Let our experts help you handicap the day's races at Keeneland.
Please note that selections typically are available about 48 hours in advance of the race.
Mike is Keeneland’s longtime odds maker and is recognized as being one of the best handicappers in America. In addition to his duties at Keeneland, he is a racing analyst for NBC’s Thoroughbred racing coverage.
1st Race: TIME FOR MY ANGEL (#7) ran well when dropped in for a tag last out. She has the speed to make the lead and appears to be in a good spot for her maiden win. MADISON OLIVIA (#3) broke poorly last out and Julien Leparoux picks up the mount today. ELONA (#1A) can add value to the gimmicks.
2nd Race: DIVINE STORM (#6) looks like a winner but will be a short-priced favorite with Corey Lanerie picking up the mount for trainer Chris Richard. RILEY ROCKS (#1) should make the lead from his inside post and is the one to catch. K C'S CALL (#2) can complete the chalky trifecta.
3rd Race: ALZANBAQ (#1) drops in for a tag for the first time and should get a good trip from the inside post. Give him the edge in a well matched race. BIRD HUMOR (#7) has been running evenly at this level and has the tactical speed to be in contention throughout. PARK RANGER (#4) posted a solid recent work over this track and also takes the class drop.
4th Race: CREATOR (#7) closed well to finish second in his debut and posted a solid work over this track last week. Trainer Steve Asmussen figures to have him ready for a top effort this afternoon and he rates the slight edge in here. HUNTER O'RILEY (#3) also closed strongly in his debut at Saratoga and the winner of that one came back to win the Pilgrim (G3) in his next start. DISSIDENT (#5) ran in the Pilgrim and is back in against maidens today.
5th Race: NATIVE INDY (#6) had a rough trip last out and may like the cutback to six furlongs today. She could spring the mild upset in this one. PRETTY PRICELESS (#3) just missed in her last start and figures to be the one to beat. ANGELS AND ARCHES (#10) could add value to the gimmicks.
6th Race: AMAZING CHARISMA (#3) drew off to break her maiden on a muddy track here on opening Saturday. If she handles the fast surface as well she can make it two in a row with Julien Leparoux back aboard for trainer Ken McPeek. PROGNOSIS (#4) has the speed to go right to the front and comes off a game maiden win at Ellis. She is the one to catch. SOUTHERN GIRL (#6) broke her maiden at first asking at Delaware and has trained well since coming to Kentucky.
7th Race: FARZ (#10) was a game maiden winner over the Keeneland lawn at the same 1 3/16 distance as today's race. He appears to be in a good spot to make it two in a row with Shaun Bridgmohan aboard for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. VIGILANTE (#1) broke his maiden at Saratoga in August in his third career start for trainer Wayne Catalano. He is training sharply for this one and is a definite threat. GENEROUS KITTEN (#5) has won two races and can't be dismissed.
8th Race: BULL DOZER (#9) is a 7-year-old veteran who has definitely lost a step or two recently. He does drop to a career-low claiming level and should get a good trip behind the two speed runners. Give him the edge. DEFER HEAVEN (#1) and ABBAA (#6) both look like need-the-lead types who figure to hook up in the early going. If either of them makes a clear lead, he will be tough to catch.