Ever a Derby Winner With Better Credentials Than Nyquist?Read this article
Alto Belle Seeks to Hit a High Note in $100,000 Busanda Stakes
On Sunday at Aqueduct, the featured race is the $100,000 Busanda Stakes. Restricted to three-year-olds, the race has been carded at a mile and seventy yards and has drawn a field of nine fillies.
Alto Belle has been installed as the morning line favorite in the wide open field at morning line odds of 5-2 for trainer Todd Pletcher. A bay daughter of Trappe Shot, she has been on the board in two of her three starts and will be trying to earn her second career victory. She is stepping up to stakes competition for the first time after breaking her maiden in her third start at Aqueduct last time out. Irad Ortiz, Jr. will be aboard and they will break from post position five.
Flora Dora looking for second stakes win
Second choice at morning line odds of 3-1 is Flora Dora for trainer Marialice Coffey. A chestnut daughter of First Dude, she was purchased for $87,000 as a yearling and has one win from four starts which came against state-bred stakes competition in the Florida Sire My Dear Girl Stakes as a juvenile. She will be trying for her second career victory and will break from the rail under jockey Jose Ortiz.
Sophomore debut for Invite
Also in the field at morning line odds of 8-1 is Invite for Bill Mott. A bay daughter of Include, she will be competing with Lasix for the first time and will be making her three-year-old debut. As a juvenile, she broke her maiden in her second career start and went on to finish sixth in the Demoiselle Stakes (G2) in her stakes debut. Junior Alvarado will be aboard and they will break from post position four.
For all the negative buzz about Nyquist's average speed figures and vulnerability, the newly crowned and much-deserving 2016 Kentucky Derby winner might just have the most impeccable credentials of any Derby winner in the illustrious history of the race - and certainly in the modern era.
On Friday at Churchill Downs, the field has been set for the 142nd running of the $1 million Kentucky Oaks. The Grade 1 event, carded at a mile and an eighth, has drawn a full field of fourteen three-year-old fillies with one listed as an also-eligible.
With the final round of Kentucky Derby preps in the books, it seems improbable, but arguable that the March 12 Tampa Derby was the most useful and review-worthy of the 24 official point-bearing races in 2016.