Preakness Recap – War of Will On Top – Super Screener
Super Screener

Preakness Recap – War of Will On Top

Photo by: Scott Serio/Eclipse Sportswire

Redemption was at hand as the Super Screener Top Win pick, War of Will, traveled the same Kentucky Derby trip — pressing on the rail (the place to be on this day) tucked behind pace leader Warrior’s Charge — but when that one floated out a bit turning for home, it was all over as War of Will scooted through and prevailed.  Here’s what the Super Screener had to say about the Preakness winner prior to the race:

“Comes into the Preakness as an “A” horse, missing slightly on a few pace/speed based criteria. Horses exiting the Derby finishing in the top half of the field, while experiencing trouble, do quite well in the Preakness… Lookin at Lucky and Oxbow are recent examples. War of Will will press a modest pace, though, like the Derby, he will have plenty of company up front with four other rivals applying pressure. Scores best in what is otherwise another toss up field.”

That Super Screener top screening criteria of “…finished in the top half of the Kentucky Derby field and experienced trouble” is just so reliable that even in a year in which the top four finishers of the Derby did not make the race and only 4 Derby horses were part of the 13-horse field, a Derby horse still won the race rather easily.  Connections confirmed that War of Will will be coming back to run in the Belmont Stakes, adding more interest to the third leg of the Triple Crown races.

The Super Screener’s second choice, Owendale, just missed completing the Exacta by a nose, as that wide trip really cost him the Exacta finish and perhaps even the win.

“This is a viable contender that has the opportunity to hit the board, though the buzz is growing, so the price may not be favorable. After moving forward in every race since his debut, he submitted a peak effort in an Optional Claimer on a good/sealed surface. After that effort, connections naturally took a shot at the G2 Risen Star, but after 5 progressive moves forward, he understandably regressed — though it looks worse than it really was, as he was very wide throughout in that race spotting the winner, War of Will, about 6 lengths when it was all said and done. Connections wisely rested him and he came roaring back with an eye-catching victory in the Lexington Stakes, traveling wide throughout but showing a very impressive turn of foot late, reflected by that impressive BRIS Late Pace figure of 106. He didn’t defeat the best of this year’s 3 yr-old crop, but the best won’t be running back in this race. Rather than regress off that new lifetime top, the Super Screener is projecting another move forward off that effort.”

For what it is worth, the Super Screener Top Long Shot pick, Laughing Fox, finished a fast closing 5th coming from dead last while running wide throughout. Bodexpress was expected to press Warrior’s Charge hard throughout, adding to an even more pressured pace, but when he bucked in the gate losing his rider, that really helped Warrior’s Charge and certainly hurt the wide-running closers in this race that needed that pressured pace set up.

A closer that benefited from a perfect rail trip was the impossible-to-have-for-the-Exacta long shot, Everfast.  If you picked this horse to complete the Exacta, hats off to you as you are a candidate for handicapper of the year! Joel Rosario, wisely picked up on the rail bias and moved his horse to that rail position immediately from the outside post and just took back submitting a race that was many lengths better than anything he had previously accomplished. He along with Owendale are projected to move on to the Belmont Stakes.

It’s on to the Belmont Stakes and that one is shaping up to be a really good race, as rested Derby runners will be facing War of Will and the other top finishers in the Preakness. Stay tuned as we get to work on screening that race as the field takes shape.

Next Saturday, the spotlight returns to a track that is in recovery mode as Santa Anita will host 3 graded stakes races on the day.  The Winning Colors will be contested at Churchill Downs to complete the graded stakes action and we’ll have it all covered for you.

Until this coming weekend, Go Fast and Win!


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