Sunland Derby Post Race Analysis - Super Screener
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Sunland Derby Post Race Analysis

SUPER SCREENING THE KENTUCKY DERBY PREPS
G3 Sunland Derby

Bob Baffert’s charges have enjoyed a lot of success in this race over the years and his “B” player, #2 Lord Nelson will be trying to earn some badly needed Kentucky Derby qualifier points as he is currently on the outside looking in sitting at 28th with 6 points. Post time favorite will be another Californian, #1 Firing Line, out of the Simon Callaghan barn with the veteran Hall-of-Famer, Gary Stevens aboard. This colt, too, is on the outside looking in currently at #26 with 8 Kentucky Derby qualifying points. A win here for either of the favorites assures them a spot in the gate on the first Saturday in May. Currently #1 Firing Line is ranked #10 on the 2015 Horse Racing Nation Derby rankings while #2 Lord Nelson has sunk to 29th place. http://www.horseracingnation.com/p/c/kentucky_derby_2015_contenders.

The projected pace in this Kentucky Derby prep is for something softer than par with #6 Tiznow R J taking command early and enjoying easier going than his last two but there will be pressure. #1 Firing Line, #4 Why Two and #8 Dirt Monster will be the trio applying that pressure throughout.

The Super Screener is projecting #1 Firing Line as the clear winner with #2 Lord Nelson and #6 Tiznow R J the duo most likely to hit the board. #3 Where’s the Moon and #4 Why Two can make an impact underneath as well and the latter colt is our top Super Screener long shot pick in the race.

This prep comes up a bit stronger than the Spiral Stakes being run on Saturday but #1 Firing Line would have to submit a big move forward today to contend for a top half finish in the Kentucky Derby. Other than #1 Firing Line, there are no other potential impact horses in here to speak of which makes this a pretty weak prep.

The Super Screener will favor horses with two-turn route experience, early energy distribution profiles, shippers (which is more than half the field), favorable progressions in form cycle, strong works and no more than two starts in 2015.

Rating the field, we come up with the following Super Screener assessment:

WIN CONTENDERS

#1 Firing Line 3-5

BOARD HITTERS

#2 Lord Nelson 3-1
#6 Tiznow R J
#4 Why Two

Let’s break down the G3 Sunland Derby and assess the quality of this Derby Prep race:

Sunland Park– G3 Sunland Derby – 1 1/8 Miles
Field Size = 8
Number of Graded Stakes Winners: 1
Number of Graded Stakes Placed: 3
Number of Graded Stakes Starters: 4
BRIS Pace Par: First Call = 91; Second Call = 97; Final = 97
Projected Pace: First Call = 91; Second Call = 95; Final = 101
Energy Distribution Profile of Field: Pressers dominate
Morning Line Favorite: Firing Line (CURRENT HRN RANKING: #10)
Super Screener Top Three Picks: Firing Line, Lord Nelson, Tiznow R J
Hit-the-Board Bomber Pick: Why Two

SUPER SCREENER QUALITY RATING = C-

Notes: Not much to get excited about though it will be interesting to see how the “other” California starters shake out in this race. This is Firing Line and Lord Nelson’s race to lose and if they do, the Super Screener quality rating could move even lower when we do our post-race recap.

POST RACE RECAP

In the end it was all Firing Line as projected.  While he didn’t beat much he did post some very impressive and very balanced BRIS pace and speed figures.   He will be an underdog in the Kentucky Derby and certainly a pace factor but he has some sustainability which makes him one serious presser that may not fade away in the long Churchill Downs stretch.

CHART: http://www.equibase.com/static/chart/pdf/SUN032215USA11.pdf

WINNER: Firing Line
BRIS PACE/FINAL PARS: 1st Call = 91; 2nd Call = 97; Final = 97
BRIS PROJECTED PACE/FINAL PARS: 1st Call = 91; 2nd Call = 95: Final = 101
BRIS ACTUAL PACE/FINAL PARS: 1st Call = 99 ; 2nd Call = 104 ; Final = 101
TRACK BIAS: None
TOUGH TRIP: None
IMPRESSIVE EFFORT: Firing Line
SUPER SCREENER PRE-RACE QUALITY RATING: C-
SUPER SCREENER POST-RACE QUALITY RATING: C