With last weekend’s racing schedule including the first 100-point Kentucky Derby qualifying race, there were a few big shifts on the 2021 Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard. Now just six weeks out from the Derby, the runners will continue to compete as more of these 100-point qualifiers approach. Let’s have a look at our latest Triple Crown update so you can wager against their Triple Crown odds.
Updated Triple Crown Analysis
Life is Good out with injury
One of the big developments last week had to do with the undefeated Life Is Good, who was taken off of the Triple Crown trail following a hind-end injury. The injury was discovered as the colt was exiting a March 20 work, and he is now set to undergo surgery on March 26.
Life Is Good is trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert. Despite being disappointed in the new development, especially as the runner exited the work “beautifully,” Baffert has no reservations about Life Is Good making a return in the November 6 Breeders’ Cup Championships at Del Mar Racetrack.
Hot Rod Charlie becomes leader
Following his win in last weekend’s Louisiana Derby (G2) at Fair Grounds, which awarded qualifying points on a 100-40-20-5 scale to the top four finishers, Hot Rod Charlie took the #1 spot on the leaderboard.
The 3-year-old son of Oxbow is now one of the leading Triple Crown contenders, and with 110 points, he sits well ahead of Midnight Bourbon in the #2 spot with 66.
Midnight Bourbon finished two lengths behind Hot Rod Charlie in the Louisiana Derby, picking up 40 points to move up the leaderboard. The colt entered the race following a victory in the Lecomte Stakes (G3), and he and Hot Rod Charlie ran next to each other for most of the race.
Longshot O Besos draws attention
One of the most surprising performances last weekend on the Triple Crown trail came from O Besos, the 28-1 longshot who rallied from last to finish third in the Louisiana Derby. He was only a head behind Midnight Bourbon, and with his performance, he gained 20 qualifying points and moved up to the #10 spot.
O Besos was trailed by Proxy, who had a disappointing run after many hoped for him to race more consistently. His connections tried to achieve this with the addition of blinkers, but they didn’t seem to help.
With his fourth-place run, Proxy sits in the #9 spot. He is slowly losing momentum on the Derby trail.
March 27 is set to be another big racing day on the Triple Crown trail, with the Florida Derby running at Gulfstream, the Jeff Ruby Steaks at Turfway, and the UAE Derby at Meydan Racecourse. Each one of these races is a 100-point qualifier.
There are 10 horses on the bubble as of right now, and with each only having 10 points, these races next week could have big implications. Those names include Sittin On Go, Risk Taking, Get Her Number, Caddo River, Candy Man Rocket. Big Lake, Highly Motivated, Hush of a Storm, Brooklyn Strong, and Dream Shake.
Just by winning one of the three races next weekend, any of these names could move up to the top of the 2021 Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard.