Saturday’s second division of the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park initially attracted eleven 2020 Kentucky Derby hopefuls; however, nine will leave the gate upon the scratches of Saratogian and Fast Enough. The 3-year-old colts and geldings will contest 1 1/18-miles worth 100 qualifying points to the victor.
Post time for the second division of the 2020 Arkansas Derby is 6:43 pm CT at Oaklawn Park. The track will be fast.
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#7 SILVER PROSPECTOR (10-1) (+1000)
Pros: Silver Prospector is bred to run all day. He has a good/bad race cycle dating back to last October and lost his last race.
Cons: Silver Prospector threw a clunker in the Rebel (G2), finishing a dozen lengths behind Nadal.
The Play: Silver Prospector can settle behind the speed and will be closing with a rush down the stretch. He is a logical longshot win contender. Use him on top and underneath on your tickets.
#5 NADAL (5-2) (+250)
Pros: The Bob Baffert trainee is undefeated in three starts.
Cons: The confirmed front runner will have plenty of company on the lead. His Brisnet late-pace speed figures are low, and nine furlongs could be at the top of his distance range.
The Play: Have to respect the connections. Use him on top and underneath on your tickets.
#4 KING GUILLERMO (3-1) (+300)
Pros: King Guillermo upset the Tampa Bay Derby (G2) with a huge front-running effort. His pedigree indicates that he will love nine furlongs.
Cons: The second division of the Arkansas Derby is filled with front-running speed. King Guillermo ran a career-best Brisnet speed figure in his debut, and he could regress.
The Play: He could be right there if the favorite stubs a hoof. Use him on top and underneath on your tickets.
#11 WELLS BAYOU (7-2) (+350)
Pros: Wells Bayou has won or placed in all three starts this year on the lead. He proved in the Louisiana Derby that he can carry his speed 1 3/16-miles.
Cons: Wells Bayou will have other speed types to his inside. He only wins when he has a clear lead in the stretch.
The Play: I like this guy, but I’m concerned about his outside post and the fact that he only wins when he is alone on the lead. Exotics.
#10 FARMINGTON ROAD (12-1) (+1200)
Pros: Farmington Road’s speed figure and finish position improved in his last two starts. He will close into a hot pace. This is his third consecutive start at nine furlongs.
Cons: Farmington Road once again draws a wide post, and his closing running style practically guarantees that he’ll be very wide around the turn.
The Play: Have to respect the duo of Todd Pletcher and Javier Castellano. I don’t think Farmington Road can win, but he can certainly shore up the lower exotics.
#3 STORM THE COURT (6-1) (+600)
Pros: Storm the Court was part of the superfecta in both starts this year.
Cons: The Peter Eurton trainee lost his starts by a combined eight lengths in small fields. The only time he wins is if he is setting the pace.
The Play: Storm the Court is brave and tough to pass if he is a pacesetter. But there’s plenty of speed in here, and he is suspect. Use him for lower exotics if you’re placing multiple bets.
#1 FINNICK THE FIERCE (15-1) (+1500)
Pros: The one-eyed gelding has earned a check each time that he has drawn the rail. He was placed first in his last race after the winner was disqualified.
Cons: Class is suspect. Finnick the Fierce has hit the board in one of three starts at the graded stakes level.
The Play: He’s a one-run closer and could hit the lower exotics. Use him if you’re placing multiple bets. Otherwise, pass.
#6 CODE RUNNER (50-1) (+5000)
Pros: The later-maturing Code Runner has hit the board in five of eight starts.
Cons: Code Runner just broke his maiden last out in what was his eighth career start. He has spent his career at second-tier tracks facing lesser company than what he will meet here.
The Play: Pass.
#9 TAISHAN (15-1) (+1500)
Pros: Taishan had a wide trip in the nine-furlong Oaklawn Stakes, yet still finished third.
Cons: Taishan had the lead in the stretch of the Oaklawn Stakes, but couldn’t sustain his drive. He lost ground, finishing 3 3/4-lengths behind the winner.
The Play: Taishan will get another wide trip. Note that he finished a combined 20 lengths out of it in both graded stakes attempts. Pass.
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