Trio of Kentucky Derby Prep Races Highlight A Monster Saturday In Horse Racing

Horse Racing guru Frankie Fantasy provides his top-tier analysis for three pre-Kentucky Derby races following a huge win with his exacta play at the G2 Fountain of Youth Stakes last weekend!

We had a monster start to the Kentucky Derby Prep trail last week as we scored by hitting on our value longshot play Promises Fulfilled at 18/1 in the Fountain of Youth Stakes. In addition to returning a healthy $38.40 for every $2 dollar win bet we also gave out a whopping 115 -1 exacta as early Derby favorite Good Magic failed coming off a huge layoff. We highlighted this as the reason we could not back him at a short price! Well, in the middle of NCAA Conference Tournament weekend, we get treated to a three more Derby Prep races in the span of 22 minutes on Saturday afternoon!

G3 Gotham Stakes

  • What: $300,000 G3 Gotham Stakes
  • Where: Aqueduct Racetrack, NY
  • Race: Race 10 Post Time: 5:42 EST2:42 PST
  • When: Saturday March 10, 2018

In terms of form, three horses jump off the page: Firenze Fire , Free Drop Billy and Enticed. Free Drop Billy was a late scratch last week in the Fountain of Youth Stakes as trainer Dale Romans opted to instead try for the Kentucky Derby points in this spot rather than face Good Magic & Strike Power last week. Firenze Fire, trained by John Servis, bested a tough field in the Champagne Stakes back in October at Belmont with Free Drop Billy earning a dominating victory in the Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland.  Enticed also enters with a strong resume for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin.

Chelsea Durand

I can easily see these three rounding out a chalky trifecta but my preference in this spot is for Free Drop Billy.  Free Drop Billy is coming in fresh off one of the best races of his career with a runner-up finish in the Grade 2 Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park last month.

Two longshots to consider are #1 Dial Operator and #3 Beautiful Shot. I am very high on Dial Operator, the speed of the race, and I will be adding a nice win bet on him & hoping both if not one of these can sneak in & give us a price in the exotics.


Top Contenders:

  • #6 Free Drop Billy  (9/5) | #5 Firenze Fire (5/2) | #9 Enticed (7/2) | #3  Beautiful Shot (8/1)


  • #1 Dial Operator (10/1) 


Exacta Box: 

  • 6-5-9-1-3

Trifecta Box:

  • 6-5-9-1

Trifecta P/W Play:

  • 1,6/ 1,3,5,6,9 / 1,3,5,6,7,9

Gotham Stakes Field: (Morning Line Odds)

  1. Dial Operator – 10-1
  2. Cove Blue – 30-1
  3. Beautiful Shot– 8-1
  4. Whereshetoldmetogo – 15-1
  5. Firenze Fire – 5-2
  6. Free Drop Billy – 9-5
  7. Old Time Revival – 15-1
  8. Nine Route – 30-1
  9. Enticed – 7-2

G2 Tampa Bay Derby

  • What: $400,000 G2 Tampa Bay Derby
  • Where: Tampa Bay Downs, Fla
  • Race: Race 11 Post Time: 5:20 EST2:20 PST
  • When: Saturday March 10, 2018

World of Trouble trained by Jason Servis is ubber talented and has dominated in two of his career starts on this track winning by no less than 12 lengths in either win and must be considered to repeat his January effort in the Pasco Stakes when he crushed the field and won by nearly 14 lengths. Vinno Rossi, the son of Curlin–now adding blinkers for top trainer Todd Pletcher, is another strong contender you must consider in the win spot. Flameaway posted almost as equally impressive speed Beyer as World of Trouble when victorious in the Sam F. Davis Stakes last month–earning a career-best 106 speed figure. He did this after earning a previous 102, winning the Kitten’s Joy Stakes in his 3-year-old debut. We cant overlook Flameaway, son of Scat Daddy, winning the Bourbon Stakes in October on the main track at the same distance expected of the runners in the Tampa Bay Derby. Flameaway appears fresh and looks to be a serious contender to win for the sixth time in his eight career starts. Untamed Domain, the son of 2001 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom, is top notch on the turf, but is trying the dirt for the first time in six career starts and this could be a rough spot to be trying new things…

This race offers perhaps the best value of the three races as my expectations are the exotics pay the highest of the trio we examined. This is definitely a race to get involved in.


Top Contenders:
  • #6 World of Trouble (6/1) | #3 Vino Rosso (4/1) | #5 Flameaway (3/1) | #7  Untamed Domain  (6/1)  


  • #10 Quip (20/1)


Exacta Box: 

  • 7-3-5-9-10

Trifecta Box:

  • 7-3-5-10

Trifecta P/W Play:

  • 3,5,7 / 3,5,7 / 2,3,5,7,10

Tampa Bay Derby Field: (Morning Line Odds)

  1. Arazi Like Move – 50-1
  2. Tiz Mischief – 8-1
  3. Vino Rosso– 4-1
  4. Grandpa Knows Best – 30-1
  5. Flameaway – 3-1
  6. World of Trouble – 5-1
  7. Untamed Domain – 6-1
  8. Quip – 20-1
  9. Caloric – 50-1

G2 San Felipe Stakes

  • What: $400,000 G2 San Felipe Stakes
  • Where: Santa Anita, Ca
  • Race: Race 6 Post Time: 5:30 EST2:30 PST
  • When: Saturday March 10, 2018

This is shaping up as the race of 2018 (weather permitting) with a showdown between Bolt d’Oro and McKinzie –two well respected horses that rank near the top of almost every list of Vegas future Derby pools. These two boys could easily be the fastest mares with Derby hopes. Bolt d’Oro’s scored an eye-popping 8-length victory in the FrontRunner Stakes here at Santa Anita last September with McKinzie entering the San Felipe with speed figures that jump off the form in every start of his career including what turned into a cupcake stroll at Santa Anita in January also scoring by nearly 8-lengths.

For those of you who follow me at ScoutFantasySports know that last week, one of the major reasons why I faded Good Magic was because of the huge layoff–well we are faced with that situation once again. Bolt d’Oro has not run since a 3rd place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile back in November and now may face an off track with rain in the forecast–I am going to toss off the top two spots and hope he bounces and enables us to cash some nice exotics.. In addition, for some odd reason this lightening fast horse has broken slowly from the starting gate in three of his four starts. A slow start from the rail could put him behind the eight ball–in the form of equally as fast McKinzie–in the San Felipe.

For this reason alone, I am backing Bob Baffert’s McKinzie for the win spot in this massive showdown. My two longshots to consider are Aquila & Peace who I hope can maybe sneak into the exacta & the trifecta should Bolt bounce and miss the board completely. 

*If it rains, which is possible from forecasts, Aycara is one to look at hard and a must add on all tickets on an off track.


Top Contenders: 
  • #4 McKinzie (8/5) | #2 Lombo (8/1) | #3 Ayacara (8/1) | #1  Bolt d’Oro  (2/1) 


  • #5 Aquila (15/1) | #7 Peace (15/1)


Exacta Box: 

  • 4-2-5-7

Trifecta P/W Play:

  • 4/ 2,3,5,7 / 1,3,5,7,8

San Felipe Stakes Field: (Morning Line Odds)

  1. Bolt d’Oro – 2-1
  2. Lombo – 8-1
  3. Ayacara– 8-1
  4. McKinzie – 8-5
  5. Aquila – 15-1
  6. Calexman – 30-1
  7. Peace – 15-1
  8. Kanthaka – 4-1


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About Frank Taddeo 53 Articles
Frankie is a Villanova alumni who created the first Casino Fantasy Sports program in Vegas book. He was the 2019 FFWC 10K Top Gun Champion & 2017 + 2018 Back-to-Back Top 100 Players in World Invit. Champ! He is a sports fanatic, a Vegas whisperer, and a horse racing expert handicapper!