The latest weather forecast calls for heavy overnight rains Friday evening into Saturday morning. That could mean the Derby will be run on a muddy track, something Lookin At Lucky and his fellow California runners accustomed to running on synthetic racing surfaces have never experienced.
And it’s possible the anticipated quick pace could fail to materialize, enabling front-running Sidney’s Candy or one of the other speedsters to shake clear of the field and leave Lookin At Lucky and the other closers with too much work to do.
But in my mind’s eye, I see Lucky’s fortunes taking a sudden turn for the brighter. The movie playing in my head goes something like this:
California-based speedsters Sidney’s Candy and Conveyance go to the front out of the gate. Super Saver is close up behind the leaders, riding the rail under inside-job specialist Calvin Borel, with American Lion, Discreetly Mine, Jackson Bend, Line of David and Paddy O’Prado in close attendance.
Gomez, meanwhile, places Lookin At Lucky midpack, in tight quarters but running comfortably. Backtalk, Dean’s Kitten, Devil May Care, Dublin, Homeboykris, Noble’s Promise and Mission Impazible are in close proximity, followed by Awesome Act, Ice Box, Make Music for Me and Stately Victor.
On the backstretch, Conveyance and Sidney’s Candy continue to show the way, with the latter racing off the hip of the leader. Gomez and Lookin At Lucky continue to bide their time in midpack, but begin to make up a little ground on the front-runners.
Rounding the far turn, Sidney’s Candy engages Conveyance and slowly edges clear of his speedy rival. American Lion and Super Saver also make a move, as the rest of the early speed brigade begins to fade.
Sidney’s Candy is 1½ lengths clear of Super Saver at the 1/8th pole, but Lookin at Lucky is now rolling on the outside. He catches Sidney’s Candy inside the 1/16th pole and pulls away to a 2-length victory, as Awesome Act rallies late to nip Super Saver for the show.
With that vision in mind and a self-imposed $100 limit, here’s how I intend to attack the race:
• A $5 exacta box: Lookin At Lucky, Sidney’s Candy, Awesome Act = $30.
• $2 exacta boxes: American Lion, Lookin At Lucky, Devil May Care; Dublin, Lookin At Lucky, Super Saver = $24.
• A $1 trifecta structured like this: Lookin At Lucky and Sidney’s Candy on top of Awesome Act, Lookin At Lucky, Sidney’s Candy and Super Saver on top of American Lion, Awesome Act, Devil May Care, Dublin, Make Music for Me, Super Saver and Stately Victor = $42
• $4 win bet on Stately Victor (a saver in the event that my mind’s eye is legally blind).
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