• Profile of a Derby Winner

    POSTED Jan 17, 2014


    With the Kentucky Derby just around the corner, now is the perfect time to start thinking about what to look for in a Derby winner. OK, OK, perhaps I exaggerate when I say “just around the corner,” but, hey, I like to be prepared.

    And one of the best ways to prepare for the Kentucky Derby is to look at the traits of former winners of the big race. So I scoured my database of Derby winners since 1992 and here’s what I found:

    1) 20 of 22 Derby winners (91 percent) recorded a Brisnet speed figure of 100 or greater prior to triumphing in the Bluegrass State.

    2) Nearly 2/3 of all Derby winners captured at least one race by three lengths or more as a juvenile. More than half (55 percent) won at least one race by five lengths or more as a two-year-old.

    3) 68 percent of Derby winners won a route (one mile or greater) race as a juvie.

    4) Close to half (45 percent) of all Derby winners were stakes-placed over a route of ground as a two-year-old.

    5) 14 Derby champs (64 percent) were favored in at least one of their first two lifetime races.

    6) Just three of 22 Derby winners trailed by more than five lengths at the first call of their final prep race.

    7) Over 3/4 (77 percent) of all Derby winners earned a negative early speed ration (ESR) in their last race.

    8) Half of all Derby winners won a route race by at least three lengths as a two-year-old.

    9) 91 percent of all Derby winners broke their maidens as two-year-olds.

    10) 17 of 22 (77 percent) of all Derby champions recorded a late speed ration of -10 or greater in their final prep. Only Mine That Bird (2009) earned an LSR of -15 or less in its final prep race.

    Early Speed Ration (ESR): A measurement of a horse’s early energy expenditure in relation to the total race requirements. The lower the figure, the greater the horse’s early exertion in that event.

    -15= Demanding.
    -10= Brisk.
      -5= Moderate.
       0= Soft.

    Late Speed Ration (LSR): A measurement of a horse’s late energy expenditure in relation to the total race requirements. The higher the figure, the greater the horse’s late exertion in that event. Because late speed is calculated at a time when a horse is being asked for his/her maximum effort, LSRs can be a great indication of form as well.

       0= Excellent.
      -5= Good.
    -10= Fair.
    -15= Poor.

    Pace Profile: A simple comparison between a horse’s LSR and the ESR of the race in which it was earned. Positive profiles are greatly desired.

    Note: ESRs and LSRs recorded on turf or all-weather surfaces tend to vary by 5-10 points from those garnered on dirt tracks.
  • 13 comments:

    JMS in the D said...

    Derek:

    In this years field, there are no horses with a win at a route of a mile or greater at two who also have a 100 Bris. If you could only use one of those two angles, which would it be?

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