Lots has already been written and said about Uncle Mo’s loss in the Wood. I can’t say I am totally surprised. He has had a light- no make that – a non- existent campaign so far this year and we are 4 weeks out from the Derby. The Wood was really his only test in 5 months -I can’t count the Timely Writer - and he failed.
Either he hasn’t progressed from 2 to 3, or something is wrong in Paradise. Todd P. did not forget how to get a horse fit, I can tell you that. This is NOT a question of fitness.
Anyhow, Toby’s Corner and runner-up Arthur’s Tale both ran improved races and seem to be headed in the direction you want to see with a 3 year old this time of year. Both have the pedigrees to want to go further.
On the West Coast, ok, I don’t know what to say about how Victor rode Midnight Interlude, the winner of the Santa Anita Derby. Yes, he won, but is it me? … Did he have to ride him SO HARD from the top of the stretch to the wire, I mean, he got the job done, but for a lightly raced colt, will that effort take its toll come Derby Day?
Comma To the Top ran huge too. Has he peaked? Can he put his body on the line again, in a month?
I liked Mr. Commons’ performance. Mike Smith asked him several questions in the race, and he had the answers. He came up a little short, but that was a sneaky good ride.
The very best horse that ran this weekend could very well have been Fox Hill Farm’s 3 year old filly, Joyful Victory. A short field in the Fantasy but Arienza, made her work a little and that’s just what she needed to set her up for the Oaks. She won with plenty left, and her win was as solid and stylish as anything I’ve seen this year.
Mike Smith has his Oaks filly, and I have my Oaks filly too. I predict a joyful victory in the Oaks for trainer Larry Jones and owner Rick Porter. I think it’s meant to be.