Belmont Park and Aqueduct will open their doors at 10 a.m. today and tomorrow for the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby. The only wagering available at that time will be with Self Service machines, which open at 10:15 a.m. The first race at Churchill Downs goes off at 10:30 a.m. At 11:15, wagering will be available with live tellers. Advance wagering for the Derby will be available today. Patrons can also bet the Oaks/ Derby double.
Overnight thunderstorms left the main track sloppy and all turf races were switched to the main track. That caused the Milesius Stakes, originally carded for a mile and a quarter on the inner turf course with a field of eight horses, to be run on the main track at a mile and an eighth with a field of three. Redeemed, a main track only horse, battled for the lead with Birdrun, put that one away on the far turn and basically coasted down the stretch to win by 9 3/4 lengths.
FOURTH RACE: With a carryover of $102,960.44 coming into the day, patrons bet $319,840 into the Pick Six pool hoping to cash the winning ticket. Speed had raced well in the first three races and here, D’oro Princess stalked the early pace, took over the lead from Bid a Moon turning for home and drew away to win by 4 1/2 lengths. The favorite players were eliminated right away as favored Hard Life was never a contender, finishing third.
FIFTH RACE: As the field prepared to enter the gate, Suroof acted up, dumping Junior Alvarado and ran off, eventually becoming a late scratch. Once the race went off, Lindz Winz went out for the lead but was soon joined by the longest shot in the race, Celtic Chant. Lindz Winz fell back on the far turn and Celtic Chant tried to draw off and was chased by Revenue. Despite drifting out in the stretch, Celtic Chant still had enough left and won by two lengths at 8-1. Favored Smart Stride chased the pace and had nothing in the stretch, barely holding on to third.
NINTH RACE: There were three horses that would have caused a Pick Six carryover but that was not going to happen as Special Action took the lead on the far turn and drew away to gain the victory. Favored Thisskysabeauty was never a factor and finished fifth.
Winners paid $40,749
Cons. (5 of 6) winners each receives $247.50
- end of story -
Kentucky Derby, Derby, Celtic Chant, Kentucky Oaks, Lindz Winz, Self Service