If you’re planning to play Churchill Downs on Friday, allow me to direct your attention to Race 5. A maiden special weight event on the grass for 3yos and up featuring your average, ordinary field of colts and geldings, most of whom last raced at Ellis or Kentucky Downs. You’ve seen races like this a million times, right?
Making his career debut for Juddmonte Farms and trainer Bill Mott is 10-Sailing Solo. He’s the lone first-time starter in the field. His daddy is Smart Strike. His mommy is the brilliant Proviso. Hopefully you remember her. If not, just know that in 2010, she rattled off four consecutive Grade 1 wins on the grass, including a win in the Kilroe against the boys. Though she was retired that year, she has only given birth to three foals, none of whom have raced. Until now. Sailing Solo is her first ever starter (I think I’m right about this. I literally just called Juddmonte Farms in Lexington 20 minutes ago to ask if she has had a foal hit the track. Someone is supposed to call me back. I’ll update this post if they do. LoneSpeed doesn’t have the clout of, say, Daily Racing Form…..YET!!!!)
Now, we all know that Bill Mott is not exactly known for getting his runners to win first out. See the stats above. But if bloodlines count for anything, then Sailing Solo might just roll over this field of experienced runners based purely on DNA. But I don’t think we should expect 10-1. I mean, that would be crazy. Mott actually wins with 9% of his first time starters. And I assure you they aren’t all bred this well. So taking 10-1 on any Mott FTS is a reasonable proposition. I see Sailing Solo leaving the gate at about 9-2. From a betting standpoint, you can make the call yourself.
Now, watch Proviso win the Kilroe…