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Kentucky Derby Points Race Heating Up
Just over three weeks away from the 2013 Kentucky Derby, the points battle to qualify for the Run for the Roses is becoming something of a race within a race. For 2013, Churchill Downs switched from a graded-stakes earnings system to an accumulated-points system in order to qualify for one of the 20 spots in the Derby starting gate. For horses that run in the Derby Trail designated races, valuable points are awarded for first through fourth place finishes.
Orb and Verrazano top Derby points leaderboard
Tied at the top of the leaderboard with 150 points are Orb and Verrazano. These two Kentucky bred horses have been matching each other victory-for-victory, with Orb winning his last four starts, while the highly regarded Verrazano is unbeaten in four lifetime starts. The contenders that round out the current top 10 are Goldencents, Revolutionary, Lines of Battle, Vyjack, Will Take Charge, Itsmyluckyday, Governor Charlie, and Black Onyx. We love this new system.
Derby hopefuls are running out of qualifying races
At the other end of the table, seven horses sit tied with 20 points, and will likely battled it out for the last four guaranteed spots, while the rest will have to be content with waiting on the "Also Eligible" list in the hope one of the higher qualifiers withdraws. With just three prep races still to come (Blue Grass, Lexington, Derby Trial) it’s going to be an anxious couple of weeks for the owners, trainers and jockeys that are hoping to take part in the greatest two minutes in sports.
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