The $400,000 Springboard Mile at Remington Park on Friday is a points-scoring race for the Kentucky Derby.
It features a quality nine-horse field, headed by betting online favorite Make It Big, who could be one of the early Derby elects.
It won’t be easy for the Florida native, who comes up against the likes Concept, Bye Bye Bobby and Classic Moment.
Favorite is Versatile
Bettors love backing versatile Thoroughbreds and Make It Big fits the bill.
The Saffie Joseph-trained son of Neolithic was dominant on debut at Gulfstream when scoring by 8½ lengths, but not everything went to plan second-up.
He missed the start off an inside draw, but the quality 2-year-old mustered to score by 2¼ lengths.
Florida form is usually taken with a grain of salt in the Derby lead-up races, but Make It Big could be special. Joseph believes it will be a big test at Remington Park, but running around two turns could help.
“He acts like he wants to go two turns,” Joseph told DRF.com. “It’s a big test. Obviously, they have to do it first. Until they do it, you never know. But he acts like more distance shouldn’t be a problem.
“His first race, I thought he would come from behind and he showed speed, went wire to wire. The second race, he didn’t break that good from the one hole and came from behind. He’s shown the ability to adapt, which is a good thing.”
Horse racing betting markets have Make It Big at 7-2 to win the Springboard Mile. It’s a fair price for a promising runner and we wouldn’t leave him off our tickets.
We expect plenty of money to come for the favorite on race day, so locking in the early odds is a sound betting strategy.
Asmussen Pair Has Winning Credentials
Trainer Steven Asmussen has a two-pronged attack with Concept and Classic Moment.
The juveniles have been well-backed to win, with Classic Moment edging out his stablemate narrowly.
Classic Moment finished third on debut at Keeneland before heading to Churchill Downs and breaking maidens impressively. The son of Classic Empire should have strengthened up nicely from that effort and the sportsbook is keeping him safe.
He’s currently on the second line of betting at 4-1, ahead of stablemate Concept at 5-1.
Concept has had four starts for a win and a placing. He started his career with a third placing at Lone Star Park before struggling at Prairie Meadows. However, he improved quickly to win at Remington Park.
Having winning experience on the track is ideal and his effort for fourth in the Clever Trevor Stakes is a good form guide.
Bettors should always respect runners from the Asmussen stable and they should test Big It Big in the straight.
Include Osbourne and Bye Bye Bobby
Osbourne might not be the most high-profile runner in the Springboard Mile, but he has a chance to win.
The Ron Moquett-owned and trained colt comes off a maiden win at Churchill Downs, which holds him in good stead.
He is nominated for the Smarty Jones at Oaklawn Park next month, so he’s on track for a potential start in much bigger races.
Bye Bye Bobby is another last start winner and trainer Todd Fincher believes he should run a good race, despite facing some hurdles for the first time.
“He’s on a new track, he’s going to be running under the lights and he’s going to be going around two turns,” Fincher said. “He’s not a super aggressive horse, but he does rise to the occasion, so I expect him to run good.”
Any runner using Lasix won’t be allocated Kentucky Derby points, but Fincher has no problem taking Bye Bye Bobby off the highly controversial medication.
“I believe it’s the one medication they should never mess with, but that’s the way it looks like it’s going” Fincher said. “If we get down to that position, I don’t have any problem taking him off.”
Osbourne and Bye Bye Bobby have been well-found in betting markets and should be included in trifecta wagers.