With many of the colts surfacing now through two qualifiers, or some races, the Cup picture is starting to become a little more readable.
This morning, All Speed Hanover (my top rated horse for the Cup as of last month), Woodstock, Sportswriter and Malicious all qualified. As expected, Noel had his two charges a little tighter this week, as per his training style. They both passed with flying colours. Last year, All Speed was the better of the two of course, and I think this year will be no different. He is solidified as a top contender for me.
On the flipside, Sportswriter was one I tabbed as my fourth rated choice last month, tepidly. I will be dropping him out of the top five after this mornings qualifier. Most handicappers will tell you he is not there, and Brian Sears echoed that sentiment this morning. "I feel he is still a few races away from being very sharp, but he does feel like a very nice horse." said Sears. Major red light.
Malicious, who ran second to Sportswriter by a length has some potential issues to overcome. Doctor Moore: "He was a little bit flat today," he explained. "I may have come back with him a little too soon. It's actually been 22 days or more since he qualified in Florida."
One More Laugh, who I have to move up to #2 in the list, is scheduled to go this weekend. He qualified so well - under no encouragement and with last quarter speed like he is a good horse - he will probably be able to carry that over. I did not have him on the list earlier, because I was worried that he finished the year a shadow of what he was in August. However, those qualifiers answered that question. If some of you have him at number one, I can not quarrel with that. He's a fast horse.
He vaults to number two in place of Rock n Roll Heaven. I did not like his qualifiers, and I did not like his Berry's Creek either.
Rockin Image (#5 in April) has really done nothing wrong, and he is in to go this weekend, which will tell us more. We'll see what he and Ideal Matters (#3 in April) are made of perhaps, when they knock heads in race 10 at the M.
My North America Cup Top Five, as of today:
1. All Speed Hanover (Daley)
2. One More Laugh (Schnittker)
3. Ideal Matters (Daley)
4. Woodstock (Daley)
5. Rockin Image (Takter)
Dropped: Rock n Roll Heaven, Sportswriter.
Last months list here
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