The Wood: This is a match race
by Geir Stabell (email@example.com) / Globeform (http://www.globeform.com)
Last update: 2007-04-20 03:41:56 (First published: 2007-04-06 08:13:35 )
Aqueduct 7 April: Two high profile contenders for the Kentucky Derby (G1) overshadow five others in the Wood Memorial Stakes (G1).
Nobiz Like Shobiz, coming off a close third to the subsequent Florida Derby (G1) winner Scat Daddy at Gulfstream Park, is set to clash with the horse who lost by just a nose to Street Sense at Tampa Bay Downs, Any Given Saturday. They are head and shoulders above the rest and any exacta but one filled by these two, would be a shocker. But who will walk away as this season’s second Grade One winning 3-year-old colt?
THE WOOD MEMORIAL (G1)
Aqueduct 7 April 2007 – 9 furlongs dirt
Top ranked horse on 100, with others ranked
down in pounds (1 length = 2lbs).
Horses presented with best Globeform, sires, riders.
A ”+” after horse indicates improvement expected.
100 – ANY GIVEN SATURDAY (Distorted Humor) / J Velazquez
..98 – NOBIZ LIKE SHOBIZ (Albert the Great) + / C Velasquez
..86 – COWTOWN CAT (Distorted Humor) + / F Jara
..86 – SUMMER DOLDRUMS (Street Cry) / M Luzzi
..83 – SIGHTEEING (Pulpit) / J Castellano
...? – REPTILIAN SMARTS (Include) / D Flores
...? – FLASHSTORM (Storm Cat) / J Jacinto
Any Given Saturday ran his best race to date when just pipped by the Kentucky Derby favorite Street Sense in the Tampa Bay Derby (G3) last time out. He may have held fitness advantage over the reappearing Street Sense – after winning the Sam F Davis a month earlier – but he also went wide when Street Sense was saving ground by the rail. Losing by a nose to the current champion is no mean feat, and the pair finished well clear of the rest – in a course record time.
A repeat of that form will make Any Given Saturday a Grade One winner this Saturday – but that is not what is most likely to happen. What’s most likely to happen is that the Pletcher trainee improves again. He really does look like a solid bet.
Nobiz Like Shobiz adds blinkers, after failing to live up to the ’hype’ – and failing to keep his head straight under pressure – in the Holy Bull Stakes (G3), which he won, and the Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2), where he lost. He was third, 1 ½ lengths behind Scat Daddy, who gave the form a boost when winning the Florida Derby (G1). For whatevr reason, Nobiz Like Shobiz ran better in his seasonal debut, beating Drums of Thunder readily in the one-mile Holy Bull. His best race to date, however, was last year’s Remsen Stakes (G2) here at Aqueduct. It was also over 9 furlongs, and a return to this track and distance makles it hard to come up with excuses if he fails to fire once more. He burst away at the top of the lane in the Remsen to beat Zanjero by 6 ½ lengths. Zanjero is not a G1 horse but is not that bad either, and if Nobiz Like Shobiz can reproduce such form he will win big races also in 2007.
Cowtown Cat, who had Summer Doldrums 2 ½ lengths behind him when winning the Gotham (G3), is also entered for the Illinois Derby (G2) at Hawthorne. Summer Doldrums would meet him on 4lbs better terms if he runs here, but Cowtown Cat is the more likely stayer and should be first past the post again. Of these two.
A: 1 ANY GIVEN SATURDAY
B: 2 NOBIZ LIKE SHOBIZ
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