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Antony's Eleven

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Welcome to "Anthony's Eleven," your source for anything and everything leading up to Kentucky Derby 139 on May 4 at historic Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. In the coming weeks, Anthony Stabile, best known for picking 2003 Kentucky Derby winner Funny Cide at odds of over 12-1, will break down the top contenders for this years Run for the Roses, exclusively on VegasInsider.com, culminating on Friday, May 3th with an extensive analysis of every runner that steps into the gate for the most exciting two minutes in sports. On both May 3rd and May 4th, Kentucky Oaks and Derby Day, you'll be able to purchase Stabile's Pick Packs, full of selections and plays for two of racings' most exciting days of the year.

Breakdown
Rank Horse Trainer Jockey Next Race Pool 2 Odds
1 Verrazano Todd Pletcher John Velazquez Tampa Bay Derby (3/9 at TB) 10/1
2 Orb Shug McGaughey John Velazquez Undecided 12/1
3 Normandy Invasion Chad Brown Jose Lezcano Wood Memorial (4/6 at Aqu) 15/1
4 Uncaptured Mark Casse Miguel Mena Spiral (3/23 at TP) 30/1
5 Flashback Bob Baffert Julien Leparoux San Felipe (3/9 at SA) 12/1
6 My Name is Michael Bill Mott Joel Rosario Tampa Bay Derby (3/9 at TB) 3/1 (field)
7 Overanalyze Todd Pletcher John Velazquez Gotham (3/2 at Aqu) 20/1
8 Delhomme Todd Pletcher Undecided Rebel (3/16 at OP) 50/1
9 Super Ninenty Nine Bob Baffert Rafael Bejarano Arkansas Derby (4/13 at OP) 10/1
10 Goldencents Doug O'Neill Kevin Krigger San Felipe (3/9 at SA) 20/1
11 Code West Bob Baffert Martin Garcia Undecided 20/1

The lone stop on the Kentucky Derby trail this week is in New York as a dozen sophomores are set to duke it out in the $400,000 G3 Gotham at Aqueduct going 1 1/16 miles on the main track.
 
In a stunning development, trainer Todd Pletcher figures to have the post time favorite in G2 Remsen winner OVERANALYZE. Can you imagine that?!?!
 
Sarcasm aside, Overanalyze is a deserving favorite in the Gotham, coming off a mostly prosperous juvenile campaign in which he won three of his five starts. After breaking his maiden in his debut, Overanalyze was fourth in the G2 Hopeful behind stablemate and eventual juvenile Eclipse champ Shanghai Bobby.
 
Overanalyze rebounded nicely in the G2 Futurity at Belmont, overcoming a poor start and five wide journey to draw clear in the stretch by a convincing 3 ¼ lengths. Next out in the G3 Iroquois at Churchill, Overanalyze had one of the most hidden brutal trips you’ve ever seen, bottled up for most of the way and never getting a chance to roll yet still managed to finish third behind runaway winner Uncaptured.
 
The Remsen, however, was his shining moment. Rating just off the pace of fellow Pletcher trainee Delhomme looked like a polished older horse, battling between horses through most of the stretch before putting away Delhomme and holding off a hard charging Normandy Invasion to win by just a nose.
 
Overanalyze returned to the worktab in mid-January and hasn’t missed a beat since. Pletcher has done a great job so far keeping his army of three-year-olds separate, which also gives him the luxury of having his go to guy John Velazquez aboard Overanalyze in here. They’ll break from post 12.
 
Vyjack will look to keep his perfect record intact for trainer Rudy Rodriguez but will do so with a new rider on his back as his connections have opted to replace Cornelio Velasquez, who was aboard for all three of his prior victories, with Joel Rosario. After breaking his maiden at almost 18-1, Vyjack splashed home through the slop to win a minor stakes in his second start.
 
Last out in his graded stakes debut, Vyjack was rank for most of the way while attending the pace in the one mile and seventy yard G2 Jerome, then was bothered in deep stretch by second place finisher Siete de Oros yet still managed to scratch out a head victory It was off that effort that the connections felt Rosario would be better suited to get their charge to relax a bit better towards the front end. Vyjack will break from post 8.
 
The aforementioned Siete de Oros will be making his third trip up the New Jersey Turnpike from his Parx base in less than two months while trying to grab an elusive New York stakes win for his trainer Ramon Preciado. Siete de Oros followed up his rough and tumble second place finish in the Jerome with an equally game third place finish in the G3 Withers last out, won by Revolutionary. Much improved in his last two starts since adding blinkers, Siete de Oros will be reunited with jockey Angel Arroyo for this. They’ll break from post7.
 
Escapefromreality is another who put forth an amazing effort in defeat in the Withers, briefly grabbing the lead in the final furlong before getting nailed in the last two strides. David Cohen will climb aboard Escapefromreality for the first time from post two for trainer Dom Schettino.
 
Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin will take three shots at the Gotham with entrymates Transparent and Now and Then as well as Elnaawi. Transparent added blinkers two back when second to Revolutionary before overcoming backstretch trouble last out to break his maiden in the easiest fashion. Irad Ortiz rides from post 5. Junior Alvarado will pilot Now and Then from post 6 as he stretches out in his stakes debut after winning going six furlongs in his debut. Elnaawi, a half-brother to G1 winner To Honor and Serve adds Lasix after breaking his maiden at second asking last out in his two turn debut. Channing Hill rides from post 9.
 
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Still a maiden, Champion Boy will break from the rail under Eddie Castro for trainer Juan Carlos Guerrero. Champion Boy was fifth in the Withers most recently. Ore Pass ships up from Maryland for trainer Michael Trombetta off a minor stakes score at Laurel. Two for three overall, Ore Pass will be ridden by Julien Pimentel from post 3.
 
Amerigo Vespucci was third in the Jerome before adding blinkers when fourth in the Withers last out. Erick Rodriguez rides for Tim Tullock from post 4. Sky Captain ships up from Florida making his stakes debut for trainer Mark Casse having chased some tough allowance foes at Gulfstream. Miguel Mena rides from post 10. West Hills Giant adds blinkers and stretches out off a third place finish in a minor stakes over this course for trainer John Terranova. Jose Espinoza rides from post 11.
 
Since we only had one race to cover this week, let’s take a look at Pool 2 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager that runs from Friday, March 1st at noon through Sunday, March 3d at 6PM.
 
Two weeks into Anthony’s Eleven and this will remarkably be the first words written about head honcho VERRAZANO. In my 14 year career as a public handicapper I have picked a Todd Pletcher trained horse to win the Kentucky Derby once, Dunkirk, back in 2009 and he was actually a co-selection with Pioneer of the Nile. I’m a strong believer that Pletcher is not the best at getting a horse ready for the 1 ¼ miles on the first Saturday in May and even his lone winner, 2010 victor Super Saver, was greatly aided by a sloppy Churchill Downs surface.
 
With all of that said, I think Verrazano is absolutely the real deal. I know he has beaten anything but it’s the way he does it. I was able to get him at 11-1 in Pool 1 and would jump on him again if he’s anywhere near that price.
 
If you are a super-duper Pletcher neighsayer, NORMANDY INVASION, ORB and UNCAPTURED are the routes I’d take. Orb, who came from far back to win the G2 Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream last Saturday, really seems to have put it all together for his Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey. Simply put, horses just don’t make up that kind of ground at Gulfstream, no matter how fast they go early.
 
Normandy Invasion had a brutal trip in the G2 Risen Star at Fair Grounds last out and I’m hoping to see a new rider in his next start which should come in the G1 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct on April 6th for trainer Chad Brown.
 
Uncaptured is already a dual stakes winner at Churchill for trainer Mark Casse but has battled some foot issues this winter which have delayed his return to the races. Still, he figures to be a juicy price and the talent is surely there.
 
Finally, a quick word about the Kentucky Oaks. I firmly believe that trainer Bill Mott will win the Oaks this year, I just don’t know what filly will get the job done. You have four options in this pool, the only one offered for the Oaks. They are Calistoga, Close Hatches, Emollient and Flashy Gray. I’m leaning towards the middle pair but will likely make a token wager on all four.
 
Prep Play of the Day
 
Well we started the year off on the right foot, hitting both the exacta box and trifecta part-wheel in the Fountain of Youth. This week in the Gotham, Elnaawi is an intriguing sort. Play $20 to win on him then make a $1 trifecta part wheel using Elnaawi with the McLaughlin entry, Siete de Oros and Overanalyze with all the horses. Then make a $1 trifecta box using Elnaawi, Siete de Oros, Overanalyze and the McLaughlin Entry. Bets total $71. Good luck!!!
Bankroll: plus $142
 

  
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