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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

WEBN Stakes: Long Road to Derby from Here

2/3/2012

By Greg “The Commish” Johnson
The Downey Profile


It is generally hard for me to get too excited about some of the top prospects in this years’ running of the WEBN Stakes at Turfway Park, but hey, you never know. Even a long road to Churchill is still a road.

Phantom Fury has looked good in his last two, with noted improvement in both the class jump and the stretchout to a mile. His 11-length score in the $50K Optional Claimer on Jan. 12 earned him the top last race Beyer Speed Figure of 85, considerably better than most in this field. The time in that race was 1:42.40. Hmm. Well, there’s your horse to beat.

The beaten favorite in that Jan. 12 race was Tigerdude, who may have regressed a bit after taking a maiden 1 1/16-mile fray just a few weeks earlier for fun. This son of Aptitude has a second-best-of-nineteen four-furlong move at Keeneland in prep for this, and the fact he has been well supported in all three of his starts tells me he may be more than we’ve seen to date. Contender.

Tiz Tee Time may very well have the best-looking win of the bunch under his belt with that nice rolling rail run at Keeneland last October at first asking, with a respectable 76 BSF to boot. He had tons of trouble in his last, on New Year’s Eve at Fair Grounds, while stretching out for the first time. With two sizzling workouts following that dance and a return to a synthetic surface, there is plenty to like here. Enough for The Commish to take a few bucks to the win bet window.

Mr. Prankster has been plenty consistent, with two firsts and two seconds in his five race career. Add to that a nice win in the Turfway Park Prevue on Jan. 7 and Hansen trainer Mike Maker -- who's hitting at an astounding 43% at this meet -- and you have a chalky go-to-the-window recipe that will be hard to keep off the board.

Some of these comments also hold true for stable mate Magical Season, who picked up the place dough in the Prevue for Maker. There are a couple of other speedy types I kind of like, too, but the extra real estate might not help this guy -- or them.

The rest of the pack have a bit to prove to make a dent in this one, or they appear to be heading in the wrong direction, so I will have to wad them into a ball and give them the “not today” stamp.

PICKS FROM THE COMMISH:

1. TIZ TEE TIME
2. MR. PRANKSTER
3. TIGERDUDE
4. PHANTOM FURY


I am not sure that this race will help much in the long run with finding that answer, but I thought I would ask anyway--- GOT YOUR WINNER YET?

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