Derby Stable Showdown Week 4 – Eric DeCoster Vs. Eric Solomon

Instead of rolling out a traditional Top 10 list, we’ve decided to give it a little twist this year. Eric DeCoster and Eric Solomon are going to have a friendly competition, choosing a fantasy stable of ten prospects for the Kentucky Derby. The Derby Points will determine the scoring, so if a winning horse in a player’s stable wins a 50 point race, the player gets 50 points. Any horse not selected into a stable will be available to pick up “on waivers” after each week, leading up to the Derby. The scoring for the Kentucky Derby will be 200 points to the winning horse, 80 points to the second place finisher, 40 points for third, and 20 points for 4th. Each week, we’ll post some thoughts and rationale for managing our stable. 


Eric D’s Stable Eric S’s Stable
Mo Donegal Smile Happy
Classic Causeway Zandon
Simplification Charge It
Emmanuel Happy Boy Rocket
Epicenter White Abarrio
Barese In Due Time
Rattle N Roll Forbidden Kingdom
Shipsational Morello
Stolen Base Barber Road
Early Voting Ethereal Road
Total Points: 105 Total Points: 180


Eric Solomon’s Stable: (Week 4 Update)

My stable had a solid weekend, taking home the top prizes in the San Felipe with Forbidden Kingdom and the Gotham with Morello. Both should be formidable in their 100 point prep races next month. I was also pleased with the effort from In Due Time in the Fountain of Youth, and I was very lucky to be able to keep those points, since he probably should have been disqualified for causing a spill. 


The Tampa Bay Derby is the only Derby Points race this weekend and it’s undeniable that Eric D. has the upper hand in this race. Classic Causeway will be a heavy favorite after winning the Sam F. Davis last month. The weather forecast is questionable for the race, so he could have to prove he can handle an off track. The only horse with a proven track record on a wet track is Shipsational, who is also in his stable. I really liked his effort last month when going two turns for the first time, and I see him as a player in this race as well. I ended up replacing Howling Time, who came up empty in the Fountain of Youth, with Happy Boy Rocket. He’s moving from a maiden special weight race to a Grade 2 contest, however, Mott has had a decent amount of success with that move over the last several years. He’s drawn well and taking him gives me an outside shot to get a few points in this race. 


Eric DeCoster’s Stable:


My stable took home a big victory this past weekend with Simplification’s win in the Fountain of Youth. I did take a bit of a hit though with less than ideal runs from Emmanuel and Rattle N Roll, but both had their excuses which is why I’m okay with keeping them around for some 100-point preps. I also got dug into a hole with Eric S scoring in both the San Felipe (Forbidden Kingdom) and Gotham (Morello), but this weekend give’s me a chance to make up some ground with key contenders in the only Derby prep for the next two weekends in the Tampa Bay Derby.


Classic Causeway is being considered by some to be the top colt on this year’s Derby trail and I can certainly see why, he’ll be very tough to beat on Saturday and will hopefully secure 50 more points for my team. If he fails to fire I still have the likely second choice in my barn with Shipsational, who even with another strong runner-up effort could add on 20 extra points and put me only 5 back of Eric S heading into some of the 100-point preps. If neither of them win or run second, I could be in big trouble going into crunch time. 


I finally decided to make a change to my stable as God of Love is yet to make the work tab since his run in the Sam F. Davis, and therefore I will be adding a bit of a wild card in Stolen Base. He’s coming off a great second in the John Battaglia Memorial and looks to be a big factor in the Jeff Ruby Steaks next month. Originally I was going to pick up the horse who beat him there, Tiz the Bomb, however it was reported he will likely go to the Arkansas or Florida Derby and I’m looking to have some ammunition in the Ruby. This pickup is purely a points grab along the Derby trail but I don’t take him too seriously as a Kentucky Derby contender at the moment. Other than that I imagine my stable will remain the same for the next few weeks. All of my horses are penciled in either this weekend or for one of the final 100-point preps, and there’s a good chance that one of those horses will be favored in three or four of those spots. 


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