Before this blog came into existence in the spring of 2010, a bold prediction was made on the TVG Community about the 2010 Classic. In January of 2010, It was proclaimed by yours truly that Blame would win the Classic, with Zenyatta finishing underneath in the exotics. As it later panned out, I was right. Blame won, and the only horse among those who I listed to put underneath (Zenyatta) who made the race ran second. This blog thought about putting together a list of wild prophecies to try to match or surpass the success of last year. Instead, it was decided that only one claim would be made, and it would involve a horse who this blog has followed since his win back in the summer of 2009. The prediction is this: William's Kitten will win the 2011 Breeders' Cup Classic.
A few of you may know who he is, but for those who do not, let me introduce him. William's Kitten is son of multiple Grade 1 winning sire Kitten's Joy out of the Menifee mare Blush. He has run 8 times, with 2 wins, a second and a third while being trained by Michael Maker. He was bred by his owners, Ken and Sarah Ramsey, who stands his sire at stud. He is multiple graded stakes placed, with a second (behind eventual 2010 Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver) in the 2009 Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club and a third in the 2010 Grade 3 Holy Bull S. His most significant win to date was in the 2009 Sunday Silence S. at Louisiana Downs (below), where he rushed from well off the pace to an easy victory. (below)
This win was the race that caught my eye and formed the crush. I knew at that very point that he would be my Derby horse. After a couple of so-so efforts in the Grey Stakes and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (in which I saw him in person), he went to the KJC to run a distant second to Super Saver, who ran away and hid that day. He started 2010 with his race in the Holy Bull, and looked to be going to bigger and better things. Unfortunately, he wretched an ankle in a subsequent workout. He will be sidelined for over a year by the time he makes his next start...
... which is today (1/23) in the 9th race at Gulfstream Park going a mile on the dirt. He has been working well for the return, but he does have a few gaps in his workout tab. He looks to be in tough though, since the race also marks the return of Grade 2 Louisiana Derby winner Mission Impazible. If nothing else, this will serve as a good prep race for wherever the connections decide to run him. Knowing the connections (based on their previous decisions), if William pans out like they & I hope he does, the mid-season goal is probably the Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs. Then, hopefully a fall campaign that will set him up for a winning rally from the back of the pack in the Breeders' Cup Classic come November.
So there you have it. A bold prediction that requires a big leap of faith to see it possibly happen. I could be horribly wrong, and he may just not pan out as an older horse. But isn't it more fun to take a chance on a flier and get in on the ground floor, rather then have to scramble for room on the bandwagon come November? We shall see what he does. Good luck everybody.