West Coast colts managed to finish 1-2 at the Breeders' Cup Juvenile this year, as both Nyquist and Swipe head into their three-year old season in fine form. However, the East Coast is sure to be represented well at the Run for the Roses as well, and Mohaymen leads the charge for what could be an interesting group of ponies elsewhere across the country.
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It's been a while since a New York horse has been able to get all the way to the Kentucky Derby and be a huge factor. Last year, El Kabeir and others all seemed to fade away after putting on competitive shows in the Derby prep races. This year though, there's a clear favorite in Mohaymen, a colt who will surely be the odds-on favorite at the Holy Bull Stakes, his next projected race late in January.
Mohaymen is an undefeated two-year old at this point, but he's only raced three times. Granted, he hasn't run in any of the major Grade 1 races, nor did he go to the Breeders' Cup, but he did win the Nashua Stakes and the Remsen Stakes and is likely to be 6-for-6 going into the Kentucky Derby in May.
Mohaymen is the favorite to win the Kentucky Derby right now at 6 to 1, and he doesn't have another East Coast contender anywhere near him, let alone another pony who is going to be racing against him in the Empire State in the Spring.
Airoforce is likely point towards Keeneland Park this Spring, as he's really only run in Kentucky in his career. He's not really familiar with the dirt all that much, though he did win his only race off the grass at the Kentucky Jockey Club in November. Whether that translates in the Derby prep races remains to be seen, but there's little reason to lack confidence.
The only horse who has beaten Airoforce thus far in his four races was Hit It A Bomb, and that came at the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf race.
A price of 20 to 1 suggests that Airoforce is a force to be reckoned with, but we'll definitely reserve judgment until we see him race some more this spring.
Exaggerator might be the best colt out of Curlin yet. Thus far, Curlin has been rather disappointing as a breeding horse, but this could be the exception to the rule. He won the Delta Downs Jackpot and was best at the Saratoga Special in August. The concerns came in the Breeders' Futurity and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, where he placed second and fourth respectively.
However, the colt that we have the highest regard for right now is Brody's Cause. He's a 20 to 1 choice at the moment, but he was the favorite at the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. Though it isn't often to see a horse be both the two-year old champion and the Kentucky Derby winner, it isn't unusual to see the favorites of the Breeders' Cup go on to ultimately be big time Derby contenders the next year.
Giant's Causeway has had a ton of success as a breeding horse in his career, and this could be yet another big time colt to watch out for.
Brody's Cause will either be pointed to the Bluegrass Stakes or to a trip to New York for the Spring, but either way, he's going to be amongst the favorites wherever he goes, and we think he's certainly worth a flyer at 20 to 1 to claim the Run for the Roses in May.
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