Some food for thought for the Tampa Derby, with scheduled post at 5:27 and likely to go off at 5:32.
Racetracks always like to have fast times on their big stakes days. After all, track records help bring headlines
So, there were expectations that Tampa Bay Downs might have the track set up harder than usual today.
Whether or not they did, is open to question.What can be seen is that speed has been holding up and times have been fast in the dirt races.
That happened even before Stanford went gate-to-wire to win the Columbia in a track record 1:41.75 for 1 1/16 miles.
In the first four dirt races, two winners went gate-to-wire. one winner was second after a half mile and one was third after a half mile.
In the Tampa Bay Derby, four starters have shown speed in previous starts.
They are: Beasley (6), Sonic Mule (7), State of Honor (8) and Wild Shot (9).
Of those, Beasley and Wild Shot appear most likely to hold their speed to the end.
Beasley is making his stakes debut. But had a strong recent second place finish at Gulfstream along with two bullet workouts at four furlongs there.
Speed aside, I am going with Tapwrit, No Dozing and Besasley in that order.
Our handicapper Bob Bauer is going with Tapwrit, followed by Beasley and No Dozing.