The 2022 Lexington

The Lexington is the last chance to earn any points for the Kentucky Derby. The field of 11 that is scheduled to go is competitive. None of the horses look like the top Derby contenders but plenty can happen between now and then. Let’s run down the field and see who and what we have.

 

Midnight Chrome looks too slow for me. He will break from the rail with Jose Ortiz riding but would need a lot of help to get up here.

 

In Due Time may go favored. He comes off the controversial Fountain of Youth where under a questionable if not reckless move by Paco Lopez which caused a spill. In Due Time didn’t go down and wound up second to Simplification. While his last two are certainly good enough to put him right in this, I am not sold on him. He can win but I’ll try and beat him as the favorite or even second choice.

 

We All See It gets Luis Saez, almost always a plus. This is his first stakes try and he comes off his best race to date. He would have to go forward again or repeat that effort against considerably tougher horses. I don’t think he can do it.

 

Ethereal Road runs back fast off a flop in the Blue Grass. It is no secret Wayne Lukas can be tough on horses and doesn’t back away if he thinks his horse can handle it. To me he has the look of a horse tailing off, and maybe he just liked Oaklawn Park. I don’t see him bouncing back here.

 

Howling Time is an interesting long-shot from Dale Romans. It was not that long ago Dale was dangerous in these races. This colt has only one race back this year after showing promise at two. That one race was a disaster in the spill marred Fountain of Youth, but he was always far back and never looked like a contender. Maybe Gulfstream wasn’t for him and maybe he needed the race or both. He worked well for this, has shown versatility, and I will be using him in here.

 

Skate to Heaven comes off a gritty maiden breaker at Oaklawn Park. This is a big ask for him. I’ll pass.

 

Major General is probably my top choice. This colt, like Howling Time the other horse I like is coming off a debacle of a race. He ran two excellent races last year, then flopped in the Tampa Bay Derby his three-year old debut. He stumbled at the start that day which didn’t help. He adds blinkers, gets Irad Ortiz, and I am willing to give him another chance.

 

Strava adds blinkers and is lightly raced for Dallas Stewart. He is improving. He might not be up to winning this just yet, but I think he can hit the board. I would also not be shocked if he pulled off a shocker. Tyler Gaffalione is riding, Dallas pops at big process in big races, why not use?

 

Tawny Port will vie for favoritism with In Due Time. His one dirt race was his worst race. He looks like he prefers synthetic. No thank you at what will be a short price for what he has shown to date.

 

Dash Attack is another long-shot I give a chance to. Prat takes the call off two mediocre races. He tailed off after a nice win in the Smarty Jones, but those short stretch races and big fields can be tricky at Oaklawn Park. I think he is dangerous, especially with the hot jock aboard.

 

Call Me Midnight ran down Epicenter two back and off that alone he will get respect in here. He has a wide draw and will have plenty to do to win here coming from where I expect him to be. He is not hopeless by any means, but I’ll toss him and hope for the best.

 

I will be a little deeper than I like to be in multi-race wagers in here. I will use four horses. Howling Time, Major General, Strava, and Dash Attack. I will go back harder at Major General. The good news is I will toss both favorites and the race is pretty wide open. At least two and maybe three of the horses I am using should be nice prices. I can deal with that scenario.

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Jon Stettin

Since childhood, Jon has always had a deep love and respect for the Sport of Kings. His years of experience have earned him a well respected spot in the industry as a handicapper. He now is a frequent contributor to AmWager as well as writing for his own site.

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