Kentucky Derby Post Analysis 2006

Doghouse Confidential Kentucky Derby 2006

Kentucky Derby 2006 Results Chart

It is now time to reflect upon the results of the 2006 Derby.  First and foremost, the analysis using a median energy distribution of less than 68% and a final time of less than 38 seconds in the final prep led us to a number of contenders.  Of that group, our choice of Barbaro as the key horse was correct.  We were rewarded with a $14.20 payoff, well above what I would consider to be fair value of $10.  We enter Barbaro's statistics below, and we now have seven years of data to confirm that our analysis using energy distribution and last three furlong time is empirically significant:
Yr Name Derby Winning Beyer Last Race
Final 3f time
Last Race
2000 Fusaichi Pegasus 108 37.0 67.60% SP
2001 Monarchos 116 37.3 67.79% SP
2002 War Emblem 114 36.7 66.75% S
2003 Funny Cide 109 37.5 67.82% SP
2004 Smarty Jones 107 37.8 67.69% SP
2005 Giacomo 100 37.6 67.55% S
2006 Barbaro 111 37.7 67.89% SP

Note that all have met the criteria for the energy distribution and the last 3f time.  All have either a S or SP running style meaning that they are either a sustained presser in the second half of the group or a dead closer based on time distribution.

All of the horses that were included in my 2006 Derby wager met the criteria above.  We eliminated many good horses that may have been good at 9f but weren't going to win at 10f.  Recall from the April 29 analysis, we eliminated the following from winning because they did not meet the criteria:

Lawyer Ron, Bob and John (met criteria earlier), Sinister Minister, Private Vow, Steppenwolfer (met criteria earlier), Keyed Entry, Showing Up, Deputy Glitters, Flashy Bull, Sacred Light (did not run), Red Raymond (did not run), Storm Treasure, and Seaside Retreat.

While one could argue the details, all top five finishers in the 2006 Derby displayed the ability to meet the criteria of an energy distribution of less than 68% and a last three furlong time of less than 38 seconds.

Checking back to what I bet in the Derby, I had five horses boxed with Barbaro in the exacta and triples.   I left out the Questionable (April 29) Bluegrass Cat because of his awful race in the Bluegrass at Keeneland.  I should note that in the Bluegrass, I had a major exacta of Sinister Minister over Bluegrass Cat and was counting my money when Sinister Minister took off and paid over $19.  I didn't think that Bluegrass Cat would finish worst than second.  However, he finished in 1:54.3 (my figures) as compared to 1:48.9 at Tampa in the race before.  So he finished more than 6 seconds slower or more than 30 lengths behind his time at Tampa.  With any other trainer, you would conclude that the horse was hurt, but Todd Pletcher would not run a hurt horse in the Derby.  Therefore, I should have ignored the Keeneland race with the excuse that he didn't like Keeneland (not unusual).  While you can't bet them all, in retrospect I should have included him in the mix.

With regard to Jazil which was my second choice, he ran just great along the rail closing significant ground (more than 10 lengths).  In the middle of the stretch, I thought that he would spurt ahead to get second, but he flattened out.  If Jazil had come second, I would have been looking at a significant four figure payoff.  Woulda, shoulda, coulda.

Barbaro won with ease.  I thought he was too close to the pace, but at the top of the stretch, he was running effortlessly, then just took off without being pressed.  I think this is a special horse.  I don't want to jinx him by saying it.

Note on betting strategy: I bet $50 to win and collected $355.  A fair price would have been $250 (4-1).  However, I already had $10 exactas with five horses, so the better bet would have been to cover all of the remaining horses with a $4 straight exacta ($4 times 13 = $52).  That way, I would have hit the exacta at least two times if Barbaro won.  With Bluegrass Cat, the exacta was over $580, so I would have collected almost $1200 instead of $355.  You need to do things differently when there are twenty horses.  What a dope!

The bottom line is that we threw out the right horses, and we won on the key horse that won at a very generous price.  We just didn't hit the big one.  Maybe next time.

Mr. X