Thursday: Was his father a ‘mudder’?

As the day wore on this afternoon the weather forecast for Louisville over the next 48 hours rapidly deteriorated, and it follows according to accuweather.com:

Friday, May 1, 2009:

High: 74
Low: 59

Chance of Rain: 40%

Saturday, May 2, 2009

High: 69
Low: 51

Chance of Rain: 80%

Based on those numbers, the chaos and confusion that goes into handicapping races on wet tracks has begun with punters digging for the Sire Stats book, watching videos and delving into pedigree handicapping.  When it comes to proven wet track form, this race starts and stops with Friesan Fire, who cruised away from the opposition in the Louisiana Derby, drawing off late.  He is bred to handle the slop beautifully, as evidenced by his 446 Tomlinson for wet tracks.  Here are the rest of the Tomlinson numbers for the field, in descending order:

18 Nowhere to Hide (Vindication) 480
2 General Quarters (Sky Mesa) 452
6 Friesan Fire (A.P. Indy) 446
9 Join in the Dance (Sky Mesa) 429 
5 Dunkirk (Unbridled’s Song) 427
20 Flying Private (Fusaichi Pegasus) 420
3 Mr. Hot Stuff (Tiznow) 406
5 Hold Me Back (Giant’s Causeway) 403
19 Desert Party (Street Cry) 398
7 Papa Clem (Smart Strike) 397 
10 Regal Ransom (Distorted Humor) 387
14 Atomic Rain (Smart Strike) 382
13 I Want Revenge (Stephen Got Even) 381
16 Pioneerof the Nile (Empire Maker) 379
2 Musket Man (Yonaguska) 378

1. West Side Bernie (Bernstein)
356
8 Mine That Bird (Birdstone) 341
4 Advice (Chapel Royal) 339
11 Chocolate Candy (Candy Ride) 314
17 Summer Bird (Birdstone) 316*

It goes without saying that these numbers are meant to be a guideline because I wouldn’t back Nowhere to Hide for the win spot with your money.  However, some of the more interesting conclusions were the poor wet track ratings of Stephen Got Even and Empire Maker, the sires of the projected two favorites, I Want Revenge and Pioneerof the Nile.  In fact, Empire Maker is rated a ‘D’ by the TSN Sire Stats for 2009. 

The best way to approach the weather situation is certainly to monitor the forecast but note what happens at Churchill on both Friday and on the undercard Saturday.

We’ll leave you with the last Derby to be run on a wet track, the 2004 running:

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