Rick Lee’s Arkansas Derby analysis

Rick Lee's analysis

12 Arkansas Derby Grade I. Purse $1,500,000. 1 1/8 miles, 3-year-olds


7 MuthJJHernandezBaffert8-5

COMMENT Followed a convincing victory in the Grade I American Pharoah with a runner-up finish in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, and he has been training impressively since winning the Grade II San Vicente.

2 TimberlakePratCox9-5

COMMENT Was a Grade I winner as a juvenile at Aqueduct and he finished full of run, despite racing a bit greenly, when winning the Grade II Rebel.

9 Mystik DanBHernandezMcPeek5-2

COMMENT Earned the field's fastest Beyer figure when dominating 10 rivals in the Grade III Southwest, and he showed he can win on a fast track when breaking his maiden in a fast clocking at Churchill.

5 Liberal ArtsGaffalioneMedina15-1

COMMENT Finished third behind Mystik Dan in the Southwest, and the consistent finisher may appreciate getting back on a fast surface.

8 Just SteelAsmussenLukas15-1

COMMENT Was compromised by a wide trip throughout in the Rebel, and he worked a strong mile March 14.

3 DimaticTorresAsmussen20-1

COMMENT Was one-paced when fifth best in the Rebel, and he switches to the leading rider.

4 Time for TruthBejaranoMoquett20-1

COMMENT Is a stake-placed sprinter who defeated entry-level allowance runners in his first try around two turns.

6 Informed PatriotSantanaAsmussen30-1

COMMENT Fnished third in the Smarty Jones on Jan. 1, and his disappointing effort in the Sunland Derby is excusable since many shippers do not race well at Sunland.

10 Imperial GunEsquivelAsmussen30-1

COMMENT Has only a clear maiden win on his resume, but he is bred to excel at extended route distances.

1 Will Take ItArrietaMilligan50-1

COMMENT Has never won a race or even been bet down in a three-race career, but I have learned to never say never.

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