Remington Springboard Mile is a First-Time Kentucky Derby Prep Race
A pair of Southern California-based 2-year-olds lead a field of 12 in Sunday’s $400,000 Springboard Mile Stakes at Remington Park. The race made its debut in 2009, and for the first time, the Springboard Mile will offer Kentucky Derby qualifying points to the top-4 finishers (10-4-2-1). The final official Kentucky Derby prep race of the year drew a field of 12 for the two-turn 1 mile event.
There will be one clear favorite when the advance lines are posted Thursday, and that will be Greyvitos, who won his stakes debut in the Bob Hope last month at Del Mar. But the Adam Kitchingman-trained California shipper drew the far outside post, and a short run to the first turn could make it tough as rider Victor Espinoza tries to scoot him towards the front.
The challengers at the betting windows are expected to be Believe in Royalty, who has won twice at a mile with both at Laurel Park. The son of Tapit has some solid works leading into this Derby prep race. Combatant is a definite contender for trainer Steve Asmussen, who also has Flat Lucky running as one to watch after finishing 3rd in the one-turn Clever Trevor Stakes last month. That race was won by Redatory, who has won both his starts at Remington and will be running on or near the lead as the hometown favorite.
Combatant broke his maiden at Churchill Downs the end of October with a 91 speed figure, which is the second-best Equibase figure of all entries. He’ll break from the rail with Asmussen’s go to jockey Ricardo Santana, Jr. up. Flip the Coin Jan is another West Coast shipper from Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Doug O’Neil. He’s finished top-2 in his last three starts including his 7-length win a month ago at Del Mar.
Asking a young 2-year-old to win his debut going two turns for the first time can be a tall order. But if you’re looking for a horse that has improved his speed figures with each outing and can make a run at the heavy favorite with a stalking trip, then Believe in Royalty is worth support and a winning wager Sunday.
The Remington Springboard Mile is Race 11 at 8:40 p.m. ET on Sunday, Dec. 17.