Kentucky Derby Contenders - Day 10: #21 Optimizer

Contributed By Post Time Pete
Posted on 4/10/12 8:00 AM

Day 10: #21 Optimizer

Optimizer Trainer: Jon Court Bluegrass Hall LLC Silks
Jockey: Ramon A. Dominguez*
Owner: Bluegrass Hall LLC
Breeder: Bluegrass Hall LLC
Earnings: $181,375*
Next Race: Arkansas Derby
* Current as of April 1, 2012

Optimizer is an English Channel and Indy Pick colt. He broke his maiden on his first attempt and finished third in the Breeders' Futurity during his two-year old campaign. Despite not placing in the money in his first two races as a three-year old, he finished second in the Rebel G2 under new jockey Jon Court.

Experts consider Optimizer to be a great turf prospect. "I have no problem if people think his best races should be on the turf," trainer D. Wayne Lukas said. "But they don't run the Derby on the grass and this horse is clearly suited to longer distances. I think the mile-and-an-eighth is going to suit him a lot. I think a mile-and-a-quarter is going to suit him even better. And your better horses will run well on whatever you ask them, be it grass, dirt, crushed glass or rocks."

The Arkansas Derby is an excellent prep race for this hopeful and a win there would cement him for the Derby. However, Optimizer is a strong closer, something he demonstrated in the Rebel. That works well in smaller fields, but a bad position in the Derby would make a fast close difficult. We're still watching this one, but we're not sold yet!

Click here to preview yesterday's breakdown of #22 on the earnings list, Alpha.

Check back tomorrow when we preview #20 on our list, Isn’t He Clever.

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