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ALWAYS DREAMING MOVES INTO FIRST PLACE, NTRA TOP 3-YEAR-OLD POLL;
ARROGATE REMAINS IN FIRST, NTRA TOP THOROUGHBRED POLL
(Receives all 44 first-place votes)
Saratoga Springs, N.Y. (Monday, May 8, 2017) – With the running of the 143rd Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (Grade 1) in the books, the 2017 ‘run for the roses’ belongs to Always Dreaming – and is crowned number one in week 15 of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) Top 3-Year-Old Poll, which results were released today.
Always Dreaming (43 first-place votes; 439 points) moves up from second to first-place in the rankings for trainer Todd Pletcher and owners Brooklyn Boyz Stable, MeB Racing Stable, Teresa Viola Racing Stables, St. Elias Stables, West Point Thoroughbreds and Siena Farm. Always Dreaming ridden by John Velazquez took command of the race at the half-mile pole winning by 2 ¾ lengths covering the 1 ¼ miles on a wet-fast track in 2:03.59 and became the fifth consecutive favorite to win the Kentucky Derby. The son of Bodemeister is being pointed towards the 142nd running of the Preakness Stakes, the second jewel of the Triple Crown which will be contested at Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore, Md., on May 20.
John and Debby Oxley’s reigning two-year-old champion Classic Empire (380) drops down a step on the ladder to second after his fourth place finish in the Kentucky Derby. The Pioneerof the Nile colt who is trained by Mark Casse reported that the colt came out of the race in good order after a troubling start and will make his next start in the Preakness Stakes.
Lookin At Lee (272) moves into the top-ten in third position for the first time. Breaking from the one hole and coming in second in the Derby, Lookin At Lee became the first horse in over 20 years to finish in the top three. According to his trainer Steve Asmussen, the Preakness Stakes is under consideration for the Lookin At Lucky colt’s next start.
Taking the fourth slot on the top-ten is new comer Battle of Midway (224) who finished third in the Derby for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.
Irish War Cry (155) slips down from third to fifth position after his tenth place finish in the Derby. The G2 Wood Memorial Curlin colt is owned and breed by Isabelle de Tomaso and trained by Graham Motion. His next start is undetermined at this time.
Dropping down from fourth to sixth after his eighth place finish in the Derby is Ian Wilkes trainee McCraken (142). Owned by Whitham Thoroughbreds LLC the Ghostzapper colt is currently not under consideration to run in the Preakness Stakes.
Rounding out the field is: Practical Joke (136); Gunnevera (135); Unique Bella (115) and Abel Tasman (96).
The NTRA Top 3-Year-Old Poll is the sport’s most comprehensive survey of experts ranking the generation of Thoroughbreds that includes all Triple Crown contenders. Every week eligible journalists and broadcasters cast votes for their top 10 horses, with points awarded on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. The Top 3-Year-Old Poll concludes June 12 after the Belmont Stakes.
The top ranked older horses on this week’s NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll for horses four and up shows slight movement in the bottom-half of the rankings.
The number one ranked horse, Group 1 $10 million Dubai World Cup winner and Eclipse Award champion Arrogate (44 first-place votes; 440 points) with earnings of $17,084,600 is to take some time and freshen up as he prepares for his next engagement, the G1 $1 million TVG Pacific Classic on August 19 at Del Mar Race Course according to his trainer Bob Baffert and owner Juddmonte Farm.
Standing in second in the top-ten is the second place finisher from the Dubai World Cup, Gun Runner (355) for trainer Steve Asmussen and Winchell Thoroughbreds and Three Chimneys Farm.
Grade I Santa Anita Handicapped winner Shaman Ghost (304) remains in third for trainer Jimmy Jerkens and Stronach Stables.
2016 Eclipse Champion Female Songbird (198) remains in fourth for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer followed by 2017 newly crowned Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming (167) in fifth position.
Grade I Apple Blossom Handicap winner Stellar Wind (140) drops from fifth to sixth for owners Hronis Racing LLC and trainer John Sadler. The 5-year-old Curlin mare, voted champion 3-year-old filly of 2015, improved her career record to eight wins from 14 starts.
Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen winner Neolithic (131) slips from sixth to seventh followed by New York bred, Mind Your Biscuits (129) taking the eighth slot for 32 year-old trainer Chad Summers.
Rounding out the last two places on the top-ten are: Vale Dori (99); and Connect (82).
The NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll concludes November 6 after the running of the Breeders’ Cup.
About the NTRA
The NTRA is a broad-based coalition of more than 100 horse racing interests and thousands of individual stakeholders consisting of horseplayers, racetrack operators, owners, breeders, trainers and affiliated horse racing associations, charged with increasing the popularity, welfare and integrity of Thoroughbred racing through consensus-based leadership, legislative advocacy, safety and integrity initiatives, fan engagement and corporate partner development. The NTRA, Based in Lexington, Ky., owns and manages the NTRA Safety & Integrity Alliance; NTRA.com; the NTRA Top Thoroughbred and NTRA Top 3-Year-Old weekly media polls; the Eclipse Awards; the National Handicapping Championship; NTRA Advantage, a corporate partner sales and sponsorship program; and Horse PAC, a federal political action committee. NTRA press releases appear on NTRA.com, Twitter (@ntra) and Facebook (facebook.com/1NTRA).