Kentucky Downs Picks

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About Kentucky Downs

Kentucky Downs statistics, track bias and information

Kentucky Downs is one of the most famous racetracks in America and is based in the city of Franklin, Kentucky. It is located just off Interstate 65 and is approximately 35 miles from Nashville.

 

The design was inspired by a number of European venues. It is also one of the longest tracks in the country, measuring1.3125 miles, and is famed for its sweeping turn into the straight. The track is often described as "kidney-shaped," and is positioned in the middle of several acres of farmland.

 

Compared to the majority of its neighboring tracks, Kentucky Downs is relatively modern. It opened in 1990 and has been holding regular September race-days ever since. The track also stages year-round simulcasting, live music events and charity nights.

 

The track is regarded as one of the best inNorth America, and it continues to attract huge crowds every single year. In2009, Kentucky Downs was voted as the second-best racetrack in the country by the Horseplayers Association of North America.

 

Unlike the majority of US tracks, KentuckyDowns races exclusively on the turf. The course is 1 mile, 550 yards in length.It is one of just two courses to feature a right-hand turn – the other is Santa Anita. The track is elevated, and that can certainly cause problems for horses who are unfamiliar with the various undulations of Kentucky Downs.

 

The track hosts a number of high-profile events throughout September, including the Kentucky Turf Cup Stakes and the Franklin Simpson Stakes. Currently, the average prize purse at the track is $1.56 million per day.

Kentucky Downs Track History

The track was originally called Dueling Grounds Race Course and was named after the grounds on which it was built. Originally, the course was designed to host steeplechasing events, although this notion was scrapped two years later. One of the races on the inaugural card offered a prize fund of $750,000.

 

Due to financial issues and unresolved ownership issues, Kentucky Downs was unable to stage any racing in 1997. The track was later purchased by the company responsible for Turfway Park andChurchill Downs, and the name was changed to Kentucky Downs soon after.

 

Despite being scrapped in 1992, steeplechasing returned to the track in 2000 and sat alongside Kentucky's flat racing cards.

 

Kentucky Downs hosts limited live racing each year, although off-track betting is extremely popular at the track.

 

In 2007, an 85 percent share in the track was sold to Corey Johnson and Ray Reid. The former was the president of Lone Star Racetrack at the time of the purchase. Turfway Park still maintains a 5 percent share in the track to this day.

 

In 2011, the track introduced historical racing terminals which helped boost income and have raised more than $15million. It enables purses to increase, with prize money rising to over $8 million in 2017.

Kentucky Downs Known Track Bias

The Kentucky Downs track is extremely unique, and the course has the ability to hinder horses who lack stamina or experience on the grass.

 

Horses for courses is almost certainly a factor at this quirky track. It's always advised to favor competitors who have won or placed at this venue previously. Even horses who finish an eye-catching third should be kept onside next time out.

 

Alternatively, any horses who are shipped from Santa Anita could run a solid race. While both tracks have unique elements, they have similar layouts, and the right-hand turns are closely matched.

 

The track is susceptible to bias, though with only a handful of meets each year, it is hard to truly get a grasp on the statistics. Between 2013 and 2017, the track was considered to favor horses drawn in the outside posts and those who flashed early speed. These stats are still relevant; however, the weather can also have a significant effect on the outcome of these races.

Winning Post Positions at Kentucky Downs

Admittedly, PP stats are a little thin on the ground when it comes to Kentucky Downs. However, the data from September 2019 shows that there was a fairly even spread of winners in sprint races. Four of the 19 runners who were drawn in stall 10 were victorious (21 percent), and this was the most successful starting position. Over the shorter trips, both stalls 4 and 9 were also fairly productive, each yielding a return of 15 percent.

 

In distance races, stall 8 was the best position to be drawn. Twenty percent of all runners were drawn here. Unlike sprint races, stall 10 was the weakest position, yielding just a single winner in 2019 from 28 starters. Stalls 1, 4, 5, 7 and 9 also posted decent results, with each of these positions posted over 10 percent when it came to winners.

 

Overall (spring and distance), stall 8 was the most successful stall at Kentucky Downs in 2019. It produced 16 percent of all winners.

Top Trainers at Kentucky Downs

There are a number of trainers who regularly send their runners to Kentucky Downs each September. Many of the top horsemen who regularly win contests in New York and Florida will send turf specialists to the track, and there are many names to look out:

 

2019 Meet

     Eddie Kenneally – 38% Strike Rate

     Todd Pletcher – 33% Strike Rate

     Ian Wilkes – 29% Strike Rate

     Wesley Ward – 27% Strike Rate

     Doug O'Neill – 25% Strike Rate

     Richard Baltas – 25% Strike Rate

     Joe Sharp – 21% Strike Rate

Top Jockeys at Kentucky Downs

There are a number of jockeys who spend their September at the track. A number of these expert riders will regularly fire in winners throughout the month, and many of these are Kentucky Downs specialists.

 

2019 Meet

     Joe Bravo – 33% Strike Rate

     Jose Ortiz – 29% Strike Rate

     Drayden Van Dyke – 27% Strike Rate

     Tyler Gaffalione – 19% Strike Rate

     Julien Leparoux – 17% Strike Rate

     Julio Garcia – 17% Strike Rate

     Luis Saez – 17% Strike Rate

     Brian Hernandez – 14% Strike Rate

Kentucky Downs Racing Calendar and Key Races

Kentucky Downs holds racing for a very short period of time. Each year, the track hosts regular race-days throughout September. In 2019, the opening day actually fell on Aug. 31, with the track hosting live racing on Sept. 5, 7, 8 and 12.

 

During those five race-days, Kentucky Downs staged numerous high-quality races, and there some significant prize purses available throughout the month.

 

Grade III:

     Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint Stakes

     Ladies Turf Sprint Stakes

     Franklin Simpson Stakes

     Ladies Turf Stakes

     Kentucky Turf Cup


Other key races:

     Kentucky Downs Juvenile Stakes

Kentucky Downs Address

5629 Nashville Road

Franklin, KY 42134