On Saturday, Aqueduct Park will host its signature race and the final stop on the New York road to the Kentucky Derby.
A field of eight 3-year-olds will do battle in the $750,000, Grade 2 Wood Memorial Stakes.
A total of 170 Derby qualifying points are on the line, with the Winner receiving 100 points, the runner-up getting 40, the 3rd-place finisher earning 20, and the 4th-place finisher notching 10.
A top-two finish by any of these horses in the 1 1/8-mile Wood Memorial should be enough to ensure a spot in the Derby starting gate.
Twenty horses coming out of the Wood Memorial have Won the Kentucky Derby, including some of the sport’s biggest stars.
The list includes; GALLANT FOX, OMAHA, COUNT FLEET, ASSAULT, CARRY BACK, SECRETARIAT, FOOLISH PLEASURE, SEATTLE SLEW, GENUINE RISK, and FUNNY CIDE.
FUSAICHI PEGASUS in 2000 was the last Wood Memorial Winner to also be Victorious in the Kentucky Derby.
So as of late the Wood has not been a hot bed of Derby champions.
The weather forecast for Saturday in New York City calls for partly sunny day with a high of 56 degrees and a 30 percent chance of showers, according to the National Weather Service.
The 97th Wood Memorial Stakes will be televised on NBC as part of their coverage of the Road To The Derby and will also be shown on TVG. Post Time is scheduled for 4:45.
On Friday the Daily Racing Blog will preview the field for this year’s edition of the Wood. So stop back and see who we like.