“He’s as hot as he’s ever been.” – Randy Moss on Bob Baffert
“He is kind of a throwback horse, tough, gritty.” – Moss on Santa Anita Derby favorite Creative Cause
“Gemologist and Alpha both have things to prove because they haven’t been ‘tournament tested.’” – Bob Neumeier on Wood Memorial Favorites
NEW YORK – April 5, 2012 – Live coverage of the Road to the Kentucky Derby™, a series of major prep races for the 2012 Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands, continues this Saturday, 4:30-6 p.m. ET with three key races: the Santa Anita Derby, the Resorts World Casino New York City Wood Memorial, and the Central Bank Ashland Stakes for fillies. The Road to the Kentucky Derby™ is a collaboration of The Jockey Club and the NBC Sports Group.
Tom Hammond will host NBC Sports’ coverage this Saturday from Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif. He will be joined by analysts Gary Stevens and Randy Moss and reporters Kenny Rice, Donna Brothers and Laffit Pincay, III. Bob Neumeier will host coverage of the Wood Memorial from Aqueduct Racetrack in Jamaica, N.Y., and Mike Battaglia will host coverage of the Ashland Stakes from Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Ky.
MOSS ON CREATIVE CAUSE IN THE SANTA ANITA DERBY: “After the loss by Union Rags last week in the Florida Derby, even more attention now is going to be focused on Creative Cause. Arguably he is on even par with Union Rags in the eyes of most Kentucky Derby handicappers. He is kind of a throwback horse, tough, gritty; the kind of horse that always keeps coming. And he seems to be in excellent form right now.”
MOSS ON BOB BAFFERT: “Bob Baffert has three horses in the Santa Anita Derby (Liaison, Paynter, Blueskiesnrainbows), which is one of the biggest storylines in this race. He has had a lot of great seasons, but the first few months of 2012 he’s probably been as hot as he’s ever been. He has had phenomenal success this year.”
NEUMEIER ON THE WOOD MEMORIAL: “Both favorites, Gemologist and Alpha, have taken the path of least resistance to get to this race. They have avoided the likes of Union Rags and Hansen. They both have things to prove because they haven’t been “tournament tested” so far, but I don’t know if people are going to learn so much about them in this race. Todd Pletcher has been quoted as saying that Gemologist is one of the top four three-year-olds in the country and if he says that he means it.”
NEUMEIER ON WHO COULD SURPRISE THE FAVORITES IN THE WOOD: “I look to My Adonis as my third choice, and my sleeper would be Teeth of the Dog, who is a surprise entrant.”
The Road to the Kentucky Derby™ series began March 24 with the Spiral Stakes, which was won by Went the Day Well, and continued last Saturday with the Florida Derby won by Take Charge Indy. The series concludes with coverage of the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes from Keeneland Race Course and the Arkansas Derby from Oaklawn Park, which will air on CNBC on Saturday, April 14 from 6-7 p.m. ET.
REMAINING ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY COVERAGE (All Times ET)
Saturday, April 7, 2012, 4:30-6 p.m. (NBC)
Resorts World Casino New York City Wood Memorial (Aqueduct Racetrack) and Santa Anita Derby (Santa Anita Park), Central Bank Ashland Stakes (Keeneland Race Course)
Host: Tom Hammond
Analysts: Gary Stevens, Randy Moss
Reporters: Kenny Rice, Donna Brothers, Laffit Pincay, III, Mike Battaglia (from Keeneland), Bob Neumeier (from Aqueduct)
Saturday, April 14, 2012, 6-7 p.m. ET (CNBC)
Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (Keeneland Race Course) and Arkansas Derby (Oaklawn Park)
Host: Tom Hammond
Analysts: Gary Stevens, Randy Moss
Reporters: Mike Battaglia, Kenny Rice, Katie Mikolay, Jay Privman (from Oaklawn)
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NBC SPORTS GROUP AND HORSE RACING: The NBC Sports Group is the exclusive home to the most important and prestigious events in horse racing, including the Triple Crown and the Breeders’ Cup, which was broadcast on NBC from 1984-2005. Last year marked the first time that all three Triple Crown races appeared on one network since NBC last aired the Triple Crown in 2005. NBC has been the exclusive home of the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes since 2001. This year, the NBC Sports Group will present 27 hours of Triple Crown coverage across NBC and NBC Sports Network.
NBC Sports Group is also the home to Summer at Saratoga, Autumn at Keeneland, and, in collaboration with The Jockey Club, the Road to the Kentucky Derby series that will provide live coverage of six major prep races for the 2012 Kentucky Derby.
CNBC: With CNBC in the U.S., CNBC in Asia Pacific, CNBC in Europe, Middle East and Africa, CNBC World and CNBC HD+, CNBC is the recognized world leader in business news providing real-time data, analysis and information to more than 390 million homes worldwide. The network’s 16 live hours a day of business programming in North America (weekdays from 4:00 a.m.- 8:00 p.m.) is produced at CNBC’s global headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and includes reports from CNBC News bureaus worldwide. CNBC.com and CNBC Mobile Web (mobile.cnbc.com) offer real-time stock quotes, charts, analysis and streaming video.
THE JOCKEY CLUB: The Jockey Club, founded in 1894 and dedicated to the improvement of Thoroughbred racing and breeding, is the breed registry for North American Thoroughbreds. In fulfillment of its mission, The Jockey Club provides support and leadership on a wide range of important industry initiatives and it serves the information and technology needs of owners, breeders, media, fans and farms, among others. Additional information is available at jockeyclub.com.
Kentucky Derby and The Road to the Kentucky Derby are registered trademarks of Churchill Downs Incorporated.
–NBC Sports Group–