In addition to being an objective predictor of success in the Kentucky Derby, The Downey Profile is also proficient in predicting success in the other two legs of the Triple Crown, as well as later major stakes races. The key is to not give up on your horse.
Let's take a look back.
Justify was in The Downey Profile Top 4, and he won not only the Kentucky Derby, but the Triple Crown. Unfortunately, after the Belmont Stakes injury and unfortunate timing led to his retirement, and he didn't race again. Good Magic, another Top 4 horse, finished second in the Kentucky Derby and narrowly missed running second in the Preakness. He went on to win the Haskell Stakes, a grade I race. He's been retired. Audible was off for six months after the Kentucky Derby, and as of this post we'll see how he fares in the $9 million Pegasus at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 26. Our other Top 4 horse was Bolt d'Oro. I didn't include him in my top four picks in the race, and he finished twelfth before running eleventh in his only after that, the Met Mile.
Nothing is foolproof, and we have to say that 2017 wasn't a great year for Downey Profile Top 4 horses or Kentucky Derby horses in general. The Eclipse Award winner for top 3-year-old, West Coast, was a late bloomer and didn't even compete in the Derby. The Downey Profile Top 4 horses for the Kentukcky Derby were Classic Empire, Practical Joke, Gormley and Irish Way Cry, and these are not names that endured as the year progressed. The best we can say is that Classic Empire finished second -- and should have won -- the Preakness. By the way, Downey went outside The Downey Profile Top 4 and picked the top Profile Buster horse, Always Dreaming, to win the 2017 Kentucky Derby. Among Kentucky Derby starters that were not in The Downey Profle Top 4, there was some success, but not much. Tapwrit went on to win the Belmont Stakes, Girvin won the Haskell Stakes and Gunnevera remained relevant all year, but there's not much else to talk about.
Nyquist, a Top Four horse in the Downey Profile, won the Kentucky Derby. He didn't go on to achive other great wins; perhaps that high dosage index (7.00) eventually caught up with him. Exaggerator, also in the Downey Profile Top Four, finished second in the Derby and went on to win the Preakness and Grade I Haskell Stakes, although his record in other big races wasn't as good before he was retired. Gun Runner, third in the Kentucky Derby was also a Top Four horse and went on to win the Grade I Clark Handicap and the Grade III Matt Winn Stakes, run second in the Grade I Breeders' Cup Mile and the Grade II Pennsylvania Derby and third in the Grade I Travers Stakes. Gun Runner went on to win everything in sight as a 4-year-old, including the Breeders' Cup Classic, and was the 2017 Horse of the Year. Brody's Cause was the other Top Four horse in 2016, and he was retired after the Belmont Stakes.
American Pharoah, a Top Four horse in the Downey Profile, won the Kentucky Derby and became the first horse in 37 years to win the Triple Crown. Dortmund ranked at the top of The Downey Profile and finished third in the Kentucky Derby. He won a minor stake later in 2015 and then needed time off. In 2016, he won the Grade III Native Diver Stakes, ran second in the Grade II San Diego Handicap and Grade I Awesome Again Stakes, and ran third in the Grade I Pacific Classic. As this is posted in early 2017, he is being readied for a return to racing. Carpe Diem was ranked in the Top Four, and he was retired after running poorly in the Kentucky Derby. Materiality was ranked fourth and he was retired after running poorly in the Belmont Stakes. Frosted, the fifth-ranked horse, has gone on to win the Grade I Met Mile by a pole as well as the Grade I Whitney Stakes and the Grade II Pennsylvania Derby, run second in the Belmont Stakes and the Grade II Jim Dandy Stakes, and third in the Grade I Travers Stakes and Grade I Woodward Stakes.
Caliornia Chrome, a Top Four horse in The Downey Profile, won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness. He ran a heck of a race in the 2014 Breeders' Cup Classic, coming up just short of the win. Some would say the top two finishers should have been disqualified, but they weren't, and that's that. California Chrome went on to win the Grade I Hollywood Derby on turf that same year. In 2015, California Chrome raced only twice, finishing second in both the Group 1 Dubai World Cup and the Grade II San Antonio Stakes. In 2016, California Chrome won the Group 1 Dubai World Cup, Grade I Pacific Classic, Grade I Awesome Again Stakes, Grade II San Pasqual Stakes and the Grade II San Diego Handicap. He also ran second in the Breeders' Cup Classic and was voted Horse of the Year. The remaining Top Four: Samraat didn't go on to accomlish much. Danza, who may have been robbed of second place in the Kentucky Derby after he was clobbered by stable mate Vinceremos early in the race, never raced again. Chitu looked like one of the best middle distance horses in the country, but he raced only twice more after the Derby.
This wasn't a good year for residual results in 2013. The Top 4 -- Overanalyze, Java's War, Normandy Invasion and Revolutionary -- didn't do much the remainder of that year. In 2014, only Revolutionary impacted graded stakes races, winning the Grade III Pimlico Special and placing in the Grade II Oaklawn Handicap.
Number four Union Rags, Downey's pick to win the Kentucky Derby, was compromised at the gate break; but he went on to win the Belmont Stakes. Dullahan, ranked number two in the Profile, finished third in the Kentucky Derby and won the Grade I Pacific Classic. Number three Creative Cause, whom we determined was a nervous animai Derby week, still managed to finish fifth in the Derby and third in the Preakness before being retired. Gemologist was ranked number one in the Profile but something went wrong with him and he was retired not long after the summer classics.
After winning the Derby, Animal Kingdom finished second in the Preakness, second in the Breeders' Cup Mile, second in the Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap and won the Group 1 Dubai World Cup. Brilliant Speed was our top-ranked horse and finished third in the Belmont Stakes, won the Grade III Saranac, was second in the Grade I Jamaica, third in the Breeders' Cup Turf, third in the Grade I Manhattan Handicap and third in the Grade II Bowling Green Stakes. Comma to the Top is kind of a footnote. Poor old Archarcharch, whom we thought had the best pre-Derby workout, drew the one-hole, was hurt during the running of the Derby and was subsequently retired.
Super Saver wasn't in The Downey Profile Top Four in 2010, but we did have him in our top three selections for the Kentucky Derby on our Subscription Page because we could see how well he was training at Churchill Downs the week of the race. Ice Box was ranked second in our Top Four and we picked him to win. They ran one-two, and the exacta paid $152.40.
Super Saver was retired not long after the Derby. Ice Box peaked in the Derby and was never the same again.
Top-ranked Pioneerof the Nile finished second in the Kentucky Derby at 6-1 odds and then ran up the track in the Preakness. He was subsequently retired.
Third-ranked Papa Clem finished fourth in the Kentucky Derby at 12-1 odds and had only moderate success afterward, finishing fourth in the Grade I Haskell, third in a grade I and winning a grade II before retirement.
West Side Bernie ranked second in the Profile and finished ninth in the Derby, but he was then purchased for a large sum and taken to Dubai. He raced twice after that, accomplishing nothing, and he's not been heard from since July, 2010.
Since his Kentucky Derby, when he didn't fare well, General Quarters has, among other things, won the Grade I Turf Classic at Churchill Downs; finished second in the Grade III Mineshaft and Grade II New Orleans Handicap; and finished third in the Grade I Stephen Foster.
Third-ranked Colonel John went on to win the most important 3-year-old race at Saratoga, the Travers Stakes, in a scintillating stretch effort. Second-ranked Tale of Ekati won the Grade II Jerome and the Grade I Cigar Mile later in 2008.
After a poor effort in the Derby, Nobiz Like Shobiz finished second in the Grade II Swaps, then was switched to turf and won the Grade II Hall of Fame Stakes, Grade III Kent Breeders' Cup and Grade II Jamaica Handicap. He registered a fourth-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Mile but was eighth in the Grade I Hollywood Derby.
Scat Daddy was tied for top rank but was hurt during the running of the Kentucky Derby and was retired.
Sam P. was ranked third but never awakened from his mental slumber.
Fourth-ranked Any Given Saturday was compromised by post 18 in the Kentucky Derby, was probably the victim of a minor injury during the race -- he finished eighth. After recovering, he reeled off wins in the Grade II Dwyer, Grade I Haskell and Grade II Brooklyn before finishing sixth on a sloppy track in the Breeders' Cup Classic.
Street Sense ranked sixth in The Downey Profile but would have been in the Top Four had he won the Blue Grass Stakes by a nose instead of losing it by a nose.
Barbaro, ranked third in the Downey Profile, looked to have a decent chance to win the Triple Crown, but he sustained a devastating injury in the first stretch run of the Preakness.
Jazil was in our Top Four and went on to win the Belmont Stakes.
Brother Derek, who was top-ranked, did not go on to do much.
Bob and John, who was second-ranked, turned out much the same as Brother Derek.
Afleet Alex, the Downey Profile number one-ranked horse, lost the Kentucky Derby by one length. He went on to win the Preakness and Belmont Stakes, and was easily the nation's top three-year-old.
Flower Alley, who was ranked third, won the Jim Dandy Stakes before defeating Bellamy Road in the 1 1/4 mile Travers Stakes at Saratoga. The Travers is, of course, known as the "Mid-Summer Derby." Flower Alley closed out his 3-year-old campaign with a second-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Classic.
Buzzards Bay was ranked fourth in the Downey Profile and finished fifth in the Kentucky Derby at 41-1 odds after mounting a rally coming out of the far turn. His owners' partnership subsequently dissolved, he was sold, and he showed spotty performance afterward.
Smarty Jones was in our Top Four and won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness. He finished second by a heart-breaking length in the Belmont Stakes and was retired.
The Cliff's Edge led the Profile Rankings, and although he was fifth in the Kentucky Derby after reportedly losing a shoe in the race, he went to finish second in the Travers Stakes, Jim Dandy Stakes and Dwyer Stakes before being retired in 2004 with physical problems.
Imperialism was second-ranked in 2004 and validated himself with a third-place finish in the Kentucky Derby.
Third-ranked Borrego had a monster year in 2005, winning the Pacific Classic at 20-1 odds, followed with a win in the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park.
Fourth-ranked Funny Cide won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, and was third in the Belmont Stakes.
Second-ranked Empire Maker was second in the Kentucky Derby and won the Belmont. He skipped the Preakness.
Third-ranked Ten Most Wanted was second in the Belmont and won the Travers. He skipped the Preakness.
Second-, third- and fourth-ranked Empire Maker, Ten Most Wanted and Funny Cide ran one-two-three in the Belmont.
Top-ranked Buddy Gil flopped in the Derby; developed physical problems, skipped other big three-year-old races; and was retired.
Top-ranked Medaglia d’Oro ran fourth in the Kentucky Derby and eighth in the Preakness. Bettors gave up on him, and he ran second in the Belmont Stakes at 16-1 odds. He subsequently won the Jim Dandy and Travers Stakes. The following year he won the Whitney, the Oaklawn Handicap and the Strub. He finished second in the Breeders’ Cup Classic in 2002 and 2003, and was second in the Dubai World Cup.
Third-ranked Came Home ran fifth in the Derby but won the Swaps, the Affirmed, and the 1 1/4 mile Pacific Classic later in the year.
Fourth-ranked Perfect Drift ran third in the Kentucky Derby and tailed off later, only to come back and defeat Mineshaft in the Stephen Foster the following year, as well as winning the Hawthorne Gold Cup, Kentucky Cup Classic and the Washington Park Handicap.
Second-ranked Harlan’s Holiday earned over $3 million dollars before being retired.
Top-ranked Point Given ran fifth in a Kentucky Derby that no one will ever be able to explain. He then reeled off four consecutive Grade I wins: Preakness, Belmont, Haskell, Travers.
Second-ranked Monarchos won the Kentucky Derby. He was ranked number one in our separate Performance Points Only category, which does not utilize any pedigree-related factors.
Third-ranked Congaree finished third in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, was still running at age six, and earned over $3.2 million dollars including winning the Swaps, the 1 1/4 mile Hollywood Gold Cup and twice winning the Cigar Mile before being retired.
A strange year for the Profile. While he did not rank in the top four of our base Profile, the Total Points Category, Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus was number one in our Performance Points Only Category.
Top-ranked Cat Thief was third in the Kentucky Derby and later won the Breeders’ Cup Classic, paying $41.20.