NO. 16 BLACK ONYX
Sprung a 15-1 surprise in the Spiral Stakes to earn 50 qualifying points that will be sufficient to land a starting spot in the Kentucky Derby and has been sent to Churchill Downs where he will be trained up to the first jewel in the Triple Crown. The form of the Spiral, however, took a hit when runner-up Uncaptured returned to run poorly in the Blue Grass Stakes. Prior to his victory in the the below-par rated Spiral victory over the poly track at Turfway Park he won an entry-level allowance event on turf at Gulfstream Park (defeating subsequent Rushaway winner Crop Report). At his best when allowed to settle in mid pack and then rally, the son of Rock Hard Ten doesn’t have a blazing turn of foot but was relentless in his two recent victories and should stay the Derby’s 10-furlong trip. His female family is a nice mixture of speed and stamina; his third dam produced Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner Desert Stormer. He’s a progressive sort but isn’t impressive in the speed figure department and still must prove he can be as effective over conventional dirt as he is on turf or synthetic.