Kentucky Derby: Can European Master of Hounds Impress in American Debut?
Kentucky Derby Features Irish Master of Hounds, But How Will European Horse Fare In American Debut?
This year's field for the Kentucky Derby remains one of the most wide open in recent memory. With a lack of a sure-fire favorite, we've seen different horses rise to prominence and fade back into the pack over the course of the last few weeks.
One potentially intriguing pick is the Irish horse Master of Hounds. The only internationally-based horse in this year's Derby field, Master of Hounds arrived on Monday and has begun his 48-hour mandatory quarantine prior to the race.
Hounds has run in three races in his career, the UAE Derby, the Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf, and the Racing Post Trophy. He finished second in the Derby, a disappointing sixth in the Turf, and third in the Post Trophy races.
But, what should we make of this horse? Is he capable of putting on an impressive showing in his American debut, or will he fall flat like he did in the Breeders Cup?
The fact is, we just don't know what this horse is capable of. His results in Europe haven't been great, and we have yet to see him run against any elite American competition. There's a good chance that he could go out there at Churchill and just get blown out of the water.
But, at the same time, there is potential there. Hounds isn't a bad racer, and he was barely nudged out of the win in the UAE Derby, losing by a nose in that race. He's a grinder, capable of making strong finishes and strong starts, with a good, balanced style.
In the end, I just don't see Master of Hounds keeping up with the Derby's best this year. He's yet to win a race in his brief career, and even with the strong showing in Dubai, it's hard to be convinced that he can deliver a strong showing on this stage.
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