Stay Lucky Guide: Road to Kentucky Derby Highlights Terrific Schedule


Welcome to the 2018 Stay Lucky season! You will notice new prizes and smoother performance for the new season, along with presenting sponsor Equestricon!

If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve downloaded the app and are ready to start picking winners. If you have not yet downloaded Stay Lucky, what are you waiting for?

Get the iOS version of the app here.

The Android version of the app on Google Play can be downloaded here.

Stay Lucky offers participants the opportunity to win great prizes by stringing together winners in Thoroughbred races. Unbroken streaks of five, seven, nine, 14, 17 and 20 reward the players with a prize or choice of prizes. Terms and conditions apply.

The object is simple: pick winners from North American graded stakes races that draw at least six entrants. Races will be scored in real time but streaks will be updated only once daily to make sure they are scored in the correct order.

Pick as many races each weekend as you like, but be sure to play at least one race every weekend or your streak will be reset.

This week’s schedule is highlighted by a trio of Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve prep races: the Grade 3, $250,000 Withers Stakes at Aqueduct, the Grade 2, $350,000 Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park, and the Grade 3, $150,000 Robert B. Lewis Stakes at Santa Anita Park. Watch the Withers and the Holy Bull Stakes on FS2’s new “Fox Sports Saturday At the Races” series and all three races will be televised on TVG.

Saturday, Feb 4

Swale Stakes (1:30 p.m. ET): Strike Power (#6) was incredibly impressive in his debut win and I’ll bet he’s a popular pick this week, but there are four stakes winners in here and I don’t expect him to get another easy lead. Pass.

Sweetest Chant Stakes (2:30 p.m. ET): Trainer Chad Brown, who repeated in 2017 as the Eclipse Award winner as outstanding trainer, has a couple of nice 3-year-old fillies in here in Data Dependent (#4) and Salsa Bella (#5), the latter making her U.S. debut after winning her only start in France. There are a few others in here with a chance, but I’ll take a shot with Thewayiam (#1), who won the Ginger Bred Stakes on this turf course for trainer Graham Motion on Jan. 6.

Withers Stakes (4:35 p.m. ET): I’m still dubious about Firenze Fire’s (#1) ability as the distances get longer, and I think 1 1/8 miles here might be stretching it. I like Avery Island (#4) to improve upon a runner-up finish in the Grade 2 Remsen Stakes with a victory here.

Forward Gal Stakes (4:43 p.m. ET): Put the eight names in a hat, shake them up, and pick one. It’s that wide open. Look elsewhere.

Dania Beach Stakes (5:16 p.m. ET): I LOVE Untamed Domain (#6) — he’s probably my favorite horse in training —and I think he’s a strong play here, but I’m no dummy (although some might argue otherwise). His last race was his second in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf, and he might need this race. The competition might also have caught up to him a bit as other 3-year-olds grew into their bodies. I also am leery of Gidu (#7), a Frankel colt coming in off an impressive victory sprinting.

Robert B. Lewis Stakes (5:30 p.m. ET): With many of the top Southern California Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve hopefuls sitting this one out, it opens up the race for Peace (#7) to earn his first graded stakes win for Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella. He’s got a win on this track at this distance.

Holy Bull Stakes (5:49 p.m. ET): You could make a case for probably six 3-year-olds in this race. I landed on Enticed (#1) as my selection, but it’s a lukewarm pick at best.

San Marcos Stakes (6:30 p.m. ET): Itsinthepost (#5) posted three wins and three seconds in nine starts last season and opened this year with a win on this turf course in the Grade 2 San Gabriel Stakes on Jan. 6. It’s a pretty evenly matched group, but he’s the best of this bunch when he’s on his game like he is right now.

San Pasqual Stakes (7 p.m. ET): I like Mubtaahij (#2) to fire here. He’s training well for Bob Baffert and he’s proven capable against the elite older males in the world. He ran a huge race on this track in September when he won the Grade 1 Awesome Again Stakes.

Sunday, Feb. 4

Las Virgenes Stakes (TBA p.m. ET): The racing gods might have given Stay Lucky players a Sunday gift as Bob Baffert's Dream Tree (#3) looks like a clear standout in this race as she tries to improve to 4-for-4.

Mike’s Top 4 Stay Lucky Plays

1. Dream Tree (Las Virgenes Stakes)

2. Untamed Domain (Dania Beach Stakes)

3. Peace (Robert B. Lewis Stakes)

4. Avery Island (Withers Stakes)

newsletter sign-up

Stay up-to-date with the best from America's Best Racing!