America's Best Horses for March 8

Racing
Morello rolled to victory in the March 5 Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct and improved to 3-for-3 in his career. The colt joined the NTRA rankings of top 10 Thoroughbreds this week at no. 8. (Adam Coglianese/NYRA)

Each week, members of the media around the country vote on the nation's top contenders on the Triple Crown trail in the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll.

The poll will run weekly through June 5. Find out the latest 2022 top 3-year-old rankings below.


AMERICA’S TOP THOROUGHBREDS FOR MARCH 8, 2022

Eclipse Sportswire

1. Epicenter (9 first-place votes)

Owner: Winchell Thoroughbreds

Trainer: Steve Asmussen

Jockey: Joel Rosario

2022 record: 2 starts – 1 win – 1 second – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford, Feb. 19 at Fair Grounds

Next race: Louisiana Derby, March 26 at Fair Grounds


BENOIT photo

2. Forbidden Kingdom (8 first-place votes)

Owners: MyRacehorse and Spendthrift Farm

Trainer: Richard Mandella

Jockey: Juan Hernandez

2022 record: 2 starts – 2 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, San Felipe Stakes, March 5 at Santa Anita Park

Next race: Runhappy Santa Anita Derby, April 9 at Santa Anita Park


Bob Coglianese/Gulfstream Park

3. Simplification

Owner: Tami Bobo

Trainer: Antonio Sano

Jockey: Jose Ortiz

2022 record: 3 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth Stakes, March 5 at Gulfstream Park

Next race: Curlin Florida Derby, April 2 at Gulfstream Park


Eclipse Sportswire

4. Messier (12 first-place votes)

Owners: SF Racing, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables, Robert Masterson, Jay Schoenfarber, Waves Edge Capital, Catherine Donovan, Golconda Stable and Siena Farm

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Jockey: John Velazquez

2022 record: 1 start – 1 win – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Robert B. Lewis Stakes, Feb. 6 at Santa Anita Park

Next race: Runhappy Santa Anita Derby, April 9 at Santa Anita Park


Eclipse Sportswire

5. Smile Happy (3 first-place votes)

Owner: Lucky Seven Stable 

Trainer: Ken McPeek

Jockey: Corey Lanerie

2022 record: 1 start – 0 wins – 1 second – 0 thirds

Last race: 2nd, Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford, Feb. 19 at Fair Grounds

Next race: TBD


Eclipse Sportswire

6. Classic Causeway 

Owners: Kentucky West Racing and Clarke Cooper

Trainer: Brian Lynch

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

2022 record: 1 start – 1 win – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Sam F. Davis Stakes, Feb. 13 at Tampa Bay Downs

Next race: Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby, March 12 at Tampa Bay Downs


Lauren King/Coglianese Photo

7. White Abarrio

Owners: C2 Racing Stable and La Milagrosa Stable

Trainer: Saffie Joseph Jr.

Jockey: Tyler Gaffalione

2022 record: 1 start – 1 win – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Holy Bull Stakes, Feb. 5 at Gulfstream Park

Next race: Curlin Florida Derby, April 2 at Gulfstream Park


Eclipse Sportswire

8. Morello

Owners: Blue Lion Thoroughbreds, Craig Taylor and Diamond T Racing

Trainer: Steve Asmussen

Jockey: Jose Lezcano

2022 record: 2 starts – 2 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Gotham Stakes, March 5 at Aqueduct

Next race: Wood Memorial Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets, April 9 at Aqueduct


Coady Photography

9. Secret Oath (3 first-place votes)

Owner: Briland Farm 

Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas

Jockey: Luis Contreras

2022 record: 2 starts – 2 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Last race: 1st, Honeybee Stakes, Feb. 26 at Oaklawn Park

Next race: TBD, possibly the Fantasy Stakes or the Arkansas Derby, both April 2 at Oaklawn Park


Adam Coglianese/NYRA

10. Zandon (1 first-place vote)

Owner: Jeff Drown

Trainer: Chad Brown

Jockey: Jose Ortiz

2022 record: 1 start – 0 wins – 0 seconds – 1 third

Last race: 3rd, Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford, Feb. 19 at Fair Grounds

Next race: TBD, possibly the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, April 9 at Keeneland Race Course

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