Post positions, odds and full field for Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park

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Newgrange and jockey John Velazquez win the Southwest Stakes on Jan. 29 at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark.
Newgrange and jockey John Velazquez win the Southwest Stakes on Jan. 29 at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark.

Bob Baffert-trained horses may be ineligible to run in this year’s Kentucky Derby, but they’re dominating the lead-up.

Of the 21 Kentucky Derby prep races conducted since September, Baffert’s horses have won six of them – two each by Corniche and Newgrange and one by Messier and Blackadder.

Newgrange will look to continue the trend Saturday as the 9-5 morning-line favorite in the $1 million, Grade 2 Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark. The Rebel offers 50 Kentucky Derby qualifying points to the winner, virtually assuring a spot in the May 7 Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs.

More coverage: Top 20 horses to watch on the Kentucky Derby trail

However, Baffert’s horses are ineligible for the Kentucky Derby as part of a two-year ban Churchill Downs announced in June as the result of Medina Spirit’s positive drug test following last year’s victory in the Derby. Stewards announced the disqualification of Medina Spirit on Monday and suspended Baffert for 90 days.

So far, owners are standing by Baffert and not moving their horses to other trainers in an attempt to be eligible for the Kentucky Derby.

Newgrange, a $125,000 purchase at the 2020 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, is owned by a high-profile ownership group that includes SF Racing (Gavin Murphy), Starlight Racing (Jack Wolf), Madaket Stables (Sol Kumin) and Stonestreet Stables (Barbara Banke).

In a story posted Wednesday at HorseRacingNation.com, Madaket’s Kumin would not comment on any future plans with regard to Baffert. Kumin noted both Newgrange and Pinehurst (Saudi Derby) were running Saturday in seven-figure races, “and we will try and focus on those for now and try and enjoy them.”

A son of Violence, Newgrange is undefeated in three career starts and most recently won the Grade 3 Southwest on Jan. 29 at Oaklawn. That continued Baffert’s dominance at Oaklawn, where he’s started 84 horses and won 36 races for a 42.9% win clip. That includes 28 stakes victories (eight Rebels) and $9.9 million in purse earnings.

More coverage: Current point standings for 2022 Kentucky Derby

“I’ve brought the good horses up there,” Baffert said. “That track, I’ve always had good luck there and they run well there. It’s a great racetrack.”

Trained by John Ortiz, Barber Road is the 9-2 second choice in the Rebel morning line. A son of Race Day, Barber Road is 2-3-0 in six career starts and was the runner-up to Newgrange in the Southwest.

Ben Diesel, trained by Dallas Stewart, was third in the Southwest and is 6-1 in the morning line.

Rebel Stakes

Post time: 6:22 p.m. EST Saturday at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark. Purse: $1 million. Grade: 2. Distance: 1 1/16 miles. TV: TVG and FoxSports2.

PP Horse, jockey, trainer, odds

1. Kavod, Francisco Arrieta, Chris Hartman, 12-1

2. Newgrange, John Velazquez, Bob Baffert, 9-5

3. Cairama, Geovanni Franco, Steve Asmussen, 15-1

4. Un Ojo, Ramon Vazquez, Ricky Courville, 12-1

5. Texas Red Hot, Ricardo Santana Jr., Randy Morse, 12-1

6. Stellar Tap, Cristian Torres, Steve Asmussen, 10-1

7. Ben Diesel, Jon Court, Dallas Stewart, 6-1

8. Chasing Time, Tyler Gaffalione, Steve Asmussen, 8-1

9. Barber Road, Reylu Gutierrez, John Ortiz, 9-2

10. Ethereal Road, Luis Contreras, D. Wayne Lukas, 12-1

11. Dash Attack, David Cohen, Kenny McPeek, 8-1

Jason Frakes: 502-582-4046; jfrakes@courier-journal.com; Twitter: @KentuckyDerbyCJ.

This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: Post positions, odds and full field for Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park