Home Horse Racing A Nearer Take a look at West Will Energy

A Nearer Take a look at West Will Energy

A Nearer Take a look at West Will Energy


The fields for the 14 races that comprise the Breeders’ Cup World Championships actually start to come back into focus in summer time and fall and this common function will supply a snapshot profile of one of many earlier weekend’s standout stars.

West Will Energy punched his ticket to the $6 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Traditional with a decided half-length victory July 1 within the $1 million Stephen Foster Stakes at Ellis Park. The 5-year-old by Bernardini has emerged as a power within the older male division with 4 wins, three seconds, and one third-place end in his eight begins in 2022 and 2023.

Pace is West Will Energy’s greatest attribute and his evolution into one of many elite two-turn, dust racehorses within the U.S. corresponded with a change from stalking ways to a extra aggressive strategy early in his races. He excels when setting or urgent the tempo.

West Will Energy has been excellent and ultra-consistent since he first set foot on a racetrack as he has solely completed exterior the highest three twice in 17 begins and misplaced by greater than three lengths only one time in his profession. Extra just lately, his 4 begins this yr have been very good.

West Will Energy opened 2023 with a runner-up end within the Grade 3 Razorback Handicap Feb. 18, the place he earned a brand new career-best 117 Equibase Pace Determine. He adopted with a 4 ¾-length romp within the Grade 2 New Orleans Traditional Stakes Offered by Relyne GI By Hagyard that earned a 115 velocity determine. He pale a bit late when third within the Grade 2 Alysheba Stakes Offered by Sentient Jet on the Might 5 Kentucky Derby Offered by Woodford Reserve undercard however regained his profitable kind within the Stephen Foster.

West Will Energy utilized his velocity within the Stephen Foster to achieve good tactical place when each Stilleto Boy and Pace Bias broke sharply and engaged in a quick battle for the lead coming into the primary flip at Ellis Park. Pace Bias seized command and West Will Energy, beneath jockey Flavien Prat, settled into a snug rhythm in second, monitoring from a couple of size to 1 ½ lengths off Pace Bias alongside the backstretch by way of a half-mile in :46.97. West Will Energy took over the lead on cue on the ultimate flip and surged to a transparent lead in early stretch earlier than having lots left to carry off a late bid from runner-up Rattle N Roll.

Certain, Rattle N Roll made up important floor late, however West Will Energy coated the ultimate eighth of a mile in :12.73 and his ultimate three-eighths of a mile in :37.10, so the winner completed fairly properly contemplating he was near a strong early tempo. He equaled a career-best 117 Equibase Pace Determine within the Stephen Foster. Merely put, this was an enormous race from West Will Energy.

West Will Energy has by no means tried the 1 ¼-mile distance of the Longines Traditional, however longer does appear higher for him as he’s compiled 4 wins and two seconds in six begins at 1 1/8 miles, whereas each of his unplaced finishes got here at one mile.

The older male division lacks a standout and this yr’s Longines Traditional seems to be a wide-open race as we strategy the important thing summer time conferences at Del Mar and Saratoga Race Course. West Will Energy appears to be like like a serious win contender to me in 2023, and right here’s why:

  • Seven of the final 10 Traditional winners profiled as racehorses preferring to press or set the tempo and the opposite three have been stalkers. Latest historical past has proven that horses with tactical velocity, like West Will Energy, have a serious benefit within the Traditional.
  • Sluggish horses don’t win the Traditional. The typical profitable Equibase Pace Determine during the last 20 years has been 120.85 with a median of 119. With a career-best 117, West Will Energy is true inside vary of the kind of determine wanted to win the race.
  • Whereas West Will Energy has by no means tried the 1 1/4-mile distance, his greatest distance thus far has been 1 1/8 miles and his pedigree suggests 1 ¼ miles ought to be inside his scope. He’s by 2006 Preakness winner and stamina affect Bernardini out of Wild Guarantees, a Wild Occasion mare who received 13 of 20 profession begins, together with seven stakes races. Wild Guarantees received three stakes at 1 1/8 miles and one other at 1 3/8 miles, so West Will Energy has stamina high and backside in his pedigree.
  • Coach Brad Cox received the Traditional in 2021 with Knicks Go and jockey Flavien Prat received final yr on Flightline. West Will Energy is in succesful palms.
  • Whereas we do not know how West Will Energy’s season will progress nor how he’ll fare in his ultimate preps at this level within the season, he virtually by no means runs a foul race. Constant excellence is a trademark of previous traditional winners. The final 20 Traditional winners completed within the high three in 57 of 61 begins (93.4%) from June by way of October of their Breeders’ Cup-winning marketing campaign and received 40 of these races (65.6%).



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