IN A NUTSHELL:The National Thoroughbred Racing Association’s Top Thoroughbred Poll came out yesterday, and two-time Horse of the Year Wise Dan remains at the head of the class with 34 of the 45 first-place votes cast.   The poll looks largely similar to last week’s — with one major exception.

BIG MOVER: The unpredictable Bayern delivered an absolutely killer performance Saturday in the Pennsylvania Derby (here), turning a front-running trip into a smashing victory and a track record.  He also parlayed that into a big move in the Top Thoroughbred Poll, jumping from 21st a week ago to fifth, just behind California Chrome.

NO STRIKES AND YOU’RE OUT: Goldencents hasn’t run since winning the Grade 2 Pat O’Brien at Del Mar on August 24.  But he became the victim of Bayern’s big move in the poll, dropping out after finishing in tenth a week ago.

I HEAR YOU KNOCKING, BUT…: The three horses just off the list are Main Sequence, Palace, and Goldencents.  All had between 43 and 49 points, well short of the 75 Palace Malice, who is tenth, accrued.

SHINY: California Chrome’s glittering resume includes Grade 1 wins in the Santa Anita Derby, Kentucky Derby, and Preakness.  All of that gave voters enough to largely overlook the clunker he threw on Saturday when sixth in the G2 Pennsylvania Derby; he dropped just one spot, to fourth on the list.

AGE AND SEX: The list includes five three-year-olds (Shared Belief, California Chrome, Bayern, Untapable, and Wicked Strong) and two females (Close Hatches and Untapable).



  1. Wise Dan
  2. Shared Belief
  3. Close Hatches
  4. California Chrome
  5. Bayern
  6. Itsmyluckyday
  7. Untapable
  8. Moreno
  9. Wicked Strong
  10. Palace Malice

Note: The Racing Biz writers Nick Hahn and Frank Vespe are voters in the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll.