Multiple Grade 1 winner Bricks and Mortar continues to hold the lead spot in the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll heading into his expected start in the Grade 1 Arlington Million, but McKinzie's sublime victory in the Grade 1 Whitney Stakes August 3 has allowed the son of Street Sense to narrow the gap on the Chad Brown-trained runner.
Bricks and Mortar, who has held the No. 1 position in the poll since April 8, earned 25 first-place votes and 418 points this week as he prepares to put his five-race win streak on the line in Arlington International Racecourse's signature test August 10. In winning the Whitney Stakes by 1 3/4-lengths, McKinzie notched his fourth career top-level triumph and garnered 16 first-place votes and 399 points to move into second overall on the NTRA Poll.
“He got a proper Grade 1 race, as they say in England,” Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert told NYRA's publicity team the morning after McKinzie's Whitney victory. “He showed us what he could do. (Jockey) Mike Smith rode him with a lot of confidence. He's got him figured out now.”
Leading distaffer Midnight Bisou (3 first-place votes, 333 points) dipped one spot this week to third with stablemate Mitole (212 points) now fourth.
Reigning champion turf female Sistercharlie (IRE), who is slated to start in the Grade 1 Beverly D. Stakes at Arlington this Saturday, is fifth with 193 points while World of Trouble (185 points) dropped to sixth after being scratched out of the Grade 3 Troy Stakes at Saratoga Race Course last Saturday due to a foot bruise.
Fellow top sprinter Imperial Hint ranks seventh with 134 points followed by Grade 1 Haskell Invitational Stakes winner Maximum Security (107 points), the only 3-year-old in the top 10.
Grade 1 winners Seeking the Soul and Elate are tied for ninth with 67 points apiece.
The Top Thoroughbred Poll wraps up November 4 after the running of the Breeders' Cup.
The NTRA Top Thoroughbred polls are the sport's most comprehensive surveys of experts. Every week eligible journalists and broadcasters cast votes for their top 10 horses, with points awarded on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. All horses that have raced in the U.S., are in training in the U.S., or are known to be pointing to a major event in the U.S. are eligible for the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2020 Paulick Report.