This is a continuing series examining the profile of each contender for this year's Kentucky Derby. Links to all the previews in the series can be found in the left sidebar under Kentucky Derby 136: Contender Profiles.
Sire: Indian Charlie
Dam: Emptythetill (Holy Bull)
Trainer: Bob Baffert
Jockey: Martin Garcia
Career Record: 5-4-1-0
Graded Earnings (rank): $386,000 (#11)
Running style: Speed
Conveyance has held the lead after a half mile in every single one of his five lifetime starts. If this colt knows how to rate, he's never shown it at any time.
Like some of the other horses in the Derby, it's possible Conveyance could develop a new running style in the next week, but it's not likely.
How he got to the Derby: Conveyance began his three year old campaign by winning the Grade 3 San Rafael at Santa Anita in wire-to-wire fashion. He followed that up with a similar performance in the one mile Grade 3 Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park. He defeated a decent field at Oaklawn that day, including fellow Derby contender Dublin in that colt's three year old debut.
His final Derby prep took place at Sunland Park in the Grade 3 Sunland Derby where he finished a well beaten second to Endorsement after setting the pace for the first mile. The two wins and a second in those three graded stakes events were more than enough to get Conveyance into this year's Kentucky Derby field.
What has to happen for him to win: Conveyance can't change his pedigree and that's going to be a problem in the Derby. Both sides of his ancestry have produced horses that have succeeded primarily in sprints and races at a mile. Asking for a mile and quarter out of this horse is, in my opinion, an unrealistic proposition.
The conventional wisdom says that this horse has to "freak" and put up an unbelievable gate-to-wire performance to win. I think if he tries that he'll be done after a mile and will finish last. The only way I see this colt winning is by taking back after the break and trying to at least stalk the early lead. Even then, I'm not sure he's got the stamina to make it all the way.
I've got Conveyance as one of the longer prices on the board based primarily off of his effort in the Sunland Derby last time out which confirmed the pedigree questions. As I note below in the Key Race section, this horse ran his usual race at Sunland, but he didn't have the stamina to win.
Key Race: Grade 3 Sunland Derby (2nd)
Please see the preview for Endorsement for the race replay of the Sunland Derby.
Conveyance wasn't high on my list of contenders for the Kentucky Derby prior to this race and he really fell off the radar after it. Conveyance has one tactic, and that's to use his speed to gain control of the race and to run the competition into submission. This colt has never raced more than a mile prior to the Sunland Derby, and you couldn't help but think that he wants no part of a mile and a quarter after watching this performance. By the time this colt came off the far turn, the race was over. He held for second, but considering the Derby is going to be an eighth of a mile longer (and with a more contentious pace), I just can't see him winning
Conveyance didn't do anything wrong in this race and he really didn't run a bad race (in terms of Beyers, it was essentially the same as his winning effort in the Southwest). But I think it's clear that he's more of a miler than a horse that's going to win a Classic.