Shakeup In Early August NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll

Written By Fairway Jay on August 4, 2020 - Last Updated on August 17, 2020

Some major upsets last weekend caused a shakeup in the latest National Thoroughbred Racing Association Top Thoroughbred Poll. The NTRA has a new leader after both Midnight Bisou and Tom’s d’Etat were runner-ups in big graded stakes races Aug. 1 at Saratoga.

The magnificent mare Midnight Bisou dropped from the top spot for the first time since March 10 after suffering a setback in Race 5. She finished a neck short in the Personal Ensign (Grade 1). The Steve Asmussen-trained mare has won $7.4 million with 13 wins in 21 starts. She finished second for the sixth time in her career when she couldn’t overcome a bump from the winner Vexatious in the stretch and an inquiry for interference that stood.

The gate was open for Tom’s d’Etat to take over the top spot in the NTRA poll in Race 9 a few hours later. But Tom’s d’Etat stumbled badly from the gate and couldn’t recover, finishing third in the Whitney Stakes (Grade 1).


So Vekoma, who had just two first-place votes in last week’s NTRA poll, moves up to No. 1 this week. Vekoma has won all three of his starts in 2020 for trainer Albert Stall, Jr. The 4-year-old most recently won the Metropolitan Handicap (Met Mile) on July 4, finishing ahead of race favorite McKinzie (fifth) and Code of Honor (third). Vekoma will next run in the $300,000 Forego Stakes (Grade 1) on Aug. 29 at Saratoga. Then he heads to the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (Grade 1) Nov. 7 at Keeneland.

Bob Baffert-trained Improbable makes the biggest move in the latest NTRA poll going from outside the top 10 to No. 3 this week after he galloped home a 2-length winner in the Whitney Stakes (Grade 1) over By My Standards, who drops from No. 7 to No. 9 in this week’s poll.

Maximum Security picked up nine first-place votes and remains in the top five, at No. 4 ahead of Midnight Bisou. Maximum Security won the July 25 San Diego Handicap (Grade 2) by a nose at Del Mar.

NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll (first-place votes)

1Vekoma (13) 321
2Tom's d'Etat (6)299
3Improbable (6)278
4Maximum Security (9)256
5Midnight Bisou (1)248
6Zulu Alpha140
7Monomoy Girl (2)120
8Tiz the Law (3)118
9By My Standards112


Tiz the Law is No. 8 in this week’s NTRA Top Thoroughbred poll, but is currently the top 3-year-old. Tiz the Law picked up all 40 first-place votes and took this year’s first leg of the Triple Crown when capturing the Belmont Stakes (Grade 1). Tiz the Law races this weekend in the Aug. 8 Travers Stakes (Grade 1) at Saratoga. Another victory would improve his standing and continue Tiz the Law toward Champion 3-Year-Old honors ahead of the Sept. 5 Kentucky Derby, where he will be the favorite to capture the Run for the Roses.

NTRA Top 3-Year-Old Poll (first-place votes)

1TIz the Law (40)400
2 Honor A. P. 300
3Authentic 280
4Art Collector276
5Uncle Chuck180
6Thousand Words138
7Ny Traffic112
8King Guillermo106
9Swiss Skydiver89


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FairwayJay is a leading national sports and betting analyst and provides insight and information you can bet on to engage and assist the avid fan. His tee-to-green coverage and racing contributions have been provided to Churchill Downs, Twinspires, TVG, Forbes, TheLines, numberFire and PlayUSA platforms. Follow on Twitter: @FairwayJay

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