International Star is the sort of horse who fires his shot every time. He likes the rail but he doesn't have to have it. He likes a good pace up front to soften things up for his closing run, but he doesn't have to have that either. In the Louisiana Derby, he ran down a colt who had gotten things his own way with a soft pace on the front end, and he did it with the kind of relentless drive that doesn't take no for an answer. He may or may not be good enough for the crowd at Louisville, but it's a safe bet that he will give them whatever he has.
In contrast to some of his potential competitors, it's also a fairly good bet that he will stay 10 furlongs regardless of a dosage index of 4.09. Sired by Kentucky Derby (USA-G1) winner Fusaichi Pegasus, he's out of a French Deputy daughter who was at her best going around two turns. The second dam, Speak Halory, is by Verbatim, a major winner over 10 furlongs, and is a half sister to five good stakes winners, most of which preferred routes, out of a Halo mare.
In some ways, International Star reminds me of Smarten, who wasn't quite good enough for the best of his crop in Spectacular Bid's year but racked up quite a chunk of change racing in somewhat softer spots. One could do a lot worse than have a horse like this in the barn.