Sunday, June 16, 2019
The rain held off and it was a picture perfect night for racing at Churchill Downs.
I handicapped the six stakes races on the card (5-10) and ended up with one scratch. Paddy's Day didn't go in the 10th. Maybe waiting for St. Patrick's Day?
Out of the 23 horses I gave you that actually broke from the gate...I had five winners, three places and three shows. We captured 11 of the 18 possible "pay" spots (61%) and 48% of my picks hit the board.
Some nice prices as well.. MARCH TO THE ARCH in the sixth paid $23.00 on a $2 win ticket. QUIP in the eighth returned $13.80 for a $2 place bet. HARD LEGACY in the ninth was worth $13.80 for $2 to win and RB TEXAS HOLD EM got you $17.80 on a $2 win wager.
Following the $2 across the board strategy that was implemented last week by a reader, I laid out $138 on $2 win, place and show total bets on my 23 runners. I got back $157. A $19 profit isn't worth running down Central Ave. screaming your lungs out about...but it's enough to handle a few beers and a dog out there "on them".
Race 8 was the race that kept me from going 6 for 6 with winners...my picks ran second with QUIP and third with TOM'S D'ETAT. I probably should have tossed SEEKING THE SOUL...the winner of Race 8 in there...but neither Yoshida nor Gift Box ran like I thought they would and Johnny V. edged quip by a neck with a nice stretch run.
Otherwise, I gave you MR. MONEY (5TH RACE), MARCH TO THE ARCH (6TH RACE), ELATE (7TH RACE), HARD LEGACY (9TH RACE) AND RB TEXAS HOLD EM (10TH RACE) as winners...and they did.
If you were playing the Pick 3, 4 or 5 wagers, it wasn't a good night for you.
I'll be back later this month with a look at more racing.
Churchill Downs goes to night racing today for Stephan Foster Night. They're having a Mardi Gras theme, so, if you go...dress and act accordingly. Beads and gumbo maybe? You make the call. Maybe a Hurricane or two.
There are six stakes races on the card and some very good ones, so let's take a look at all six and see who I'm looking at to make money.
RACE 5 -- MATT WINN STAKES
2 - SIGNALMAN
6 - MR. MONEY
4 - KNICKS GO
3 - NO LO CONTESTO
RACE 6 -- WISE DAN STAKES
6 - SIEM RIEP
9 - MARCH TO THE ARCH
12 - ADMISSIONS OFFICER
10 - EL PICARO
RACE 7 -- FLEUR DE LIS STAKES
3 - ELATE
2 - SHE'S A JULIE
5 - BLUE PRIZE
4 - GO GOOGLE YOURSELF
RACE 8 -- STEPHEN FOSTER STAKES
10 - QUIP
9 - TOM'S D 'ETAT
6 - GIFT BOX
12 - YOSHIDA
RACE 9 -- REGRET STAKES
4 - VARENKA
10 - GAMBLIN TRAIN
11 - PRINCESA CAROLINA
5 - HARD LEGACY
RACE 10 -- PRESIDENT OF THE U.A.E. STAKES
5 - EASTER MAN
6 - RB TEXAS HOLD 'EM
8 - PADDY'S MAN
9 - QUICK AND RICH
There is a chance for rain this evening (it's Louisville and a weekend, so that's almost always a certainty) so be ready for scratches and such. Like I say, play 'em anyway you want. Good luck!
Saturday, June 8, 2019
This Saturday Belmont race day card is imposing, impressive and intriguing in terms of handicapping. I've chosen to concentrate on Races 7-11 for my picks today. All high quality stakes races here, all Grade I and some tough decisions.
To play a multi-race Pick 5 (or even Pick 3) looks like it could be quite costly, so I'm going this route. I've identified my to five horses in each race. I'll try a $1 exacta box in each race with these and a .50 cent trifecta box. We're looking at an outlay, then, of $50 per race and a sum total of $250 wagered.
RACE 7 -- ACORN -- 1 MILE
7 - GUARANA
1 - SERENGETI EMPRESS
3 - COOKIE DOUGH
8 - QUEEN OF BEAS
9 - CECE
RACE 8 -- WOODY STEPHENS -- 7 FURLONGS
9 - MIND CONTROL
1 - HONEST MISCHIEF
3 - BORRACHO
4 - COMPLEXITY
8 - HOG CREEK HUSTLE
RACE 9 -- METROPOLITAN -- 1 MILE
3 - MITOLE
1 - COAL FRONT
2 - MCKINZIE
9 - PRINCE LUCKY
4 - THUNDER SHOW
RACE 10 -- MANHATTAN -- 1-1/4TH MILE (TURF)
8 - BRICKS AND MORTAR
4 - QURBAAN
7 - OLYMPICO
10 - CHANNEL MARKER
9 - EPICAL
RACE 11 -- BELMONT STAKES -- 1-1/2 MILE
10 - TACITUS (I think he'll like the extra distance)
9 - WAR OF WILL ( All reports are he's looking good and ready to go)
3 - MASTER FENCER ( Made up a lot of ground in Ky. Derby in stretch)
7- SIR WINSTON ( Was closing in the Peter Pan)
4 - TAX ( Likes a fast track, adds Irad Ortiz)
I gave you 25 horses to consider over the five race sequence on Belmont Day at Belmont. Minus a scratch...24 went to the gate.
There were 15 "money" or win, place and show spots up for grabs. How'd I do?
I provided five winners! Some nice $2 win prices included in there, with Hog Creek Hustle ($39.80) Sir Winston ($22.40) and Mitole ($9.00)
I also gave out three horses who ran second. Three selections came in third. That a 73% success race in filling the money sports (11-15) and 46% rate on all my selections making money (11-24).
The $1 Pick 4 that ended in Race 11 paid $4,236.00. It would have cost you $500.
Sadly, the reality here is that I wasn't willing to toss down $500.
It should be noted that there were also Three Pick 3 chances in the sequence. Starting with race seven, they would have cost you $125.00, $100.00 and $100.00 to play on the $1 wager. Those paid $341.00, $199.50 and $147.50. A total investment of $325 would have returned you $688. A profit of $363.
Last but not least, a NYRA Pick 5 was offered for races 7-11. A $1 wager on it, using my picks, would have been expensive at $3,000. It returned $20,405.50, though, for a profit over over $17,000.
Maybe the old adage "it takes money to make money" was justified yesterday.
I got a nice e-mail this morning (Sunday) from a reader who decided to take my picks and play them "her" way. She put a $2 WPS bet on each of the five horses over the five race sequence. How did she do? She stuck $50 in her on-line account and sat back and enjoyed the racing while her husband was off to Patterson Stadium and then the track for baseball and racing.
In race seven, she wagered $30 but got back just $21, so she was -$9 going into race eight.
Her $30 investment returned $71.80 in the eighth race for a profit of $41.80 on the race and $32.80 for the day.
Race nine's $30 wager brought back $26.60, for a loss of $3.40 on the race but still an overall profit of $29.40.
In the tenth race, one of my picks was scratched, so the total investment was just $24. That investment paid just $8.40, though...so she lost $15.60 on the race and her profit for the day was down to $13.80.
In the Belmont Stakes, the 11th race, the $30 investment brought back $44.40. A return profit of $14.40 in the race and an overall profit of $28.20 on the day.
We like it when people make money...
Saturday, June 1, 2019
The Twin Spires get illuminated tonight with a "throwback theme" to 1969 and racing that begins at 6 p.m.
I've selected four plays for the evening:
RACE 3 : #4 Rumandice looks far and away the best here. You won't get much of a price on this one but could be a "single" for vertical stuff like Pick 3's or the early Pick 4. I'll go $50 to win.
RACE 7: I'm going to try a .50 cent trifecta layer here that will feature #5 Grandezza and #10 Second Coming on top. I included #5 and #10 with #3, #6, and #8 for second and went really deep for third with #1, #2, #3, #5, #6, #8 and #10. $20 is the cost on the .50 cent version
RACE 8 : This late Pick 4 looks like it could produce a nice return, so let's spend a bit to make a bunch. I'll go the .50 cent Pick 4 -- starting with #2, #3 in the eighth, #2, #5, #6, #9 #10 in the ninth, #1, #2, #3, #6, #7 in the tenth and finish it with #1, #4, #5 #9 in the eleventh. Cost you a "C" note.
Yes, it's a $100 wager and might be a bit steep for some, but, I think it'll easily pay $300 or more on the .50 cent variety, though, and probably much more. You could form a "pool" and include a couple/few folks to lighten the load, of course. A Pick 3 for races 9.10,11 gets you out for $50 and I'll probably venture there as well
Total outlay for the night: $220. I expect much more coming back to me.
#4 RUMANDICE was the best in Race 3 and deservedly so, got hammered at the windows.
Still I got back $90 for $50 wagered and we always accept a outcome that is profitable.
My Race 7 trifecta probably should have been just a straight out WPS on #5 Grandezza. He won for fun and returned $6.20 on a $2 wager. The trifecta was spolied by the 19-1 #1 horse running second, I figured that one was no better than third, so we dropped $20 there.
I bet the late Pick 3 and Pick 4 as outlined above. I did a .50 cent variety in both sequences.
Out of that total of $150 wagered, the returns were $65.15 on the Pick 3 and $162.20 on the Pick 4. Not as high of a return as I hoped for (are they ever?) but $237 is what I collected for this outlay of $150 and that's a profit of $87.
So, for the night, on these four selected wagers, I made a profit of $107. I'll walk out of there anytime with that. Sometimes a bettor tries to "beat the track" and go for every win in every race. Last night, I got selective and it was beneficial.
Be sure to check back on Belmont Day (June 8th.) for a few selections from that card and also from what looks to be shaping up to be a very nice card at Churchill, too.
Monday, May 27, 2019
Only a couple of picks here today for you today out at Churchill. Be advised, front-runners and inside posts have been performing very well out at the Twin Spires. Don't let odds scare you.
RACE 3 --- I'll solo Juliet Foxtrot here in anything I do. She debuted well for Brad Cox and should make it two in a row.
RACE 8 -- Looking at a stone cold, trifecta box with SOAP BUBBLE, TOBACCO ROAD and WHISKEY ECHO here. A late Pick Three with BREAKFAST POND AND DADDY'S MELODY in race seven, the aforementioned three in Race 8 and the "all" button in the final might make you a few shillings.
Have a great Memorial Day weekend.
(Recap...the $5.40 back on $2 bet on Juliet Foxtrot set up a nice profit. It was a day to play Julian Leparoux...he won four out of the last five races and that helped the bankroll as well. )
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Saturday, May 11, 2019
Churchill Downs has a 100 K Stakes race going on Saturday. Gee, I wonder where they found the money to do that?
Anyway, it's the Mamzelle Stakes, it'll go on the turf and it's a sprinter for 5 furlongs. It is RACE 9 ON THE CHURCHILL CARD
Wesley Ward has entered three runners and I definitely like two of them
#5 Chelsea Cloisters will get Brian Hernandez, Jr to ride. This one ran a huge race in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint last year at 24-1 against Bulletin to finish second. "C.C." went toe-to-toe with the winner before fading near the wire. A trip to Keeneland this spring in another Stakes race produced a third place finish, once again, contending and fading late. The works have looked good and Chelsea could get the win today. Maybe 7/2 odds, if you're lucky. My top pick.
#7 Catherinethegreat has Julian Leparoux riding for Mark Casse and this filly goes to the turf for the first time and at a shorter distance than she did in the fall, where she ran against Restless Rider and other top quality horses at Keeneland and Saratoga. She had a graded stakes win at Saratoga last summer and has been training great for her 2019 opener. She should love the turf and the shorter distance
#9 Abyssinian is the second of three Wesley Ward entries and one I do like a lot. Tyler Gaffalione takes over in the saddle. This gal ran into Bulletin this spring at Keeneland and finished a closing third. Nothing but "bullet" works since that one indicate to me she's ready to try the Churchill turf.
Bulletin isn't in the house today. My second pick.
#12 Play On. Brad Cox goes to Shaun Bridgmohan for the ride today. She did finish behind Chelsea Cloisters this spring at Keeneland but Shaun wasn't on her that day and she won three in a row with him piloting at Fairgrounds and Gulfstream over the winter. She'll contest the early pace and have something to say about the finish.
(Ward's other horse is #1 Iva. She seems to win when Julio Garcia is on board and that's the case today but she got blown out in the Grade III Beaumont this spring at Keeneland and I have a hard time seeing her making a difference today. )
PAULIE PICKS 5-9-7-12
Next Saturday they'll contest the second jewel of the Triple Crown. The Preakness is run at Pimlico (for now...the track is falling apart, Maryland won't put any money into it and Laurel Race Course and others want that jewel....)
No Country House. No Maximum Security. No Code of Honor. No Tacitus. No Game Winner. No Omaha Beach or Roadster. Almost all the horses getting Derby chatter aren't contesting the Preakness. Only four of the 21 who were Derby considerations go to Baltimore, as of now.
Here's 11 who could show up.
ALWAYSMINING -- DANIEL CENTENO rides. Won the Tesio Stakes last out
ANOTHERTWISTAFATE -- JOSE ORTIZ up. 2nd in the Lexington
BODEXPRESS -- (NO JOCKEY NAMED) -- 13th in the Kentucky Derby
BOURBON WAR -- IRAD ORTIZ, JR on board. 4th in the Florida Derby
IMPROBABLE -- MIKE SMITH the jockey. 4th in the Kentucky Derby.
LAUGHING FOX -- RICARDO SANTANA gets the call. Won the Oaklawn Park Invitational
OWENDALE -- FLORENT GEROUX in the saddle. 1st in the Lexington
SIGNALMAN -- BRIAN HERNANDEZ, JR pilots. 3rd in the Blue Grass
WAR OF WILL -- TYLER GAFFALIONE returns. 7th in the Kentucky Derby
WARRIORS CHARGE -- JAVIER CASTELLANO jocks. Won an allowance race at Oaklawn
WIN WIN WIN -- JULIEN PIMENTEL has the reins. 9th in the Kentucky Derby.
You have a week to figure this mess out. As of right now, I'm looking at Improbable, War of Will and the Ortiz brothers mounts...Anothertwistafate and Bourbon War. We'll review it more on Friday.
Sunday, May 5, 2019
On what to be a wild and wooly trip around the final turn and to "down the stretch they come" territory, the 145th Kentucky Derby had a winner, there were objections to the winner, there was a review of the winner's trip and a subsequent disqualification.
What is this? ACC Women's basketball? All we needed was Jeff Walz, Quentin Hillsman or Wes Moore on the sloppy Churchill surface yelling in Dee Kanter's ear as the officials strode to the sideline table. This was much bigger than that, though. A horse out of control (Maximum Security) appeared to be on a jailbreak of sorts when the field made their final surge around the turn and to the wire. Luis Saez, the jockey on "Max" had him wide, then had him ducking to the rail, and...in the process, interferred with several horses final push down the Churchill stretch .
And, it went to review. 20 minutes of review. Three calls to jockeys from the stewards. Reviewing every possible angle of the scene of question. And, of course, the inane commentary of the talking heads on the peacock network.
War Of Will could have been your Derby winner if "Max" hadn't cut in front of him, stopped him almost dead in his tracks. Credit jockey Tyler Gaffliaone for keeping his horse upright in what might have been one of the most horrific spills in racing history.
And, the horse that led them all the way is taken down. All the way down. No payout, a call by stewards on two valid objections from veteran race riders...Jon Court, who got and Tyler.
It was the right call.
And it propelled second place race finisher Country House into first. The first time Derby had ever been decided that way. The first win ever for local legend Billy Mott. A win for up-and-coming rider Flavien Prat who did the right thing, kept his horse wide in the turn and ran the race of his young life.
This one will be talked about for a very long time, but...stewards have a role, they were called on to perform it and the three did what they are assigned to do.
They made the right call.
I handicapped all 14 races for you (my brain still hurts) and gave you four horses per race. Out of the 56 I picked, 22 of them claimed the 42 "payable" spots. 52% "in the money"
I had seven winners, seven seconds and eight thirds. The winners paid (on a $2 wager) $23.20, $13.20, $23.00, $6.40, $4.20, $13.20 and $9.00.
I did not have the Derby Winner when it was all finally decided. That's the breaks of the game.
I went back to the "$2 across the board" on my four choices per race. That was $24 a race and $336 wagered for the day. Final payouts brought back $278...so I actually lost $58 on the day.
Any horse player will tell you that you can't bet them all and expect to leave a winner. I barely did just that on Friday -- showing a profit -- but it came back to get me Saturday. My skills were pretty good through the first eight races and the final two...but that stretch of races 9,10,11 and 12 got me.
Add my 50 cent Derby trifecta box of five horses to the losses and it wasn't the best of days. On a day where weird things were happening and handicapping was basically just as effective and closing your eyes and picking a horse...that's how it goes sometimes.
I'll be back in a couple of weeks to look at the Preakness.
Friday, May 3, 2019
It is finally here! The first Saturday in May and the Kentucky Derby.
It looks like it is going to be a wet one, whether you're at Churchill or at a party in the area. Fortunately, the forecasts I've been watching seem to be getting a little better the later I watch them for Saturday as I've watched...but there will be rain.
14 races tomorrow. You'll find my picks below. As always, play them anyway you want.
(THESE ARE SELECTIONS based on the latest scratches as of 9 a.m. Saturday)
RACE 1 -- 6 FURLONGS -- ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- $80K
3 -- CURATE
2 -- CONTROL STAKE
6 -- MR. CROW
5 -- KOWBOY KARMA
RACE 2 -- 1 MILE -- ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- $100K
6 -- AMERICAN ANTHEM
1a -- MY BOY JACK
4 -- KING ZACHARY
2 -- WAR GIANT
RACE 3 -- 6 FURLONGS -- MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT -- $100K
1 -- YOUNG PHILLIP
4 -- SUROOJ
6 -- PALMER'S WAY
10 -- ADMIRAL BROWN
RACE 4 -- 7 FURLONGS -- ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- $75K
2 -- HIDDEN SCROLL
5 -- BORRACHO
4 -- HIGH CRIME
8 -- YOUVESAIDITALL
RACE 5 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- (TURF) -- MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT -- $100K
6 -- SILVER KITTEN
12 -- GOLD STANDARD
7 -- SHE'S GOT MOVES
1A -- SUGAR LOVE
RACE 6 -- 7 FURLONGS -- HUMANA DISTAFF STAKES -- $500K
2 -- SPICED PERFECTION
5 -- AMY'S CHALLENGE
7 -- MARLEY'S FREEDOM
6 -- EMBOLDENED
RACE 7 -- I MILE -- (TURF) -- CHURCHILL DISTAFF TURF MILE -- $400k
6 -- PRECIEUSE
10 -- VALEDICTORIAN
4 -- BEAU RECALL
3 -- PROCTOR'S LEDGE
RACE 8 -- 7 FURLONGS -- CHURCHILL DOWNS STAKES -- $500K
8 -- MITOLE
12 -- WHITMORE
6 -- PROMISES FULFILLED
7 -- WARRIOR'S CLUB
RACE 9 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- (TURF) -- THE AMERICAN TURF -- $400K
1 -- A THREAD OF BLUE
8 -- AVIE'S FLATTER
9 -- WAR FILM
10 -- HENLEY'S JOY
RACE 10 -- 1 MILE -- THE PAT DAY MILE -- $400K
10 -- INSTAGRAND
1 -- DURKIN'S CALL
9 -- CAPTAIN VON TRAPP
8 -- MANNY WAH
RACE 11 -- 1-1/8TH MILE -- (TURF) -- OLD FORESTER TURF CLASSIC -- $1 MIL
12 -- BRICKS AND MORTAR
9 -- SYNCHRONY
6 -- CLYDE'S IMAGE
2 -- RAGING BULL
RACE 12 -- 1-1/4TH MILE -- THE KENTUCKY DERBY -- 3 MIL
17 -- ROADSTER
3 -- BY MY STANDARDS
8 -- TACITUS
16 -- GAME WINNER
RACE 13 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- $75K
10 -- BANDON WOODS
9 -- ROYAL MESA
11 -- HOFFA UNION
1 -- LIMONITE
RACE 14 -- 1-1/16TH MILE-- MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT -- $100 K
2 -- RANGER UP
1 -- ROTATION
7 -- FELIX THE FOX
9 -- SPEED APP
GOOD LUCK !
I had a few winners but missed capturing the Oaks Race. Oh well, racing luck, right?
I gave you 52 horses to choose from that competed for 39 "payoff" spots (win place or show). 23 of my picks "hit the board" for a 59% "in the money" percentage.
I had eight winners in the 13 races, nine second places and six shows.
I also had five exactas and three trifectas correctly picked.
I wagered a little differently on Friday. I took my four picks in each race and bet a $2 exacta box. That's $24 a race X 13 races = $312 in total wagers
I got back $325.80. A $13.80 profit. I also spent $10 to win on Bellafina. Ugh.
Thursday, May 2, 2019
Oaks Day could be a pretty sloppy wet mess, but we'll hope for the best and -- whatever the weather turns out to be, it's a very challenging field. 13 races today, so let's get to it.
PER USUAL...I'll give you my top four picks. Do what you will with them.
NOTE: PICKS HAVE BEEN UPDATED AS OF 10 A.M. FRIDAY TO REFLECT CHANGES DUE TO SCRATCHES AND WILL CONTINUE AS NEEDED AS THE DAY GOES ON
RACE 1 -- 1 MILE -- NOW OFF TURF --ALLOWANCE -- 50K
5) TOM'S LAST GENERAL
8) LUCK OF THE DRAW
1) HANDSOME HONEY
RACE 2 -- 6 FURLONGS -- OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- 80K
3) ALTER MOON
5) UPSET BREWING
RACE 3 -- 7 FURLONGS -- OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- 75K
9) GOLDEN CURL
6) IRISH MISCHIEF
5) ANGEL ALESSANDRA
RACE 4 -- 1-1/16TH MILE (NOW OFF TURF) -- 100K
3) I CAN DO ANYTHING
10) FIREBALL JON
4) HEIRLOOM KITTEN
19) NAPOLEAN'S EMPIRE
RACE 5 -- 7 FURLONGS -- THE EIGHT BELLES -- GII -- 250K
1) TAKE CHARGE ANGEL
9) MOTHER MOTHER
6) DEL MAR MARY
4) BREAK EVEN
RACE 6 -- 1-1/16TH MILE (TURF) THE EDGEWOOD -- GIII -- 250K
2) CAMBIER PARC
5) CONCRETE ROSE
4) FORTUNATE GIRL
RACE 7 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- THE ALYSHEBA -- G II -- 400K
5) BOURBON RESOLUTION
8) SEEKING THE SOUL
2) TOM'S D ETAT
RACE 8 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- LA TROIENNE -- GI -- 500K
2) BLUE PRIZE
1) SHE'S A JULIE
9) SECRET SYSTEM
RACE 9 -- 7 FURLONGS -- OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- 62.5K
8) HOME BASE
7) SOLID WAGER
10) GREY SKY
RACE 10 -- 5-1/2 FURLONGS -- (TURF) -- TURF SPRINT -- G II -- 250K
6) WORLD OF TROUBLE
4) JAZZY TIMES
RACE 11 -- 1-1/8TH MILES -- THE KENTUCKY OAKS -- GI -- 1250K
1) OUT FOR A SPIN
10) CHAMPAGNE ANYONE
RACE 12 -- 1-1/16TH MILES -- OPTIONAL CLAIMING -- 75K
10) CLOUD CHARMER
3) HIGH REGARD
1) FUN PADDY
RACE 13 -- SIX FURLONGS -- MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT -- 100k
3) SHILAH BABY
5) NEW RULES
GOOD LUCK !
I handicapped all 11 races and had an OK day. Out of the 44 horses I gave out, 33 had the
chance to "make money" (win, place or show). 20 of them did just that, for an average of 60%
"in the money"
Six were winners. Based on $2 wagers, they paid $10.40, $8.40, $11.40, $4.80, $3.40 and $7.00
I also had seven horses run second and seven run third.
I hit five exactas. Based on $2 wagers, those paid $42.20, $74.40, $13.00, $17.60 and $43.40.
I don't play trifectas...but I selected two of those, For what it's worth.
With OMAHA BEACH scratching from the Kentucky Derby with a breathing/throat problem, my favorite to win the Derby is now also in the barn and on the sidelines.
I'll add TACITUS to my list of five horses to watch.
Tacitus ran well in winning the Wood Memorial in New York, out-dueling Tax in the stretch and Churchill has that long, long stretch...so I' have to move Tacitus into the spot.
So, the final five for me, as it stands now...is Roadster, Game Winner, By My Standards, Code of Honor and Tacitus. If pressed for a winner out of this bunch, I guess I'll land on Roadster.
He's a Baffert horse. Florent Geroux is a very capable jockey. He did well in the Santa Anita Derby getting past Game Winner. That's about all I got.
Let me tell you that this picking of Roadster is far from a confident pick, however. I'll watch track conditions Saturday and decide how I'll go about wagering.
I gave you three plays yesterday. we went 2 for 3.
We hit the 4th race exacta with the 3-1.. Paid $25.60 on the $2 wager
We hit the 7th race exacta withthe 5-1 .. Paid $23.60 on the $2 wager
We miised on the late pick three (8,9,10). Didn't have the ninth race -- a 25-1 shot -- but
ran a VERY CLOSE second with the #1 who was also 25-1. BALLLONS !
THURSDAY SELECTIONS (UPDATED 11:45 AM)
As usual, I'll give you four horses or entries. You decide what to do with them. I list my favorite on top.
RACE 1 -- Five Furlongs -- 2 yr old maidens -- 100K
1 -- LADY DELAWARE
4 -- MEMORABLE
7) -- DEVIANT
8) -- ENFORCEABLE
RACE 2 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- CLAIMING 50K
2 -- COWBOY RHYTHM
1 -- HE'S BANKABLE
4 -- SUPREME AURA
6 -- STRONG YEN
RACE 3 -- 1 MILE -- MAIDENS 100K
4 -- SWEET ADDISON
5 -- AWESOME ONE
6 -- MY MAJESTIC ROSE
7 -- SECOND COMING
RACE 4 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- CLAIMING 10K
2 - EVENING TIDE
4 -- KATIE THE CUTIE
1 - SHE TAKES HEART
5 - MORTY
RACE 5 -- 1-1/16TH MILE (TURF) - ALLOWANCE 103K
3 -- PENALTY
7 -- CLEAR FOR ACTION
9 -- BATTLE OF MEMPHIS
2 -- ARMISTICE DAY
RACE 6 -- 6 FURLONGS -- MDN CLAIMING 30K
8 -- JD'S GIRL
3 -- WON LIL INDIAN
5 -- PAIGELY
2 -- PASSION'S IMAGE
RACE 7 -- 6 FURLONGS -- CLAIMING 5K
8 -- BUGGY BROWN
1 - SWAMP RULER
2 - ARCH YOU READY
5 -- BOURNE IN NIXA
RACE 8 -- 1 MILE (TURF) OPENING VERSE STAKES 115K
2 -- HOT SPRINGS
4 -- FIRST PREMIO
7 -- BALLAGH ROCKS
9 -- OM
RACE 9 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- CLAIMING 30K
4 -- DATA DAMSEL
5 -- IPANAMA BEACH
1 -- HOUSTON STRONG
2 -- BODE ON TAP
RACE 10 -- 5-1/2 FURLONGS (TURF) -- UNBRIDLED SIDNEY STAKES -- 125K
7 -- MORTICIA
8 -- RUBY NOTION
9 -- EXCESSIVE SPENDING
2 -- SURRENDER NOW
RACE 11 -- 1 MILE -- CLAIMING 20K
4 -- ALZHAI
9 -- TAYLOR'S EDGE
10 -- TOP MENTION
2 -- LETHAL LEVY
Wednesday, May 1, 2019
There's your field and post positions for the Kentucky Derby.
Based on the draw, I'm ready to give you my five horses I feel have the best shot at winning.
OMAHA BEACH still remains my pick to win but I'm also considering GAME WINNER, ROADSTER, BY MY STANDARDS and CODE OF HONOR. Play them anyway you see fit, I'll probably try a .50 cent trifecta box on the five and some other nonsense. If you are a superfecta fan, maybe try those five in the top two spots and add Tacitus and Maximum Security with them in third and fourth. You can do a .50 cent superfecta this way for $200 and my guess is it'll pay way more than your original investment.
I'll be back tomorrow with some selections for Thursday's card at Churchill.
Looking at today (Wednesday's) card....I see three races where I might play.
Play #1 .50 Cent Late Pick Three:
Race 8: 1,6,11
Race 9: 1,2.6
Race 10: 1,3,7,8
This is only a $22.50 wager amount and from what I saw yesterday....inside posts werre having a lot of success and the rail was quite alive.
Play #2 $2 exacta box in Race 7 with the 1,2,3,5 A $24 investment
Play #3 $2 exacta box in Race 4 with 1,2,3,6 A $24 investment
Tuesday, April 30, 2019
We now know who will contest the Kentucky Oaks and what post they'll break from.
The Oaks is contested at 1-1/8th miles on the dirt. 14 horses contest the distance of Friday of Derby Week.
Here's the list by post position, morning line odds and jockey:
1) OUT FOR A SPIN 16-1 Irad Ortiz
2) CHOCOLATE KISSES 20-1 Julian Leparoux
3) LADY APPLE 20-1 Ricardo Santana
4) BELLAFINA 2-1 Flavian Prat
5) FLOR DE LA MAR 20-1 Joel Rosario
6) POSITIVE SPIRIT 30-1 Manual Franco
7) JAYWALK 8-1 Javier Castallano
8) MOTION EMOTION 15-1 Mike Smith
9) LIORA 20-1 Channing Hill
10) CHAMPANGE ANYONE 6-1 (unnamed jockey yet)
11) JELTRIN 15-1 Luis Saez
12) STREET BAND 15-1 Sophie Doyle
13) SERENGETI EMPRESS 8-1 Jose Ortiz
14) RESTLESS RIDER 6-1 Brian Hernandez, Jr
Bellafina didn't get hurt at all with the four spot. No rail post to deal with and I'll take 2-1 all day, every day on this one. I doubt it stays there. Out For A Spin, one of my five I like, got the rail and that isn't good but maybe a little early speed will get her out of the danger being there presents. Lady Apple should be OK with a #3 post, Baffert should have confidence in Ricardo Santana to so the right thing with her early. Champagne Anyone is OK with the #10 hole, I'll look to see who takes this ride. There are some very good jockeys remaining to choose from... Johnny Velasquez, trainer Ian Wilkes son-in-law Chris Landeros, Joe Talamo, Rafael Bejarano and Corey Lanerie, just to name a few. Liora is OK with where she is at #9, Channing Hill probably wouldn't be my first choice to ride her, but who am I to question owner and trainer decisions?
8-1 on Serengeti Empress surprises me, especially with Jose Ortiz named yet. This one could drop in odds, based on her run in the Pocahontas at Churchill. She seems to be a "bounce" as well, one good race and then a bad race...the Fairgrounds Oaks, her last, was the bad race...so....
Two horses are on the "also eligible list". Dunbar Road (who was listed at 5-1 odds) and Code of Honor (30-1)
I remain solidly behind BELLAFINA as my top choice, I'll back her up with Champagne Anyone. Liora, Out For A Spin, Lady Apple and Dunbar Road (if she gets in) Jaywalk is one of those "mystery" horses, she ran so well at the Breeders Cup at Churchill last November but since then has gone 0-2 as a three year old. I suspect she'll figure in there in some of my handicapping, but...it's buyer beware on her.
Sunday, April 28, 2019
I didn't do too badly for the ten race card on Opening Night at Churchill Downs Saturday. Out of ten races, I picked six winners, six places and five shows. That is over 50% as far as the the possible payouts go. 17 payouts on the 30 possible money makers in a ten race card. Out of my 40 picks for the night, I had five scratches...so 35 runners actually left the gate for me.
Winners I gave you were:
Mindyerownmalone -- 2nd race --- $21.20 payout to win
Moonfield -- 3rd race -- $9.20 payout to win
Proschema -- 7th race -- $15.60 payout to win
Jo Jo Air -- $30.40 payout to win
Belle Tapisserie -- 9th race -- $4.60 payout to win
Apreciado -- 10th race -- $15.60 payout to win
$96.60 returned on win bets
So, a profit, just on the win bets alone. If you had put $2 win on each of the 35 horses I have you, that's $70 bucks.
We'll look at Oaks and Derby later week here and maybe Thursday.
Saturday, April 27, 2019
The horses have returned to Churchill for Derby Week Racing. Saturday Night
under the lights is featured today out at the Twin Spires. I've crunched the numbers and
handicapped the card for you. I've given you my top four contenders in each race below.
I like to play $1 exactas on the top four picks, but use them however you like. I'll also try a couple of Pick Threes and maybe a late Pick Four.
Let's face it. The first four tonight are pretty ugly. Beaten claimers and non-winners.
Let's get into it. As always "for entertainment purposes only"
RACE 1 -- 1 MILE -- MDCLM 10000
6 - LADY OF DRAGONSTONE
5 - DATA STAR
2 - STREET RALLY
4 - ORLEANS
RACE 2 -- 1 1/16TH MILE -- CLAIMING 25000
5 - MONO
4 - CONQUEROR
1 - CALIFORNIA SWING
RACE 3 -- 1 MILE -- MDCLM 10000
5 - WEIGHTLESSNESS
6 - MOONFIELD
4 - CZARINA MARIA
2 - COUNTRY LOVIN
RACE 4 -- 6 FURLONGS -- CLAIMING 20000
6 - FAITH HEALER
3 - GENUWINE
4 - THEA BEA
1 - FIVE STAR FACTOR
RACE 5 -- 7 FURLONGS -- MD CLM 50000
1 - YABBA DABBA DUDE
3 - ATOMS
5 - JUDGE STANTON
9 - TRASH TALKING YANKEE
RACE 6 -- (TURF) 1-1/16TH MILE -- OPT CLM 62500
1 - MURAD KHAN
7 - SPACE MOUNTAIN
4 - FRANKINCENSE
10 - COMMANDEERING
RACE 7 -- 1-1/16TH MILE -- CLAIMING 75000
6 - HISTORIAN
1 - GENTLE WARRIOR
5 - MAKE AMERICA GREAT
4 - PROSCHEMA
RACE 8 -- (TURF) -- 5 FURLONGS -- WILLIAM WAKER STAKES -- 125000
1 - BULLETIN
8 - HARTEL
2 - SOVERNIGN IMPACT
5 - JO JO AIR
RACE 9 -- 6-1/2 FURLONGS -- CLAIMING 40000
8 - BELLE TAPISSERIE
2b -- GRIFF
1 - TWIN FARMS
6 - SIR NAVIGATION
RACE 10 -- (TURF) -- 1 MILE -- CLAIMING 30000
3 - COMBUSTIBLE
8 - JAILHOUSE KITTEN
2 - SEKONDI
4 - APRECIADO
BEST BET OF THE NIGHT
#1 -- BULLETIN - RACE 8
LONGSHOT OF THE NIGHT
#3 -- WEIGHTLESSNESS - RACE 3
Thursday, April 25, 2019
I posted an article last week on the five horses to consider and my favorite to win the Kentucky Derby.
Here's a current Vegas update on those five horses odds:
OMAHA BEACH 4-1
GAME WINNER 9-2
I'll be watching the opening week at Churchill (which starts Friday night) and offering a few
suggestions here on wagering, as well as, breakdown of Oaks and Derby cards and my picks.
Be sure to check back.
Wednesday, April 24, 2019
BELLFINA LOOKS THE BEST OF THE BUNCH
The Oaks may not be nearly interesting as the Kentucky Derby this year in terms of multiple contenders poised to win. BELLAFINA, from the West Coast, has been solid, spectacular and won four in a row since her 4th place finish in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Fillies at Churchill last fall. That finish was attributed to the horse "being in heat" according to the barn.
She toyed with a small field in the Santa Anita Oaks before drawing off to win by five lengths. Flavian Prat is a great rider, Simon Callaghan a respected trainer and if you can get 2-1 odds on her, run to the betting machine as fast as you can. My guess is she'll be even money or lower when they break from the gate on May 3rd.
CHAMPAGNE ANYONE is an interesting filly. She finally got a win in the Gulfstream Oaks after her prior three career starts...and at 7-1...stalking the pace and holding off Dunbar Road when Chris Landeros took her to the lead in the stretch. Ian Wilkes brings them along slowly, at times, and this one's best race may still be in the future...but if you see 10-1 on her, you might want to invest a small wager.
OUT FOR A SPIN cause quite the commotion when she won the Ashland Stakes at Keeneland at a whopping 52-1 odds. Journeyman jockey Paco Lopez pulled the upset with a nice move on the turn and held off incomng Restless Rider (maybe another horse to consider?) for Dallas Stewart. She had been running allowance company stuff at Fairgrounds before the win in Lexington and had won her last, but this huge jump and ultimate win baffled the bettors. Can she keep it going? If I get 20-1 on her, Ill be willing to lay down a few coins to find out.
LIORA . Let's not forget she won the Goldenrod last fall at Churchill and beat Champagne Anyone and Restless Rider in that one. Maybe a horse for the course? A front running wire-to-wire nose victory in the slop over Restless Rider, but...at 27-1 odds and she held off the challenge(s). She's hd a bit of "second-itis" since then, but watch her if the Oaks is contested in the slop. She just might wire them all again for Wayne Catalano. Expect about the same odds Oaks Day.
LADY APPLE . Winner of three straight, including the Grade 3 Fantasy Stakes at Oaklawn Park, she's one of Steve Asmussen's runners and Ricardo Santana was on board for that rail-skimming ride. LADY APPLE stalked the pace-setters and favorites (Motion Emotion and Brill) who just might have worn themselves out in the duel, and she got through on the inside and forged ahead with a few steps to go. I doubt she can repeat that in the Oaks, but I'll throw her in all the "exotics" and hope for the best. 15-1, if you're lucky, on her...is my guess
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
SOME DERBY THOUGHTS
In a race where favorites have won each year since the Bush presidential administration, the logical picks would be to go with the favorite. That wasn't hard at all last year with Justify, although some of us out here believed Audible might get the nod.
That was yesterday (or last year), though, and yesterday's gone. (to paraphrase an old Herman's Hermits ditty).
I'm currently looking at the five horses below as having the best chance to dance in the winner's circle at Churchill on Saturday, May 4th. One of them will most likely be the favorite.
GAME WINNER Thinking maybe he goes off around 6-1. He was the Breeders Cup Juvenile Champion as a two-year old. Since then, he's 0-2 in 2019. He's been trying, he's been close and you have to think that if he gets a good trip on the first Saturday in May, he might just triumph down that long Churchill stretch. He likes running at Churchill, remember.
ROADSTER This guy could be your Derby favorite and I'll guess around 4-1. He beat Game Winner in the Santa Anita Derby. He has throat surgery to clear up a breathing problem when he was two. He's trained by Bob Baffert (who has an army of them) and a big question is who will ride...Mike Smith or someone else?
OMAHA BEACH. He may not be the Derby betting odds favorite (I'm going to guess around 10-1) but he has big momentum after winning the Arkansas Derby and the Rebel. This one will run in any type of conditions and will shine. OMAHA BEACH IS MY PICK TO CAPTURE THE ROSES. Mike Smith has to decide whether he'll ride or not. If not, you can be assured trainer Richard Mandela will enlist someone else very capable.
IMPROBABLE. I expect he'll be a 10-1 or so choice on Derby Day. He was fractious at the gate in Arkansas. He's lost two in a row now, but ran well in each. He picks up Irad Ortiz, Jr in the saddle, since brother Jose is going with Tacitus. He loved Churchill as a two-year old and that could be a huge factor. The question is, how will he respond when he's eye-to-eye with one or more of them in the stretch?
TACITUS. Bettors will probably send him off around 8-1 or so. He's gone a different route than most of the contenders, getting wins in the Tampa Bay Derby and in the Wood at Aqueduct. We've mentioned Jose Ortiz staying on board for trainer Billy Mott. I wonder how he'll hold up against the other four listed here, though. He's never run at Churchill, either.
I'll be back in a few days with some Oaks ideas. Until then, good racing luck and wager responsibly. After all, you're betting against me and the guy in the corner -- not the track.
Monday, April 15, 2019
A new start.
Here, you will find commentary and selections from me on horse racing in Kentucky and beyond.
We'll keep you up on the Derby and Oaks trail, the Triple Crown and other big thoroughbred racing days throughout the year.
Stay tuned. I'll post my top five Derby and Oaks picks in a couple of days.
Wednesday, April 10, 2019
Thank you for checking out Handicapping Heroes.
We are no longer active. We have also stopped our radio show and our weekly articles. I'll be introducing a new site here eventually that will reflect my own picks, thoughts and selections. Radio? Maybe down the road.
We'll see you at the track.
Paulie, Archie, Hollywood and in memory of our co-founder the late Scott Harris.
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Our co-founder and good friend, the late Scott Harris, left a rich and lasting legacy for us.
His Family is undergoing a very tough stretch right now. His lovely wife Jamie has a broken hip and cannot work right now.
We ask, here at Handicapping Heroes. that you consider helping them in their time of need. Please go to the link below to support in any way to can.
******** CLICK THE LINK HELP SCOTTY'S SURVIVORS ********
His Family is undergoing a very tough stretch right now. His lovely wife Jamie has a broken hip and cannot work right now.
We ask, here at Handicapping Heroes. that you consider helping them in their time of need. Please go to the link below to support in any way to can.
******** CLICK THE LINK HELP SCOTTY'S SURVIVORS ********