Wednesday, April 17, 2019

PAULIE PICKS -- A top five Derby Contender list to consider


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

It's been fun, but we are done

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.

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