Day Results 8-4-3-4
Keeneland 129-45-45-55
Top Pick Win % 34.80%
Top Pick ITM % 82-129 63.60%
Top 3 Picks ITM % 38%
2018 Overall 614 Races 212-222-233
Win % of Top Pick 34.50%
ITM % of Top 3 Picks 36.20%

(Editor’s Note: “In The Money %s are calculated as if you bet them in order. If my first place horse runs second, I do NOT get credit for anything. On the other hand, if my third place horse wins, then I am credited for a third place finish.)

We finished Wednesday’s card at Keeneland with a flury. We won the last three races, and, combined with a win earlier in the day, we totaled 4 victories on the day.

Here is a closer look at today’s card at Keeneland:

1st: 3-2-6-5-1…Time For War (3) will get the saddle from trainer Brendan Walsh today, and he is still looking for the first win for the meet going into its’ final few days. This one ran 5th the first time out at Gulfstream Park on March 24 when running over the grass course. Made a late move in that to get within 2 lengths, but couldn’t get past the rest of them late. Move to dirt may help in this case. Has come back to work well here and picks up a top rider in these parts. He is 6-1 ML odds, and that is appealing. This one cost $130,000 in 2015 Keeneland November. Now goes for a $30,000 price tag. Has a shot at a price. Ride on Earth (2) should be the favorite for this one, and he has been installed as the 9-5 ML choice . Ran a really good second two starts back at Gulfstream and a duplicate effort to that one should put this one in the winner’s circle today. But he came out of that one to run a rather dull 4th here earlier this meet. Picks up a top notch jock for this one, but I am a bit weary. This trainer is 0-for-11 this meet, too. Pain in the Arch (6) has not run on anything but grass in his first 4 races. Shifts to the dirt today for a trainer that scores with .17% of those making the surface switch. Has 2 thirds to show for the first four, but was no close in either. The winner of the last race has already come back to win again. May like the dirt. I bet the 3-2 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in one exacta. I key the top 3 over the rest in a smaller version.

2nd: 3-6-1-7…Girls Know Best (3) gets my “dot” (must use) designation, and is my first Best Bet of the Day, as well. She is coming into this one off a tough race, where she was in-between hustlers from the get-go and brushed throughout the early going in a Stakes event. Before that one, though, she has hit the board in 5 in a row — with 4 wins in that group. I toss out the last race, and if she can get a clear early lead — then hang on. Spellker (6) won the last time out, but that was at Churchill Downs last November. Trainer on a roll this meet, and does well with this kind of layup, as well (.23% winners on return). Filly has a tidy 3-2-0 record in 7 races at this specialty sprint distance. Miss Gossip (1) has finished third twice in the last three races — both Stakes down at the Fair Grounds. This one is a deep closer, and will need a clear path to get the job done today. Rider is 0-for-51 this meet. I bet the 3 to win/place/show and then key the 3 over/under all the others listed.

3rd: 2-5-7-8-6…Another “dot” horse right here, right now. El Charro (2) gets a huge class drop to the $20,000 price category today, and I can’t find on the PPs if he has ever raced for that low a number yet. Before the last race fourth, this one had hit the board in six in a row and that included a win and 2 seconds. Super work at Oaklawn Park on March 18. The trainer is having another great year and wins at a .38% clip when he goes sprint-sprint-route. Solid pick. Tonedaddy (5) will be saddled for the first time today by our great friend, Buff Bradley. This gelded son of Curlin ran third in the last time out, but was no close. Winner of that one has already come back to win, though. Two races back, he won at a cheaper price at GP. Looks like the move to the dirt has helped this one. Abraham (7) is 2-1 ML odds, but I am skeptical. Gets a huge class drop into the claiming ranks, which the trainer hits with .21%. Has raced three in a row on the sod, but the trainer does score with .18% of those making this kind of surface switch. Last two on dirt were debacles. Curious. I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then key the 2 over/under the 5/7.  I then key the 2 over (only) the rest of the numbers listed.

4th: 10-3-1-5-8-7-2…Flume (10) cost $310,000 at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale when purchased by the current owners. Has worked super this spring for this initial start. Picks up the meet’s top rider. Hard to beat Wesley Ward in these “baby races,” but this one appears to be gassed up and ready to go to town. Mucho Amor (3) and Egoli (1) are both from the barn of Ward. The former will get one of the meet’s top riders aboard and has been working very well. That one cost $260,000 the the OBS March Sale just a few days ago. Trainer is hitting with .29% winners this meet with a record of 10-8-3 in just 34 starts. The latter comes from a dam who has 1 winner from 1 starter to date and that one is a SW already. Working very well here, too. I bet the 10 to win/place/show and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta.

5th: 9-6-1-8-5-7…Get a Valentine (9) does not have a great post position, but is a 4YO gelding by Get Stormy who is blessed with pure natural speed. With a clean break, he should be able to air early and get a good position in the early stages. Before the last one, where he tired late, he won two in a row. Shockingly, though, gets a new rider for this one today. Strange? I think so. The former rider is the No.1 jockey for this barn. Weird, to say the least. But this one is working very well here, and still gets the nod. Lawton (6) won the last time out and now moves up a notch in class after losing that condition. This one has 12 times lifetime, and has hit the board 10 times. But still only has 2 wins. I prefer to use underneath. The Critical Way (1) will be making his first start East of the Mississippi today, and will do so for a new trainer who I have never heard of, seen, or have any idea about. The new conditioner is Lands A. Trites. And, this will be the first starter for this barn. (But you can read about this young man in the Keeneland Barn Notes in another post on the Home Page). This one has run the last four times down the hill course at Santa Anita. Has done well on that unique track configuration with a win and a second. Will try to stalk the leaders and make a run late. I bet the 9 to win/place/show and then key the 9 over/under all the other numbers listed in the exactas.

6th: 2-11-10-8-9-4-(14)…Moonlight Romance (2) is another baby from the barn of Wesley Ward. The biggest benefit this one gets other than that conditioning is the fact that she will get to break near the rail — which has been truly golden all meet, and, in particular for these 2YO races. Hard to overcome the built in advantage if they break well. Gets a top rider to ensure that, as well. Devious Charm (11) may be every bit as good as the top pick. She cost $260,000 as a yearling, and has been working super well for the barn of Mark Casse. Gets a veteran rider to help launch the outside run, but will need to overcome the outside post pretty quickly to match strides with the Ward horse. Giro Kate (10) has already raced once then meet, and nearly pulled off a huge upset win at odds of 25-1 in that one. But she broke from the rail that day. It is a huge advantage. I bet the 2-11 across the board and then box the top 2 numbers solidly in one exacta. I key the 2-11 over the rest in a smaller version. 

7th: 3-5-6-4-10-9-7-8-2…Cash Out (3) ran a huge 4th in the G3 Florida Oaks at Tampa Bay Downs in her last out. Came running late to nearly get a piece of the action at the wire. Meet’s top rider stays aboard for this one, and she has returned from the race to work very well. The rider has posted a record of 10-4-1 in the last 34 rides. Biggest factor why I like her? Look at the race four back. She ran third to the undefeated champion Rushing Fall here in the Jessamine Stakes last Fall. Starving Artist (5) has hit the board in each of the last four tries and broke the maiden at the Fair Grounds just two races back. Lost to the preferred choice at Kentucky Downs last September. But is right there most of the time. Romantic Moment (6) broke the maiden last time out when she got the grass for the first time at GP back in February. Moves up to face winners for the first time today, but picks up a top rider for one of the game’s best trainers. Can’t dismiss. I bet the 3 to win/place/show and then box the 3-5 solidly in one exacta. I key the 3-5 over/under the 6-4 in another; and finally I key the 3-5 over (only) the rest of the numbers. 

8th: 10-9-2-8-11-7-1-5…Sparticle (10) was transferred to the barn of Michael Stidham since his last outing in 2017. Has been training super here for the first start for the new barn and the new year. Gets a HOF rider to take the mount, and looks like he could be tough if he can duplicate some of his earlier runs on the return. Whatelse Got Todo (9) is a Louisiana-bred colt who will be running against open company for the first time. But this one really ran well in the slop last time out and the winner of the first race has already come back to win. Up against tougher today, but may be worth a shot with the meet’s top rider getting the mount. Teletap (2) has raced 12 times in his career and is still looking for that first, elusive win. Does have 3 seconds and a third to his credit, but the son of Tapit needs to pass horses at the wire to win. This one takes the class drop in the claiming ranks for the first time and gets the blinkers for the first time, too. Graduation day? I bet the 10-2 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta.

9th: 2-3-6-7-10-8-4-1-5-9…Lascaux (2) will be stretching out to 13/16-miles over the turf today, but appears to like long distance racing. He ran third with a late rush two races back and closed again when running at 11/8 miles last time out. Maybe the endurance test will give him the ground he needs today. Picks up a British rider who is making a real name for himself in this country. The kid can really ride. Eclipsed Moon (3) is 8-1 ML odds, but is my Upset Special on today’s card. This one nearly won on debut at Ellis Park last summer when running over the grass there. He looked so good doing that that the connections shipped him immediately to Saratoga to try the sod up there. Didn’t fare as well in that race, but was not embarrassed. For some strange reason, he has not been on the grass since. Gets back to it today and I think has a real chance with these. Sportswear (6) will make his second start for the trainer after he picked him up this year. Ran OK in the initial start, and should improve off that effort today. I really like the last three works at Churchill Downs and the trainer is not only one of the best humans to walk on God’s green earth, he is pretty handy with a horse, too. I bet the 2-3 across the board, and box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I key the top 3 over/under the 7-10 as well. 

Good Luck & All the Best/Gene