Results from Churchill Downs on Thursday:

Total Day Results 9 / 5-3-5
2021 Overall 1,643 1643 / 619-584-783
Win % of Top Pick 37.67%
Payoff% of Top 3 Picks Overall 40.29%
2021 Top Pick in the Money Overall — 1,114-1,643 67.80%
2021 Top Selection ITM / CD 54-81 66.67%
2021 Top Selections Win / CD 25-81 30.86%
“Key Horses” @ CD 8/3-1-0 37.50% Win / 50.00% ITM
“Key Horses” in 2021 248/ 112-55-23 45.16% Win / 76.61% ITM
“Longshots of Day” @ CD 7/0-0-1 00.00% Win / 14.29% ITM
“Longshots of Day” @IGR (10-30-21) 18/4-0-0 22.22% Win / 22.22% ITM
“Longshots of the Day” @ SAR (8-28-21) 4/0-2-0 00.00% Win / 50.00% ITM
“Longshots of the Day” @ KY Downs 19/2-1-2 10.53% Win / 26.32% ITM
“Key Horses” @ Breeders’ Cup 2/1-0-0 50.00% Win / 50.00% ITM
“Longshots of the Day” @ Breeders’ Cup : 2 / 1-0-1 50.00% Win / 50.00% ITM

Results from Indiana Grand on Thursday:

Total Day Results 12 / 7-6-3
2021 Overall 1,655 1655/626-590-786
Win % of Top Pick 37.82%
Payoff% of Top 3 Picks Overall 40.32%
2021 Top Pick in the Money Overall — 1,122-1,655 67.79%
2021 Top Selection ITM / CD 54-81 66.67%
2021 Top Selections Win / CD 25-81 30.86%
“Key Horses” @ CD 8/3-1-0 37.50% Win / 50.00% ITM
“Key Horses” in 2021 250/ 113-55-24 45.20% Win / 76.80% ITM
“Longshots of Day” @ CD 7/0-0-1 00.00% Win / 14.29% ITM
“Longshots of Day” @IGR (11-11-21) 21/4-1-0 19.05% Win / 23.81% ITM
“Longshots of the Day” @ SAR (8-28-21) 4/0-2-0 00.00% Win / 50.00% ITM
“Longshots of the Day” @ KY Downs 19/2-1-2 10.53% Win / 26.32% ITM
“Key Horses” @ Breeders’ Cup 2/1-0-0 50.00% Win / 50.00% ITM
“Longshots of the Day” @ Breeders’ Cup : 2 / 1-0-1 50.00% Win / 100.00% ITM

We are back at the big oval in Louisville for a TGIF program at Churchill Downs.

We are running a bit behind schedule, so here is a look at our picks…they will be updated as we go…stay tuned and sorry for the late notice:

1st: 3-5/4-2-6/1-7…In the ole’ lid-lifter I am going with the first-time starter, whom I don’t know yet is not very good. The rest of these? I am pretty sure they are looking up at life without much of a ladder. So, I saddle up with Madelyns Heat (3). The barn is red hot and the rider is, too. They are leading the Trainer and Jockey standings, respectively, and this 2YO gelding has been training good enough to suggest he can hang with the likes of these. Dam of this one has 2 winners from 3 starters and the jockey-trainer duo has gone 6-2-0 in the last 14 outs. I’m sold. I bet the 3 across the board and then key the 3 over/under all the numbers listed. Go lightly, and bred accordingly, my good friends. 

2nd: 6-2/5/4-1/3…Seven Kingdoms (6) was claimed last time out by trainer Tom Amoss for top owner Maggi Moss. Wheels right back at the same level and looks formidable in this grouping. Barn wins with .24% when starting for the first time after the purchase, and this one will get the addition of blinkers for the first time, too. Barn wins with .15% of those adding the shades. Look out here. Has speed and should carve out the perfect trip. I bet the 6 to win/place/show and then box the 6-2 in the exactas. I will key the 6-2 over/under with the rest of the numbers listed. More with the 5.

3rd: 4-2/6-3/1/5…Centurion (4) looks the best of this field, coming off a near-miss 2nd against tougher last time out. Drops to the $50,000 level where he was 3rd at Belmont Park over the turf back in July. Was claimed for $40,000 just three starts ago. Been facing tougher since. Barn wins with .27% of the last 300 in the claiming ranks. Gets the barn’s go-to rider up. I bet the 4 to win/place/show and then box the 4-2 in the exactas. I will key the 4-2 over/under the rest of the numbers listed in two smaller units.

4th: 8/2-3-5/1-7/6…My first “Key Play of the Day” comes here with Marvelousmoondance (8), who will be dropping from the MSW ranks all the way to the $20,000 price tag here. Barn wins with .20% when coming off a layup and this one should benefit from the reintroduction of the blinkers. Works are solid enough and the veteran rider is back for a repeat performance after missing the last start. This one has a 2nd in two previous tries here and has never been out for this low a tag since running for the first time. I’m in. I bet the 8 to win/place/show and then key the 8 over/under all the numbers listed in the exactas. More with the 2-3-5 than the rest.

5th: 5-8/1/3-2-6/4-7…Moonchild (5) will drop into the MCL ranks for the first time after running 3rd in the MSW company up at Indy Grand last time out. Goes for a barn that wins with .31% when making this move down and the barn’s go-to rider takes the mount. Jockey has won with .21% of the last 77 rides for this operation, and the work open Nov. 3 was spot on. Look out here. I bet the 5 to win/place/show and then box the 5-8 in the exactas. I will key the 5 over/under all the numbers listed in two smaller exactas, as well.

6th: 8-6/3-5/4-7/1-2…What a nice allowance race has been assembled here by Racing Secretary Ben Huffman and assistant Dan Bork. This has the feel of a Stakes race, to me. Lots in here have been competing in the Stakes races throughout the summer. I will saddle up with Colonel Bowman (8), who just so happens to be the work partner of the grand G1 winner and most recently 3rd place finisher in the Breeders’ Cup Classic — Essential Quality. This 3YO son of Curlin is a good one in his own right. Ran a tiring 4th in the Ellis Park Derby last time out, against some good ones. Before that, though, won an allowance at Ellis Park. Blinkers are added for this one today and the barn wins with a whopping .40% of the last 15 to get that equipment change. Top rider takes the reins here. Be interesting to watch this one today. I be the 8 to win/place/show and then box the 8-6 in the exactas. I will key the 8-6 over/under the 3-5-4-7-1-2 in two smaller units. 

7th: 10-6-3/5-9/2-7/4…This is another classy allowance field, who will be lining up to sprint fast and furious over the 5.5 furlong distance on the main track. I will go to the far outside here and line up with Flash Magic (10). Granted, this is not the most ideal post position. Hung wide right from the get-go, as they race into the only turn. But this daughter of Pioneerof the Nile is all class. She can stalk and she can finish. She has faced some good ones in her past, too. This year, in four starts, she has a 1-2-0 record. Only time she missed was against Caramel Swirl, who is outstanding. That one just won the G2 Raven Run at KEE. Look for this one to be close at the wire. Sarah Harper (6) has run two good ones to begin the career and the MSW win here last time out was spectacular. Ran off by 7 lengths and the runner-up that day came right back to win the next time out. Impressive. Will be the one to catch with a top rider up. Fire On Time (3) has only raced one time, to date, in the abbreviated career. But this daughter of Not This Time was impressive in doing so, winning the only start by 3 at Ellis Park in September. Has speed and I’m told this one has a bag full of talent, too. Look at the works since the win. Spot on. May be lacking experience next to some of these, but the wheels work. I bet the 10-3 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exactas. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 5-9 in two smaller units.

8th: 3-5-7/8-4-2/1-9/6…Willful Woman (3) has not raced since May, when she was an impressive 2nd to Army Wife in the G2 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico on Preakness Day. This one has been training good for the return and the barn wins with .16% of the last 667 to be away from the afternoon starting gate this long. Should fit here and will be a tough out if ready. Town Avenger (5) did not run well in the G1 Spinster Stakes last time out against the likes of Letruska. But? Stumbled at the start of that one and lost all chance. All. Chance. Won the race before here by nearly 10 over a sloppy track. Love the pedigree. Trainer is top notch, too. Chance. Moon Swag (7) is my first “Longshot Special of the Day.” This 3YO daughter of Malibu Moon ran in a Stakes here last time out. Caught Crazy Beautiful in that one, and the latter just ran a huge one over the grass last time out. The race that impressed me the most was the G3 Indiana Oaks. Nearly defeated the very talented Soothsay in that one. If she can duplicate that effort. Look out. I bet the 3-7 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exactas. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 8-4-2 in two smaller units.

9th: 5-8/9-12-1A/1-6-7-11/2-3-10…The finale is a wide open affair, but I will line up with Malpais (5). This 5YO gelded son of Hard Spun has ripped off an amazing 7 wins in a row and looks to be the pure speed of this sprint affair, as well. Gets the world’s top rider in the saddle for the first time and he may need it here in this spot. In 5 previous runs here, this one has only 1 win. Has 3 thirds. Interesting. If they catch this one, it may be the Thirsty Betrayal (8). This one has hit the board in each of the last 5 outings and has a tidy 2-1-0 mark in 5 previous runs here, too. Gets a hot rider up, and worked very sharply on Nov. 6. Looks poised. Barn wins with .36% with the last 25 to make the 3rd start off a layup. I bet the 8 — take note — across the board and then box the 5-8 in the exactas. I will key the 5-8 over/under the 9-12-1A-1-6 in two smaller units.

Good Luck & All the Best / Gene