|2019 Overall 997||997/359-346-462|
|Win % of Top Pick||36.01%|
|Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall||39.02%|
|2019 Top Pick in the Money –676 of 997||67.80%|
|Top Selection ITM / CD 44/69||63.77%|
|Top Selection Win / CD 26/69||37.68%|
|“Key Horses” @ CD 6-4-0-0||66.67%|
|“Key Horses” in 2019 172-69-34-20||40.12%|
We had a nice day on Friday, covering 4 winners and pencilling in 6 exactas that returned $30.40, $45.50, $5.30, $11.70, $18.20, and $22.00 for each $1 played.
Now, we try to build on a couple of solid days into what could be a wonderful night — on the last Saturday Night Live event of the year, and the last weekend of this abbreviated September race meeting.
There is a mandatory payout on the Pick 6.
There is a carryover of over $70,000 for the Late Pick 5.
There is money to be made.
So, let’s go make some.
Might as well be us.
Here’s a look at today’s card: (Comments to Come Saturday Morning)
1st: 10-5/8-6/3-4-9…A high-end Maiden-Claimer will kick off Saturday night’s card, and will be contested at 6 furlongs over the main dirt track. I will go with Indian Cross (10), from the far outside post. Not an ideal starting spot, where you have to gas a bit early to get a good position out of the gate. But this 2YO son of Cross Traffic has some speed — as flashed two starts ago — and should be able to find a nice settling position with the help of a solid rider. Like the class drop here and if he can find the same lick that he showed two back, he should be OK with this bunch. Tadeo (5) spit the bit midway through the debut run. Coasted home 24 lengths behind the winner. Yet, this one now moves to the barn of the clever Brad Cox — who hits with .24% of those making the second career start; with .25% of those getting blinkers for the first time; and with .27% of those that ship. Training very well since being shipped South and gets the services of a top rider. Likely to improve. Maybe a lot. I bet the 10-5 across the board and then box those 2 in the exacta. I will key the 10-5 over/under the 8-6-3-4-9 in two smaller versions.
2nd: 12-8-4/11-6-1/10-9-2…Another Maiden-Claimer here, for the price tag of $30,000. I go back to the outside, again, and push the button on Move It (12). This 2YO son of Conveyance will be making the career debut for a trainer that hits with .15% of those making the first start at the MCL level. Love the work here on Sept. 24, and the rider has hit with .11% of the last 19 rides for this barn. Boston Light (8) is another first time starter, with this one coming from the barn of Dallas Stewart. While the barn doesn’t score that well with debut runners overall (.07%), it does hit with .17% of those making the first start in the MCL level. This one flashed a nice work on Sept. 21. Get a solid rider choice. Likely to get picked out of this group. I bet the 12 to win/place/show and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the top 3 over (only) the next 3.
3rd: 6-3/7-2-8/1-4…This is a really nice Optional Claimer for the sprinters, and I will go with Do Share (6) on top. This 6YO gelded son of Candy Ride was claimed last time out by a barn that does well with this kind. Trainer hits with a whopping .42% on the first try after the purchase. This guy had run in 5 Graded Stakes before the last outing. Look for this one to be tough in the late going with an expert rider up. Transatlantic Kiss (3) ran a really good one here on June 29 in the Kelly’s Landing Stakes. Second that day at 7-furlongs to Line Judge. The turn back in distance should help and gets a new rider to try his luck. Watch out here. I bet the 6 to win/place/show and then box the 6-3 in one exacta. I will key the 6-3 over/under the rest of the numbers in two shorter versions.
4th: 6-3/1-10-5/4-7…This is a MSW event for the 2YO fillies, and I will go bullish on Impeccable Style (6). This daughter of Uncle Mo ran on Sept. 1 at Saratoga. Ran a solid 4th that day, tiring at the end. Now, she will be treated with Lasix for the first time and will get the meet’s top rider in the irons. Barn hits with .19% of those that get the anti-bleeder medication for the first time. Love the work here on Sept. 21, and the barn really improves with the second career start. Weekend Fun (3) is a More Than Ready filly trained by a HOFer. Ran super the first two times before being shifted over to the grass and the hills at KY Downs. Didn’t care for that trip at all. Spit the bit halfway through. Returns today with the barn’s go-to rider taking the reins. One to beat, for sure. I bet the 6 to win/place/show and then box the top two in the exacta. I key the 6-3 over/under the rest of the numbers in two smaller groups.
5th: 10-4-6/9-8-5/7-3/2-1…This is the first turf race of the night, and it will be contested at 1 mile for the 2YO fillies. I will go to the outside and give the edge to Battleofwinterfell (10). Would prefer a better starting position, but this one has shown some speed in the first start and should be able to carve out a good trip here. Definite “Z” pattern working with the past performances, and I love the way this one enters this spot. Gets a top rider up, and the work here on Sept. 20 was spot on. My first Key Play of the Day comes right here with the #10. Wexx (4) is another daughter of Declaration of War and she ran a real good one at first asking at KY Downs — not the easiest place in the world to make the career debut. Finished strong in that one to be second. Moved up to the win spot after interference was called in the deep stretch. Good grass rider gets the mount again. May be tough to hold off late. Kodikova (6) won on debut at Ellis Park on Sept. 1. Was bet down to favoritism that day, too. Daughter of Speightstown is out of a Stakes-Placed mare. Looks the part. I bet the 10-6 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 10-6 over/under the 4-9-8-5-7-3 in two smaller versions.
6th: 5-8-12/1-6-7/4-11-9-3-2…This is another MSW event, going 11/16-miles over the main track. I like Pintxos (5) on top. This 3YO son of Distorted Humor ran a very sharp second on debut over the grass at Ellis Park. Ran well before tiring late while journeying 11/2-miles at KY Downs. Now, will try the dirt for a barn that hits with .20% of those converting surfaces. Plus, the work here on Sept. 22 was spot on. Like the jockey change here. Baringer Spring (8) could spice up the odds rack here a bit. Will be making the career debut for a barn that hits with .16% rookies. Love the work outs. Sharp. Chief Executive (12) will have to make a run from the far outside, and has not raced since debuting at Saratoga in 2018. But the works have been consistent and getting better. Barn hits with .21% with second-time starters. Was super bet last year. First time gelding may be a tough out. I bet the 5-12 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the top 3 numbers over (only) the 1-6-7-4-11 in another smaller version.
7th: 8-1/2-7-9…G3 Ack Ack Stakes…The first of 3 Stakes races tonight, and this one will be contested at the 1 mile distance on the main track. Just love this race and the set-up, coming out of the 1-mile shoot. What a history this track configuration and distance has had under the Twin Spires. This one could be a heckuva race, too. I’m going strong on Timeline (8) — who will be making his 2019 debut tonight with a new trainer and a new attitude. This one won the first 4 races of his carer while being conditioned by Chad Brown. Captured both the G3 Peter Pan and the G3 Pegasus Stakes in two of them. Was busted in the G1 Haskell Invitational, though, and has not been the same horse since. Now, moves to the barn of Steve Asmussen — who has rejuvenated others for this ownership team. Look for a monster performance. I am. My second Key Play of the Night. The runner-up could come from any one of these, but I will trend toward the 20-1 long shot Olympic Village (1), who becomes my “Upset Special of the Night.” This one has won 3 races in a row and was claimed for $75,000 last time out by the new connections. Won that one easily at Saratoga. This one is under-respected in my opinion and is capable of a large run. I bet the 8-1 across the board and then box those two in the exacta. I will key the 8-1 over/under the rest of the numbers listed.
8th: 6/3-5-8/7-2-4/1…Jefferson Cup…This is a 11/8-mile Stakes event that will be held over the sod. I go with my third Key Play of the Night and Tracksmith (6). This 3YO son of Street Sense comes in off two wins and a nice 4th in a G3 event at Colonial Downs last time out. Had a rough trip in that one, or could have been a winner there, too. Gets reunited with his regular rider tonight, and I think they will enjoy the chance to prove again. In 6 turf races to date, this one has 3 wins and a second. Has a win over this sod. My choice. I bet the 6 to win/place/show and then key the 6 over/under all the other numbers listed.
9th: 9-8-7/4-6-10/2-5/1-3…G3 Lukas Classic…The featured event of the night is the 11/8th mile Stakes named after the legendary HOF “Coach” of Thoroughbred racing — D. Wayne Lukas. I will go to the outside for my top picks — led by Silver Dust (9). This 5YO gelded son of Tapit is my Upset Special of the Night, too. Won the last time out. Nearly won two back. In 6 starts here, has 2 wins and 2 thirds. And, out of the last 10 races, Silver Dust has hit the board 9 times. Solid performer. Never won at this distance is the only ding in this one’s resume. Kukulkan (8) is the pride of Mexico, but has really started to kick his heels in this country, too. Over the last 3 starts, he has a win, a second and a third. Just was beaten 1/2-length by Silver Dust in the last out. This one looks like he has hit his stride. Pioneer Spirit (7) is moving up in class, but has run 5 good ones in a row and is training lights out. Would not be a surprise. I bet the 9-7 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 9-8-7 over the 4-6-10-2-5 in a smaller version.
10th: 6-3/4-8-9-5…An Optional-Claimer for the $10,000 level, and I will go with Kimberley Dream (6). Drops in class after a win here on Sept. 13. Really impressed at long, long odds that day. There’s an old saying: “If you didn’t go to the wedding, then don’t go to the funeral.” We didn’t go to the wedding. So? Well, this one’s race was so good that if she can duplicate that effort in any way? She would dominate here. I have to use. Have to. Indian Paint (3) could be the horse to beat. This 6YO Uncle Mo mare was claimed last time out when she ran 2nd over in Virginia. Barn hits with just .06% of those making the debut after the purchase. But the barn also hits with .25% of those that switch from turf to dirt, too. Has a second in only previous start here. I bet the 3 — take note — to win/place/show and then box the 6-3 in one exacta. I will key the 6-3 over/under the rest of the numbers listed.
11th: 6-9-8/11-12-4-5/10-2/1-3-7…The final race of the night will go to the post at 11:10 p.m. ET. Question is: Will I be standing and awake? Doubt it. Unless I am alive in both the Single 6 and the Pick 5. Those pools will be handsome. If we are alive? I will definitely be up and ready to cash. I will go with yet another “6” on the program in this spot. All Around (6) was claimed last time out when running at Ellis Park on Aug. 2. Beaten favorite that day. Now, drops from the $30,000 level to $20,000. New barn hits with .19% of the newbies. Interesting rider choice — to be sure. Perplexing? Lontani (9) comes from the barn of Tom Amoss, who normally is a handful when he teams up with owner Maggi Moss. Poor outing last time, when spit the bit. Now, gets the class drop. I expect a lot more tonight. Watch out. Front Page (8) was claimed last time out, as well, and is now owned and trained by the HOFer Steve Asmussen. Hits with .22% in the first race after the purchase. Won over the grass as the favorite last time out. Returns to Churchill Downs, where he is 0-for-2. Will push the pace and moves up to face winners for the first time. Barn scores with .19% of those kind, and with .23% of those shortening up from a route to a sprint. I use. I bet the 6-9 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 6-9 over/under the 8-11-12-4-5 in two smaller versions.
G1 Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park:
Tacitus has been both unlucky and not good enough at times this year. Got the blinkers for the first time in the Travers Stakes and ran a bit more rapidly, but, perhaps, too much so. Sometimes the shades are better the second go around. The big gray from the barn of Bill Mott is due. Over due. I am going to bet Tacitus across the board and then key with the “all button” in this one.
G1 Awesome Again Stakes at Santa Anita:
McKinzie is one of the best and most under-appreciated horses of our time. The guy is both consistent and spectacular. He is both versatile and push-button. He is both good, and, at times, great. Yet, nobody seems to compare him to the best. Don’t know why. He should be. He will lace them up again in this spot today. I think he wins, at low odds. But I also think that Seeking the Soul will redeem himself after the poor showing down at Del Mar, at some good odds. I box those two in the exacta. And, root for both.