Day Results 11 / 5-2-4
2020 Overall 746 746 / 269-246-291
Win % of Top Pick 36.06%
Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall 36.01%
2020 Top Pick in the Money –476-746 63.81%
Top Selection ITM / CD Spring-Summer: 157-248 63.31%
Top Selection Win / CD Spring-Summer: 90-248 36.29%
“Key Horses” @ CD Spring-Summer:29-13-6-5 44.83% Win / 82.76% ITM
“Key Horses” in 2020 102-36-23-15 35.29% Win / 72.55% ITM

The final day of the abbreviated Churchill Downs’ Spring / Summer Meet comes today. We will try our best to get a little cash flow going for the upcoming weeks. The next time we see you guys turning the pages of the PPs and turning your attention to the Louisville racing circuit, it will be KY Derby Week 2020. Long awaited.

Had a good meet, despite the distractions and the complications.

Looking forward to a better summer.

We will handicap the Keeneland Summer Meet — 5 days in July.

We will handicap some of Ellis Park’s races, as well.

We may even look at some of the more important races at both Saratoga and Del Mar. You just never know.

But, other than a few days that we lost in the early Spring and before we switched over to Oaklawn Park, we have been going steady since last September when Churchill Downs had that meet. On to Keeneland last October. Back to Churchill Downs in November. Our first Turfway meet ever. And, then an audible to pick up Oaklawn before Churchill Downs resumed.

My eyes and brain could use a little break.

But we will be around with some picks. Stay tuned for more.

Here’s a look at today’s closing card:

1st: 2-5/6-3-4/1…A rather interesting group of fillies, who are either moving up in class to try harder or moving down to find softer. I will give the edge to Lemon Chill (2), who ran super good coming off an extended layoff to be second here on June 11. Has a third in only previous run over an “off track.” Does return as the beaten favorite, and this barn wins with .19% of them. Will be coming very late in the proceedings and will need some racing luck to get a spot. Addison (5) nipped the top choice last time out to be second. This one is moving up too after two straight seconds. Has never been over an “off track” before, so that is a question mark. Was claimed last time out and this barn only wins with .08% of those making the barn debut. Does appear to fit with this class today. I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then box the 2-5 in one exacta. I will key the 2-5 ove/under the rest of the numbers in two smaller versions. 

2nd: 2-1/7-11-4/5-12-10…Today’s “Baby Race” is scheduled for 5 furlongs over a track that is sure to be a bit wet. I will give the edge to Team Asmussen — who had a big day on Saturday across the globe, and, in particular, at Churchill Downs. This 2YO daughter of Anothony’s Cross is a Florida-bred, but has been training lights out over at KEE. Worked a half-mile in :47.4 on June 21. Gets the barn’s go-to rider in the saddle. If she can break well, she may be off to the races. Dream Quist (1) may be the horse to beat, if not for the dreaded rail position in the career debut. Most be learned in the early morn and ready to pop with the gate. Trainer not known to have them cranked for the first one, though, winning with only .06% on debut. This one does have a nice work here on June 16 and June 9. Gets a top jockey in the irons. Daughter of KY Derby winner Nyquist cost $265,000 last year. I bet the 2-1 across the board and then box those two in the exacta. I will key the 2-1 over/under the 7-11-4-5 in two shorter versions.

3rd: 1-8/6-4-5/3-7/2…Another interesting tilt here, with some plummeting in class and probably looking for a new home with the right halter. I will go to the rail and Something Natural (1). This 3YO son of Violence was nominated to the Triple Crown series this year and ran in the Oaklawn Stakes against some of the “big boys” just two starts ago. Didn’t fare well in the deep well, but returned to run OK against better here on June 5. Steadied in that race and had all kinds of issues. Gets a new rider for this barn, but not this horse. Joe Talamo rode him twice at Oaklawn in the winter and had a second and a win with him down in Arkansas. Look for a return to form here. Artemus Eagle (8) drops from the $40,000 tag to the $20,000 level for the barn of Mike Maker, who hits with .27% of those getting this kind of class relief. Did not run well in the last out, but the win two starts ago says he still has something in the tank. Look for him to stay a bit closer to the pace today, if possible. Gets a new rider and that could help a lot. I bet the 1-8 across the board and then box those two in the exacta. I will key the 1-8 over/under the rest of the numbers in two shorter versions.

4th: 9-4/2-5-1/7-6…Chasing Anna (9) drops into the MCL ranks for the first time and the barn hits with .16% of those kind. Ran a couple of OK races to begin the career. Just couldn’t finish them off. Will get considerable class relief with this group, but needs to find a way to finish and not hang late. Gets a new rider who may be able to encourage that move. J Z My Man (4) takes another class drop after running on the lead and nearly pulling off the upset last time out. Gets a new rider and shorter distance in this spot and both could help the 3YO son of American Pharoah to coax a little more energy out at the wire. I bet the 9-4 across the board and then box those 2 in the exacta. I will key the 9-4 over/under all the other numbers in two shorter units.

5th: 10-4-11/2-9/6-5/7-1A-8…What a wide open affair this one is. Take a dart. I will give the slight edge to Peerless Brown (10), who is 10-1 in the ML, and, thus, will become my first Upset Special of the Day. This 3YO son of Blame will drop into the MCL ranks for the first time and the barn hits with only .08% of those kind. But this one does show some flash over the all-weather at Turfway Park this winter and has returned to train well at KEE for a barn that has a 3-2-3 record in 27 starts here this meet. Gets Corey Lanerie up for the second time. Had all kinds of issues in the last try. Look for more at a square price here. On d’Oro (4) is a 4YO son of Tapit, who now finds himself for sale for $20,000. Drops from the $75,000 level to this tag, and the barn hits with .38% when making this much of a drop. Has 2 seconds and 2 thirds in 11 tries to do. This may be the wake-up call he needs or the exit slip out of the barn, too. Ahsad (11) gets a nice drop, too, and the barn hits with .33% of those getting this kind of relief. Work here on June 21 was sharp. Barn has 2 wins in 7 starts this meet and the rider has a .33% success rate with the trainer over the last 60 days. Chance. I bet the 10-4 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 10-4 over/under the 11-2-9-6 in two smaller units.

6th: 1-1A-10-6/4-3/5…This was originally scheduled for 5.5 furlongs over the sod. Wet weather has moved this bad boy to the main track and we are still awaiting word on some of the scratches. We do know that the 2-7-8-9 are now out. One part of the entry is likely to go to the bench, too, since the same rider was named on both. Either one of Cardiac Kitten (1) or Artemus Citylimits (1A) could win this race — even with the surface switch. I think I would prefer the 1, since he does have a win over the main dirt — although it came last April at KEE. The 1A is a little more current and ran well up at Woodbine on June 14 after winning on debut at Turfway Park. Both of those were over the AW surface. Both training sharply for the barn of Wesley Ward, who has 7 wins in 28 tries here this meet. Lonely Private (10) has a shot in here, too. Broke the maiden at FG two starts back and then nearly came right back to win again on March 20. Trainer wins with .17% in the sprint category and this one has a win over a sloppy track, too. Note. American Mandate (6) may be the horse to beat. Has 2 seconds and a third over an “off track” and nearly won the last time out over a main track at Oaklawn Park. Has not seen the winner’s circle since Jan. 13 of 2019, though. Long spell. I bet the entry to win/place/show and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the top 3 over (only) the 4-3 in a smaller unit.

7th: 2-1-7/3/6-4-5…Gun It (2) has been facing some good ones all season. Ran up against Silver Dust (who ran 3rd in the Stephen A. Foster on Saturday) twice and By My Standards (2nd in the Foster) once. Was wide and still made the lead off a layup last time out. Just tired. If that conditioning helps a little bit? Watch out here with a return to the regular rider. Top Seed (1) appears to have finally figured things out now. Last two have been spot on. Nipped our top pick last time out and now gets one of the best riders in these parts to take the reins again. Top contender. Signalman (7) looked to be embarked on a great career path as a 2YO. Won the G2 Kentucky Jockey Club here over the slop. Was third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile to Game Winner. Was 2nd in the G1 Breeders’ Futurity to Knicks Go. But the 3YO season was a debacle and the first run this year was in a Stakes event. Lanerie picks the 1 over this one, though. May be tough out over the slop if he is back in form. Possible. I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I key the top 3 over/under the 3 in two smaller versions.

8th:  1-9-2/6-10-3-7/5-4-8…Stakes caliber race, right here. Wow. What a nice field. I will give the slight edge to Risky Mandate (1), a 4YO daughter of Strong Mandate and trained by the red-hot barn of Tom Amoss. After a chilly beginning to the meet, the barn has become white hot — winning the Ohio Derby on Saturday, as well. Over the last two weeks, the rider has gone 5-0-2 in 9 starts for this barn. This one has been off since last August, but has been training super and won the first two races of her career at Churchill and Saratoga — by daylight. Watch out off the layup here. Divine Queen (9) loves, loves, loves a wet track. A perfect 2-for-2 over it and in 6 lifetime tries here, she has 4 wins. Won the Open Mind over this track, too. Trainer Buff Bradley is one of the best people and hard boots in the game. He deserves this one, too. Talk Veuve to Me (2) had the misfortune of returning to the races and facing Monomoy Girl here on May 16. Probably needed that race. Probably doesn’t need to face the “Champ,” either. Look for more off this one for a trainer getting his second start with her. Loses the blinkers and the barn hits with .22% of those.

9th: 5-12-4/1-17/3-6…The final race of the meet was scheduled to be a 1-mile turf event. It is now a 1-mile main track event. Lots of outs here, including the 7-9-11-13-14-15-16. The MTO horse — #17 — does get in. I’m going with the career maiden Golden Loch (5). Has made the gate 12 times in the career. Does have 6 seconds. Has a second over an “off track,” too. This one lost by less than 2 here on June 6 over the turf. Last time on dirt came last April at Hawthorne and a sloppy track. Ran 2nd then. May not be the best of this group, but probably the most learned and consistent. Lovers Quarrel (12) is a first time starter and a huge long shot for the barn of Chris Block. Trained well here on June 20. And, the barn does have 3 seconds here in 8 starts. The young sire is off to a great start at producing “mud marks.” Chance and my second Upset Special of the Day. Golden Star Lady will be stretching out for a trainer known for his sprinters. But does win with .14% of those routing for the first time. Flashed some speed here on May 16. Tired, but probably needed that race. Chance. I bet the 5-12 across the board and then box the top 3 in one exacta. I will key the 5-12 over/under the numbers listed in two smaller versions.

Good Luck & All the Best / Gene