|2020 Overall 1337||1337 / 470-451-559|
|Win % of Top Pick||35.15%|
|Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall||36.90%|
|2020 Top Pick in the Money –865-1,337||64.70%|
|Top Selection ITM / KEE 31-49||63.27%|
|Top Selections Win / KEE 14-49||28.57%|
|“Key Horses” @ KEE 5-2-1-1||40.00% Win / 80.00% ITM|
|“Key Horses” in 2020 185-60-43-27||32.43% Win / 70.27% ITM|
Another productive day at the ole’ ball yard. We managed four winners on the 10-race card, but we made our hay in the exactas category.
Nailed returns of $9.90, $17.20, $6.80, $26.50, $9.60, $16.10, $45.40, and $26.60 for every $1 wagered. Ten races. Eight exactas hit.
Not bad. Will take it again on Friday.
Here’s a look at our picks:
1st: 3-1-2/6/5-4…Frills (3) has only raced twice since late March and they both have been spaced out on the calendar. But the works are good and the last race wass promising over a “good” track. Should fit well in this group and has two wins in four tries at the distance. Rider is now 0-for-22 for this barn of late. Not a hot streak. Stolen Beauty (1) is the pure speed of this race and will play a little “catch me, if you can” with this group from the get-go. The drop in class should assist this one in her efforts to stretch the speed for the distance. Also, this track has always favored inside speedy types. Instructions are simple. Get going. New rider is having a solid meet, too. Love the work on Sept. 15. Look out here. Charge It Jenn (2) could spice up the odds rack here. This one will talk the early goers and will try to come late. Like the run here on July 8. Has not raced since, but the works are plenty good enough to help this one hit the board. I bet the 3-1 across the board and then box the top 3 i the exacta. I will key the top 3 over/under the 6 in two smaller units.
2nd: 2-4-1/5-3/6…Skamania (2) gets an interesting rider for this barn operation. Has had 12 mounts for the Mike Maker group over the last 60 days. Has won with only .08%. But this one is working well and ships in from New York to try her hooves over this dirt surface. Barn wins with .15% of those making the first start for the new operation after a claim Drops considerably off that price tag, too. Can heat it up early. At this distance? Has one third in one previous try. Over fast dirt, though? No doubts. Has 4-1-2 mark in 11 outings. Liz’s Cable Girl (4) is a New Jersey-bred and has run in two straight Stakes events limited to just the state-bred. Ran well in both of those, but last time in open company? Didn’t fair well at Oaklawn Park. Work on Oct. 1 was solid. Gets a top rider and the barn is on fire. Some good. Some not-so? Keep Your Distance (1) comes in after being claimed two back by a top claiming operation. Ran 4th last time out against better. Now, drops back in for $32,000. Fits here. Has speed to burn. Barn is 1-2-1 in 4 starts here this October. Another one hits the board? I bet the 2-1 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the top 3 over/under the 5-3 in two smaller units.
3rd: 2-5/1-4/6-3…Trashtalkinyankee (2) is a 4YO Northern Afleet colt who has just one win in the first 14 career starts. Hard to bet those kind, right? But he has 2 seconds and 6 thirds in that group, too. Hard to leave those kind out, right? Both are a little bit right. But this one does have 2 thirds in 2 previous starts here. Has trained well for this one. Gets a top rider, who has won with over .23% here this meet. chance. Hersh (5) didn’t fire much in the last outing, but that was against so much better. Drops in for the $50,000 tag today and the barn has won with .13% of the last 140 starts. Gets a top rider to take the reins, even though he is 0-for-20 to start this meet. Ouch. Like the most recent work. Looks to have a chance here. I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then box the top two in the exacta. I will key the top 2 over/under the rest of the numbers listed.
4th: 11-1-12/4-3/6…Park Ridge Benny (11) was claimed for $10,000 last time out and now shows up here for a HOF trainer at the $8,000 rung. Has hit the board in each of the last 4 outings. Has 2 seconds and 2 thirds in 9 starts this year. But the barn wins with .23% when dropping off the purchase and .22% of those making the first start after the claim purchase. Has one previous start here. Won it. My choice. Maniacal (1) has been running against much, much, much better. Was third against $40,000 optional claimers last time out. In 12 starts over a fast dirt track? Has a 3-2-2 mark and has never missed hitting the board here in 4 starts. Looks perfect for this spot. Never been anywhere close to this level before. Victory Element (12) goes back to the dirt, where he is best. Barn hits with .20% of those making this surface switch. Also, the barn wins with .31% of those returning to the fray as a beaten favorite. This one is. new rider up. Interesting. I bet the 11-1 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the top 3 over/under the 4-3 in two smaller units.
5th: 3-8/6-1-7/2-5/4…Flatoya (3) should be able to handle this group today. The 3YO daughter of Flatter drops into the MCL ranks for the first time ever and the barn wins with .31% of those. Returns to the dirt after a poor effort over the sod at KY Downs last time out. Barn wins with .15% of those making this surface switch. Nice work at Churchill Downs on Sept. 29. New rider up. Big chance here. Ashley’s New Shoes (8) is my first Upset Special of the Day. This 4YO daughter of Declaration of War has not raced this year. But ran well in the career debut in July of 2019 and returns after a year layup after faltering as a beaten favorite. Working well for the return. Top rider takes the assignment. Could be ready if ready. I bet the 3-8 across the board and then box those two in the exacta. I will key the 3 over/under the “all button” in this event, as well.
6th: 5-3/1-6-2-7/8-4…Winters Back (5) ran very well on debut at Saratoga on Sept. 6. Tired in that one and retreated late. But the 3YO son of Summer Front goes for a barn red hot this session. In the first 6 starts of the meet, trainer has 2 wins and 2 seconds. Barn wins with .26% of those making the 2nd start of the career. Dreams of Tomorrow (3) is a homebred son of Speightstown and has never been worse than 3rd in the first 3 career starts. Makes debut today on the sod. Working well and gets a top local rider for the mount. Will be coming late and the stretch out in distance should not hurt at all. Barn wins with .26% when routing for the first time. Nice race here and I will bet the 5-3-2 across the board. I will box those three numbers in one exacta and then key those three over/under the 1-6-7-8-4 in two much smaller units. Don’t leave out the 2 here. Could be a nice surprise in the horizontals, too.
7th: 3-2-6…As good as the race before, this one is weak. Wow. Throw a dart and hope you hit the darn board here. I guess I can make a case for Behind the Couch (3). This NY-bred ran OK against open company last time out at Churchill Downs at this same level. Was third, but beaten nearly 5 on that day. Will be a heavy favorite, it appears on paper, for this one. Don’t know if she warrants that kind of betting number. No matter how weak the comp is. Larimar (2) has not been on the main track this year. Ran good over it last year, with a second and a third in two tries. Training super good for this one. Last work was spot on. Barn wins with .19% of them switching to this surface and with .24% of those making the claiming ranks for the first time. Take note — I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then key the 2 over/under the “all button” in this one. Good luck.
8th: 2-6-10/3-9-4/1/11-12…This is a Stakes-caliber field logged into an allowance race. I go with Hog Creek Hustle (2) — a G1 winner in here, and one who has never been worse than 2nd in 5 career tries at this tricky 7-furlong distance. This guy has only 3 wins in 19 career starts. But he has won over $661,000 in purses. Is coming off a nice performance at this distance last time out. Could be at the right spot at the right time. Coming late. Lasting Legacy (6) ran 2nd to Diamond Oops last December at Gulfstream Park. That one just won a big Graded Stakes here and punched his ticket to the Breeders’ Cup. In 3 races this year, Lasting Legacy has 2 seconds. Won the last time out, but was DQ’d. Could have been a confidence builder, all the same. Gray Magician (10) has not raced since January. Was back-to-back 5ths in a G3 and a G2 before going to the sidelines. Looking back, though, this one won over this track a year ago and has been working well for the return here. Gets one of the meet’s top riders up. Looks dangerous. Barn wins with .16% when coming off this type of a layup. I bet the 2-6 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 2-6 over/under the 10-3-9-4-1 in two smaller units.
9th: 10-7-5/11-2-12/9-4/3-1-6-8…G3 Buffalo Trace Franklin County Stakes…Got Stormy (10) handled the cutback in distance in the G3 Ladies Sprint at KY Downs with style. In her first sprint try in many a day, she overpowered that field. Still, that was at 6.5 furlongs and up a hill at the end. Now, she will face true turf sprinters today and another question pops. Can she cut back to 5.5 furlongs? Especially when pure speed may be required a bit earlier than she has ever given it? I think she has it in her and she is obviously the most talented of this field. Needs a clean trip. Needs a hole late. She has the potential to create her own luck, though. My pick. If she hiccups, though, the horse that may benefit the most is Winning Envelope (7). This 4YO daughter of More Than Ready has a second in only previous try at this distance, but has three nice seconds in a row. Love the rider and the works are spot on. Can she make up 4 lengths on the mare that beat her last time out? Only if luck helps, IMO. Jakarta (5) has the speed and will likely be the one to catch on the front end. Has a win and a second in only two previous tries at this distance. Trainer is having a superb meet. Chance. I bet the 10 to win/place and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 10 over/under the 7-5-11-2-12-9 in two smaller units.
10th: 9-6-7/3-4/1-5/8-2…Ocean Breeze (9) popped onto the racing scene here this Spring with brilliance. Won the maiden at CD by over 8. Immediately landed in a G3 Stakes in the Iowa Oaks and ran a credible 3rd when going two turns for the first time. Aggressive spot. Came back to run second to a whirlwind in Mundaye Call in the Audubon Oaks. Now, admittedly, the winner of the last has disappointed since, and Ocean Breeze ran just so-so last time out when 3rd as the overwhelming favorite. Barn wins with .27% of those returning as a beaten favorite. And, this one has faced the toughest comp to date. Like the rider choice. May return to favor. Palomita (6) edged our top choice last time out at CD by a half length. Broke the maiden here in April of 2019. In 6 tries, has a 1-3-1 mark. Daughter of Into Mischief comes from the Chad Brown barn. Has to be considered. Lady Rocket (7) won on debut at Saratoga this August. Connections paid a whopping $420,000 at a 2YO Sale in 2019. Long wait. but the works are good. Win was good. Now, has to face winners for the first time. Could step right up. I bet the 9-7 across the board and then box the top 3 in one exacta. I will key the top 3 over (only) the 3-4 in two smaller numbers.
Good Luck & All the Best / Gene