Day Results 8 / 4-1-5
2020 Overall 1327 1327 / 466-445-555
Win % of Top Pick 35.12%
Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall 36.82%
2020 Top Pick in the Money –856-1,327 64.51%
Top Selection ITM / KEE 22-39 56.41%
Top Selections Win / KEE 10-39 25.64%
“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

We had twice as many winners at Keeneland on Wednesday as we had the previous two days — combined. So, we had 4 winners out of the 8 races total. In addition, our top pick finished second 4 additional times.

Also, we cashed 7 exactas out of the 8 races. They returned $16.20, $11.40, $36.50, $20.70, $36.20, $31.70, $6.30 for each $1 played and returned.

Positive Day.

Handicapping Back.

Faith Restored.

Here’s hoping that we can double down on Thursday. Here’s a look at our picks:

1st: 2-5-1/4-6/3…Victory Boulevard (2) ran a solid second at this level last time out, and picks up a top rider who has won with .17% of the last 36 mounts for this barn operation. The thing is? This one has done his best running over an off-track. Not supposed to be rainy on Thursday, which may compromise this one’s chances. Will come running late and the stretch out to the rout should help. Barn wins with .20% when going from a sprint to a route. Mexican Wonder Boy (5) gets the blinkers for the first time today, and also drops from a Stakes event into the claiming ranks for the first time. If this one can duplicate the run on July 25? Lights out. Kadesh (1) is a first time gelding for a barn that wins with .21% when dropping into the claiming ranks for the first time. Won two of the last three outs and should fit well here. Cut back in distance can’t hurt here. I bet the 2-5 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I key the top 3 over/under the 4-6 in two smaller units.

2nd: 6-3/5-7…Four K’s (6) will switch back to the dirt today, and the barn hits with nearly .30% when making this surface switch. Over a fast dirt track, this one has a win in three previous tries and the barn wins with .20% when cutting back from a route event to a sprint distance. Rider has won with .32% with the last 22 mounts for this barn. Sunset Paula Jo (3) has 2 wins and 4 thirds in 12 races over a fast strip. Drops into the $20,000 price category for this one. Does not have a win or a second in 5 tries this year and has not won since last seen here — right here — last October. Two races here, though? A win and a third. Home cooking. I bet the 6 across the board and then box the top 2 in the exacta. I key the top 2 over/under the 5-7 in two smaller units.

3rd: 5-(16)-8-9/6-7-1/(15)-2-4/11-3/10-12…I actually handicapped this race on two separate occasions. Seriously. Forgot the fact that I had already done it once. Age meet brain. The good news is that I picked the same horse twice. Whew. I will go with my second straight horse from the barn of Wesley Ward. This time it is Anamuya (5). This 2YO daughter of Dialed In ran very well from coming off the pace in the last outing at KY Downs. Nearly got up at the wire and the winner came right back to post an impressive, rail-skimming win here earlier this meet. Blinkers come off and the barn wins with .21% of those. Big shot here at a square price. Eileen Alexandra (16) figures if she draws in from the AE. The Louisiana-bred ran well at first asking. Doubt she gets in, though. Demeter (8) is listed at 8-1 in the ML odds. If that is the case by PT? I load in some extra as my Upset Special of the Day. Did not run well on debut, but was well bet. Should produce better results today. Cuzzywuzzy (9) has never missed the board in the first three starts to the career. Ran third to Wednesday’s run-away Jessamine Stakes winner. I use here, too, at a price. I bet the 5 to win/place/show and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the 5 over/under the 6-8-9-6-7-1-2-4 in two smaller units.

4th: 5-3/1-2/4…Sonneman (5) ran a very nice 2nd in the G2 Pat Day Mile last time out, and now cuts back into the allowance ranks. If this son of Curlin can post the same fractions this time out? Could be a salty dog. Big Dreaming (3) ran very well over the grass last time out and now converts to the dirt. Barn wins withy .14% of those kind. Has talent. No doubt. But will be on the main track for the first time. Can he handle that? Work at CD — over the dirt — ws nice on Sept. 22. I bet the 5 to win/place and then box the top 2 in the exacta.  I will key the top 2 over/under the rest of the numbers in two smaller units.

5th: 2-7-9/8/1-6-10-5/4-3…Portal One (2) drops from the $50,000 level all the way to the $20,000 tag today, and the barn wins with a whopping .34% of those that get this kind of class relief all at once. Ran an OK race last time out, too. Could be a tough out against this kind. Sir Acealot (7) goes for the barn of Brad Cox and gets a similar class plunge for this one. Barn wins with .32% when dropping this much. Rider has won with .24% of the last 59 times out. Algebraic (9) ran a real good one at Churchill Downs last time out. Gets class relief, and this barn operator wins with .42% when dropping this much. Wow. I bet the 2-7 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 8 in two smaller units.

6th: 1-4-6/3-8-2-5…Pit Boss (1) is the big favorite for this one and draws the rail, which can be golden at this track. Has enough speed to hold onto a good forward position, and the rider is patient enough to wait for his hole. Barn wins with .20% when dropping into the MCL ranks for the first time. Ghost Fighter (4) did not fare too well on the turf for the first time, but the return to the dirt should help. Barn wins with .16% when getting the blinkers for the first time, too. The son of the barn’s assistant trainer gets the rider assignment. Like it when that happens here. Has won with .33% of the last 6 rides for this outfit. Soviet (6) makes the 3rd start off a layup and drops into the claiming ranks for the first time, too. Barn wins with .13% and .10% of those kind, respectively. Rider choice is solid her. Work on Sept. 26? Lights out. I bet the 1-6 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I key the top 3 numbers over/under the 3-8 in two smaller units.

7th: 9-8-1/3/6-4/7-5…Romantic Pursuit (9) comes out of a G2 event and drops back into the allowance company here. Ran very well at this level two back and gets the same rider that was in the irons for that one. Work here on Oct. 2 was solid and the barn wins with .15% returning from a small vacation. In 4 starts this year? Two seconds and a third. Might as well add a win, right? Delta’s Kingdom (8) ran in a Stakes event at KY Downs last time out. Was third in that one. In the last 4 starts, has a second and a third. Over the sod, has a 2-3-3 record in 13 career starts. Chance. Eliade (1) comes from the barn of Chad Brown and ran well in a G2 last time out. Enough. I bet the 9-1 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I key the top 3 numbers over/under the 3 in two smaller units.

8th: 9-8/12-6-11-7/3-2-5/4…Financial One (9) is a pupil of Chad Brown, who wins with .32% of those routing for the first time and .30% racing for the second time. Enough. Villanelle (8) is a 3YO daughter of Curlin and is trained by Brad Cox, who is winning with .25% this meet and nearly anything that has a chance to be a runner. This one ran a huge 2nd as the beaten favorite last time out. May not make that mistake again. I bet the 9-8 across the board and then box those two solidly in one exacta. I will key the 9-8 over (only) the rest of the numbers listed. More with the 12-6-11-7 than the rest.

9th: 6-5/1A-3-4/9-2-1/7-8…Spectacular Gem (6) ran in a G1 last time out. Now, the 4YO colt finds himself at Keeneland. In an allowance event. Wow. This one won the previous two races — both over the sod — at Ellis Park and Churchill Downs, respectively. May like today’s shorter distance. In 10 career starts over the grass? Five wins. Five. Mr Dumas (5) is what I should be called, after I let a huge tout — from a reliable source — get away without pounding the window. This one has a 4-1-4 record in 13 races. Should factor here. I bet the 6-5 across the board and then box those two sternly in the exacta. I will key the 6-5 over/under the 1A-3-4-9-2 in two smaller units.

10th: 9-3-6/1-5/10-4…Spy a Star (9) takes another step down the claiming ladder today, after running 3rd last time out against much tougher. Barn wins with .16% when racing 2YOs. But? The rider is 0-for-21 over the last 60 days for this barn operation. Maybe should look for another pilot? Just writing. Ambitiously Placed (3) ran very well last time out to be a close-up 2nd and now gets another drop in the class order. Should fit nicely here and gets the blinkers for the first time. Bran wins with only .08% of those kind. Twirling Wildcat (6) drops into the claiming ranks for the first time for a barn that wins with .21% of those making the 2nd career start; with .21% when taking the shades off; and with .24% returning from this kind of layup. Rider has won with .32% of the last 22 mounts for this barn. Adds up for me. I bet the 9-6 across the board and I box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 9-6 over/under the 3-1-5-10-4 in two smaller. I really like the 9-6 here. Really like. Really.

Good Luck & All the Best / Gene