Day Results 8/4-0-3
2020 Overall 16 16/6-3-5
Win % of Top Pick 37.50%
Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall 29.17%
2020 Top Pick in the Money –10-16 62.50%
Top Selection ITM / TP Winter-Sprng 10-16 62.50%
Top Selection Win / TP Winter-Spring 6-16 37.50%
“Key Horses” @ TP Winter-Spring 1-0-1-0 0.00%
“Key Horses” in 2020 1-0-1-0 0.00%

Not a bad night at the ole’ ball yard at the Turfway Park and “soon-to-come” Gaming in Northern Kentucky.

We managed to coax 4 winners home out of the 8 races and we had exactas that returned $14.50, $18.60, $22.30, and $11.00 for each $1 played.

We will try to catch a little fire to warm the hearts and pocket books. Here’s hoping for another good one.

1st: 2/4-8/3-6-1…The first Key Play of the Day comes in the very first event of the day — Eternal Power (2). The 4YO gelded son of Giant’s Causeway has not run since May, and that is a bit of a concern. But in November of 2018, this one came off a 3 month layoff to nearly win over this same track. The barn does hit with .18% of those that return from this type of a layup. And, this one has been working steadily since September for the return. Drops in class for this effort tonight, and the barn hits with .14% of those getting this kind of plunge. Has a 0-2-1 record in 4 starts here, too. I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then key the 2 over/under all the numbers listed in the exactas.

2nd: 9/6-4/3-1…The second Key Play of the Day comes in the second race — with Penthouse Kitten (9). This 3YO son of Kitten’s Joy will be making his career debut for trainer Wesley Ward. The barn is hitting with .32% this meet with the first 28 starters. The outfit also hits with .21% of those that make the debut in the MCL ranks. The dam of this one has 2 winners from 2 starters. Jockey has teamed up to go 3-2-2 in the last 11 starts over the past 2 weeks. Adds up for me. I bet the 9 to win/place/show and then key the 9 over/under the rest of the numbers in the exactas.

3rd: 8-3/6-1/4-5…Absolute Love (8) will get a huge drop in class for this tilt tonight. Has not been close against much better over the past 8 races, but should fit nicely with these kinds. Gets a new rider, who knows his way around this oval. B Deb’s Fortune (3) won two starts back and ran OK here last time out on Dec. 13. But in 7 career starts over this track, this 5YO mare has only 2 thirds to show on the resume. Troublesome. But not a lot of attractive offers in this one. I tread lightly in this spot. I bet the 8 to win/place/show and then box the 8-3 in one exacta. I will key the 8-3 over/under the rest of the numbers in two exactas.

4th: 8-12/3-4-1/11-9/7-6…Imnotsmall (8) gets another drop in class tonight for a barn that has a winner in 5 starts when stretching out to a route for the first time. Yes a new rider than has won with .13% in a limited number of mounts this meet. Rushed from the gate last time out, and that is never a good scenario. I more patient ride could assist this one. Sea Serenade (12) drops from a MSW level at Churchill Downs all the way to a $5,000 price tag tonight. Now, that, my friends, is a drop in class. If this 5YO mare warranted a chance at MSW company, then she should figure with these. Right? We shall see. I bet the 8-12 across the board and then box those 2 in the exacta. I will key the 8-12 over/under the 3-4-1-11-9 in two smaller versions.

5th: 8-9-1/6-10-2/4…Bexar (8) is a 3YO son Daredevil that cost the connections $60,000 to purchase at the 2017 Fasig-Tipton November Sale. Will make the career debut tonight. Has trained well over this track in final preparation. Dam has 4 winners from 6 starters for a barn that has won with .32% of the first 28 starters this meet. Has a 9-4-4 in those starts. Quarterback Dak (9) may be the stiffest comp in here, and this guy comes from the same barn and will be making the career debut, too. Gets the meet’s top rider on this one. Has won 2 of 4 mounts for this barn this meet, too. Try Try Again (1) moves up in class after running well for the $15,000 price level. I bet the 8-9 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the 8-9 over/under the 1-6-10-2-4 in two smaller versions.

6th: 4-7/5-6/1-2…Bump Bailey (4) is trained by Peter Miller, who has done quite well along the KY circuit over the past 6 months. In two starts here so far, barn has one winner. This 4YO gelded son of Fed Biz has been training very well and the rider has a winner for this barn this meet. Has the speed to be in control. Declined (7) drops considerably in class for a barn that has won with .24% of the first 37 runners here this meet. Has not been close in the last 3 outs, but they were against much tougher. Barn hits with .20% of those dropping into the claiming ranks for the first time. The rider — who has been getting on many of the horses from the Wesley Ward barn — takes the reins for the first time. He has a 7-3-3 mark in 26 starts and has a win in 2 rides for this barn, too. I bet the 4-7 across the board and then box those 2 in the exacta. I will key the 4-7 over/under the 5-6-1-2 in two smaller versions.

7th: 3/2/8-9-1-6/5-4…The last Key Play of the Day comes in this one with Hayden’s Havoc (3). This 4YO gelded son of Jimmy Creed is another that comes form the barn of Peter Miller and another who has been prepping very well. Look at the work on Dec. 8 at Churchill Downs. If he can duplicate the effort that he had in the last few outings? May air this group by many. I bet the 3 to win/place/show and then box the 3-2 solidly in one exacta. I will key the 3 over/under the 2-8-9-1-6-5-4 in two smaller versions.

8th: 7-8-10/11/9-6-3-2/12-1-4…Belmonte (7) was beaten just a nose at this same level last time out here on Dec. 18. That was the first try over this track. The trainer has 3 seconds in 6 starts this meet, but had a terrific meet at Churchill Downs in November. Training very well at The Thoroughbred Center in Lexington. Looks like the best off the last effort. But look at the form? Good race. Poor race. Good race. Poor race. Ran well last time out. Hmmm. One Thirty Nine (8) was claimed last time out for a barn that can win in the first try after a purchase. Puts up a new rider that should help. Has not been out since June, but has been working here. May need one. Big John O (10) is an Indiana-bredthat will move to open company for the first time since the career debut. Has hit the board in 8 of last 9 tries against state-reds, and the barn has had a very good meet so far (4-2-0 in 12 starts). Rider is 1-for-34 here. Hmmm. I bet the 7-10 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 7-10 over/under the 8-11-9-6-3-2 in two smaller versions.

Good Luck & All the Best / Gene