Day Results 15 / 4-7-6
2021 Overall 143 143 / 46-52-56
Win % of Top Pick 32.17%
Payoff% of Top 3 Picks Overall 35.90%
2021 Top Pick in the Money Overall — 85-143 59.44%
2021 Top Selection ITM / TP 62-108 57.41%
2021 Top Selections Win / TP 34-108 31.48%
“Key Horses” @ TP 14 / 8-2-0 57.14% Win / 71.43% ITM
“Key Horses” in 2021 23 / 14-3-0 60.87% Win / 73.91% ITM

The last time we made the call was Saturday. We had 4 races at Turfway Park before it was forced to cancel the remainder of the card due to heavy snow showers. We also provided some “bonus” coverage with picks at Gulfstream Park, Oaklawn Park and a couple at Santa Anita, too.

Overall, we had 15 races with 4 winners, 7 seconds and 6 thirds. We had 5 exactas. And, we had 3 winners out of 4 “Key Plays of the Day.”

Now, we are back for some more fun and excitement at Turfway Park tonight. Here’s our looks:

1st: 8-9-5/2/3-1-7/4-6…Sacred Storm (8) has hit the board in half of her 28 lifetime starts to date, with 8 victories and trips to the winner’s circle. On the AW surfaces? She has 2 wins and 2 thirds — and all of that activity has been in Northern Kentucky. Comes into this one off a very nice 3rd here on Dec. 12. Nearly won that one and the winner that night came right back to win the next time out. Works are OK, and the veteran rider takes the reins again. Can’t dismiss this one, especially when you consider that the trainer wins with .31% when returning from a small vacation like this one. Superstar Diva (9) could spice up the odds rack here, a bit. This 6YO Data Link mare ran a very nice 2nd here on Jan. 21. But in 38 lifetime starts? This one has only 3 wins. On the AW, she has gone 2-3-4 in 12 outs. Looks like one to use underneath. Musabaqa (5) goes for a barn operation that has only 20 starts over the last couple of years. Has won a couple of races, and will take over the training duties of this one from West Virginia. Has 4 wins in a row and has hit the board in the last 9 tries. Consistent sort. I bet the 8-9 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 2 in two smaller units. In the Pick 5, I go in my first ticket with: 8-9-5-2-3-1-7/8/(14)-12-3-4-1-10/4-7-9-5-2/11. In a smaller Pick 5 ticket, I will go this way: 8-9-5-2/8-6-7-1-4-5/14-12-3-4/4-7-9/11. If these are two rich for the pocket book? 8-9-5/8-6-7/14-12-3-4/4-7-9/11. Bargain ticket: 8-9-5/8/14-12-3-4/4-7-9/11.

2nd: 8/6-7-1-4/5/9-3/2-10…Chicks for Free (8) drops all the way from the allowance ranks to the near-bargain bin and will be offered up for the price tag of $7,500. Significant drop, to be sure. But the trainer is the owner, as well, and is winning at a .29% rate this meet with 42 runners. Blinkers come off and the barn wins with .21% of those. Barn wins with .34% when going from the dirt to the All Weather. Gets a rider who has a win in 3 previous mounts for the barn. Should be able to outclass these. This is — drum roll please — my first “Key Play of the Night,” and I would love the 4-1 ML odds that is offering up. I bet the 8 to win/place/show and then key the 8 over/under the 6-7-1-4-5 in two exactas. I will key the 8 over/under the “all button” in another two smaller versions. I may box the 6-7-1-4 in the trifecta as my “saver” and “insurance policy.”

3rd: (14)-12-3-4/1-10/6-5/11-8-(13)/7…Forty Pieces (14) figures very prominently in this spot if the 3YO Shackleford filly can make the starting gate from the AE List. Barn is winning at a .26% clip here this meet and the trainer wins with .27% of those going from the MSW ranks to the MCL level for the first time. This one has never missed the board in three previous tries, but has not raced since late November. Barn wins with .22% of those away from the starting gate this long. Like the rider choice. If the 14 does not get in? Gold for Kitten (12) is a first time starter for the barn of Wesley Ward. Gets a relative unknown in the saddle, but the barn is known for introducing new riders that can get the job done. Love the works for this one and the breeding, too. Post Position is not great, but I would think this one is ready to roll. Next Time You Win (3) is a first time starter for the barn of Brad Cox. The barn has won with .23% here this meet with 22 starters. Have to consider anything out of this barn. Wins with .19% of those making the first effort in the MCL ranks. Mississippi Mist (4) is another first time starter for the Ward barn. Dam of this one has 4 winners from 5 starters and the barn wins with .32% on the AW surfaces. Working OK, but I like the other “debut runner” from this barn a bit better. I bet the 14-12 across the board if the outside horse draws in from the AE List. If the 14 does not make the gate, I bet the 12-3 across the board. I box the top 3 numbers in the exacta — no matter whom they are. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 1-10 in two smaller units.

4th: 4-7-9/5-2/3-1-10-8/6…Hey Kitten (4) is a 4YO daughter of Haynesfield and will drop back into the claiming ranks for the first time since she nearly won over the Minnesota grass two starts ago. Barn wins with .30% when cutting back from a route to a sprint distance, and the barn wins with .17% of those making the 2nd start off a layup. Gets a top rider, who is riding super good right now. Has won with .17% of the last 6 mounts for the barn. This one looks primed for me. Heavenly Peace (7) will drop into the claiming ranks for the first time since she was claimed for this same price tag last August at Ellis Park. Won that day, coming from off the pace. Last race at KY Downs was much better than looks on paper. Take a glance at the race replay. Training good and has a chance here. Morning Light (9) is 8-1 in the ML and will be my first “Longshot Price of the Night.” This one won the debut in West Virginia over the muddy track. Barn wins withy .17% when routing for the fist time. Trainer and rider have teamed up for a 2-1-1 record in the last 6 efforts together, too. Work here on Jan. 20 was spot on. Can’t leave out, for me. I bet the 4-7 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the top 3 ove/runder the 5-2 in two smaller units.

5th: 11/(14)-(13)-6/9-8/1-4-10/5-7…The second “Key Play of the Night” comes here with Poppy’s Girl (11). This is a 4YO daughter of Wicked Strong, who was bred and still owned by the partnership of Ken and Sarah Ramsey. This one ran 6th last time out, in the career debut. But this one broke nearly last and ran back of the pack for much of the race. Came with a late, late rush to finish 6th — but was beaten here by less than 2 lengths. Less than 2. Firing at the end. Work on Jan. 27 was spot on. Rider is 1-for-3 for the barn. A better break tonight, and this one could be gone. Long gone. Barn wins with .27% of those returning as a beaten favorite, too. I bet the 11 to win/place/show and then key the 11 over/under the 14-13-6-9-8-1-4-10-5-7 in two exactas. More with the 14-13-6. A bit less with the 9-8. 

6th: 9-5-10/2-1-4/3-7-8…One Fast Cat (9) is another first time starter for the Wesley Ward barn operation. This one cost $145,000 to purchase at the 2019 KEE September Yearling Sale. Dam was a winner and has thrown a winner from the first 2 starters. Trainer is 5-0-0 in the last 13 starts. Bullet works over this track in the last two outs. Looks primed. Sag Harbor (5) comes from the barn of HOF trainer Steve Asmussen. Has two thirds in two trips here this meet. Made a challenge in each before tiring at the end. Winner of the race two back returned to win the next outing, too. Chance. Extreme (10) is a first time starter for one of the best young trainers in the game today. Is bred royally, and is by one of my most favorite sires of all time. Has been working well and the barn can gear them up for a solid effort in the debut. Like the looks of this one. I bet the 9-10 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exacta. I will key the 9-10 over/under the 5-2-1-4-3-7-8 win two smaller units.

7th: 1-10-5/2-7-9/8-3/11-4/12-6…Lil’s Song (1) is my second “Longshot Special” and my next “Key Play of the Night.” This 4YO daughter of Liam’s Map will stretch back out to a route race and will return as a beaten favorite, too. The barn wins with .14% going sprint to route and with .25% when returning to the gate as a beaten fan’s choice. Was outside the entire trip last time out. Gets a huge rider switch tonight. In 6 previous runs over an AW track? Has not won yet, but has 3 seconds and a third. Been facing tougher, too. Work here on Jan. 15? Top notch. Look for huge improvement tonight. Richies Noble Girl (10) has three seconds and a win in the last 4 outings for a barn that has been red, red, white, white hot here all meet long. Trainer has scored with 10 of the first 34 starters. Rider has won with .38% for this barn, too. Will be coming late. Will have to eye ball in the stretch and hold off. Gold Button (5) gets the blinkers for the first time from a barn operation that is very solid. Barn wins with .17% of those adding the shades for the first time and with .22% of those making the 2nd start after a claim purchase. Interesting rider choice here, but this barn doesn’t make many bad choices. Chance. I bet the 1-10 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the 1-10 over/under the 5-2-7-9-8-3 in two smaller units.

8th: 10-(13)-9/8-6/3-2/1-(14)/5-12/11…Natoma (10) drops to the bargain bin in tonight’s finale. Won over this track here on Dec. 5 against the $15,000 price tag level. Now, this one goes against the easiest foes. Barn wins with .20% when dropping this much at once, and the rider is one of the best in the game today. Has gone 4-1-1 in the last 12 mounts. Look for this one to be running late, but has the class edge, to be sure. Rollover Risk (13) could be a threat if she gets in from the AE List. Has a hard-beat second and a win in two starts here in January. Will be rolling late. Rathrbluckythngood (9) didn’t run much in the last outing here on Jan. 7. But had very little chance in that one. Caught in a mess at the quarter pole and went from real contender to real unfortunate in a hurry. Now, returns at the 6-1 ML odds. My last “Longshot Special of the Night.” Must use for me. In 4 tries here? Has a win and a second. Look for more tonight. Will be coming late, too. I bet the 10-9 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers — no matter who they are. I will key the 10-9 over/under the 13-8-6-3-2-1 in two smaller units.

Good Luck & All the Best / Gene