(A new binoculars view…this time at Culabra near Puerto Rico. No horses. Just sea horses in this view / Photo submitted)

Day Results 8/5-2-0
2019 Overall 1,473 1,473/516-534-651
Win % of Top Pick 35.03%
Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall 38.49%
2019 Top Pick in the Money –968 of 1,473 65.72%
Top Selection ITM / TP Holiday 21-32 65.63%
Top Selection Win / TP Holiday 13-32 40.63%
“Key Horses” @ TP Holiday 3-1-0-0 33.33%
“Key Horses” in 2019 218-84-43-22 38.53% Win / 68.35% ITM

We had another good day to finish up last week at Turfway Park in Northern KY. We landed 5 winners on the 8 race card and we hit a couple of nice exactas that returned $28.80 and $30.80 for each $1 played to close out the card.

Not bad spending money for the Holidays.

Here’s hoping that the momentum can carry over. Still more presents to buy, since my elves are on vacation.

Here’s a look at our picks for Wednesday, Dec. 11:

1st: 6-11-4/3-8-7/1-12-1A-10…Mountain Melodies (6) comes from a barn that normally does quite well over this grounds. Off to a bit of a slow start, though, with just 1 win from the first 10 runners. This one ran behind a filly that is very special to me — my own, Miss Jacqueline. While we are at home getting geared up for our 2020 campaign, this one returns. The last two works here are very solid, and I’m rooting like crazy for this one, too. May make our race look better, too. I bet the 6 to win/place/show and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the 6 over/under the 11-4-3-8-7-1-12 in two smaller versions.

2nd: 7-12/9-6/3-8/10-2-5-11…Shut the Box (7) was claimed for $16,000 last time out and is now offered up for sale for $5,000. Need a bigger truck, right? The new barn hits with .13% of those running for the first time after the purchase, and with .13% of those coming off this kind of a layoff. Barn hits with .23% of those that drop off the claim, though, and if this one is anywhere close to where he used to be? He should be very tough against this crowed. Strong Yen (12) drops way down from the $25,000 price level to the basement here, too. Barn hits with .23% of those getting this kind of class relief. Rider has won with .20% of the last 5 rides for this barn. Love the work on Nov. 17. One to beat. I bet the 7-12 across the board and then box those two in the exacta. I will key the 7-12 over/under the 9-6-3-8-10 in two smaller versions.

3rd: 1-12/2-11/10-4-9-(13)/8…Sperling (1) goes for a new trainer for the first time. Has been running very well against these types in Chicago. Has a 4-5-1 record over the all-weather surface, and should take to this footing, as well. Barn hits with .16% of those shipping in. Miss Vicki (12) could spice up the odds rack in this one. Drops into the bargain basement level after nearly winning at this level two starts back. In the one trip over the all-weather, she did run second. Fits here and the barn is having a solid year (16.% winners out of 79 starters this year). Chance. I bet the 1-12 across the board and then box those two in the exacta. I will key the 1-12 over/under the 2-11-10-4-9 in two smaller versions.

4th: 12-2-3/4-1-8/10-11-6/5-7…I will go back outside for my top selection here — Statesboro (12). This 3YO gelding will be making his first start over an all-weather surface, but the new barn operation hits with .21% of those making the initial start after a claim. Work here on Nov. 27 was spot on. Spot. On. My pick. I bet the 12 to win/place/show and then box the top 3 numbers in the exacta. I will key the 12 over/under the 2-3-4-1-8-10-11 in two smaller versions, too.

5th: 9-11/12-(14)-6-8/1-7/3-2-13-4…Ameerah (9) nearly won last time out when running over the hills and dales of KY Downs. That came against some classy competition, and if she can convert to the all-weather, she looks very solid in this spot. In 4 tries to date, she has 3 wins. About time to crack the ceiling, and break the maiden. I bet the 9 to win/place/show and then box the 9-11 in one exacta. I will key the 9-11 over/under the 12-14-6-8-1 in two smaller versions.

6th: 2-8/7/5-4-3/6-1A-1…O’Keeffe (2) goes for the barn of Larry Rivelli, who has won with .32% of his 406 starters this year. Has a win and a second in three starts here this meet, too. This one is very talented and has 4 wins in 6 starts over the all-weather, already. My pick. Moonlight Romance (8) has 3 wins and a second in 7 career starts, too, and comes into this one off a considerable layup. Barn hits with .21% of those returning and with .35% of those moving from the dirt to the all-weather. I bet the 2 to win/place/show and then box the 2-8 solidly in one exacta. I will key the 2 over/under the 8-7-5-4-3 in two smaller versions.

7th: 11-9/(14)-(13)-6-8/3-1-12-5/4-7-10-2…Enchanting Kitten (11) comes in here off three 2nd place finishes in the last 4 outings. Has burned some money in those proceedings, and has only 1 win in the 12 starts, to date. Does have the 5 seconds and 1 third to offer on the resume. Will press the leaders. Will she hang again. New rider takes his shot in here. Straitouttapopcorn (9) has 3 wins and 2 seconds over the all-weather. Conditioned by a great young trainer with a very bright future. Yep. He trains for me, too. Look for this one to run a huge one tonight and may offer some real value, too. I bet the 9 — take note — to win/place/show and then box the 11-9 in one solid exacta. I will key the 11-9 over/under the 14-13-6-8-3 in two smaller versions.

8th: 12-7/(13)/4-9-11-1/(14)-2…Wallet (12) is the prohibitive favorite in the ML here, and he figures to be the PT favorite, as well. Has run 2nd in the last two and now cuts to an all-time low price tag. If he can find the same kind of run that he flashed in the last two, he may be able to run these off their feet in the early going. Rider returns and this one should prove tough to catch. Dry Lake (7) could offer some real value. Comes from the accomplished barn of Ian Wilkes. Has run only 2 here this meet so far. Has a win and a third. This one closes, and should relish the drop in class tonight. I bet the 12-7 across the board and then box those two solidly in the exacta. I will key the 12-7 over/under the 13-4-9-11-1 in two smaller versions.

Good Luck & All the Best/Gene