Days Results 10 / 5-3-5
2023 Overall — 629 629 / 218-203-274
Win % of Top Pick 34.66%
Payoff % of Top 3 Picks Overall 36.83%
2023 Only / Top Pick in the Money Overall — 385-629 61.21%
2023 Only / Top Pick in the Money @ HI 20-30 66.67%
2023 Only / Top Pick Wins @ HI 12-30 40.00%
2023 Only / Top Pick in the Money @ CD 7-10 70.00%
2023 Only / Top Pick Wins @ CD 5-10 50.00%
2023 Only / “Key Horses” @ KEE 2 / 2-0-0 100.00% Win / 100.00% ITM
2023 Only / “Key Horses” @ TP 45/21-8-4 46.47% Win / 73.33% ITM
2023 Only / “Key Horses” @ FG 5/1-1-1 20.00% Win / 60.00% ITM
2023 Only / “Key Horses” @ GP 6/6-0-0 100.00% Win / 100.00% ITM
2023 Only / “Key Horses” @ OP 2/1-1-0 50.00% Win / 100.00% ITM
2023 Only / “Key Horses” @ HI 1/0-0-0 00.00% Win / 00.00% ITM
2023 Only / “Key Horses” Overall 84/38-16-8 45.24% Win / 73.81% ITM

(Stats to be updated after Churchill Downs’ cards on Tuesday and Wednesday)

Here’s our looks at the classy card scheduled for “Thurby” — Thursday, May 4:

1st: 3-8-5/6-7-1/2/4…Tattered Heart (3) gets the nod in the ole’ lid-lifter on the introduction of the amazing “Thurby” day card. This 3YO filly drops another couple of rungs in the claiming game for a barn that wins with .21% of the last 24 to fall this much at one time. Gets a clever rider, who takes no prisoners, in the saddle again. Has won with .08% of the last 13 mounts for this barn. Should fit here. Freedom Machine (8) will get the 2nd start for one of the best young trainers in the game today. This one should be better than the last, but will be over the main dirt surface. Never run on that before. Interesting. Lucy Jane (5) will make the 2nd start after a claim purchase and the barn wins with .29% of the last 17 to do that. Broke the MCL here last November. By 9 lengths. Looks solid here. I bet the 3-5 across the board and then box the top 3 in the exactas. I will key the 3-5 over/under the 8-6-7-1-2 in two smaller units. 

2nd: 1-4-3/6/2//5…Beauxs Artes (1) didn’t fire last time out, but could be a force here with a better trip. Gets a huge rider switch for this one and the barn will add blinkers for the first time. Third time off the layoff and this trainer wins with .18% of the last 55 to do that. Scarlet Stripe (4) has not been out since December and will make the debut for a new trainer here, too. But? Has hit the board in 4 of the first 5 outs, and gets a very talented rider back for the saddle job. Look out. Work on April 8 was spot on. Academic Honor (3) ran huge off a long layoff last time out at KEE on April 14. If this one improves — and does not bounce — off that performance? Look out. Has a win at this distance, too and the work on April 28 was solid. I bet the 1-3 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in the exactas. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 6-2 in two smaller units. 

3rd: 3-8/6-1/2-7-5//4…Caramel Chip (3) will return in this spot for a barn that has won with .18% of the last 193 outings. Gets the world’s best rider up and this one has hit the board in the last five starts — with 3 wins in that mix. Top pick. By a lot. Concrete Glory (8) returns as a beaten favorite here and this barn wins with .28% of the last 240 to do that. Has hit the board in each of the last four and has 3 wins in that group. Ran 2nd to our top pick last time out, but has the speed to be very dangerous here. I bet the 3 across the board and then box the 3-8 in the exactas. I will key the 3-8 over/under the 6-1-2-7-5 in two smaller units. 

4th: 1-2/6/3/5-4…Kentucky Juvenile Stakes…Hibernacle (1) broke the MSW in the first start for the guru of 2YO races in these parts. Won that one by nearly 8 lengths. Gets a world-class rider up and will offer some speed in here. But? Draws the rail and that’s a tough spot, especially if you don’t get away from the gate right way. Still, this one looks to be the one. Youalmosthadme (2) broke the MSW at KEE by over 8 lengths and now shifts to one of the top barn operations in the land. Class rider sticks here, too. Looks to be a two-horse race. Coin toss? I bet the 1 across the board and then box the 1-2 in the exactas. I will key the 1-2 over (only) the 6-3 in a smaller unit. 

5th: 1-4-9/11-12/10-(17)-(13)/3/2-10…The first turf race of the day and I will line up with another rail bird — He’s Got Swagger (1). This 3YO son of Temple City comes in off a rather lackluster effort at KEE. But? Was way way wide in that effort and never mustered a rally. The race before — or two races before — were much better at the Fair Grounds. I toss the last and rely on the past. Hidden Path (4) goes for a HOF trainer and nearly won the debut on the main track at GP. Now, this one will get to the surface that the trainer wanted all along. This son of Hare Spun looks to be the one to beat. Decanted (9) nearly won the last time out and just tired at the end. May improve here with a shorter distance to navigate. Gets a top grass rider up. Top. Look out. Chance. I bet the 1-4 across the board and then box the top 3 numbers in the exactas. I will key the top 3 numbers over/under the 11-12 in two smaller units. 

6th: 3-2-7/1/6-4/5…Chasing Time (3) is a talented son of Not This Time. Very talented. Let’s hope that this one starts to develop a little more consistency to go with that run-ability. Has hit the board in each of the last two and returns here as a beaten favorite. Barn wins with .24% of the last 810 to do that. Gets a top rider back up. And this stalker should get the first jump one the front-runners. Has a win and a runner-up in 3 previous runs here. Strava (2) won here last November when the track turned into a sloppy mess. Now has 2 wins and a third in 3 tries here. Gets the same rider that surfaced last time out when running in the G1 Malibu. No match in that effort, but this is not a G1. Run Classic (7) has run in 3 straight Graded Stakes, as well. Nearly won the G3 Mineshaft just two starts ago. Has a win and a 2nd in two starts here. Will be on or near the lead. I bet the 3 across the board and double down on the win wager. I will box the top 3 numbers in the exactas. I will also key the top 3 numbers over/under the 1 in two smaller units.

7th: 11-5/1-7-10/6-8-(13)/9/2-3-4…Fearless Kristie (11) gets the blinkers after disappointing in the last outing at KEE on April 13. Cuts back to a sprint here, too, and the barn wins with .37% when going from a sprint, to a route and back to a sprint. Look out. Love this one here with the shift to a world-class rider here. Big switch. Good Tohave Around (5) has run at this level the last two times and ran much better at KEE in the last. Improvement off that effort and could be tough here. I bet the 11 across the board and double down on the win wager. I will box the 11-5 in the exactas. I will key the 11-5 over/under the 1-7-10-6-8-13 in two smaller units. 

8th: 3-2/4-10/6-12/(13)-7-9/8/5-11…Morning Cup (3) returns here as a beaten favorite, too. This barn wins with .31% of the last 42 to make the gate with that credential. Get a top rider back up here and this one could fit this race perfectly. Drop in class should elevate status. Has speed. Can turn it loose early and often. I bet the 3 across the board and then double down on the win wager. I will box the 3-2 in the exactas. I will key the 3-2 over/under the 4-10-6-12 in two smaller units. 

9th: 7-2/6-1/5-4/3-8…St. Matthews Stakes…This is a 6-furlong sprint over the main dirt track and I will saddle up with Bango (7). This 5YO son of Into Mischief loves, loves, loves this track. Has raced here 16 times. Has won 9 times. And, has a 2nd and two more 3rds to his credit. Has hit the board in the last 4 and looks primed for another big run here. I’m in. Miles Ahead (2) won the Louisville Thoroughbred Society (YEAH!) last September. Ran well in the G3 Whitmore Stakes last out. Will be coming late and may be a tough out. I bet the 7 across the board and then double down on the win wager. I will box the 7-2 in the exactas. I will also key the 7 over/under the 2-6-1-5-4-3 in two smaller units. 

10th: 3/5-7-12/11-6/10-4/1-8-9/2…Opening Verse Stakes…This is a 1-mile grass event and I will ante up with the grand Annapolis (3) and I will make this one my “Key Play of the Day.” Last year, this one ran 6 times. Had 3 wins and 2 seconds. Only miss came in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Mile. Loves the sod. Should love this new and improved grass course, which looks so beautiful now. Gets the world’s #1 rider. Lots to like. I bet the 3 across the board and then double down on the win wager. I will key the 3 over/under the 5-7-12-11-6 in the exactas. More with the 5-7-12 than the others. 

11th: 3-10/7-8/6-11/5-9/1-4…The finale is a 6-furlong sprint over the main track and I will go with Dark Timber (3). This 5YO gelding has never won here in 4 previous tries. Ugh. But? Will drop considerably for this effort and the ban wins with a whopping .27% when engaged at the claiming level. This rider can boot and the work here on April 22 is very impressive. All Eyes West (10) drops for half the asking price since the last race in December. Fits here and has a 2-1-0 record in 3 starts here. Trainer has won with .21% of the last 353. Chance. I bet the 3 across the board and then box the 3-10 in the exactas. I will key the 3-10 over/under the 7-8-6-11-5-9 in two smaller units. 

Good Luck & All the Best / Gene