By Ryan Dickey:
For every live race day of the Keeneland Spring meet, I will be analyzing the finale for each card. We’ll call it the “Bail-Out Special” — in case you had a bad day at the track and you need JUST ONE WINNER to right the ship. We are going to try our best to give you that advice and counsel and hope that we all can get some “dinner money” for the night.
But the selection can be used for more than just stemming losses from a bad day. Maybe you’d like to get aggressive and single a horse in multi-race bets. Maybe you’ve had a GREAT day at the track and you want to “let it ride.”
No matter how you use it, it’s my goal to pick THE WINNING HORSE in the finale — I won’t be too concerned about the morning line odds. I’ll actually be handicapping the race before the odds are announced. So my selection may not be the “value play” in the finale — just my opinion on who I think will be, can be, may be the WINNER. At the least, we are “all in” together.
Wednesday, April 24
Race 8 Allowance ($81,000 purse) 4 years old and up 1-1/16 miles on turf approx 4:57 pm ET
With only three more days of racing for the Keeneland spring meet, it’s time to finish strong with the “Bail-out Special” which has been a winner five of the eleven times we’ve seen the pick get to the gate this month.
Assuming that we’ll have three more runners over the next three days make the gate, I’ll have to be right two of the three times to end the meet at the .500 mark, seven for fourteen.
And I really like my chances today. Probably one of the most confident picks of the meet.
Getting right into it, the feature of the day is the finale, a mile and a sixteenth route on the turf. There are eleven runners assigned to the field with ten betting interests (the Ramsey entry of #1 ONE LAST STRIKE and #1A VEGAS KITTEN are coupled).
I’m very interested in #2 FACTOR THIS who returns to what appears to be his best surface (11-2-2-1 on the green stuff) after a dull effort on the dirt at Oaklawn in March. He’s my best bet of the day, running for trainer Brad Cox and jockey Florent Geroux. The trainer/jockey combo has seen a lot of success in the past few months.
He should be forwardly placed in an honest pace behind #10 WILD HAIR, who will have to expend a lot of energy getting in front of this field from the far outside post.
#9 ST. DENMAN was a winner last out, breaking his maiden at Gulfstream in March. Facing winners for the first time, he’s the 9/5 morning line favorite, and will be bet accordingly. We will be in the enviable position of playing against this favorite. The biggest class jump is going from the maiden ranks to allowance company, and although St. Denman is good in his own right, today doesn’t look like the day he deserves favoritism.
The only other horse that concerns me for this race is #4 FRED’STWIRLINGCANDY who scratched from an off-the-turf race here at Keeneland earlier in the meet. I was interested in playing him the day he was supposed to race, and I still have an interest in him for a minor award today.
But make no mistake, I’m all-in on #2 Factor This to win the finale at Keeneland today, which would bring the “Bail-out Special” record to 6-for-12 on the meet with two days to go.
Play #2 Factor This over the #1 Ramsey entry, #4 Fred’stwirlingcandy and #9 St. Denman in exactas and trifectas. Single Factor This in multi-race bets.