THURBY: Gene’s Tips for a Rainy Day at Churchill

Race 1: 2-3-1

Second back off extended layoff & drops extensively. Either wins or finishes last. I go with win.

Race 2: 2-3-1-4

Big mud marks on the top two, but I give the edge to Asmussen, who has a 0.21 win percentage on first off claim.

Race 3: 3-4-6-2-8

Big mud mark on the 3 for Flint-Lanerie because jockey Corey Lanerie has never been better. The 4 must switch from turf to dirt, but still looks good.

Race 4: 5-8-2-1-4

I’ll take the speed first here on Race 4. My top four are all speed.

Race 5: 10-8-2-3-1-9-7

Love the 10 here, who gets my “dot play.” Key with others over & under. Horizontally speaking, key 10 in pick 3s & 4s.

Race 6: 12-8-1-5-10-11-6-7

Double dot on the 12. Another key horse; play others under $ over in exotics.

Race 7: 9-6-7-5-2-3/4

Love the 9 here with a dot. Box the top two choices and play over and under the rest.

Race 8: 4-9-2-7-5-1

Romans may be tough here with two horses, but I am going to put Brad Cox on top! You can get the 4 at 12-1 morning line. Don’t leave out the 5 here! Very hot trainer & jockey.

Race 9: 8-4-10-2-5

Wow, what a race! Go with the 8 here, who got a much needed race at Keeneland in this highly contested field. Chad Brown is, well, Chad Brown so you have to use the 4. 10 is great off layoffs and 2 LOVES this grass. Justin Mott’s horse can strike at any moment.

Race 10: 1-4-8-1A

Wesley Ward all day! Key the 1.

Race 11: 10-11-1

All button! Seriously, all button. But, I’d advise you to key 10-11-1.

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds
  • Gene McLean

    Gene McLean

    Gene McLean began his professional career in 1977 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky., and was recognized as one of the state’s best writers, winning the prestigious “Sportswriter of the Year” honor in 1985. Now the President and Publisher of The Pressbox, McLean sets ...

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