Equidaily Racing Journal

Today's Best Bets

by Seth Mellow

Saratoga Race Course
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Meet Total ... 3-10

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3-10. Took awhile to get cranked up but then we hit the 7th [$4.70], 8th [$3.30], and 9th [$26.40]. Obviously Jardin scoring in the featured G3 Schuylerville at 12-1 was the "deal-maker", turning what was shaping up to be a mediocre afternoon into a pretty good one.

In a personal story of how frustrating this game can be: We had singled Jardin in a late P3, bookending her with three horses in the first leg and ALL in the nightcap. In the 10th, when 11-1 Sonny Pajamas took what looked to be an insurmountable lead late in the stretch I was counting my $800+/$2 P3 payoff -- only to be nipped right at the wire by an incredible late charge -- with the 5-1 winner cutting my P3 by about $600. So, with some WPS money on Jardin and with a $200+/$2 P3 ticket, I made a nice little pot of money -- but still felt like I'd been kicked in the stomach!

Otherwise, those three straight wins accounted for two cold rolling doubles [$6.60; 44.60], we had a boxed tri in the 5th [$83.50]; plus our second and third choices combined for a couple exactas and we had another exacta with our top pick over our third choice.

On-track 18,127 attended on what turned out to be a miserable day. An annoying, steady drizzle turned into a deluge-like downpour late in the day. The faithful braved the elements however, with many in the backyard setting up shop at the picnic tables under tarps and tents.


NOTE: The steeplechase opener has been canceled [re-scheduled for next week]. Post-time for the second race will remain the same -- meaning that racing on Thursday will start at 1:35pm ET. Also, they are off the turf on Thursday. Handicap accordingly.

Note: I'll be sitting in this week as the guest handicapper on Capital OTB-TV's Newsdesk, hosted by Jeanne Wood. Watch live on cable TV throughout upstate NY, or log-on to capitalotb.com to catch the streaming video web cast [click on 'View it LIVE' in the left-hand column]. The program airs from 9 - 9:45am ET.

(You can review each of the previous seasons' totals here: 2007... 2006... 2005... 2004 ... 2003.)

Steeplechase event canceled due to Wednesday's rain. Re-scheduled for next week.

Stunning Electra...Riding the hot trainer -- Asmussen got the meet off to a smokin' start with three winners on Opening Day. This one could easily show improvement in her second start.
Red Seven...Promising debut -- but flopped in the follow-up [finishing behind the top pick]. Will contend if able to rebound to the prior effort.
Not a Peep...Debut should prove a good foundation to move forward from.

Goretty...In some good form the past few months. Has the speed to be prominent early and has some OK wet-track form.
Aunt Marge...Three wins and a second in the last three tries in claiming company. Looking for her to be sent from the rail.
French Song...Trainer have a strong stat first-off the claim.
Hanna Banana.

Fair Game...This one could be interesting if she stays in. Two turf sprints so far -- but the breeding says she should be capable on the main track. We'll see...
Scott's Choice...MTO entrant has looked OK in first two -- although not jumping off the page.
Depose the Cat...Sent and just caught in the slop at F'Lakes last time. A similar catch me if you can strategy makes her dangerous.
Shirley Law.
Western Decision.

Mine All Mine...Moves back in against her own sex after facing the boys in two troubled trips. Scratched from yesterday's G3 Schuylerville for this spot.
Pletcher entry...Market at Midday looks very dangerous off of the solid debut. Smarty Marty is by Smarty Jones and that one is off to a nice start as a sire.
Cats...Expensive yearling purchase going out for Lukas/Tabor-Magnier.
Siren Serenade.

Spin Move...Down from Woodbine. Trying conventional dirt for the first time but looks to find a little class relief in here.
Tempest Storm... MTO. Showed good early speed in two sloppy track tries at Churchill.
Abby Morgan...MTO. Dropping in for a tag.
Easy Ashley.

Temecula Creek...Taking a little bit of a shot in what looks like a wide-open affair. Lifetime best Beyer last time and a bullet work since might indicate that this Frankel trainee is ready to take it to another level.
Visionaire...Toss the G1 Ky Derby and the G1 Blue Grass [run on Poly] and this guy is pretty consistent. Won the G3 Gotham earlier this year in the slop.
Roi Maudit...Iffy selection. Ended last year looking like something special -- then disappointed in 2008 debut. But has been on the bench for a while and moves back to proper level.
Street Magician.

Loving Vindication...MTO. Has some early speed. Turf-to-dirt today.
Rizzi's Twist...MTO. Nice win vs state-breds last time. Ran well here last year.
Aidan...Was entered for turf -- but should be just as happy on the main track. Suspect she's better than her last.
Positive Prospect.
Quiet Meadow.

NINTH RACE - Sanford G2 $150KG
Vineyard Haven...Good-looking debut win at Calder. Privately sold since to Bobby Frankel. Could be any kind.
Desert Party...Lived up to $2.1 mil sale price with a nice win at Arlington in the first career start. Also could be any kind.
Bullion Cache...Can't discount Pletcher in these 2YO stakes.

Slade...Been fairly consistent since at least this time last year. Claimed for $25K in March -- now comes back for $20K. Could raise some red flags, but it looks like they're shopping for a winning spot.
Commodore Way...Shipper could be the one to catch.
Final Story...Claimed two back and just missed last time in first start for the new connections. Right back at the same level.
Fit Faze.

If we are interested in both halves of an entry -- in event of a scratch -- it is noted that way [in other words, both halve are named]. If only one-half of the entry is named, then we prefer that half and will move to our next pick listed [rather than the other half of the entry] in event of a scratch.

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