Equidaily Racing Journal

Today's Best Bets

by Seth Merrow

Saratoga Race Course
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Meet Total ... 7-40

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1-11. We fell into a little bit of a hole on Thursday -- tossing an oh-fer -- and we haven't yet climbed out. Only one winner on top [9th, $2.40] -- but four of our top picks managed to frustrate us by running second. Two of those at short prices, two more at 3-1 and 6-1.

The upside was that folks playing around with the selections just a little bit still might have had a good day. Our second and third selections combined for three exactas [2nd, $13.80; 3rd, $77.00; 10th, $100.00]. We had the cold, albeit small, cold exacta in the G1 Go for Wand -- using the logical Ginger Punch over the second-longest price in the field [$13.60]. And our top two flip-flopped for the exacta in the 5th [$23.60]. Plus, our top three boxed for the tri in the 3rd [$333.50].

The disappointment of the afternoon? At least one regular reader picked up on our pain -- we completely missed the Sheppard Special winner of the G1 Diana. Year after year after year we've jumped on the Jonathon Sheppard/Augustin turfers as solid longshot plays -- but for some inexplicable reason 9-1 Forever Together completely slipped under our radar on Saturday. We'll kick ourselves over that one all meet long!

27,297 attended and enjoyed mostly nice weather. Things got hinky after the running off the G2 Vanderbilt with some modest showers lingering off-and-on for the remainder of the card. Perhaps 45 minutes after the last race the skies opened up and a torrential downpour hit the area.


The heavy, heavy rain that fell shortly after the races on Saturday could have an effect on turf racing Sunday. Check with official sources to verify turf or main track for the scheduled grass events

On-track: Baseball cap giveaway with each paid admission while supplies last. Annual Hat Contest held after the 2nd, 3rd and 4th races. Categories: Kreative Kids, Fashionably Saratoga and Uniquely Saratoga. Registration at noon under the Grandstand.

Yelt...Solid in Florida last year. Claimed two back and ran well last time. Now second-off the claim and third of 2008. Should go well.
Ready in the Morn...Been racing well this year in and around this level.
Gimmearoutine...Could be finding a little class relief in here.
All Expenses Paid.
Api Mohkat.

Footnote This...Attracted $220K at April auction -- solid for a NY-bred. Worked in 10.0 at that sale.
Scorch the Torch/The Third Degree...Both seem precociously-bred.
Cribnote...Ok debut despite some trouble.
Natty Meboy.

City Roar...Beyer are making a nice, steady improvement. Especially since the return to dirt.
Critical Cathy...Toss the "broke slowly" race and all others have been good.
Sew Slippery...Showed some life last year. Now second start of 2008 and turf-to-dirt. Interesting.

Acclimate...Tossed in a clunker at the end of May. Off since. Could be tough if he benefits from the rest and bounces back to prior good form.
Mister Nobody...Back to dirt and proper level.
R Fast Favorite...Obviously the key here is what to make of that last race. An aberration, or a signal of current good form? We'll split the difference and slot this one as our third selection.
Bill Place.

Survived...This one won in fairly similar company in April. Been competitive against a little bit better since.
Just a Little Jet...AE lister was claimed out of a good second-place race last time.
Mpenzi...Should fit with these.
Inter Galactic.
Fort Carillon.
On dirt: Fort Carillon, Sadie My Lady, Boss Tiffany, Spirited Seacat, Starship Cruiser, Reyana's Jet.

War Echo...This half-sib to Pyro goes out for red-hot trainer Asmussen.
Ride With the Herd...Worked in 10.1 before 2YO sale. Just-missed in debut.
Pearl of Valor...Expensive yearling also put in a good first try.
Pumpkin Shell.

Bella Attrice...Second in a similar race two back.
Dose of Reality...Ran a lifetime best Beyer in her first start of the year. Could be tough with improvement.
Dr Jess Jr...Nibbling around the edges the past few.
On dirt; Ommadon's Frenzy, Madam Commander, Crazy Catlady, Koufax Curve.

Constance...Ran into some buzzsaws last year. Could be interesting in first start for Asmussen.
Pretty Carina...Decent debut last year. Now comes back for 3YO season in the care of Frankel.
Sahara Wind...Some nice breeding.

Amped...Pretty solid right along -- but really seems to have figured it out lately.
Mambo in Seattle...Also seems to have gotten good over the last few.
Chris Got Even...As has this one.
You and I Forever.

TENTH RACE - Jim Dandy G2
Pyro...Bounced back last time and expect that good form to continue.
Macho Again...Think his talent is probably closer to his run in the G1 Preakness than his effort in the G1 Belmont.
Tiz Now Tiz Then...Come to life on conventional dirt.
Mint Lane.

Come Close...After missing Forever Together yesterday [see notes above], we have to jump on this Sheppard/Augustin runner. Could be tough moving in for a tag.
Vaunt...Stakes-placed runner drops into claiming company.
Inside Info...Occasionally flashes a nice closing kick -- but flopped on a "soft" course in May.
On dirt; Intuition Magic, Vaunt, Sonny's the One, Mondo Diverso, Bang Bang Bang, Gold Shamrock.

If we are interested in both halves of an entry -- in event of a scratch -- it is noted that way [in other words, both halves 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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