Equidaily Racing Journal

Today's Best Bets

by Seth Merrow

Saratoga Race Course
Friday, August 8, 2008
Meet Total ... 38-142

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3-10. Can't complain about a 30% day given the wacky weather. Three winners in top [4th, $6.50; 6th, $10.80; 10th, $8.10]. The 4th race was on the turf -- but all subsequent races were washed off by a mid-card shower, so our two later winners were taken from our on dirt picks. Had some very nice gimmicks with the selections: the cold exacta and tri in the 4th [$22.40/$2; $76.50]; top pick over third and second selections for the exacta and tri in the off-the-turf 6th [$78.50; $315.00]. Plus, a reverse exacta in the 3rd [$20.60].

A decent mid-week crowd of 16,647 attended. As hinted at above, they were subject to a thoroughly wacky weather-day. Showers and sun alternated all afternoon but the skies opened prior to the 5th with buckets of rain and even a pelting of hail.

Off-track, the jockeys re-matched with a Texas-based AAU team of sixth-grade basketball players in a charity game at Saratoga Springs High School. Last year the jocks made a late run to edge the kids -- but the table were turned in 2008. With the game tied 32-32 after three quarters the jocks went ice-cold while the AAU ballers caught fire -- launching and connected with three-balls to open a commanding lead and go on to win 49-32. A good crowd attended and the event was a success in raising money for the Disabled Jockeys Fund.


Mutakaway...Hmmm. Claimed for $35K in February and now comes back for $16K. Red flags. But working well. If she's ready she'll be tough.
Sweetest Kiss...Similar to top pick -- the drop is suspicious. But, again, tough if all the wheels are on.
Ambling Rose...While the top two are dropping, this one has been doing well right at this level over the last two.
Most Charming.

Mega...Might appreciate the class relief.
Flashbulb Breeze...Two good tries since moving to turf.
Misty Daylight...Also has done well on grass.
On dirt: Misty Daylight, Dove Nest, Mega, Sankobasi.

Ravel...Could prove tough with the move to real dirt.
Fearless Vision...Comeback effort was impressive.
Temporary Saint...Ten times in the exacta in twenty-five lifetime starts.

Earle's First Girl...Second in first try off the claim last time. Should go well again.
Trillian...Impressed in career debut and could be any kind.
Hope Street/French Song...Hope Street preffered off of a win over the track in latest.
Eightyfive S.

River Fancy/Platinum Girl...Always like Pletcher firsters going two turns on dirt.
Ain't Love Grand...Dutrow good second time out of the box.
Dynaslew/Total Joy...Both have some good breeding.
Warm Shower.
On dirt: Jehan, Ain't Love Grand, River Fancy/Platinum Girl, Song of Charm.

Early Response...Like Hook and Ladder's first-time out. And trainer good with debut runners too.
Mr Petersson...Should benefit from debut and now moves out of MSW company.
Bitabaz...Similar set-up to Mr Petersson.
Shifty Guy.

Paramedic...Precociously-bred and should benefit from the first-start education.
Smokin Hero...Logical contender off of first two.
Scientist...Showed speed in debut against open company.
Criminal Matters.

Tejida...Looks capable of taking them all the way.
Leap in the Sun...Better than last.
Caprice...Showed some promise in US debut. Was facing the boys often in Europe.
On dirt: So Gltizy, Leap in the Sun, Jive, Jeepers.

Winning Point...Showed plenty of promise as a 3YO and comeback effort looked like one to build on.
Are We Dreamin...Last has to make you wonder if he likes the track -- but was running well just prior.
Gem Sleuth...Consistent -- but perhaps a notch below.
Striking Tomisue.

Victory Assured...Slight edge in a well-matched bunch. This one seems better as a 4YO and could have benefitted from the education at this level last time.
Sammy's Toy...Third start of 2008 and showed improvement start #1 to start #2.
Smart Enuf...Lightly-raced and broke maiden last time.
Cardinal Hill.
On dirt: Cardinal Hill, Wishful Tomcat, Dubliner, Criminal Power.

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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