Equidaily Racing Journal

Today's Best Bets

by Seth Merrow

Saratoga Race Course
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Meet Total ... 44-160

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0-11. We fired our first oh-fer for the meet. At about the halfway point of the program we started to feel some level of trepidation -- not seeing nay that we felt super-confident about. Typically on a card that might be one or two that -- while, not "locks" -- we feel have good shots. Saturday Hot Minute might have been the one we were counting on in that department. When he faded to fourth we knew it was an uphill battle. and when our top pick in the 8th, Stroll for Acure, just missed with a late-run it felt kind of like a bad omen.

Still, there was some life in the selections. In the 1st it was second over third selection for the exacta [$26.60/$2] with our top pick completing the tri [$58.50]. Same scenario in the 2nd [$16.20, $38.40]. In the 8th our top four boxed for the super [$1668.00].

Otherwise, we just turn the page after a day like Saturday and hope to get back on track.

29,287 fans attended on Saturday. The same-old, same-old weather song continues -- another nice day, although it was certainly on the hot side temp-wise.


T-shirt giveaway at the track [free with paid admission while supplies last]. Phish concert at SPAC.

Got Clearance...Typically we stay away from trainers that are winless this deep into the meet -- but we'll hope Levine can get off the duck with this one. The gal should be finding some major class-relief today. Started her career in Florida and won one of those last summer 2YO stakes at Calder which tend to be salty affair. Disappointed when shipped to NY to run in a state-bred stakes in Oct. Comes in off of a long layoff but moves into an optclm/NW2.
R Betty Graybull...Another that ran well in open company last year. Should benefit from the first start of 2009.
City Spirit...Typically in the hunt.
Jet's Tradition.

Capitalism at Risk...It's Violette/Klaravich and this combo has won with these 2YO sale babies right out of the box at previous Saratoga meets. Breeding is something of an unknown here but this one worked 20.2 before the april sale -- fastest at the distance.
Christmas Trip...Always like the Trippi runners to be live early.
Bonita Donita...Working well for McPeek and he can have them ready to roll.

All the Bases...Slight edge in a tough race. Jerkens running cool at the meet but this guy could be interesting going turf-to-dirt.
BZ Warrior...Was ambitiously-placed in third career start. They've re-grouped since and this one is eligible run away form these.
Top It...Been running Beyers that fit well here and is cutting back to a sprint. As mentioned earlier, the trainer is cold at the meet -- but if that horse in the 1st wins it could signal a turnaround.

FOURTH RACE - Addison Mallery $70K
Thunders Dove...It's all about the Beyers here -- they're clearly best among these. BUT, the horse is coming off of a long layoff.
JZ Warrior...Turf-to-dirt and looking at the PPs it could be argued she's better on dirt.
Orinoquia...Should find some class-relief here coming out of a G1 in Florida.
A Rose for You.

Starforaday...Has had some problems in both tries in and around this level. A clean trip from the outside might get it done.
The Vin Man...Bullet work might signal he's ready for this race.
Check It Twice. Ugh. The kind that we find one of the biggest puzzles in handicapping. Clearly looks best based solely on PPs. BUT -- and it's a BIG BUT -- it's really hard for us to take a Pletcher runner that won a $100k stake, coming off of a 11-month layoff and now dropping in for $25K. The red flags are flying and the flares are firing. But if all the wheels are on he could easily win by daylight.
Fuhrever Dancing.

Common Currency...$250K yearling NY-bred for McLaughlin/West Point. Should be well-meant.
One Note Samba...Expect improvement today.
Make Note...Worked a very quick 10.0 before Feb auction. Working well here too.

Epicurus...Love the More Than Ready offspring on turf and they can be precocious as well.
Drosselmeyer...Distorted Humor also known as a win-early sire.
One Sky...Another firster that should go well.
Steve's Kitten.

Siren Serenade...Returned to the races as an improved 3YO. Have to think this is a field she can beat.
Corporate Star...Expect improvement today.
Catigo...Euro-import was a $15mil yearling buy. Would be no surprise.

Redefined...Almost always in the hunt over the past two seasons and drops in for a tag today.
Ziptronic/The Zipster...Turf sprint. Linda Rice. Nuff said.
Elusive Fox...Bona fide turf sprint.
Five Towns.

TENTH RACE - West Point $100K
Banrock...Won this race last year. Looks like he's better if the going is a little soft -- but he's run well on 'firm' turf.
Hangingbyathread...Should be heard from in the stretch.
Kutais...Has run well on turf.
Mission Approved.

We're Hooked...Linda Rice in a turf sprint. Also, the drop in for a tag should help.
Miss Redoubled...Another moving into claimers.
Smart Trade...first time tag -- on turf.
Private Battle.

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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