Equidaily Racing Journal



Saturday, December 13, 2003
Picks and plays for some of the day's major stakes

Note: Thanks to the folks at Capital [NY] OTB Racing Network. They made me feel at home and I had a great time appearing as an analyst on the network during Friday afternoon's racing action. We concentrated on Calder and managed to tab three winners on top in six races ($7.40, 7.00, 3.00) -- showing a decent 45% ROI in that category. We also had a top pick best a third choice for a $32.60/$2 exacta. And in the day's 4th our top two picks flip-flopped for a $34.80 exacta -- with our third choice rounding out the $130.20/$2 tri... Not enough to retire on, but a nice outing over the course of the six races we focused on during the three-hour program.

I've been invited back for next Friday and I look forward to the return visit. If you're in the upstate NY area tune in on 12/19 from 12-3pm.
Seth Merrow

Wow. What a wacky afternoon. We balanced precariously between bust and jackpot throughout -- ending up walking all the way through the afternoon's fourteen races (we lost a turf event at Fair Grounds) squarely on that borderline and, despite having a hefty amount wagered (almost $700) we managed to just about break even.

Two winners on top in fourteen races (Calder, $6.40; Fair Grounds, $4.00). Our second pick won four more races -- including 18-1 Cute N Noble at Fair Grounds.

But as the afternoon progressed, it went something like this... We picked up a decent exacta in the second stake at Aqueduct as our top two flip-flopped ($28.60/$2). Then we grabbed a decent exacta ($37.40/$2) and tri ($95.80/$2) in the first stake at Calder. We picked up another good exacta ($68.40/$2) on one of the remaining stakes at Calder. So, heading into the stakes laden card at Fair Grounds we were going pretty well.

We went cold with the opening two stakes we played at Fair Grounds -- but managed a hefty ($165.80/$2) exacta in our third try there, the Juvenile. But, this was one of the races that frustrated our efforts for a jackpot day... Two of ours ran 1-2 at 13-1 and 4-1 accounting for that nice exacta. But our top pick couldn't hold onto the lead late and was nipped for the show spot. So we ran 1-2-4. The triple, with the 7-2 fave rounding out the third spot paid $807.60/$2. We can only guess what it might have paid if our 9-1 shot had hung on!

It was a similar scenario in the next, the Sprint. Two of ours completed the $44.80/$2 exacta -- but we ran 1-2-4 to miss the tri. The Turf was switched to the main track (Fair Grounds was a wet mess with fog obstructing the view for much of the afternoon) which canceled our plays in that race. In the Ladies we were frustrated again as our second pick won at a juicy 18-1 -- but we lost a three-way for place and show, running 1-3-4, so we didn't collect anything there. Doh!

And we ran 1-3-4 again in the Classic. We collected on our win/place wager, but got nothing from the gimmicks.

So, we shifted our attention to California having collected a few -- but also having just missed enough to have us hovering over a money pit. Hollywood offered no solace but it was our nightcap event that finally brought a smile to our face...

At Golden Gate we grabbed a nice exacta ($61.40/$2) -- and our fourth pick rounded out the tri at 19-1, returning a generous $664.20/$2. And as we stated earlier -- we balanced our way on the tightrope all the way to the break-even point.

WAGERED: $688.00
COLLECTED: $672.55

Turf wagers are turf only

Aqueduct: Garland of Roses H'cp $75K

Balmy 25-1
Gazillion 5-1
Bonefide Reason 31-1

Wager: $5 WP on Wilzada.
Ran 7th at 9-5.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 6-7.
...$1 exacta box top four, sub next if scratch.
Ran 2-6-7-9.
...$1 tri box top four, sub next if scratch.
Ran 2-6-7-9.

Wilzada...Making fourth start of a substantial layoff. Ran well two back and might have bounced last time slightly off of that effort. Expect a return to good form moving back to six furlongs and returning to a track she's 3-3 over.
Shawklit Mint...Not as prolific this year as last -- but had trouble last two and might wake-up over the inner track where she's 8-5-2-0.
Gazillion...Came back from a March layoff to win two at Laurel. Should be rolling late.
Bonefide Reason.

Aqueduct: Queens County H'cp G3 $100K

Thunder Blitz 9-2
Evening Attire 1-1
Seattle Fitz 3-1

Wager: $5 WP on Evening Attire.
Collected $6.75 on the WP (xxx, 2.70).
...$2 exacta box top two.
Collected $28.60 on the ex box ($28.70/$2).
...$1 exacta box top four.
Collected $14.30 on the ex box.
...$1 tri key Evening Attire over next three.
Ran 2/1-4-6.

Evening Attire...Was DQ's from a winning effort in the G2 Clark last time. Expect a big run in the stretch.
Thunder Blitz...Seems in good form and is now running for the sizzling hot Richard Dutrow.
Unforgettable Max...Speed is always an asset on the inner oval.
Nothing Flat.

Calder: What A Pleasure $100K

Second of June 2-1
Twice as Bad 7-1
Silver Wagon 4-5

Smoocher scratched.

Wager: $5 WP on Second of June.
Collected $25.50 on the WP (6.40, 3.80).
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 1-3.
...$1 exacta box top four, sub next if scratch.
Collected $18.70 on the ex box ($37.40/$2).
...$1 tri box top four, sub next if scratch.
Collected $47.90 on the tri box ($95.80/$2).

Second of June...Got off to a poor start in only bad effort. Near-miss two back in $100K stake. Followed up with a big alw win last time. Gets nod on that successful two-turn experience.
Silver Wagon...Established himself as one of the leaders in the division with a nice win in G1 Hopeful -- but has been on sidelines since and makes first start around two-turns. So there are some question marks.
Smoocher/Zakocity...Smoocher preferred. Won a G2 stake at Woodbine in October.
Mr Willie Joe.
Twice as Bad.

Calder: Chaposa Springs H'cp G3 $100K

Barbara O'Brien 5-1
Holy Bubbette 3-1
Splasha 11-1

Wager: $5 WP on Elegant Mercedes.
Ran 9th at 7-2.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 6-9.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Collected $34.20 on the ex box ($68.40/$2).
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 1-2-6-9.

Elegant Mercedes...Has won three straight since moving into barn of Richard Dutrow. 2-2 at the trip.
Chispiski...Very competitive. Very consistent. Loves the track. A little suspect at the trip -- although she won this event last year.
Barbara O'Brien...Expect improvement over last with return to sprint.
Holy Bubbette.

Calder: Kenny Noe Jr H'cp $100K

Hasty Kris 4-1
Wake At Noon 10-1
Tour of the Cat 7-2

Wager: $5 WP on Built up.
Ran 9th at 7-1.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 3-9.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Ran 3-5-9-10.
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 3-5-9-10.

Built Up...Came out of a fair effort in the J Dudley last year to win this. Similar set up for this try.
Tour of the Cat...14-8-3-1 over the track. Ran second in this stake in 2002.
Love That Moon...Comes in with a three-race win streak and loves this track.
Sing Me Back Home.

Calder: Three Ring $100K

Ender's Sister 4-1
Marina de Chavon 5-1
Runaway Rizzi 20-1

Wager: $2 tri key Chatter Chatter over next three.
Ran 5/1-2-8.

Chatter Chatter...Won a stake over the track and at the trip two back. Hard to look past in present form.
Ender's Sister...NY shipper showed nice improvement when breaking maiden last time.
Steph's Meadowlake...Probably sprint meant -- but might grab a piece if able to improve second time out.
Marina de Chavon.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Lassie $100K

Rose of Sophia 15-1
Just Plain Vanilla 15-1
Merry Mary 7-2

Wager: $5 WP on Von Braun.
Ran 6th at 5-2.
...$4 exacta box top two.
Ran 2-6.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Ran 2-4-6-9.
...$1 tri key Von Braun over next three.
Ran 6/2-4-9.
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 2-4-6-9.

Von Braun...Beaten fave was caught late in nice debut. Asmussen runner is eligible to show improvement in second start.
Just Plain Vanilla...Here's one that proves how much these 2YOs can improve. Bumped her Beyer up almost 60 points last time. A repeat effort is enough to contend.
Glitter Queen...Has gone well last two -- including nipping the top pick last time.
Cool Cool Cool.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Starter H'cp $50K

Jacob's Prospect 7-1
Sunup Sundown 5-1
Ex Who 9-5

Wager: $5 WP on Minotaur.
Ran 8th at 13-1.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 4/6-8.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Ran 2-3-4/6-8.
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 2-3-4/6-8.

Minotaur...Was rounding into nice form in October. Should go well if able to stay at the level of performance.
Asmussen entry...Both Strike For Richard and Master John will be coming late.
Sunup Sundown...Another Asmussen trainee -- so we've got the 'hidden entry' angle. Likes the track.
Ex Who.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Juvenile $100K

Walk This Way 13-1
Nitro Chip 4-1
Ten Times Better 7-2

Wager: $5 WP on Bag to the Bone.
Ran 4th at 9-1.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 4-8.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Collected $82.90 on the ex box ($165.80/$2).
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 1-2-4-8.

Bag to the Bone...Decent last time in second start. Can improve some more making first start for Asmussen.
Fuzzy Fund...Banged a big Beyer last time at Delta Downs. Can prove tough if able to repeat that effort.
Nitro Chip...4-4 lifetime including a couple of state-bred stakes. Could be this good.
Walk This Way.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Sprint $100K

Zarb's Luck 5-2
Go Rail Go 7-2
Patrick's Talent 32-1

Wager: $5 WP on Donna's Mailbag.
Ran 4th at 3-1.
...$4 exacta box top two.
Ran 1-4.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Collected $22.40 on the ex box ($44.80/$2).
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 1-2-4-7.

Donna's Mailbag...Making fourth start off a long layoff. Won first two back then faltered last time. But expect return to good form as this seems to be preferred distance.
Zarb's Luck...Third start off layoff. Likes the track and trip.
Believe In Special...Also making third start back. Won a minor open stake last time.
Go Rail Go.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Turf $100K

Silky Zarb 3-5
Mr Sulu 3-1
Spend a Web 17-1

Off turf. Our wagers cancelled.

Coach Rags...Comes into this in good form having won latest. Ran a close-up second in this event last year.
Jay's Buddy Bob...Seemed to be taking a liking to the turf two and three back.
Mr Sulu...Let's hope the last was just to work the kinks out after a six-month break. Tried to wire the field in this race last year and just got caught late.
Zarb's Music.

Wager: $5 WP on Coach Rags.
...$2 exacta box top two.
...$1 exacta box top four.
...$1 tri box top four.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Ladies $100K

Cute N Noble 18-1
Autobesarah 25-1
Prized Amberpro 4-5

Wager: $5 WP on Prized Amberpro.
Ran 3rd.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 1-3.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Ran 1-3-4-6.
...$2 tri key Prized Amberpro over next three.
Ran 3/1-4-6.
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 1-3-4-6.

Prized Amberpro...Won this race last year off of a winning effort at Delta Downs. Same scenario leading into this race.
Cute N Noble...Seemed to have rounded into nice form. Forgive last as there was traffic trouble.
Zamanda...Very consistent in-the-money runner.
Mrs Mac.

Fair Grounds: La Champs Day Classic $150K

Spritely Walker 1-1
Prince Slew 14-1
Mr Archibald 3-1

Wager: $5 WP on Spritely Walker.
Collected $17.50 on the WP (4.00, 3.00).
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 1-5.
...$1 exacta box top four, sub next if scratch.
Ran 1-3-4-5.
...$1 tri box top four, sub next if scratch.
Ran 1-3-4-5.

Spritely Walker...Asmussen runner ran his best two when stretched out this fall.
Witt Ante...Hasn't quite lived up to 2YO potential -- but could appreciate return to Fair Grounds.
Mr Archibald...Ran a couple of big ones recently on the front-end. Might be tough again if sent from the rail.
White Star.

Hollywood Park: On Trust H'cp $95K

Excess Summer 9-2
Green Team 3-1
Kedington 9-1

Wager: $5 WP on Green Team.
Collected $11.00 on the WP (xxx, 4.40).
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 2-10.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Ran 2-4-5-10.
...$1 tri box top four.
Ran 2-4-5-10.

Green Team...Tough rail post coming out of the chute -- and trip might prove to be a little long, but just going too well to ignore since late summer.
Trapper...9-5-2-1 lifetime including a closing third behind top pick last time. Extra distance might help.
Hot Market...Won this event last year off of a dull effort. Will have to repeat that pattern.

Golden Gate: Gold Rush $75K

Skipaslew 8-1
The Herc 1-1
OK Mikie 19-1

Wager: $5 WP on Hajji's Honor.
Ran 5th at 9-2.
...$2 exacta box top two.
Ran 2-5.
...$1 exacta box top four.
Collected $30.70 on the ex box ($61.40/$2).
...$1 tri box top four.
Collected $332.10 on the tri box ($664.20/$2).

Hajji's Honor...Might have bounced a little last time -- also seems to prefer this trip. Just missed in a similar stake two back.
The Herc...Dominated in a stake here last time at six furlongs. Might be able to stretch speed if sent from the rail.
Skipaslew...Was just behind top pick last time despite some trouble.
OK Mikie.

Coast-to-coast Archives...Picks, plays and results from previous weeks


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