Breeders' Cup 2020: Classic Preview & Odds

2020 Preakness Stakes Early Expert Analysis

2020 Preakness Stakes Early Expert Analysis
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2020 Preakness Stakes Early Expert Analysis

Written by RedAlertWagers.com on September 28, 2020
Horse Racing Betting News
The final Triple Crown horse race of the year happens on Saturday, October 3. Although Belmont and Travers winner Tiz the Law will skip the Run for the Blackeyed Susans to ready for the Breeders’ Cup Classic, Kentucky Derby winner Authentic will enter the starting gate. The Baffert trainee faces serious speed in filly Swiss Skydiver, though. Will Authentic prove too tough to get by in the Preakness? Check out top plays and Horse Racing Odds from Preakness Stakes for Saturday, October 3. You can also visit our Online Racebook to place your bets on active racetracks.

Horse Racing Odds & Pick | Preakness Stakes Early Predictions

2020 Preakness Stakes

  • When: Saturday, October 3
  • Where: Pimlico Racecourse, Baltimore, MD
  • Weather: Mostly Sunny

2020 Preakness Stakes Odds

  • Authentic +125
  • Art Collector +350 (MAC's Win)
  • Rushie +1000
  • Swiss Skydiver +1400
  • King Guillermo +1800
  • Dr. Post +3300
  • Mr. Big News +1000
  • Pneumatic +1800 (MAC's Place)
  • Mystic Guide +2000
  • Max Player +1400
  • Tap It to Win +2500
  • Money Moves +2500
  • Cezanne +1800 (MAC's Show)
  • New York Traffic +1600
  • Stoneman +3300
  • Storm the Court +3300
  • Enforceable +3300
  • Sole Volante +4000
  • No Parole +4000
  • Major Fed +5000
  • Necker Island +5000
  • Attachment Rate +4000
  • South Bend +4000
  • Winning Impression +6600
  • Mongolian Wind +5000
  • Finnick the Fierce +8000
  • Lebda +10000
  • Leavyourbeastlife +2500
  • Jesus Team +3300
  • Excession +2200
  • Country Grammar +2000

Win: Authentic +125

Right now, it’s difficult seeing any contender out running Authentic to the first turn. Swiss Skydiver has enough speed to do it. But if the filly goes after Authentic before the first turn, her jockey could compromise her chances to win.
Once Authentic gets the lead, he’s almost impossible to run down. Since no horse entered, including Thousands Words if he goes, should push Authentic early, the Derby winner looks like a lock.

Place: Swiss Skydiver +1400

The Kenny McPeek trained daughter of Daredevil and Exo Gold was right there in the Kentucky Oaks. If not for the best performance of Shedaresthedevil’s life, Swiss Skydiver would have run by and won the Oaks. She’s a talented enough filly to win the Preakness. She should also be a length or two off Authentic.
If the Derby winner isn’t at the top of his game on Saturday, she’s the likeliest winner. One advantage? She’s much smaller than the boys, which means her jockey should have no trouble getting her through traffic if it’s required.

Show: Art Collector +350

Trained by Thomas Drury Jr., Art Collector has enough speed to stay close to Authentic as well. He hasn’t raced against a field nearly as good as this yet, but he has won five races in a row. If he can stick with Authentic early, Art Collector may have a shot.
The problem? We know Authentic will fight in the stretch. We also know Swiss Skydiver will give it her all. We’re not one-hundred percent positive Art Collector won’t give up if things get tough.

Fourth: Ny Traffic +1800

The second-place finisher in the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational over the summer was out of his element in the Kentucky Derby. Traffic runs most effectively when he’s near the lead. But Authentic got the first quarter at Churchill Downs in less than 23 seconds. It’s tough to go all in so early in a 1 ¼ mile race. The Preakness is at 1 3/16ths, though. So, whomever is on NYT’s back, the jockey should gun it from the outset to stay no more than a length behind Authentic.
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Hollyberry The Christmas Fluffy, part 2 (Story by Gardel and Wangew_Wick)

“SCREEEEEE! Bad upsies! Nu wike!” -yelled the mare
“We’ll send that one to Debbie. She’ll make a good size breeder.”
“Sure thing, Marcus. Whaddya think—that red one ready to go, too?”
“Nu take fwend ‘way! Nee fwend fow huggies!” The red fluffy reached out desperately for his friend, and she reached back, but she was soon too far away.
Marcus picked the red gelding up by his mane, causing him to SCREEEEEEE. “Yeah, I’d say he’s big enough. Into the cart ya go, buddy!”
The earthie plopped down onto dozens of crying fluffies. He had no idea why he was in the cart, but the sheer panic that enveloped the rest of the creatures soon caused him to start scrambling for an escape.
“Whewe fwuffies goin’? Pwease wet fwuffies gu!”
Marcus stared straight ahead as he pushed the cart through a pair of double doors. “Let you go? Now why would I do that? Besides, now comes the fun part.”
“What am ‘fun pawt’, mistah?”
“Weeeeeell,” the man started, before pushing through a final set of doors. Then, he started singing an oft-repeated song, to the tune of “Howdy Doody”.
“Forever sleepy time! Forever sleepy time! This is where you’ll become what people like to num!”
There was more to the song than this, but all of the fluffies had started screaming and wailing at the mere mention of “forever sleepies” and becoming “nummies”, so they missed out on the rest. Standing near the beginning of the assembly line was a middle aged woman with her hands on her hips and an expression of disdain on her face.
“For fuck’s sake, Marcus. You know that just makes ‘em squeal louder.”
“Lighten up, Karen,” the man replied. “Ya gotta have a little fun with ‘em. That’s what they were made for, right?”
The woman rolled her eyes. “Whatever. Just help me get ‘em hung up and then get yer knife ready.”
“Yes, ma’am.”
Karen McNeely was a master of her craft. Years of experience at dressing out all the deer she and her brothers took during deer season served her well at Savory Hills, and she could skin five fluffies in the time it took her predecessor to do one.
The red gelding was one of the first to hang. Marcus stuck a hook through each of his back hooves and suspended him upside down. Blood trickled down his back legs towards his torso.
“SCREEEEEEEEE! Huwtie-upsies! Nu wike! Nu wike! SCREEEEEEEEE!”
“Bwudda? Am dat’choo?”
The gelding choked back a sob and turned his head. Sure enough, hanging next to him, was his sister. The two fluffies hadn’t seen each other since the day they were separated into different finishing pens.
“Sissie! Gif huggies, pwease! Fwuffy haf huwties!”
“Huu huuu” the pink mare sobbed. “Nu can! Fwuffy haf wowsest huwties, tuu! Meanie fingies nu wet fwuffy gif huggies!”
The siblings sobbed and wailed, suspended in the air and unable to reach each other. More and more fluffies joined in the cacophony as they were hooked to the apparatus. Then, somehow, the screams started getting louder.
“SCREEEEEEEEE!” “Wai take pwetty fwuff? SCREEEEEEEEEEEE!” “SCREEEEEEEEEEE! Wowsest huwties!”
The gelding watched in horror as the woman with the knife approached his sister. She looked at the woman sadly and begged her to “nu gif huwties”, but the woman continued her grisly work as if she were deaf to the fluffy’s pleas.
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!”
“Nuuuuuuuuu! Nu huwt sissie!” the red earthie screamed. “Fwuffy nee’ fwuff! Nu gif huwties an take pwetty fwuff!”
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!”
And in the blink of an eye, the mare’s bright pink fluff was gone. The monster-human had made his sister look…well…like a monster herself! But he knew his sister wasn’t a monster, so he reached out to give her huggies to make the hurties go away, but before he knew it, the knife had reached his own chest.
*slit**slit\*
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! SCREEEEEEEEEEE!”
The gelding arched his back in a rictus of pain. But no words escaped his lips now. all he could do was scream his lungs out and hope the hurties would be over soon.
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! SCREEEEEEEEEEE!”
“Huuuuuu…nu am pwetty mawe nu mowe! Am dummeh munstah nu-fwuff fwuffy! MUMMAAAAAAAH!!!” his sister wailed. He turned to face her. He couldn’t give her huggies, but maybe he could say something to comfort her—that she wasn’t a monster, or that she was still a pretty mare…
*chirp*
But it was too late. By the time the meanie-human who had promised them forever sleepies cut his sister’s tummy open and ripped out her tummy-sketties, he had lost his ability to speak.
*chirp**chirp*
The man came for him next. He could no longer plead for “no more hurties”, as if his begging would have received a response, anyway. He merely kept chirping as he saw his guts fall down past his face. The man cut off his digestive system and threw it in a bin, where all the butchered fluffies’ internal organs would be kept until a local fish bait company picked them up to make stinkbait for catfish.
Tears stung the gelding’s flayed face, and he chirped weakly and continued to stretch out feebly for his sister. She looked at him helplessly, and then reached out for huggies. The last thing either of them knew was the bitter cold of the flash freezer, where they died and were shrink-wrapped for storage.
_________________________________________________________________
The brown stallion knew his day had come. This was the day he would make lots of tummy-babies for pretty mares, and that maybe…just maybe…he would finally meet his special friend and they would live happily ever after.
He was so excited that he almost forgot to eat his nummies. Then, he got tummy hurties so bad that he scarfed down his food in three bites. He was the biggest stallion the factory had ever raised for breeding, and needed lots and lots to eat to avoid hunger pains.
Soon after he ate, the nice lady came by to take him from his cage. He wagged his tail happily and started singing. A bop on the nose brought an end to the latter.
“Wai put fwuffy on cowd fwoow, nice wady? Nu wike!”
“Hmmm…6.12 kilos…this is a big boy!”
“Yus, nice wady! Am big fwuffy stawwion! Wan gif mawes wotsa tummeh-babbehs nao! Wan fin’ speshuw-fwend!”
“Mmmhmmm…” the woman acknowledged, not really paying attention to what the fluffy had said. She continued to scribble on her notepad, and the stallion could barely stay still.
“Gon haf speshuw-fwend, an wotsa babbehs, an safewoom, an toysies, an sketties, an wotsa babbehs…”
The breeding specialist then picked him up and placed him in an upright harness. Once he was strapped in, he could look down and see his no-no stick throbbing in anticipation.
“Wai am fwuffy in bad huggies-fing? Whewe am da mawes dat wan babbehs?”
The stallion looked on with horror as the human affixed a device shaped like a Champagne flute around his no-no stick. Then, she flipped a switch and an unsettling sound filled the room.
*brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr* *suck* *suck* *suck* *suck\*
“Huuuuuu…nu wan bad speshuw-huggies! Nu wike! Huu huu…”
*suck* *suck* *suck* *suck\*
Before long, the stallion felt his no-no stick acting like it enjoyed the bad special huggies! But he was so afraid—this wasn’t a pretty mare! This wasn’t supposed to be happening!
“Pwease wet fwuffy gu, nice wady! Jus’ wan pwetty mawes, an speshuw-fwend, an babbehs, an pwetty safewoom, an…ENF!”
Nu…nu wan…
*suck* *suck* *suck* *suck\* “…enf…enf…enf…”
His whole body was strapped against the harness, so he couldn’t thrust his hips. All the same, he could see white fluid traveling through the tube from his no-no stick to a clear container.
Nu! Nu-nu juice, come back! Nee’ fow pwetty mawes!
*suck* *suck* *suck* *suck\* “…enf…enf…enf…”
The machine continued its work for many forevers, until finally
*POP* “SCREEEEEEEEEEEEE!”
“Ah, SHIT! I was hoping to get lucky this time!”
The “stallion milker”, as factory employees lovingly called the machine to which the brown stallion was connected, was capable of pulling every last drop of semen out of a fluffy’s genitals. There was enough semen in one fluffy pony to impregnate fifty mares, which was quite enough to tolerate the machine’s one major drawback: the powerful suction had a habit of making the stallion’s penis explode.
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! Huu huu…pwease nice wady, hewp fwuffy! Fwuffy nu-nu-stick haf wowsest huwties!”
Debbie hurriedly shut off the machine and cut off the flow to the semen receptacle—she couldn’t risk having it contaminated with blood. Then she removed the container, labeled it, and took it out of the room to the cold storage refrigerator with all of the rest of the stallion samples. All the while, the brown earthie hung from his harness, screaming and staring at the mutilated remains of his genitals.
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEE! SCREEEEEEEEEEEEE!”
Once the breeding specialist was done recording her work, she unhooked the stallion from the machine. The tube and cup were disposable after every use, so she tossed them in the nearby trash can and then grabbed the pony off the wall.
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEE! SCREEEEE—mmmf!”
“Can’t have you distressing the mares,” Debbie said. “Now, where’s my damn bucket?”
The stallion, now freed from confinement and safely in a black bucket, tried to give huggies to his obliterated member. As his leggies were too short to do so, he whined uncontrollably (though the rubber band the factory employee put around it did a pretty good job). Soon, he could tell that he was moving.
The room through which Debbie carried him looked familiar. Rows and rows of cages lined the aisles, and he thought that one fat, red dam in particular was one he had seen before.
Mummah? Dat am mummah?
“Mmmmf! Mmmmmmf!”
But his mummah couldn’t hear him. Not only was his mouth shut tightly, but the dam, who was heavy with foals again, was turned with her head facing away from him. Not even she would save him from his gruesome fate.
“Mmmmf! Mmmmmmf!”
Debbie threw open the dumpster door and gagged immediately. Clearly, the disposal company was late for another pickup. She quickly dumped the contents of her bucket down the chute and slammed the door closed.
The stallion tumbled down into darkness, acutely feeling the pain in his ruined no-no stick with every bump along the way. Eventually he came to a halt atop something soft. It felt…familiar. It was almost comfortable. When his eyes adjusted to the dim light that came through a crack in the wall, he screamed so loudly that the rubber band around his jaws came off.
“SCREEEEEEEEEEEEE! Nu wan foweva sweepies!”
He scrambled around, finding nothing but more dead and dying fluffies underneath him. They appeared in varying states of decomposition. One foal, who looked as though half of his face had been chewed off, scared the stallion so badly that he tumbled backwards, bending his back at an odd angle.
*crack\*
“SCREEEEEEE!”
His back leggies could no longer move. He slumped down in despair, hoping against hope that it was all just a bad dream. Then, a chirping in the darkness got his attention.
*chirp* *chirp*
The stallion turned his head to see a tiny foal with a horn crawling up the bodies next to him. He couldn’t remember having ever seen a unicorn before.
“Babbeh…nu can sabe pointie-babbeh…fwuffy weggies am meanie, an nu wan wowk!”
The little foal, whose eyes were not yet open, responded only with a chirp. It moved closer to the stallion, sensing that the voice was friendly.
*chirp* *chirp*
“Nu cwy, babbeh! Fwuffy wuv nyu fwend!”
The unicorn foal, who had the blessing of his first milkies before being stripped from his mother and cast into this horrible place, continued to chirp. The brown earthie knew he had to do something. He looked at the crack in the dumpster with resolve.
“Fwuffy am take foweva sweepies soon, bu babbeh nu haf tu! Fwuffy am hewp babbeh wun ‘way!”
He grabbed the chirping foal with his teeth and placed her on his back. As everything behind his front leggies was paralyzed, every movement was a struggle, but the stallion was determined to give his best. He pawed at the wall with his scarred front hooves, hoping to rise high enough for the foal to escape.
*chirp* *chirp*
“Yus, babbeh! When fwuffy come tu da bwite-pwace, ‘oo wun ‘way. Unnastand?”
*chirp*
The fluffy inched higher and higher, with each painful motion getting closer and closer to freedom. The foal was mere inches away from the light when the stallion’s useless legs gave way, and the filly fell back down onto the corpses. She landed straight on her horn.
“Babbeh! Nuuuuuuuuuu!”
The little unicorn twitched. There would be no second attempt. Even if the stallion had strength enough to reach up the wall again, the foal was in no condition to squeeze through the hole. The hole, in fact, was too small in the first place.
The brown stallion wailed as he watched the filly expire. Shw became one of a hundred dead, nameless fluffies that day. The spent breeder was not so fortunate—he lingered for days before the dumpster was finally taken to the incinerator.
_________________________________________________________________
“Nuuuuuu! Nu weave Howwybewwy, mummah! Howwybewwy wuv ‘oo!”
“You love me? You bit me, stupid! I hope you never have babies again…ever!”
“Huu huu…Howwybewwy nu mean be meanies! Jus’ wan babbehs! Babbehs am bestes’ fing evah!”
“Oh yeah? Well, you know what? Daddy told me that a snake’s gonna eat all your babies. I’ll bet they’re all dead now! And I hope you die, too, you selfish meanie!”
“Sweetie, that’s enough. Let’s go home.”
Emma stuck her tongue out as she and her father left where Hollyberry had been put in her shelter cage. The red dam pawed at the door with her soft, marshmallow hooves, as if she could reach out and pull the little girl back.
“Mummah! Come back mummah! If babbehs am foweva sweepies, den mummah am aww dat Howwybewwy haf! Nu weave, mummah! MUMMAAAAAAAH!”
_________________________________________________________________
Hollyberry awakened from her nightmare unable to move. She was once again so big with foals that her legs did not touch the ground. This had happened so many times that she had large patches of fluff missing from her belly that would not grow back.
"Mummah…Howwybewwy am su sowwy. Nu wan mowe babbehs. Jus wan mummah back! "
A tear rolled down her cheek, and then dripped down between the wire that made up the bottom of her cage. It landed with a *splat\* on the shit-covered floor.
Her stomach burbled. She knew it wasn’t because she was hungry. And she had made poopies before she slept, so it shouldn’t be that, either.
*burble\*
"Nu. Pwease, nu."
*blrrrrrrt\*
"Nu wan mowe babbehs. Pwease, nu be mowe babbehs."
An old, familiar pressure built in the mare that she had felt so many times before. With it came a pain that enveloped her whole body.
“SCREEEEEEEEE! BIGGEST POOPIES!”
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Ego - Part One:The Definition

My name is Mark and I am a compulsive gambler. My last bet was April 2nd 2019. Since being in recovery and working the steps one character defect I keep seeing raise its ugly head is my ego. I have decided to do a bit of research on egotism and trying to see how it fits together with my actions in addiction. I say research, I have been Googling it but what more do you expect folks!
Per Cambridge dictionary the definition of egotism is “thinking only about yourself and considering yourself better and more important than other people.” Now there is a lot more to it than that but first I am going to concentrate on the two things mentioned in this definition and see how they link into me during my addiction and were they apparent in my behaviour before my addiction.
Thinking only about yourself
Quick background on me, I have a partner, two children aged seven and three, my Mum and my Dad, no siblings and other family members and friends. I now realise, in recovery, how much of a support network I do actually have and how many people care about me. Sadly, when I was gambling, I did not give a fuck about anyone and all I cared about was me and gambling. I loved my family and friends when I was gambling, deep down that love was there, but when I was gambling they did not enter my thoughts.
When it came to the money I was gambling I never thought about what I could have bought my kids with that money or how I could have taken my partner out for a meal to show her how much I appreciate her staying at home with the kids while I go off to work. No. That money was MY money and no one was going to get their hands on it apart from a bookmaker.
Simple things like making conversation did not enter my mind when I was gambling. I did not think to look up from my phone or laptop to ask how my partner was doing in the evenings, I pretty much sat and ignored her. If she tried to speak to me I would answer back with as few words as possible and if she kept talking I would get agitated. Generally I would end up causing an argument just to get her to be quiet. I barely spoke to my Mum and Dad when I was at their house or they were at mine, generally I was picking up my kids who they had taken for the day to help me out. They had given up their day for me and I couldn’t give up 15 minutes of my time to make conversation.
I had little interest in going out and doing things with anyone as it would get in the way of what I wanted to do. Perfect example of this was the final weekend before I entered recovery. My partner and I were invited to my Aunt and Uncle’s anniversary dinner (I cannot even remember the year they were celebrating, that is how much I was paying attention) without our kids, a night out together where we could unwind and enjoy ourselves. I spent the whole night gambling away on my mobile phone on in-play tennis and barely spoke a word to anyone. I did not care and I did not want to be there as it was getting in the way of me trying to dig myself out of a hole that I had dug for myself. I was in such a bad way financially I didn’t even bring my wallet with me as I had no money in my accounts. I had to lie to my Dad about why I didn’t bring it and he ended up buying me and my partner drinks for the night. I was even gambling on the drive down (I was driving!) with one eye on my phone and one eye on the road. I was in a desperate situation and could feel the walls closing in but I was confident I could win my way out.
When I think back to the number of times I told my kids to be quiet and play or shouted at them when they would ask me questions when I was focusing on gambling really does fill me with a great sense of sadness. I did not think about how they would feel when I acted that way, all I cared about was me. I can remember them pretty much climbing over me, wanting my attention while I just maneuvered around them so I could see what was happening on my phone or laptop. What makes it worse is that they think I am the greatest person that ever lived and love me so much, reflecting back on my behaviour during those days is tough but I feel it is necessary for me to do so as I do not want to go back there.
I had a fantastic upbringing and I am so grateful for how my parents raised me and how they provided for me. Growing up I was an only child so everything to an extent has always been about me in my family. People think that only children are spoiled and I have no shame in admitting that I was extremely spoiled, not to a degree where it was damaging as my parents always made sure I appreciated the things I had and to always be thankful. I never had to learn to share with a brother or sister so when I was at home my toys were mine and I did not have to think about anyone else. Maybe that is where I planted the seed that I only need to think about myself and maybe that is why I enjoyed my own company so much because everything when I was on my own was about me and that is how I liked it.
Considering yourself better and more important than other people
This is a hard one for me to get a handle on simply because I do not feel that I came across this way when I was interacting with people, well at least I hope I did not. What I can be sure of is that in my own head I totally believed I was better and more important than other people.
I felt like my opinion mattered more than other peoples opinion and if I was discussing something, lets use football as an example, I would totally shit all over a different opinion to mine, but I would do this in my own head, by talking to myself. I would laugh at how wrong people were when they gave their opinion, again, in my own head. One thing I would do during a discussion is to continue talking about my opinion until either the persons involved agreed or until I rationalised it in my own mind that they knew I was right.
Without sounding like a lunatic I have an internal monologue going on in my head all the time, even in recovery. I talk to myself quite a lot and would almost have conversations with myself about everything and anything. My brain feels as if it is always active. When I was in active addiction my internal monologue was extremely negative and dark. I tried to keep it buried deep inside me as I was a horrible person who thought he was the best at everything and back then I knew if that person came out in public it would be make it hard for me to keep my addiction secret. I was aware that I needed to keep people onside so they could help fund what I was doing.
I would rarely listen to advice from anyone because in my mind if I did not already know something then clearly it was not worth knowing. My Dad found out about me spread betting when I was still living at home and told me about the dangers of gambling and how easy it was to become addicted. I just brushed it off because I thought I knew better. I at least knew I didn’t have a problem. I did not want someone telling me I was wrong about something because how dare they correct me about anything! Everything I said was right and nothing would change my mind about it. I enjoyed reminding people when I was right about something as well, the smug look on my face, I took so much joy from that, it reinforced to me that I was better than everyone. I would constantly bring things up that I was right about and when someone tried to do the same I would pick holes in it and call them out for talking rubbish.
If I was in a group or going out I felt the need to be in control of the situation, I wanted to be the leader because no one else could lead as well as I could, no one else was my equal and in my mind I wanted people to see how great I was, as a leader I was in the spotlight. Being in control of the situation also meant I could decide what we did and make sure it was something that I enjoyed doing.
Emotionally, I was empty during my addiction; I did not care for how other people were feeling or what problems they had. If someone was telling me a problem I would listen but I would not care, in my head I was just asking myself why? Why are you telling me this? Why do you think I care what is going on in your life? Why do you think I give a shit? That’s simply the mentality of someone who think they are better than other people.
In general I just believed I deserved to have the best things in life and I deserved to have them handed to me on a plate. Why should I work hard and save up for things like everyone else when I could just gamble and win them. I was so much smarter than everyone else, I could make this work and people would be asking me what my secret was. I was better than the bookmakers, I could beat them and their odds, I could figure out a system to win. Towards the end I actually abandoned any tipsters or systems because I felt I could just “feel” the right bet and I would be able to dig myself out of the hole.
Back in November 2018 I spoke with my current sponsor for the first time ever and we had a chat over text message. I was explaining to him how I had managed to control my gambling on sports, I was proud of this fact by the way, which has not aged well, and I was trying to explain to him that this was something that compulsive gamblers could try. I felt like I was a pioneer, like I had solved life’s great puzzle, people would thank me for this revelation. Here are some of the deluded messages I sent him;
“I just know personally, I went from having a bet on every minute of every day. £20+ each time. Betting on every horse race in work to now I can put £1 on the NFL game I’m watching or £5 on the Breeders Cup if I want and walk away. It didn’t happen overnight either. I stopped for a while.”
Jeff was calm and polite and listened to my nonsense while of course explaining to me the benefits and options of recovery. Looking back I can see he made some excellent points, asked me had I tried every reasonable step out there to stop gambling to which I responded with;
“I’ve done none of that. For one reason. I don’t want to stop some forms of gambling.”
Now, what the hell does that have to do with thinking I am better and more important than other people? I honestly thought Jeff was full of shit, that he had no idea what I was saying and that he just did not get that I had figured it out. Reading back through that chat I can see I was trying to convince him that I was right and he was wrong. Everything he threw at me I had an answer for it and it was all bullshit, but I believed that I knew better and that my opinion was more important. Luckily Jeff doesn’t hold any grudges or didn’t let that first impression put him off me when I finally entered recovery, funny enough because my sports betting was completely out of control, and he welcomed me with open arms.
It would be unfair to say I was like this all the time during my addiction but I believe I acted in these ways often enough for it to be considered an issue and something that I need to address in recovery. I believe that my ego was a problem all along and while I have no doubt the addiction amplified it, I have to be honest with myself in recovery and face up to the fact that I was, and still am to an extent, an egotistical person.
Mark
submitted by russ_789 to problemgambling [link] [comments]

My Choices For This Saturday At Saratoga 8-3-2019

Races looks fairly competitive this Saturday at Saratoga. With the exception of one race, there should be value to take a shot at. While it looks most of the races will go to highly regarded horses that will be bet well, there are a couple that are up for grabs and possibly offer value that you will remember for a long time, if you can bet the correct order of finish. And as always, I am game and will try to do just that.
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1st Race: Solid maiden special weights field which quite a few could win and be no real surprise.
3)Silver Prospector(10-1). Chased wire to wire winner in first start. Distance was a little short for his bloodlines, but good educational experience. Now others should be chasing. War Front line horses are extremely tough to run down at 1 mile on grass.
8)Our Country(6-1). Made a menacing move into contention but could not run down one of the beneficiaries of slow early pace and flatten slightly in stretch as pace quicken in first start. Adds lasix(which is not the great angle it used to be) but has decent work since, so I will use.
5)Brewmeister(4-1). First time starter for the Chad Brown barn on grass. Owner also purchased Sistercharlie privately and Brown immediately turned her into a G1 SW, one of several this ownetrainer has had success with on grass. He is a member of the third crop by grass champion Point Of Entry. Second Dam, Ginger Brew won the Woodbine Oaks on the AWT and the Calder Oaks on grass at 1 1/8 mile. Only hesitation is it looks like he missed a work as he was preparing for this start, so I will use caution.
6)Eternal Summer(9-2). Another first time starter with good bloodlines. Sire, Summer Front, is another son of War Front, but one of the few who rated throughout his career on grass while placing in several G1s and won a G2 on the grass. Should get first jump on the front running speed and could be live.
Bets: $3 Ex 3 with 5-6-8(Total $9), $2 Ex 5-6-8 with 3(Total $6), $5 Ex Box 3-8(Total $10), $1 Tri Box 3-5-8(Total $6), .10 Super Box 3-5-6-8(Total $2.40), $1 Super Key 3 with 5-6-8 with 5-6-8 with 5-6-8(Total $6). Total Risk This Race $39.40.
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Race 2:
4)Proschema(8-1). Barn switched since last. Three good solid works since last. Is cycling back to best form. Blinkers are being removed, so trainer is probably thinking he will do better rating and seeing his competition.
2)Tikhvin Flew(12-1). Slow start in last proved too much to overcome. Works since has been designed to get a better start and follows the best workout pattern available. Bred to run as far as asked. Came into last looking like he was cycling back into form but slow start caused him all chance, though he still tried.
9)Hersh(8-1). Blinkers comes off after a failed attempt at adding them in last. His sire, Jimmy Creed won G1 Malibu S and raced only in sprints. Broodmare sire, Southern Image, won 6 of 8 lifetime starts including the G1 Malibu at 7 furlongs, G1 Santa Anita H at 1 1/4 mile two starts later, followed by a win in the G1 Pimlico Special at 1 3/16 mile, and a second in the G1 Stephen Foster H at 1 1/8 mile, beaten a nose by a 62-1 shot in his career finale. Third start of the year But works have slowed slightly, indicating trainer now thinks he is fit.
1)Tapit Wise(8-1). Given a two month break from racing since his last, though he has worked steadily. Was a little too keen to go in his last while tracking a slow pace but now gets a jockey who will get him to relax early and make his best move in the stretch. Not out of it, but an underneath finish seems most likely.
Bets: $3 Ex 4 with 2-9($6), $2 Ex 2-9 with 4($4), $5 Ex Box 2-4($10), $1 Tri Box 2-4-9($6), .10 Super Box 1-2-4-9($2.40), $1 Super Key 4 with 1-2-9 with 1-2-9 with 1-2-9($6). Total Risk $34.40.
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Race 3:
10)Amends(12-1). First time starter. Decent works with the right workout pattern. His sire, Uncle Mo, was unbeaten champion 2 YO. Dam did not win in 9 starts, but 2nd dam, Smuggler, won the G1s CCA Oaks And Mother Goose S. 3rd dam, Inside Information, won 14 of 17 lifetime starts and put on a classic in the BC Distaff winning by 13+ lengths in 146 1/5, still the stakes record and 4/5 of a second off Secretariat's track record at Belmont Park for 1 1/8 mile.
6)Fishman(15-1). Has made one start and finished second after battling with the winner(first son of Honor Code to race) throughout in a good finish time. One slow work since but it was more to maintain his condition instead of taking a chance and knocking him off form to get him a little faster. This distance should be an even better fit for him pedigree wise. Only question, did his last start take any conditioning out of him?
9)Glory Road(4-1). First time starter. Works follows a pattern that is probably unique to Pletcher, but not exactly the way I prefer to see. However, should be close enough to make him a factor with these. Good bloodlines should also help.
4)Indian Cross(12-1). Another first time starter. Asmussen has 2 entered in this race and both looks to have an equal shot. But his main jockey chose this one, so I will too. Both follow similar workout patterns and the tie breaker came down to this one has three recent 5 furlongs works while the other one had only 2.
Bets: $5 Ex Box 6-10($10), $1 Tri Box 6-9-10($6), .10 Super Box 4-6-9-10($2.40), .10 Super Box 1-6-9-10($2.40), $1 Super Key 10 with 4-6-9 with 4-6-9 with 4-6-9($6). Total Risk $26.80.
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Race 4:
12)Mad Munnys(20-1) Needs the lead to perform his best and should have a good chance to get it in here. His only win on grass came at 6 furlongs when he got the lead early and maintained that cushion from gate to wire. Now his trainer is stretching him out to a mile which his bloodlines suggests will be his optimal distance on grass, mostly because he has speed breeding that tends to stop unless he gets things his way.
7)Hay Dakota(4-1) Won his last and seeks a repeat while dropping down a level in class. Should be able to sit a good trip and be a factor late if the front running speed stops. Not likely though as there is little speed in here that is fit to run a mile.
9)Coltandmississippi(6-1). Claimed out of last race and makes first start for Servis while dropping a notch. Would not let his lifetime grass record bother me because most tries were against better, including five stakes races, than he faces here. The main early threat to my top choice. Two typical slow works, which his trainer is known for as he saves his horse's energy for race day.
8)Siding Spring(8-1) Has been off form for a while and trainer has been sending him to contest the early pace while waiting until he returns to form. He now looks like he is returning to top form and expect Casse to tell jockey to rate him, as 3 of 4 of his lifetime wins, all on grass, came using that tactical. Drops several levels in class. In with a good shot to upset, especially if the rating tactic is used.
Bets: $10 WP 12($20), $5 Ex Box 7-12($10), $1 Tri Box 7-9-12($6), .10 Super Box 7-8-9-12($2.40), .50 Super Key 12 with 7-8-9 with 7-8-9 with 7-8-9($3). Total Risk $41.40.
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Race 5: Pass. Looks like two very low odds favorite with no value to risk any money.
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Race 6:
12)Somes Sound(10-1) First Time starter. Good works for debut. Sire is Ghostzapper. Dam, Glacken's Gal won her only two starts, going 5 furlongs in 58 flat in her maiden win and then 103 4/5 in her only stakes try at 5 1/2 furlongs. Glacken's Gal best daughter, Live Lively, broke down after five starts, including winning the G2 Davona Dale S and was put down while training for the Black Eyed Susan S. However, another daughter, Indian Miss, is dam of Mitole.
3)Up And Onward(15-1) Another first time starter. Has some good works showing but also showed talent last year while going through a long series of works at Belmont and Saratoga and came back this year without missing a beat. Apparently barn decided to give him more time to mature. His sire is Tapit. His dam, Let Faith Arise, was also a G1 winner in California.
9)Take Pride(12-1) Another first time starter. Trainer looks like he skipped a couple works at first glance, but owner purchased Greentree Stables in 2007, the stable formerly owned by the Whitney family in Saratoga Springs. So he could have possibly worked there and the works were missed. However, Mike Smith takes the call, so I will include.
2)Going For Gold(30-1) Has done nothing since he was purchased privately after his first two efforts. Even those efforts were probably not the way he wants to run. Both sire, Atreides and broodmare sire, Smart Strike, has sired better horses that are willing to rate rather than go all out from start to finish. Blinkers are being removed and this one is not fast enough to go with a few of these early and hang on late, so expect Carmouche to try to get him to rate and pick up a minor piece.
Bets: $10 WP 12($20), $5 Ex Box 3-12($10), $1 Tri Box 3-9-12($6), .10 Super Box 2-3-9-12($2.40), $1 Super 12 with 2-3-9 with 2-3-9 with 2-3-9($6). Total Risk $44.40.
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Race 7:
3)Projected(8-1) Looks like his trainer found a spot to give him a little class relief. While he faces a G1 winner in here, he has ran 2nd to that horse with no help to soften up the front runner. He gets that in here.
5)Sacred Life(5-2) Making his first U.S. start but for a trainer who is proficient in getting his grass runners ready at first asking off a layoff. Has some bloodlines that suggests a mile is within his scope but also some that suggests he will be better going a little further.
2)Lucullan(3-1) Won his last three races when dropped out of stakes and ran a couple good races while facing graded stakes horses. He will eventually break through and this is the perfect spot for him to take that step forward.
6)Say The Word(12-1) Finished third in last, though that field was probably easier than this one. However, he should have a chance due to all the early front running speed.
Bets: $5 Ex Box 3-5($10), $1 Tri Box 2-3-5($6), $3 Tri 3-5 with 3-5 with 2($6), $3 Tri 5 with 2-3 with 2-3($6), .10 Super Box 2-3-5-6($2.40). Total Risk $30.40.
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Race 8:
2)Bellafina(2-1) Most thought the Ky Oaks was hers to lose and she did. However, she spent most of this year racing against small fields, so she got little to no conditioning out of each start. And it ended with the worst effort of her career. Her image tarnished, she is beginning to act like she is on the rebound and ready to produce her career best effort.
4)Trenchtown Cat(12-1) Faced older stakes runners in last two. Good solid work since her last. Irad Ortiz picks up the mount, another positive.
3)Covfefe(5-2) Bounced down to her previous best rating in her last start after registering by far her highest rating in her career. She should rebound here and her works suggests as much.
5)Royal Charlotte(3-1) Has yet to be beaten, so this is the logical step to prove she can compete with this type. Castellano rides but I believe he chose Brown's horse over Brad Cox's horse due to many more opportunities to get live mounts from Brown.
Bets: $5 Ex Box 2-4($10), $1 Tri Box 2-3-4($6), $5 Tri 2 with 3-4 with 3-4($10), $3 Tri 2-4 with 2-4 with 3($6), $1 Super Key 2 with 3-4-5 with 3-4-5 with 3-4-5($6). Total Risk $38
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Race 9:
7)Yoshida(10-1) Shipped to Europe last year and ran a dull race and when he returned still needed a start to fully re-energize. Ditto for this year. Sent to contest the Dubai World Cup while off form and he returned needing a start. But since that start, he is now working like he was just before the BC Classic and traffic problems and a less than ideal trip caused him a better finish in that race, though he was 4th, beaten less than 2 lengths for the win.
4)Thunder Snow(3-1) Last saw him get nip at wire by the favorite in here. But he was the one who stayed close to a blistering pace and should have been caught much easier after he could not get by the winner, Mitole. Nice 7 furlong work since that effort.
2)Forewarned(30-1) Was a private purchase by this traineowner at the end of last year. And looks like his magic is beginning to work on this horse also. A few years ago, he purchased Discreet Lover and ran him in top races repeatedly, finishing third in both the Suburban H & this race last year before finally winning his first G1 stakes of his career with Discreet Lover in the Jockey Club Gold Cup at 45-1, beating the aforementioned Thunder Snow, Mendelssohn and Diversify(at the time in the running for Champion Older Horse). Forewarned has two very good works since his last start and he is a son of the late blooming Flat Out, who won his first stakes race at 5 YOs.
6)McKinzie(7-5) Really think he is beatable and will be overbet in here, but not much else to choose from. His max distance without help from a speed favoring race track or being left alone to dictate his own pace will be 1 1/8 mile. Vino Russo is possible but he looks like he is a grinder that will have a lot to do in the stretch.
Bets: $10 WP 7($20), $5 Ex Box 4-7($10), $1 Tri Box 2-4-7($6), $3 Tri 7 with 2-4 with 2-4($6), .10 super Box 2-4-6-7($2.40), $1 Super Key 7 with 2-4-6 with 2-4-6 with 2-4-6($6). Total Risk $50.40
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Race 10:
8) Got Stormy(3-1) Been off for almost three months, but Casse has used that off time to get his trainee ready for her best effort. He used this angle on Moon Colony who upset the G2 Penn Mile in his next effort. This effort represent a major relief in class from her last two starts.
7)Capla Temptress(8-1) Won last start which was her third effort this year off a 4 1/2 month break. Technically, the class of this field as she has faced the best throughout her racing career and would not be a surprise at all, though she does her best running in the stretch.
6)Zonza(12-1) Her last was her 2nd start in the U.S. and 2nd under Brown. However, her run in the Poule D'Essai Des Pouliches(France 1000 Guineas) suggests she fits with these. Brown is known for his work with fillies, especially ones that start their careers in Europe and then purchased and sent to him in the U.S. to train. Looking for that breakout race in here. Her sire, Alex The Great, is an unraced full brother to Blue Grass Cat and owner said he did not generate much interest in his first two crops because he was American bred which is usually frowned on by European breeders and unraced. But interest increased after this daughter won her first two starts.
9)Stella Di Camelot(4-1) Makes her 2nd start this year and beat Zonta in her last, after Zonta attended a fast pace and tired slightly in the stretch. If it was another trainer, I would be thinking bounce possibly but Brown is patient and runs them again when they indicate to him they are ready.
Bets: $5 Ex Box 7-8($10), $3 Ex 7 with 6 & 8($6), $3 Ex 6 & 8 With 7($6), $1 Tri Box 6-7-8($6), $3 Tri 8 with 6-7 with 6-7($6), $3 Tri 7-8 with 7-8 with 6($6), .10 Super Box 6-7-8-9($2.40), $1 Super 8 with 6-7-9 with 6-7-9 with 6-7-9($6). Total Risk $48.40.
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Race 11:
12)Veterans Beach(5-2) Just missed in last. Has older 1/2 sister that as won sprinting on grass twice with several near misses. Looks ready to move on to next condition.
11) Three Outlaws(8-1) Broke maiden in an open bred maiden claiming race two back. Then ran fast closing fourth in first effort on grass against top choice in last. Gets first lasix in this test with good work since his last. With a better start, has a good chance to flip the script on top choice and the race favorite.
4)Red Zinger(5-1) Working on his third start after breaking his maiden with a good work since his last. Only needs a small step forward to contend in this race. While he is making his first start on grass, he has some bloodlines that suggests he may enjoy the switch.
5)Bourbon Miss(4-1) Another in with a good shot at the win. Though Tomlinson says otherwise(and why I prefer to make my own decisions with breeding, works and everything else pertaining to racing), he is bred as good as anyone in this race for grass, if not much better. There are not many who outdoes a More Than Ready foal or his family in grass sprints and his records screams that. Claimed out of his last start, a maiden claiming win, he returns for another shot at the grass. His only start on that surface saw him break slowly which pretty much eliminated him on Belmont's inner turf in a sprint. With a better break, which is expected, he could make it interesting late.
Bets: $5 Ex Box 11-12($10), $1 Tri Box 4-11-12($6), .10 Super Box 4-5-11-12($2.40), $1 Super Box 11 with 4-5-12 with 4-5-12 with 4-5-12($6). Total Risk $24.40.
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Additional Risks:
1st Race: .50 P5 3 with 2,4 with 10 with 7,12 with 1,2 = $4
1st Race: $1 P3 3 with 2,4 with 10 = $2
2nd Race: .50 P4 2,4 with 6,10 with 7,12 with 1, 2 = $8
2nd Race: $1 P3 2,4 with 10 with 7,12 = $4
6th Race: $1 P3 3,12 with 3,5 with 2,4 = $4
7th Race: .50 P5 3,5 with 2,4 with 7 with 7,8 with 11,12 = $8
8th Race: .50 P4 2,4 with 7 with 7,8 with 5,11,12 = $6
Total Risk All Horizontals $42. Did some minor adjustments on these and not sure the total cost, but close to the original cost. Just drop one here and there, nothing major to keep money management inside my boundaries.
EDIT: P3s are $1 Minimum base wager at Saratoga. P4s & P5s are .50 base minimum.
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My estimate is my total bets on Saratoga comes to $420. That gives me plenty of opportunities to connect on a couple of races since I usually narrow my choices down to the bare minimum allowed. I am trying something slightly different than normal as I cut my WP bets down to choices that I really like to win , instead of betting the one I like best in each race. I took that savings and spread it into higher exotic risks, where the real money tends to be. Good Luck To All and enjoy!!!
submitted by hodsct59 to horseracing [link] [comments]

Saratoga

The Spaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…….

With the Saratoga season quickly approaching, I’ve had my arm twisted enough by the Discord team to write a primer on the track. I live about 20-minutes east of Saratoga and it’s my home track; my first real memory of a horse race was betting on Forty Niner in the ’88 Travers……I was 6…… During the 40-day meet, I do most of my wagering for the year and consistently show a nice positive ROI.
What is Saratoga: The Saratoga Racecourse is the oldest continually operating sporting venue in the United States. The town of Saratoga was founded around dozens of natural mineral springs which were turned into bath houses at the end of the 19th Century. Those fighting conditions like Polio sought out the healing properties of the springs; FDR was a regular visitor. The town is about a 3-hour drive north of NYC, so it’s a major summer retreat for those looking to escape. During most of the year, Saratoga is a sleepy town of 25k; on a major race weekend that number will be 5x that.
Why is it Important: The 40-day long meet has 76 stakes with $20.8 million in purse, 40 of those being Graded. Most tracks best day of racing for the entire season is a regular Saratoga Thursday afternoon, the field size and quality here is just unmatched. The feature of the meet is the Travers stakes which will see 3yr old’s coming from the Triple Crown trail facing off against later blooming horses who are setting up for a late season run targeting the Breeders Cup. Saratoga also sees a huge number of very talented maiden races where you will often see next year’s Triple Crown contenders get their start. Owners and Trainers want to show off their very best and a win at Saratoga means massive bragging rights for most. Due to its northern latitude and numerous training tracks, Saratoga is a massive training track that sees horse shippers from around the country even if they have no intent on running there. For the month of July and August, Saratoga really is the focus of all horse racing east of the Mississippi.
What you should know before going:
· New this year, the meet runs from July 11th through Labor Day Weekend with Monday and Tuesday being dark days. First post is normally 1pm except for major Saturday’s like Alabama and Travers Day.
· General/Grandstand admission is $7 with clubhouse being $10; on Travers day General/Grandstand is $15 with Clubhouse being $25. Clubhouse admission does not provide a seat, only entry to the Clubhouse areas.
· Track has a 50k capacity and it WILL sell out for Travers day a solid month in advance. If you show up at the gate for Travers without a ticket, you will be turned away.
· Reserved seating is available through Ticketmaster. If you’re someone who wants to just show up and watch the races, this is a nice easy option. Just remember that although these are covered, many of the lower seats are in the sun, so dress accordingly.
· Most regulars will sit in the Picnic Areas behind the Grandstand. Bring a camp chair and watch the races on the copious big screens. A number of these areas (specifically right behind the Carousel) have a walking path that goes through them so you can watch the horses before they hit the paddock and tree cover keeps you out of the sun.
· If you want to sit in the Picnic Area and have a Picnic Table, you have two options. The first is to reserve one of these through Ticketmaster, but the reserved area is behind the paddock and really sucks. The other is to be at the gates for 6am, wear running shoes (I’m serious) and sprint for a table. Place a tablecloth on the table and tape it down then come back for the races. Moving a tablecloth is a massive Toga foul and you will get tossed if you’re caught.
· Outside food and drink are totally fine in the picnic area, the only real rule is no glass of any kind.
· No formal dress code exists for most of the track, although pants are required for men in the paddock and “appropriate dress” is required in Clubhouse and Box Seating areas. You’ll see everything at the track from picnic area regulars in shorts and a t-shirt, those in 3-piece Armani suits, to some wearing vintage Linen or Seersucker.
· If you’re looking to stay in Saratoga, its not cheap, with rooms often going from $300-600 a night with houses in walking distance to the track going for upwards of 10k a week. Best options are to stay in Clifton Park, Albany or Lake George which are all about a 30-minute commute. Some good AirBnB options exist about 15-minutes east of town along the Hudson river as well.
· If you’re bringing people not into horse racing, tons of options exist for them. Six Flags has a theme park in Lake George with a full water park. A 30-minute drive north puts you in the Adirondack park which has amazing hiking, biking, canoeing and camping. Just east is the Battenkill river which has amazing trout fishing and is the home river of Orvis. For the history buff’s, both the Saratoga Battlefield and Grant Cottage are close by. SPAC in the Saratoga State Park is a summer location for the NYC Ballet, Philadelphia Orchestra and sees major national touring acts. The Spa Park also is a great running, biking or picnic spot that is super close to town.
· Saratoga also has the highest number of bars per capita in the US, tons of options exist Caroline street during the Summer. Restaurant wise you have a lot of world class food along Broadway and around Saratoga Lake. Many people who vacation during the summer have no interest in horse racing, so people watching at the bars can be an amazingly fun evening adventure.
· Although many people prefer paying to park (no idea why), NYRA does offer free parking off from Henning Road which is your first right after getting off the Northway with buses taking you from the parking lot to the track. Although not Glamorous, its a good way to save a few bucks and you get a nice scenic tour of the barns.
· Breakfast with the horses is an absolute MUST if you're a first timer. Get there from 7-9:30am and sit in the Clubhouse Porch and eat the Buffet (I think its $15) while watching morning works. You can park right at the track and they refund your parking on the way out. They also normally have a caller so you'll get names of major horses who might be working, its really an amazing scene.
Angles to Consider:
· Having good friends is a massive benefit here. Fields are deep and competitive, so having a 2nd or 3rd set of eyes looking at PP’s is huge. A group of us Handicap a couple of days before each card, so hop on Discord and go through the races as a team, it will substantially boost your ROI.
· Saratoga is the land of Maidens, so Workout Reports are key. All the major east coast trainers will bring the best of their best 2yr old’s to Saratoga as winning a race there is massive. The only true way to gauge these horses is with workout reports. Always remember that PP’s are rearward biased; you care about the horse today, not when it last ran a month ago. Due to the time of the Saratoga meet, it’s very common to have improving 2 or 3yr old’s take a massive step up here.
· Best way to make money at Saratoga is to pay attention to track biases and to make out your own odds. Track tends to be very speed favoring one day and then it’s all closers the next; watch not just what horse is winning but how and adjust accordingly. Saratoga also sees a lot of "dead money", people with no clue who are betting names, colors, jockeys, trainers...etc. These people LOVE to chase favorites and they are very often overlay’s more here than any place else in the country. If you handicap with no ML and have a horse's fair value at 3-1 its often common to see it drift to 10-1 because a Pletcher firster is 1-9 when it should also be 3-1.... etc....
· Saratoga is also the land of crazy weather. It’s not abnormal to have half the card be 80 and Sunny then a pop-up Thunderstorm rolls through and you have mud with off-turf. The public has no ideas how to manage this and will still bet a turf horse who hates running on the dirt. This leads to some massive overlay’s if you’re prepared.
· NYRA Bets always runs a bet $200 get $200 promo for new signups, it’s well worth your time if you don't already have it. They sometimes will run additional promos on top as well for new members on-track during the meet. This lets you use Mutel terminals if you like tickets without a voucher or you can do everything online which is WAY more efficient.
· In any Saratoga Dirt/Mellon/Inner Turf race between 5 and 6.5f, always toss the 1 horse. Over the past 3 years the 1 post is something like 5 for 450 at those distances. This is partially due to those distances seeing younger horses, but also due to the shape of the inner rail entering the far turn.
· Fade horses in the 8 path and beyond in 2-turn routes, they have terrible statistics even when accounting for field size. The most problematic races are 1 mile on the Mellon turf where early positional speed is huge. 9 & 10 furlong races on the main track also favor the inside as a shorter runup into the first turn can leave outside horses stranded.
· Irad ran away with the 2018 Jockey title, but it’s always super competitive. Saratoga has one of the best jockey colonies in the country so it’s not a chase for a good jock but pay attention to what mounts they choose. If you saw that JJ was on three horses last out but choose one of those this time over the others, it’s likely that horse is very live…. etc.
· Chad Brown also dominate the Trainer title in 2018, with it not even being a contest. His entire barn points for the meet so if it’s a CB horse, its live, just deal with it.
· With all the CB love at Saratoga, certain trainers also have TERRIBLE statistics and should be faded or avoided. Those trainers who have solid numbers of starters and do well at other tracks but suck at SAR are: Amoss, Arnold, Keneally, McPeek, Moquette, Rivelli, Romans, Stall, Stewart and Wilkes. You’ll notice a KY trend there; yes, it is real….
· Pay attention to “well meant shippers” meaning oddball ships and weird drops. Look for horses coming out of smaller tracks like a Penn, FL, GP West, OP... etc... who are trained by small time trainers who have limited starts. Betting public tends to feel a lot more comfortable backing a Pletcher horse than a guy who sees 25 starts a year from a 5-horse stable. You'll often see a horse who ran in a couple MSW races at a Penn for 12k, took a two month break with little work pattern, then shows up at Saratoga in an MCL 45k and wins. Also, huge class drops are less of a concern at Saratoga as traineowner title are so important, hell just winning a race is huge so often people will be OK being claimed away to say, "My horse won at Saratoga". You also tend to see a lot of horses who have one or two not very impressive starts, go on the bench for a month or two and then appear at Saratoga and win from a no-name trainer and connections, things often don't pass the sniff test and are often live in doing so.
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Preview of the Bob Hope Stakes and more


Aqueduct Racetrack
Race: 8 (3:20 PM EST Post)
Key Cents Stakes
My Sassy Sarah has a lot of moving parts in this race doesn’t she? Good looking filly will be dropping in class, cutting back in distance and changing surfaces all in this one spot. I’m going to make an exception in this case for Horse Racing Betting 101 (never bet a horse who is trying something for the first time), as she will be trying the dirt for the first time. That said, her works suggest she’ll handle the surface change just fine…..slight edge in wide open horse race……………….Time Limit ran the best, or possibly second best, race of her life in her last. Chestnut filly by Bustin Stones led to deep stretch in the Grade: 3, open companied, Matron Stakes, so she too will be dropping in class and changing surfaces. The problem I’m seeing is her past dirt races vs. NYSB have been….meh….ok, I guess……………….Playtone scored the highest, last race (dirt) BSF (76) when pulverizing a field of maidens in her last. Simply said, she’s a serious contender is she runs back to that effort……………….Honorable Mentions: There are two ways to look at Single Verse. One, she is super consistent as her 5-1-4-0 record would indicate or two, she has a serious case of “second-it is”. Your call from there but, once again, upon paddock and pre-race warm up inspections, she will probably by on a couple of my exotics tickets…………….Shadolamo responded to “first time Lasix” by burying a field of maidens at the Finger Lakes in her last. Filly by Girolamo waltzed home almost a dozen lengths in front at staggering 1/20 post time odds. With all due respect, should any horse at the Finger Lakes ever be 1/20, none the less a maiden?...Intriguing filly.

Churchill Downs
Race: 10 (5:36 PM EST Post)
River City Handicap
Although Admission Office finished 11th in his last, it must be noted he was only beaten by a little over three lengths in the Grade: 1 Shadwell Mile. Also note, this handsome son of Point of Entry came roaring down the stretch to just miss in his two prior races as well, which were also against much better that what he will be facing in this spot. Solid work last week and Jose Ortiz gets the leg up…..looks best………….Although Emmaus has only won one time, he’s run very well in all six U.S starts. I found it interesting that he’s only run over a turf course labeled “firm” once in 13 career outings and that one race was a “just missed” second in a rapidly run seven furlong, Grade: 2 race…..figures close…………..Mr. Misunderstood towers over this field in money won, making him the most accomplished horse in this race and, more importantly, he is 4 for 5 on this turf course. Having said all that, he does appear to have lost a step somewhere along the lines as his 0 for 4 record in 2019 would indicate……………….Honorable Mentions: Get Western is a 5 year old gelding by Get Stormy who is 2 for 4 on the Churchill turf course. He shows a very nice speed sharpening work last week and should be in front as far as he goes here…………….Blue Sky Kowboy’s last two turf races were very good. Steps up here but could be coming late. Long-shot possibility?

Del Mar Thoroughbred Club
Race; 8 (7PM EST Post)
Bob Hope Stakes
It looks like trainer Bob Baffert holds all the cards in this race as he enters a solid 1-2 punch. It starts with Thousand Words, who is a $1 million yearling purchase by the late Pioneerof the Nile. Good looking colt stalked a fast pace in his debut, executed a brazen, three wide move on the turn and inched away late while coming home the last sixteenth in a very good :06.2 seconds………………It ends with his well named, stable-mate High Velocity, who also stalked the pace and come home strong while winning his debut as the 7/10 favorite. I love the four strong, five furlong moves since, with the last one (Nov. 11-1:00.3) looking a lot better than it does on paper…………………Strongconstitution is by up and coming sire Constitution who just missed in a restricted Stakes race after wiring maiden in his quickly run (turf) debut. Dark bay colt gets an (under-rated) rider change here, fired a bullet half mile last week and could be a menace here. My only issue with him is it did take him nearly :07 seconds to negotiate the last sixteenth in his last.
By: Gerard Apadula Director of Equine Operations and Development Knights of the Round Stable Thoroughbred Racing Team [email protected] 2019- Record: 76-225 = 34% 2018- Record: 107-261= 41% 2017- Record: 92-235 = 39% 2016- Record: 91-229 = 40% 2015- Record: 67-180 = 37% 2014- Record: 29-73 = 40% 2013- Record: 20-59= 34% 2012 -Record: 24-73= 33% 2011 –Record: N/A 2010- Record: 24-74= 33%
Little Bets N’ Pieces
**** Dennis' Moment, the betting favorite who ran last of eight in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile after stumbling badly at the start, was sent to WinStar Farm this week where he will receive a freshening before rejoining trainer Dale Romans' stable in Florida in mid-December.
"He looked good. For a few days he was a little (sore) up in his shoulders," Romans said.
Romans said the Feb. 29 Fountain of Youth Stakes at Gulfstream Park is his targeted race as a three year old.

**** Bravazo worked five furlongs in :59.4, the fastest of 26 at the distance, as he prepares for the $600,000 Clark Handicap Nov. 29 at Churchill Downs.
It was the sixth breeze for four year old son of Awesome Again since he was sidelined in March for surgery to remove a chip from his left knee.
"They brought him in and he's been doing remarkably well," said trainer D. Wayne Lukas. "He's filled out and matured. Some of those Awesome Agains get that way. They fill out, look better (nearing age) 5. He's training better or as well as I've ever seen him, and I've had him his whole life."

**** In winning her second Cartier Horse of the Year title Nov. 12, super mare Enable joined Frankel (2011, 2012) and Ouija Board (2004, 2006) as just the third horse to twice be named Cartier Horse of the Year.
In also being named Europe's champion older horse for 2019, Enable equaled the record of Frankel (again) in collecting five Cartier Racing Awards. (She also was named Cartier 3-year-old filly in 2017 and Cartier Older Horse in 2018).
"Bountiful talent combined with a courageous running style make her a joy to watch and it is no wonder that Enable is so popular with everyone in racing," said Cartier's racing consultant Harry Herbert.
"It is exciting that Prince Khalid Abdullah is keeping her in training for 2020, when she could become the first three-time Cartier Horse of the Year."

**** Four-time champion Beholder will be bred to Bolt d'Oro in 2020.
“We strongly considered breeding Beholder to Bolt d'Oro this past season, so it's a mating we've been excited about for some time. Frankly, Bolt d'Oro has been so tremendously in-demand that we decided to wait until 2020,” said Ned Toffey, general manager at Spendthrift. “One of the coolest things about this mating is it matches two of the fastest Grade 1-winning 2-year-olds that racing has seen in the last decade.”
Beholder, who is in foal to War Front with a January due date, has produced two offspring to date, including a yearling colt by Uncle Mo, named Q B One, and a weanling filly by Curlin.
Beholder retired from racing in 2016 after winning 18 of 26 starts with earnings of $6,156,600. She captured Eclipse Awards as the outstanding 2-year-old filly of 2012, 3-year-old filly of 2013, and older filly & mare of 2015 and 2016.
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Today's 10th race at Santa Anita (after the Juvenile) is a good betting race

This is my free race for the Santa Anita site which you can get here https://www.santaanita.com/authoellisstar but it's also pasted below.

Race #10

#5 Parsimony - Minimum betting odds 7/2

#2 Candy Cornell - Minimum betting odds 7/2

#1 Rogallo - Minimum betting odds 4/1

#8 Threefiveindia - Minimum betting odds 4/1

#16 Top Brass - Minimum betting odds 4/1

I’m not recommending any exactas in a wide open race but if you consider the wager, in addition to those above also consider #11 Justinian and #13 Coil Me Home, at least for the second position on those exacta tickets.

Parsimony opens at hard to ignore 10/1 odds, mostly because he just broke his maiden, BUT this is a first level allowance and not only does he fit perfectly, he faced and ran well to much tougher foes than he faces today. So highly regarded earlier this year as a maiden, Parsimony ran in the Cinema Stakes and finished second, ran in the Los Alamitos Derby and finished second to Game Winner and ran in a couple of other stakes on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. Finally put where belongs last out, in a maiden dirt sprint, he won easily at 5 to 2 and so 10/1 here could prove to be very profitable if he just repeats that last effort which earned a solid 105 Equibase Figure.

Candy Cornell has just one win in 12 career starts and four runner-up finishes but his last race, under nearly identical conditions, was his best yet as he missed by a half-length for the win and was a head behind runner-up Rogallo for second.

Rogallo was making his fifth career start that day BUT ONLY his second in a dirt sprint, having won a dirt sprint in his debut, and Candy Cornell broke his maiden in a dirt sprint, so both have good shots to be competitive right back, opening at 8/1 and 6/1, respectively.

Threefiveindia has four career wins including one at this level but is in for the optional claiming price today first off the Miller claim at the same level. That was his first start after eight months off and his first after being gelded, so we can and should expect improvement second off the layoff, second off the gelding and first off the claim by a top barn.

Top Brass can be considered a contender if he gets in from the also-eligible list as he loves to win, with a 7 for 13 record on dirt. He too was claimed out of his last race, a fine runner-up effort when beaten a half-length, over the track, and from an outside post he can stalk the speed and close nicely just as he did for all three of his previous wins in six starts on the Santa Anita dirt.

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The Devil's Advocate: An Argument FOR and AGAINST Every Horse in the Kentucky Derby

With the Kentucky Derby just over a week away, the field is shaping up to be one of the more evenly matched groups in recent years. Often the most overanalyzed 2 minutes in sports, there are countless articles telling you who to bet, who’s hot, and who’s not. Like many others, I’ve been spending a lot of my free time pouring over PPs, watching replays at the office (shh), and trying to find the likeliest winners. However, instead of simply writing an article about who I like, I thought it would be more interesting to give a brief argument for and against each horse in the Derby.

This ended up being a lot longer than I anticipated, so feel free to skim over horses or buckle down for a long read. It’s a bit of a different take, so I hope you enjoy.

Tacitus:
+ Tacitus is impeccably bred, by Tapit out of the stakes winning mare Close Hatches, and has improved in every start. He proved the Tampa Derby victory was no fluke when he displayed an ability to overcome adversity after getting knocked sideways at the break in the Wood Memorial.
- Tacitus came home very slow in the Wood, running a final 3/8ths in 38.2 seconds and a final 1f in 13.4 seconds. There have only been 3 horses to win the Derby who did not run a final 3f in at least 38 seconds or a final 1f in at least 13 seconds in the last 29 years (Animal Kingdom, Mine That Bird, and Silver Charm). 22 of the past 29 Derby winners qualified on both fractions. He also benefitted from a long shot significantly compromising some of his competition at the break.

Omaha Beach:
+ Despite taking some time to break his maiden, once the light bulb turned on for this horse nobody has been able to beat him. He owns the field’s second highest Beyer at 101, highest Thorograph figure at -2, and is proven over a fast and sloppy track. Mike Smith chose this horse over a very strong Baffert candidate in Roadster despite his connection with Baffert.
- Omaha Beach has peaked too early, and is a very strong bounce candidate in the Derby. His most recent thorograph figure of a -2 represents a 4 point jump from his previous top, and from 1995 onwards 64.3% of horses who ran a -2 or better in their final prep have significantly regressed in the Derby. As the likely favorite coming off of 2 very strenuous efforts, he is a play against.

Vekoma:
+ Vekoma ran arguably the best race of any 2-year-old in the Nashua, and looked very strong in the Bluegrass. He sat too close to a scorching pace in the Fountain of Youth first off the bench, but came right back with a solid win. He has the right run style to sit just off the pace and make his move, so he should be able to avoid trouble in a crowded field like the Derby pending the draw. A step forward is possible third off the layoff.
- Vekoma, like Tacitus, does not qualify on the final fractions theory, coming home in a pedestrian 39.4 / 13.4 seconds for the final 3f / 1f in the Bluegrass. He is an ugly mover, as he runs with a paddling motion with his front legs, and the bottom half of his pedigree with Speightstown as a damsire suggests 10f will be too far for him. He also was the main beneficiary of a strong speed bias at Keeneland that day for his final prep.

Plus Que Parfait:
+ Plus Que Parfait is the only horse in the field proven at a distance greater than 9f on dirt, as he convincingly won the ~9.5f UAE Derby. His pedigree suggests he should love the extra ground of the Derby. He was able to close into a track known for a speed bias, even in spite of a new surface.
- No horse who has used the UAE Derby as their Kentucky Derby prep has ever run in the top 3 in the Kentucky Derby, with the best finish coming being fifth in 2011. The race is historically a terrible prep for the Run for the Roses, and this year’s field seems even weaker than usual. PQP was routinely trounced by local US competition and had to ship abroad to face inferior horses to even make the gate.

Roadster:
+ Roadster was the horse Baffert was most excited about as a 2 year old, earning him the nickname of “The TMZ horse.” He has been a monster since getting throat surgery to fix a breathing issue, and has beaten the consensus “top” Baffert horse in Game Winner in the SA Derby. He’s shown versatility in his running style, displaying an ability to close last out but also possessing the tactical speed to avoid trouble. He has every right to improve in his third start as a 3 year old.
- Roadster was the beneficiary of a very poor trip from his main rival, Game Winner, who ended up going 4 wide around both turns in a short field. Roadster still barely got up to win by a half-length, and his thorograph number of 2.25 was actually 2 points worse than Game Winner (0.25). Roadster’s last 2 wins have come in fields of 6 and 5 horses, respectively, and he will now have to navigate 19 other horses. Mike Smith defects to Omaha Beach despite a strong connection with Baffert, and this horse will likely be a short price on Derby day due to the recent hype.

By My Standards:
+ By My Standards has been really turning heads in the mornings since getting to Churchill with some very impressive workouts. He comfortably won the Louisiana Derby at a big price, recording an impressive Beyer of 97. He has rapidly improved his last 2 starts, and another move forward makes him competitive with the best in this field.
- The Louisiana Derby has not produced a Kentucky Derby winner since Grindstone in 1996, and is historically a weak prep compared to the others. By My Standards caught a weak field and was very fortunate when the heavy favorite, War of Will, took a bad step in the early part of the race and failed to fire his usual effort. By My Standards has lost against mediocre horses multiple times before this, and it’s more likely his Louisiana Derby effort was a flash in the pan against a weak field than a true coming out party.

Maximum Security:
+ Maximum Security enters the Derby as the only undefeated horse in the field. Since the adoption of the Kentucky Derby points system, every Derby winner has gone undefeated in their 3 year old season. He owns the field’s highest Beyer at 102, and the co-second highest Beyer of 101, and is the only horse with multiple 100+ Beyer races on his resume. His thorographs are strong despite never being asked for his best. He has the right running style for the Derby, with a lot of early speed but not the type to need the lead, and he has yet to even be challenged by his competition.
- Maximum Security is in significantly over his head. The horse debuted for a 16k claiming tag, and he wasn’t even claimed. Servis then pointed him to a restricted starter allowance race, which he won easily. Despite two monster victories, Servis, a clever and high percentage trainer, still did not point him to a stakes or prep race, but instead brings him back in yet another starter allowance race. Servis is an intelligent trainer, and he tried giving this horse away in his debut, and then only thought enough of him to enter him in two separate restricted starter allowance races despite large victories. When he finally entered stakes company in the Florida Derby, he got to walk the dog on the lead and set absolutely laughable fractions, so slow that a maiden was able to finish second simply by being near the lead. This is a horse who is just happy to be here and will fold with any real pace pressure going 10f.

Game Winner:
+ Game Winner is the most battle tested and consistent horse in the field. He had a tough trip in the SA Derby going 4 wide where he was likely not cranked all the way up, and his Rebel Effort was impressive for the first race off a layoff losing an incredibly close photo to the likely Derby favorite Omaha Beach. He should love the extra ground, and goes out for a trainer who knows a thing or two about getting his horses peaking at the right time.
- Game Winner has not exactly lived up to his name, as he’s been runner up twice in both of his starts as a 3 year old after being undefeated as a juvenile. The horses Game Winner was beating as a 2 year old have proven to be relatively weak moving into their 3 year old season. No other runner in the Breeder’s Cup Juvenile even made the Kentucky Derby starting gate, with Signalman being closest listed as an Also Eligible. It could be fair to say that Game Winner may have matured a bit faster than his competition at 2, but now the field has caught up and he may have ceded an edge to the other top California based horses. He is the likeliest candidate in the field to hit the board, but it’s questionable if he will have that final kick to come in first.

Code of Honor:
+ Code of Honor ran a respectable third in a snails-paced Florida Derby where nobody was making up any ground. He goes out for top tier connections, and he has a jockey on board who is known for his ground saving trips. He has more tactical speed than some of the other deep closers in this field, so he should get first jump on the tiring leaders before the likes of Country House and Win Win Win can make their move.
- Code of Honor was the lucky beneficiary of an absolute pace meltdown in his Fountain of Youth victory, and in another 2 jumps Bourbon War was blowing right by him. He has not significantly improved on his thorograph 2 year old top, and would need a big jump forward coupled with a clean trip and a pace meltdown to even have a chance. There are other stalkers with more front speed than him and other closers with a better final kick.

Haikal:
+ Haikal has done little wrong in his career, with a record of 5: 3-1-1. He proved his Gotham score wasn’t a fluke by running a respectable third in the Wood, and he has one of the best closing kicks in the field. If the West’s elect to use MS as a rabbit and the pace heats up, look for him late.
- Haikal has managed to outrun his pedigree this far, but this is as far as talent will take him. A half-brother to Takaful, the 2017 G1 Vosburgh Sprint winner, this is a horse at his best running in a one turn mile or shorter. He was one of the few not significantly impacted by the poor start in the Wood, yet was still soundly beaten by the top two finishers.

Improbable
+ An early Derby favorite, Improbable’s only two losses have come by a combined length and a quarter with good excuses. He was very wide in both turns in the Rebel when getting nailed by Long Rang Toddy at the wire, and he acted up badly in the gate of the Arkansas when loading first and having to wait while trying blinkers for the first time. His natural ability and raw talent put him near the top of this field, and he has the second highest thorograph in the field with a -1. Any repeat of that effort or slight improvement is probably good enough to win.
- Improbable is another who is pedigree challenged to get the distance. City Zip is notorious for siring sprinters, and while the bottom side of his pedigree has stamina, his top side is pure speed. He gets yet another new rider, his third in three races. Baffert removes the blinkers after trying them last out, and you never like to see equipment changes trying to figure out a horse in the first Saturday in May.

War of Will
+ Draw a line through War of Will’s last race, as he lost all chance when he lost action in the first 100 yards. Outside of that, you have a horse who is undefeated on dirt, possesses a great stalking run style, and is bred to run for days. Proven over fast and off tracks, he has steadily improved and paired 1s on thorograph until the Louisiana Derby.
- War of Will breaks just about every Derby rule of thumb regarding final prep before the race. Final fraction, ground loss, finish no worse than fourth, he fails them all. Couple that with the chance that he is not 100% after the Louisiana Derby incident, and he becomes a horse who is very hard to trust.

Long Range Toddy
+ Long Rang Toddy is a horse who always tries his heart out. Toss his last race where he may not have cared for the slop, and you have a horse who is ultra-consistent and ever improving. He bested Improbable, one of the Baffert monsters, in the Rebel, and then likely bounced a bit in his last race. Another new top here could make him dangerous, as he projects to sit a good stalking trip.
- Long Range Toddy is a heartwarming story of a Remington Park horse making the Derby, but he just isn’t good enough. He only has one Beyer in the 90s, and even his best thorograph of 4 is significantly weaker than most of the field. He got lucky with a dream trip and a great ride to beat Improbable in the Rebel.

Tax:
+ Tax has seen massive improvement since Danny Gargan claimed him out of a maiden claiming $50,000 race back in October. He stumbled badly in the Withers yet came very strong to fight on and get the win. This horse is very game and has moved forward with each start. He was a good second to Tacitus in the Wood, and the result may have been different if Tacitus did not lean on him and induce him to the rail.
- Tax got a great trip in the Wood, as he was not dramatically impacted by the poor start and sat a perfect stalking trip behind two dueling leaders. Despite that, he still could not hold off Tacitus, who had a tougher trip all around. His final fractions are too slow, and he is simply an inferior version of Tacitus.

Cutting Humor:
+ Cutting Humor comes from the highly respected Pletcher barn after an impressive win over well-regarded Anothertwistafate in the Sunland Derby. His final 3f and 1f fractions are the fastest of any horse in the field today, and he is coming off a big effort. He gets 6 weeks rest to recover from that, making another big effort possible.
- Cutting Humor was beaten soundly in the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn, and he had to go to a much easier spot to secure his place in the starting gate on May 4th. No winner of the Sunland Derby has even won the Kentucky Derby, with Mine That Bird being the only horse to prep at Sunland and win the Kentucky Derby at odds of 50-1. His final fraction times are artificially inflated due to how fast the track was playing that day, evidenced by his “just okay” Beyer of 95.

Win Win Win:
+ Win Win Win ran a lightning fast race in the Pasco Stakes at Tampa, and a repeat of that effort makes him very dangerous here. His last few losses have come with excuses, as he broke very slowly and was very wide in the Tampa Derby while favored over Tacitus. In the Bluegrass, he was the only horse to make up ground on the speed favoring track all day, and he was steadied badly while entering the stretch. It was very impressive to make up ground after losing all momentum, and he may have won that race with a better trip.
- Win Win Win can’t get out of his own way. He repeatedly breaks very poorly from the gate and has morphed from a horse running near the lead into a dead closer. He has a penchant for troubled trips, and his best races have come in shorter races. Julien Pimentel and Michael Trombetta are a respectable jockey/trainer pair, but they are outclassed against the best connections in the country.

Country House:
+ Country House has one of the best closing kicks in this entire field. He has been a bit of a slow learner, as he often breaks slow and lugged in down the stretch, but he has matured with every start. He may have run down War of Will if not for some green racing down the stretch in the Risen Star. He has never been out of the money in all his tries on dirt and looms a major threat when turning for home.
- Ultra-deep closers like Country House are massively disadvantaged in the Kentucky Derby since the inception of the points system, and Country House routinely spots the field 10 lengths from the onset. There is not a lot of early pace signed on in this field, and he would need an absolute pace meltdown with a dream trip to have a chance of getting the win. He lost ground in the stretch run of the Arkansas Derby to both Omaha Beach and Improbable, never something you want to see from your deep closer.

Gray Magician:
+ Gray Magician took a nice step forward when switching to the Peter Miller barn and stretching out in distance and moved forward again when going from the 1-mile races in California to the 1900m UAE Derby. It’s quite possible he further improves adding another furlong at Churchill. He has some tactical speed, so he could sit a nice trip just off the leaders to avoid trouble.
- He’s simply too slow. His career best Beyer is nearly 20 points slower than the top contenders here, and he was embarrassed when facing competition in California who weren’t good enough to even make the Derby trying US preps. The UAE Derby was very weak, and it is a poor prep even with a strong field.

Spinoff:
+ Spinoff was very impressive in his 3-year-old debut, winning by daylight in a Tampa allowance race before running a respectable second in the Louisiana Derby. He has the perfect run style, listed as an E/P 7 (pace pressing) on Brisnet, which has produced the most Derby winners in recent years (Justify, American Pharoah, California Chrome). His pedigree suggests he should handle the distance, and he’s lightly raced and eligible to continue improving.
- Todd Pletcher, an unquestionably excellent trainer, boasts a record of 2 for 49 in the Kentucky Derby. Velasquez, the routine first call pilot for the Pletcher barn and normal rider of Spinoff, ends up on Code of Honor instead. In the Louisiana Derby, Spinoff had every right to win that race turning for home and instead was easily passed by a 22-1 maiden facing winners for the first time in By My Standards. He is not as battle tested as others, so he may not respond well to the large field and massive crowd at Churchill.

Master Fencer:
+ Master Fencer is the only horse in the field to have run 10 furlongs, not once but twice, albeit on the turf. He finished second and fourth in those efforts while not embarrassing himself in either.
- Master Fencer is just a horse who is happy to be here, as his presence opens the Derby to Japanese betting markets. Foreign horses typically do terribly in the Derby, he is a dead closer, and he wasn’t even Japan’s top point earner. In fact, there were 3 Japanese horses ahead of him in the points standings, all of whom declined the invitation to the Derby. He was beaten by Derma Louvre in the Hyacinth, who went on to run a non-threatening 4th in the UAE Derby.
Edit: thank you kind internet strangers for the silver and gold! My first of each!
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Preview of the Delaware Handicap, Diana Stakes and more

Saturday, July 13, 2019
Delaware Park
Race: 8 (5:25 PM EST Post)
Delaware Handicap

Elate bounced back to Graded Stakes form when coming from behind to take down the Fleur de Lis at Churchill last time out. This daughter of “King of the (sales) Ring” Medaglia d’Oro was impressive powering past her rivals down the lane while getting the last furlong in a swift :12.1. She has worked well since and she is 2 for 2 on this oval………………..The multiple Graded Stakes winner, yet still underrated Blue Prize was head strong on the first turn of the aforementioned Fleur de Lis last time out and didn’t offer much of an answer when Elate came to her in mid stretch. However, this seven time winner, of over a million bucks, will be making her third start off the layoff in this spot and that 6F work (1:12 flat) was strong, signaling she might be ready to run another big one here………………….Escape Clause is a win machine as her 20 for 30 career record would indicate. This five year old mare gave the mega talented Midnight Bisou all she could handle two starts back and had several excuses in her last (may have bounced slightly off such a tremendous effort and got caught up in a strong early pace). Leave her out of your exotics plays at your own risk…………………….Honorable Mentions: Gotham Gala ran the best race of her life in her initial try on this oval in her last, which is the perennial prep race for this. This $260,000 daughter of Smart Strike figures to be on or near the lead early once again in here and could prove difficult to run down late……………After showing little on the grass last time out, Promise of Spring return to her preferred surface (dirt), where she’s hit the board in 11 of 16 tries.

Saratoga Race Course
Race: 3 (2:10 PM EST Post)
Sanford Stakes
These 2YO races are far and away the toughest to figure. This time of year these horses’ forms are volatile and can improve or go downhill quicker than a hiccup. Of course, having such little info (few races) to go off of is another nightmare. That said, I’ll take By Your Side who ran the last half of a furlong in sub :07 seconds to take his Churchill Downs and racing debut. The way this colt by Constitution came running late makes me think the stretch out in distane here should only help him…………………..Cucina appears to be a huge threat in this spot. After just missing in his debut, this colt beat maidens in the slop while getting 5F in a fleet :58 flat…..looks next best……………..Raging Whiskey is a California invader who broke his maiden by a wide margin in his second career start.

Race: 9 (5:46 PM EST Post)
Diana Stakes
The 2019 Diana is an intriguing race in several levels. First off, it drew yet another small field (six) with four of them trained by Chad Brown. Also, it pits 2018 Older Female Turf Champion Sistercharlie against another one of the better turf fillies in training today in Rushing Fall as well as unbeaten in this country, Homerique with yes you guessed it all three being trained by Brown. All that being said, you can throw a blanket over all three and pick one as they are almost impossible to separate. So much so, I might pass this race.
However, if I change my mind (and I probably will) I would have to stick with Champion Sistercharlie, who capped off a sensational campaign last year with a furious late run to win the BC Filly and Mare Turf. Good looking mare sports an 11-7-3-0 record overall with the elephant in the room being will she be ready as this will be her first start since the Breeders Cup in Nov?....................It might be betting suicide to put Rushing Fall, a mega talented turf filly who is an astounding 9-8-1-0 in her career, in the two slot. Her last race in the Grade: 1 Just a Game Stakes was one of the most impressive races I’ve seen all year long. After cruising through the first five furlong of that race, this filly dropped her head, leveled off and came home the last quarter supersonic :22.2….needless to say, in taking Sistercharlie, this filly scares the daylights out of me………………………………….As I mentioned earlier, Homerique is 2 for 2 since arriving from France. The gray filly by Exchange Rate overcame slows paces in both races, which is one of many telltale since of a quality racehorse. Her speed figure are in the same zip code as her stablemates (the top two) and she should be coming late once again in this spot……………………….Honorable Mentions: The speedy Mitchell Road, who has sports record of 7-5-2-0, merits attention as well. Good looking mare by English Channel should be the one to catch on the turn for home……………………Secret Message won her last two with strong late runs. Steps WAY up here however.

Los Alamitos
Race: 6
Los Alamitos Derby (6:28 PM EST Post)
The 2019 Los Alamitos Derby continues the trend for short fields this weekend as just four are entered. It almost appears as though the race was written for 2018 Two Year Old Champion Game Winner, who makes his first start since his valiant run in the Kentucky Derby. I’m not seeing a way to beat him as he absolutely towers over this field and his work line resembles an Uzi 9 millimeter (non stop “bullet” works). This is probably one of those rare occurrences where you might see a horse go off at 1-20 odds……………………After chasing the talented Visitant, Mucho Gusto and Anothertwistafate, Game Winner stable mate Kingly looks next best by a wide margin…………………..I have to go with Feeling Strong, who won his last and will be breaking out of state bred competition for the first time for the show dough, as my only other choice is a maiden who is 0 for 12 in his career.

Indiana Downs
Race: 8 (9:10 PM EST Post)
Indiana Oaks
Chocolate Kisses has shown very little in her last three but you must note the enormous class drop she is taking in this spot. $410,000 daughter of Candy Ride ran in back to back Grade: 1’s, including the Kentucky Oaks, and had a failed turf experiment in her last. She will be cutting back in distance here and clearly will not be facing anything near was she’s been lately……………..After pulling an 11-1 upset in the Grade: 2 Fair Ground Oaks two starts back, Street Band will also be coming out of the Kentucky Oaks so she too should relish the class drop vs. these………………The rest are rather difficult to separate but I’ll go with Kim K for the show dough. This $335,000 daughter of Will Take Charge seems to have improved greatly from last year, highlighted by ripping off fast early fractions and wiring a $75,000 optional field in her last. What made it more impressive is she broke from the #9 post that day. In this spot, she’ll break from the rail, which is a serious tactical advantage for her and, oh by the way, the #1 post at this meet so far is winning at a 25% rate…………………………..Honorable Mentions: With Dignity has used impressive late runs to win her first two starts. Note how she encountered serious traffic issues down the back side of her last race but yet blew past the early leaders down the lane for the win….Steps up but could easily better this rating……………..If you ignore Blessed Again’s failed turf experiment in her last, you’ll see an impressive maiden breaking win before going on to beat $75,000 optionals by a colossal margin……………….Sweet Diane has yet to be off the board in six career starts, including finishing within shouting distance of Street Band in the Fair Grounds Oaks this past spring.

Race: 9 (10:02 PM EST Post)
Indiana Derby
Mr. Money is sharp as a tack right now. The son of Goldencents won back to back Grade: 3’s by wide margins at Churchill in his last two. Good looking colt’s speed figures are higher and more consistent than these as well…......………Math Wizard is quietly having a very good year, highlighted by finishing less than five lengths behind Tacticus at 65-1 in the Wood Memorial back in April. Since then, he’s faced an improving Laughing Fox and a really improving Owendale and held his own in both. Looks next best………………Fan favorite Long Range Toddy has been in training, and running once a month for the past 10 months now, and on paper, it looks like that brutal schedule is catching up to him. He was overmatched two and three races back but I saw no visible excuses for his disappointing effort in the Ohio Derby at 2-1 odds in his last…………………Honorable Mentions: Although running admirably, Alwaysmining went down in flames as the even money favorite in the Easy Goer at Belmont in his last, further fueling my speculation that he is a vastly different horse anywhere but on his home track (Laurel)…..Find out more about that on Saturday night……………………Gray Magician is not as bad as his 1 for 9 record indicates. Make no mistake, this gray colt has talent. I’m just not sure how much a trip across the world (Dubai) and then running in the most physical race in the country (Kentucky Derby) less than five weeks later, has taken out of him……………………….. I love Roiland’s running style. Although somewhat inconsistent with it, he possesses a big closing kick which is always fun to watch. Listen, if he gets a nuclear meltdown type early pace, stranger things have happened………………….If, and that a big “if”, Frolic More can handle the class rise, he could be a menace in here as he is clearly in career best form right now.

By: Gerard Apadula
Director of Equine Operations and Development
Knights of the Round Stable Thoroughbred Racing Team
[[email protected]](mailto:[email protected])
2019- Record: 43-124 = 35%
2018- Record: 107-261= 41%
2017- Record: 92-235 = 39%
2016- Record: 91-229 = 40%
2015- Record: 67-180 = 37%
2014- Record: 29-73 = 40%
2013- Record: 20-59= 34%
2012 -Record: 24-73= 33%
2011 –Record: N/A
2010- Record: 24-74= 33%

Little Bets N’ Pieces:
**** In the “about freaking time” category Colonial Downs Group/owners announced plans to name its turf course after the immortal Secretariat.
Secretariat was born at Meadow Stable in Doswell, Va., in 1970. He became a global phenomenon after his tour de force 1973 Triple Crown win while setting track records in all three of the classic races.
The Secretariat Turf Course will be ready when Colonial Downs opens for live racing Aug. 8. The partnership is part of an agreement with the Tweedy family, who owned him while on the track, and Secretariat.com that also will feature an annual Secretariat Day at the racetrack as well.
"Colonial Downs is thrilled to partner with the Tweedy family and spotlight one of Virginia racing's brightest stars, who was foaled less than 50 miles from our own gates," said Jill Byrne, Colonial Downs Vice President of Racing operations. "Secretariat's enduring legacy continues to reverberate with new generations of fans, and it is only fitting that Colonial Downs recognizes this native son of the Commonwealth."
"My family and I are excited that live racing has returned to Virginia and that we can contribute by sharing the legacy of Secretariat." said Kate Chenery Tweedy, daughter of Penny Chenery. "The Secretariat Turf Course will no doubt witness great racing contests, something my mother and my grandfather would have especially loved to see. Our family also applauds Colonial Downs for their efforts to engage existing horse lovers and generate new racing fans."
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Preview of the Arkansas Derby and more

With the Kentucky Derby now just three weeks away, our highlighted race of the week will be the last prep race for the Derby in the Grade: 1, $1 million Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
We will also be looking at the Oaklawn Handicap, a Grade: 2, $750,000 nine furlong contest also for four year olds and up.
Elsewhere, we will take a look at three Graded Stakes races at Keeneland Race Course. The Ben Ali Stakes for four year olds and up, the Jenny Wiley Stakes, an 8 ½ furlong test for four year olds and up fillies and mares on the turf and the Lexington Stakes for three year olds who are desperately trying for some last minute Kentucky Derby points in hopes that a win or a good showing will catapult them into this year’s “Run for the Roses”.
Lastly, on Sunday we will be examining the Grade: 1, $750,000 Apple Blossom back at Oaklawn Park, another 8 ½ furlong race for four year olds and up fillies and mares.
Saturday, April 13, 2019
Keeneland Race Course
Race: 7 (4:24 PM EST Post)
Ben Ali Stakes
If you look up “racehorse rounding back into top form” in the dictionary you might see a picture of Flameaway. The one time Kentucky Derby threat ran a very good third in the Grade: 3 Mineshaft off a nearly six month break two starts back. I really like the way this $400,000 son of Scat Daddy won his last, as he took pace pressure every step of the way while wiring the field. That last race, back to back excellent works since and this being his third start off the layoff, all point to another good effort upcoming. Lastly, I don’t see him having any problems in what is projected to be an off track on Saturday.…………………….Based off his last two races, a win and a fast closing third, both at Laurel Park, Bonus Points also seems to be in peak form right now. The Todd Pletcher trainee draws a good post for his running style and should be coming late in this spot……………………… I know Solomini is quite popular but I’m not a big fan of his. In fact, I believe he is one of the most overrated horses in quite some time…maybe since Keen Ice. Yes, he’s a Grade: 1 winner and yes, he’s hit the board in 9 of 11 career starts but two facts stand out about him to me. 1) He’s won one race since that Grade: 1 win (a span of 16 months) and that was against $40,000 optional claimers and 2) the fact still remains he is 2 for 11 lifetime. This son of Curlin will likely be over bet in this spot. ………….Honorable Mentions: Third Day is a $575,000 son of the corvette looking Bernardini who did well to finish third in the aforementioned Mineshaft Handicap in his last. This handsome colt was trapped behind a slow pace yet finished just a neck behind Flameaway in that race and his one and only race in the slop was an impressive win. Bottom line here is, he could better this rating especially if the track does come up wet…………………The cleverly named Nun the Less looks better suited for the synthetics but note he is 2 for 2 on off tracks. Merits a longshot look if the rains come…………….First Mondays, a $450,000 son of Curlin who missed the break in his last, and Just Whistle, who was a good third in the Peter Pan Stakes last year, both could run well here and neither would be a huge surprise.

Race: 9 (5:34 PM EST Post)
Stonestreet Lexington
Anothertwistafate rattled off three super impressive, large margined wins over the synthetics this year but looked just as good, if not better, in his neck loss last time out in the Sunland Park Derby on the dirt. This $360,000 son of Scat Daddy sat just off screaming early fractions (:45.3, 1:09.3, 1:34.3) before “running on” to just miss the win. Note the :24 second flat internal fraction as it’s the sign of a quality runner. If this handsome, smooth strided colt, who ripped a sensational half mile work for this (:46.4) last week runs well enough here to make it into the Derby (he’s on the threshold on points), no one better go to sleep on him as he appears to have big time talent and would pose an enormous threat………………….Based off his close up, on the board finishes in the Sham, Southwest and Louisiana Derby, Sueno clearly looks next best………………….I really liked Zenden’s Tampa Bay Derby effort at 20-1 in his last. This son of Fed Biz normally assumes a stalking position early on in his races but in the Tampa Bay Derby, this horse blew the gate and ripped off super fast fractions (:22.3, 45.4 and 1:09.3). He understandably tired late but I thought he did extremely well to finish fourth and was only be beaten by four lengths to the likes of Tacitus and Win Win Win. Looks best of the rest here………………..Honorable Mentions: Call me stubborn, but I’m STILL not giving up on the late running Roiland, who has a habit of running well at double digit odds………………Anyone have any idea what to do with Harvey Wallbanger, who wins the Holy Bull at 30-1 then comes back and completely tanks in the Florida Derby? Because I sure don’t. He’s a tough horse to play with such inconsistencies…………If you are hunting a longshot in this race, take a good look at Shang, who is a neck shy of being unbeaten in five starts vs. lesser. Although he obviously will be taking a huge step up in class, it should be noted he ran the last 2 ½ furlongs of his last race in an excellent :30.1, his speed figures are climbing, he handles the wet track very well and the #1 post at this meet is winning at 18% thus far.
Race: 10 (6:12 PM EST Post)
Jenny Wiley Stakes
Rushing Fall is a very special filly. This gorgeous, $320,000 daughter of More Than Ready is 6 for 7 in her career, has already captured two Grade: 1 wins and, had it not been for a questionable ride when losing her one race by a neck, she could be unbeaten. There is nothing not to like about her as she can handle the distance, is adaptable to any pace scenario, handles any “give” in the turf and is 3 for 3 at Keeneland. If you are looking to beat her, which might prove futile, you can use the angle that this will be her first start in exactly 6 months but that’s not enough for me……………………I like Rymska. She is a big, all black (very rare) five year old mare who is 7 for 13 in her career. This multiple Graded Stakes winner could not have looked any better in taking down the Hillsborough at Gulfstream in her last and you get the third start off the layoff angle. Easily looks next best here…………………Bellavais has been gradually improving since October. $485,000 mare by Tapit finished very well in her last and won her previous time out, both at Gulfstream Park. It appears she too can handle a soft turf course and has been on the board in 10 of 15 career races…………….Honorable Mentions: Onthemoonagain is a French invader who has fared very well in all four U.S. starts. Chad Brown trainee could better this rating with the right pace scenario……………Got Stormy came back running off a long layoff when whipping high level optionals. Steps up but that race could set her up for a good effort here……………….The longshot horse in this race is Princess Warrior, who looks overmatched on paper but note her two races on off turf courses were both very good.
Oaklawn Park
Race: 9 (6:22 PM EST Post)
Oaklawn Handicap
After back to back big efforts at “big balloons,” Rated R Superstar has methodically worked his way back into what appears to be top form. Although his rider is ice cold right now, he does like this track and seems to be ok if it rains as expected. …my best guess in an extremely wide open horse race…………………….Giant Expectations disappointed as the 8/5 favorite in the Essex in his last. This 6 year old by Giant Frost chased Battle of Midway and McKinzie two back and wasn’t embarrassed by any stretch, so you know he has ability. It’s the consistency I question as he hasn’t won a horse race of any kind in 16 months. That said he looks next best…………….Quip was up against it when he had to chase the absolutely streaking right now Prince Lucky in his first race back off a long layoff. This good looking son of Distorted Humor did well to finish third in that race and should be tighter for this…………………Honorable Mentions: Tenfold’s claim to fame is running Justify to three quarters of a length in the 2018 Preakness Stakes. This son of Curlin was a very close up fourth in his first race since, handles the slop just fine and should improve off his 2019 debut. Figures close………………Lone Sailor figures to do his normal “drop way back early but come with big run late only to fall short late” routine. Logically, the faster the pace, the better his chances are and the pace figures to be honest in this race……………..Keep an eye on Chris and Dave here too if it rains. Although he seems overmatched, he is 4 for 6 on wet tracks…………..I got to spend several minutes up close and personal with Lookin’ at Lee last year at Saratoga before the Travers. He is a very nice looking, well made horse, but he just hasn’t run to those looks as his 3 for 21 career record would indicate.
Race: 11 (7:43 PM EST Post)
Arkansas Derby
There are a lot of “moving parts” with the big, almost perfectly strided, Improbable, so this race should tell the tale of where we stand with him. His last race, The Rebel, didn’t answer any questions for me. In fact, it seems to have posed more. Let’s start with why he was run down in deep stretch by Long Range Toddy. Was it because he was “parking lot” wide, off a boneheaded ride by DVD, throughout the entire race and, with that being his first race in 10 weeks, maybe he understandably tired late? I don’t know, like I’ve said before, Baffert is the master at sending them out ready, regardless of the situation. Was it the City Zip breeding that is causing the dreaded distance limitation? I don’t know that yet either being he romped, not once but twice, at 8 ½ furlongs before. Whatever the answers are, I know this much….Baffert is not sitting on his hands with this gorgeous colt. I don’t blame him one bit for making a rider change (from DVD to Jose Ortiz) and he is adding blinkers in this spot as well. I absolutely LOVED his last work where, with blinkers on, he sat just off his work mate, passed him on the turn for home and was "reaching out" soooooooooo beautifully down the lane I mumbled “wow” while stopping the clock in either 1:13.3 or 1:14 flat depending on what racing publication you read. This might prove futile, but I am sticking with him until he proves otherwise. That said, this race is a “do or die” for him. He will need to step up right now, in this spot to remain a serious Derby threat………………………….Horse Racing is a lot like other sports in the sense that the best baseball/basketball/football team doesn’t always win, but more of who gets hot heading into the playoffs. In this case, it’s who is getting good at just the right time and, aside from Tacitus and perhaps Vekoma, is there another horse in the country who is getting good right now more that Omaha Beach? After losing a couple of heart breaking, maiden races earlier in his career, this very handsome, very well bred colt (by War Front out of a mare super sire from years ago Seeking the Gold) ran a hole in the wind in the slop to finally break his maiden two starts back. He won by 9 that day and stopped the clock in a blistering 1:21 flat for seven panels. His next and last start was in a division of the Rebel, where he assumed command early, fended off a few others early in the race and then dug in and fended off none other than Two Year Old Colt Champion Game Winner in a thrilling stretch run. The Rebel proved two things. 1) He can handle the route distance and 2) he has the guts of a tight rope walker. Back to back bullet works since the Rebel signal he is holding form and possibly getting better. Big Money Mike gets the leg up……………….The aforementioned Long Range Toddy is a stretch runner who is 7-4-1-1 in his career has never finished more than two lengths behind the winner in his three career defeats. That, readers, is consistency. He draws the extreme outside post which could actually help him in this spot and I love his work pattern since his Rebel upset (8-1) win……………….Honorable Mentions: Although Galilean was passed in the stretch of the Rebel by Long Range Toddy, I still like this very handsome, $600,000 son of Uncle Mo. After annihilating Cal-Breds in his two prior races, this colt, who has a very efficient and smooth stride, did very well to finish third, beaten by less than three lengths in his first try vs. open company and outside the state of California as well. Bottom line here is, he is no easy throw out……………………...Country House is another late runner who, on the surface, looks to be struggling a bit outside the friendly confines of Gulfstream Park but a closer look shows he had legitimate excuses both times. He broke slowly (again) and chased a streaking War of Will two back and, after you guessed it, breaking slowly again, he was ridiculously wide in the Louisiana Derby. That said, this son of Lookin’ at Lucky could be a menace with a clean break and what is projected to be a hot early pace………………….Gray Attempt has won 4 of 6 in his career and is 2 for 3 on this oval plus he recorded a monster work in the mud last week (5F- :58.3). The problem I’m seeing with him is a mile or a mile a sixteenth looks to be “all of it.” In other words, on paper he looks better suited to sprinting.

Sunday, April 14, 2019
Oaklawn Park
Race: 8 (4:42 PM EST Post)
Apple Blossom
This year’s renewal of the Apple Blossom features a rematch from the Azeri Stakes with two of the best older females in the land in Elate and Midnight Bisou and this race figures to be a doozy. Midnight Bisou, who I liked since early last year, got the better of it last time and I’m sticking to my guns that she has a world of talent, will continue to get better and have a tremendous year when it’s all said and done. Four year old by Midnight Lute is off to a good start (2 for 2) in winning the Houston Ladies Classic in January and the aforementioned Azeri in March. She “takes her racetrack with her” as she is 7 for 13 in her career while winning on four different ovals in all parts of the country. Lastly, I believe she still holds a fitness edge over main rival Elate as this will be her third start (off the layoff) while Elate will be making her second start in eight months…………………….Elate is clearly the main threat in this spot. Head hunters in New Guinea could see this two time Grade: 1 winner needed her last as it was her first start in eight months. Filly by Medaglia d’ Oro did very well to finish second in the Azeri when beaten by just one length as the even money favorite. When I was at Belmont Park (before heading over to Aqueduct for the Wood Memorial) last week, I heard several folks on the backstretch talk about how she may not be coming back the same as last year after, by trainer Bill Mott’s admittance, “a few minor injuries”. I’ll give her a mulligan for the Azeri but like Improbable this weekend, she needs to improve off the Azeri to prove that theory wrong………………….Wonder Gadot is another who probably needed her first race of 2019 when finishing second vs. optional $50,000 claimers on March 8 as it was her first start in over four months. Another daughter of “King of the (sales) Ring” Medaglia d’ Oro, this filly actually won two thirds of the Canadian Triple Crown (beating the boys) last year and still has that very long and flowing stride, which is especially good when on her right handed lead………………..Honorable Mention: Escape Clause is an absolute win machine while registering a mind boggling 20 wins in 30 career starts. Granted, she was beating up on far lesser competition at smaller tracks for most of it but still that’s quite a feat. That said, she did win a Grade: 2 at Santa Anita in January and could not have looked any better while blowing out her rivals at Sunland Park in her last. Mare by Going Commando (how did the Jockey Club miss that name by the way?), who stands for less than $1,000, won by 7+, getting a mile in a track record 1:34 flat.

By: Gerard Apadula
Director of Equine Operations and Development
Knights of the Round Stable Thoroughbred Racing Team
[[email protected]](mailto:[email protected])
2019- Record: 22-72 = 31% (My Plays: -$2,314.14)
2018- Record: 107-261= 41%
2017- Record: 92-235 = 39%
2016- Record: 91-229 = 40%
2015- Record: 67-180 = 37%
2014- Record: 29-73 = 40%
2013- Record: 20-59= 34%
2012 -Record: 24-73= 33%
2011 –Record: N/A
2010- Record: 24-74= 33%
Little Bets N’ Pieces
****Superstar Winx makes her final career start in the Group: 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Royal Randwick. If her win streak continues, this will be her 33rd straight win and 25th Group: 1. The scheduled post time is 11:05 p.m. ET on Friday, April 12th.

**** Lady Pauline, a half-sister to Lady Aurelia, was an eye catching, first time out winner last week at Keeneland.
Going off at an enormous 1-5 betting favorite, the Stonestreet homebred blew the gate and showed a very impressive speed to win by 9 3/4 lengths, stopping the clock in :51:3 for 4 ½ furlongs.
We’ll need to keep an eye on her moving forward.

****In all my years of being involved in this sport, I’m not sure I’ve seen a stronger book of mares to be bred to one first year stallion ever.
Justify, who stands at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud in Paris, KY., for $150,000, has the following list of mares booked: (although this is not all of them)
A Raving Beauty Multiple G1 winner
A Z Warrior G1 winner
Afleet Maggi Dam of G1 winner Dream Tree
African Jade Dam of G1 winner Lord Nelson
Appealing Zophie G1 winner, dam of Belmont Stakes winner Tapwrit
Bar of Gold Won Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint
Bella Jolie Dam of champion sprinter Runhappy
Birdatthewire G1 winner
Blossomed Dam of G1 winner Sippican Harbor
Brave Anna G1 winner
Bubbler Dam of champion Arrogate
Caledonia Road Champion 2-year-old filly
Champagne Room Champion 2-year-old filly
Charming Dam of champion 2-year-old filly Take Charge Brandi,
Classic Strike Dam of G1 winner Union Strike
Dazzling Song Dam of G1 winner Magnum Moon
Diamondsandrubies G1 winner
Diva Delite Dam of G1 winner Midnight Bisou
Dream Dancing G1 winner
D’Wildcat Speed Dam of filly Lady Aurelia
Emma’s Encore G1 winner
Found won Breeders’ Cup Turf
Got Lucky G1 winner
Grace Hall G1 winner
Grazie Mille Dam of G1 winner Mo Town
Groupie Doll Two-time champion female sprinter and winner of the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint
Havre de Grace 2011 Horse of the Year, sold for $10 million
Ithinkisawapudycat Dam of G1 winner Sweet Loretta,
Khancord Kid Dam of Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint winner Bar of Gold
Kosmo’s Buddy Dam of G1 winner Knicks Go
Mining My Own Dam of Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird and G1 winner Dullahan
Misty For Me G1 winner, dam of Cartier champion 2-year-old colt U S Navy Flag
Moonshine Memories G1 winner
Morena dam of Belmont Stakes winner Creator
Noted and Quoted G1 winner
Pretty ‘n’ Smart Dam of G1 winner Cupid
Rare Event Dam of G1 winner Improbable
Sambuca Classica Dam of champion 2-year-old male Classic Empire
Silk and Scarlet Dam of G1 winner Master of Hounds
Silky Serenade Dam of G1 winner Restless Rider,
So Sharp of G1 winner Sharp Azteca
Storm Dixie Dam of Kentucky Oaks winner Princess of Sylmar
Tapestry G1 winner
Together Forever: G1 winner
Turbulent Descent G1 winner
Untouched Talent dam of G1 winner Bodemeister
Vale Dori G1 winner
Yellow Heat Dam of G1 winner R Heat Lightning
Zipessa G1 winner
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Kentucky Derby 2019 Analysis

**Just a little background: I have posted my father's Derby write up the past few years and it seems to get a good response. If anyone has any questions I can see if he can answer them. Good luck!
"I have been writing this analysis of the Kentucky Derby since 1983, but as I sit down to write this year’s analysis, I am awed by the fact that this will be my 50th consecutive Derby. So, from that standpoint, this write up is very special.
First an overview of this year’s field: -The field will consist of 20 colts, 19 from America and one from Japan. -These colts will be trained by 16 different trainers, only 3 of these trainers have previously won the Derby. The other 13 will be trying to win it for the first time. -The colts entered in the race are a lightly raced group, much like last year’s entrants. However, this year’s colts are more lightly raced than last year’s – an average of 5.5 career starts (last year’s colts averaged 5.9 career starts before the Derby). -Last year I spoke about the way trainers were being very cautious in the number of races they are giving their charges. Well that trend is continuing this year. This year 10 colts have fewer than 6 career starts, half the field! -Additionally, 8 colts are going into the Derby with only 2 starts as a 3-YO. Back in the good old days (the 1980’s and 90’s), these lightly raced colts’ chances of winning the race were pretty slim, but today this is the norm among Derby entrants. -While the field is light on experience, they are long on earnings – 3 of them are already millionaires, a testament to the lofty purses colts are running for these days.
I will now begin my analysis of all 20 colts (no fillies are entered this year), listing them in the order of points they have accumulated going into the Derby. But please remember that the order I analyze them in is probably not the order that I see them finishing the race.
Tacitus: This son of Tapit is one of two colts in the race trained by Bill Mott who is seeking his first Kentucky Derby win. Tacitus has only 4 lifetime starts, including 2 this year. Many people felt that his win in the 1-1/8-mile Wood Memorial at Aqueduct was the best prep race of any of the 3-YOs this year. The winner of the Wood has gone on to win the Kentucky Derby 11 times, but the last Wood/Derby winner was in 2000. It seems like the “bloom is off the rose” as far as Wood winners repeating in Louisville. Though he has only raced 4 times in his career, his speed figures have increased as the distances have gotten longer – a good sign for a colt trying a 1-1/4 miles race in the Derby. I am a little concerned that he is untested against Grade 1 company (the Wood was a Grade 2 race), but I am sure he will take some play from the bettors come Derby day. I may have to use him in my exotic bets ( bets other than win, place & show) in the Derby.
Omaha Beach: This colt has never been out of the money in 7 career starts. However, it took him 5 tries to break his maiden – not necessarily an encouraging sign. He has been the favorite in 6 of his 7 races, so he is somewhat of a “money burner”. However, that being said, he may very well be the favorite in the Derby and he gets the services of Mike Smith who had to choose between Omaha Beach and Roadster. I believe that the betting money will follow “Big Money Mike” on Derby day. Note that Mike Smith has only won 2 Kentucky Derbies from probably 20 or more mounts – not a good record for such an established rider. A couple of things that I don’t like about Omaha Beach; he began his career with 3 races on the grass before switching to dirt, 2 of his 3 wins have come on sloppy tracks with his other win by a narrow nose on a fast dirt surface. On the other hand, he has beaten proven colts in Game Winner (last year’s 2-YO champion) and Improbable (winner of the GR 1 Los Alamitos Futurity). His trainer, Richard Mandella, will be trying to win his 1st Derby (he is 0 for 6 in the race) with this colt and I have to say that he has as good a chance as anybody to win.
Vekoma: Another lightly raced colt with only 4 career starts, including 2 this year, and, like Tacitus, he is untested against Grade 1 company. Trained by George Weaver, who is seeking his 1st Derby win, this colt won the BlueGrass Stakes beating Win Win Win and Signalman – two colts he may face in Louisville. The BlueGrass has produced 10 Derby winners, but none since 1991. He is a well-travelled colt, each of his starts has come over a different track. I have always liked this colt, he has a good late turn of foot (how fast he is) and being out of Candy Ride, the Derby distance should not be a problem. However, he has a weird way of “moving”; in the stretch he seems to “paddle” his left front leg. This may not serve him well in the long stretch at CD. Also, his trainer does not have a very good record in graded stakes competition, winning at only a 6% rate. I think he will present some good odds come Derby day and just might be a must use in the exotics.
Plus Que Parfait: This colt’s claim to fame is that he won the $2.5M UAE Derby in Dubai in March. He is trained by Brendan Walsh who is another trainer seeking his 1st Derby win. I’ve observed that horses that fly half way around the world to run in Dubai, have a pretty hard time getting back into racing shape upon their return from that trip. He got the big money in Dubai but I don’t see him getting any money in the Derby so I will pass.
Roadster: Roadster is one of Bob Baffert’s three possible Derby entrants and the colt that Mike Smith didn’t choose to ride in the Derby. This son of Quality Road (a very good sire), who will be ridden by Florent Geroux, is also lightly raced with only 4 career starts, including 2 this year. He did win the Santa Anita Derby over Game Winner and Instagrand and the Santa Anita Derby has produced 10 Kentucky Derby winners, including three since 2012 – Justify, California Chrome and I’ll Have Another. This colt overcame some breathing issues after surgery last year and had been ridden by Mike Smith in all his career starts, so when Mike chose Omaha Beach over Roadster it must have been a surprise to Baffert & Co. Obviously a very talented colt who might be the 2nd betting choice in the race, but I am unsure at this point how I will play him.
By My Standards: This colt has 5 career starts and took four tries to break his maiden – not very encouraging. He is trained by Bret Calhoun, who is also seeking his first Derby win. He did win the Louisiana Derby at odds of 22-1 beating Spinoff and Sueno. However, the Louisiana Derby has only produced 2 Kentucky Derby winners, the last one being Grindstone in 1996. I am a little concerned about his ability to get the 1-1/4 miles in the Derby based on his breeding. I can’t really say that I would recommend anyone bet him to win so I will pass.
Maximum Security: This undefeated colt, from 4 lifetime starts, began racing in December last year in claiming and optional claiming races (I guess his connections didn’t feel he was that good) and was not really tested until he ran, and won, the Florida Derby in a very good time. In that race he beat Code of Honor, Bodexpress and Bourbon War. All his wins have come by good margins (3-1/2 to 18 lengths. He is trained by Jason Servis who is also looking for his first Derby win. He has only gone two turns in a race once in 4 tries and has been ridden by 3 different jockeys in 4 races, again, something that is not that encouraging. I don’t think I will bet him.
Game Winner: Last year’s 2-YO champion has won three Grade 1 races in 6 lifetime starts so he is a very good colt. He has never been out of the money and his two losses were by a nose and a ½ length. He lost the Santa Anita Derby to Roadster and the Rebel Stakes to Omaha Beach, two colts who will be highly regarded come Derby day. He is the second of Bob Baffert’s three probable entries. All three have the credentials to win the Derby and he has a win over the CD track last November in the Breeders’ Cup (always a plus to have a win over the CD surface). In a race full of speed, he has a tactical advantage in that he can get good position and lay off the pace until they hit the top of the stretch. On a slightly down note, he lost his 2 starts this year, each as the favorite, after an undefeated 2-YO campaign. Though he lost to good colts (see above) I am not sure that Bob had him cranked up for either of those efforts. He will likely be a reasonable price in the Derby, and I may have to take a long hard look at him before I bet.
Code of Honor: A somewhat inconsistent colt, he has 2 wins in 5 lifetime starts, but 2 of his losses were in Grade 1 company. He has been beaten by Maximum Security and Bodexpress in the Florida Derby after he won the Fountain of Youth stakes over Bourbon War and Vekoma. He is trained by “Shug” McGaughey who won the 2013 Derby with Orb, and knows what it takes to win the Derby. His breeding is such that he could run all day so the distance shouldn’t be an issue. He will probably be a double digit price in the Derby and I am a little hesitant to do more than maybe put him in a trifecta or superfecta box.
Haikal: Trained by Kiaran McLaughlin this colt could be Kiaran’s 1St Derby winner. Yeah, read that again - Kiaran has never won the Kentucky Derby. However, I don’t think this is his year to score that elusive victory. This colt was beaten by Tacitus and Tax in the Wood, 2 colts he will face in the Derby. Haikal has always been in the money, in 5 career starts, but has not run outside Aqueduct. I am suspect of a colt who has wintered in NY – he can’t be that good if they didn’t ship to FLA for the winter. I will pass, on the win bet but maybe find a place for him in the exotics.
Improbable: Bob Baffert’s 3rd entry has finished in the money in all of his 5 career starts and has a win over the CD track. He won the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Futurity in December before going to Arkansas for his 2 starts this year. In the Rebel, at Oaklawn, he was beaten by Long Range Toddy and then he was a close 2nd in the Arkansas Derby getting beat by Omaha Beach. He will face both colts in the Derby. His running style (tracking the pace) should suit him well. However, I question whether he can get the 1-1/4 miles of the Derby as he is out of City Zip, a sprinter. Anyway, he is a good colt with a very good trainer so I will have to take a long, hard look at him before deciding whether to bet him or not.
War of Will: One of three colts in the race who have 8 lifetime starts, this Mark Casse trainee began his career with 4 starts on the turf before breaking his maiden at CD over a sloppy track. Casse has yet to win the Derby and I have doubts that this colt will give him his first Derby victory. This colt should not have any trouble with the distance, but he took a bad beating as the 4-5 favorite in the Louisiana Derby losing by 12 lengths to the likes of By My Standards, Spinoff and Suneo. His connections have always though highly of him. He was entered in three graded stakes races as a 2-YO even though he was a maiden, but I won’t be betting him in the Derby.
Long Range Toddy: Another colt with 8 lifetime starts, he will try to get Steve Asmussen his first Derby win. However, he was badly beaten in the Arkansas Derby over a sloppy track by Omaha Beach, Improbable and Country House, although he did beat Improbable in the Rebel. I believe that he is not as good as he looks on paper and I don’t think he will get the Derby distance based on his breeding. It should be noted that he has never been the favorite in any of his 8 lifetime starts. I will likely bypass him in favor of others.
Tax: A consistent colt who has finished in the money in all his 5 career starts. He began his career in claiming races, including one at CD, and was claimed for $50K in his 2nd start by his trainer Danny Gargan who is an up and coming trainer. It is rare that a former claimer runs in, let alone wins, the Derby. Tax’s last three races have been at a 1-1/8 miles all at Aqueduct so he should not have any trouble handling the Derby distance. He was beaten in the Wood by Tacitus, one of the likely Derby favorites, but was not able to get to the winner in the stretch. So, this is a colt who has plenty of potential, but I have to wonder if his trainer is ready to take on the big boys in Louisville. He will probably be double digit odds in the Derby and a 4th place finish might be as good as he can do.
Cutting Humor: One of the two Todd Pletcher colts in the race, this colt sports 2 wins in 6 lifetime starts and I have to wonder why Todd thinks he should enter this colt. He is not that consistent having been beaten nearly 9 lengths as the favorite in the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park, behind Sueno and Long Range Toddy, and barely hanging on to beat Anothertwistafate in the Sunland Derby. He also lost to Bourbon War in an optional claiming race in January. This colt will be a longshot in the Derby and I will take a pass.
Win Win Win: This colt has never finished out of the money in 6 lifetime starts for trainer Michael Trombetta, who is another trainer seeking his first Derby win. Trombetta has not won a graded stakes race in his career so why would he prevail in America’s greatest race? Also, I doubt that this colt can handle the distance of the race based on his breeding and the fact that his 2 wins have come in one turn races. He has been beaten By Vekoma in the BlueGrasss Stakes and Tacitus and Outshine in the Tampa Bay Derby. He is always well backed at the windows so in some regards he is a “money burner” and I see him as a longshot in the race. Another one I will pass on.
Country House: Bill Mott’s second entry, this colt has only a maiden win in 6 lifetime starts so why is he in here? He has been beaten by Omaha Beach and Improbable in the Arkansas Derby, By My Standards, Spinoff and Sueno in the Louisiana Derby and War of Will in the Risen star. If he can’t win the Arkansas and Louisiana Derbies how is he going to win the Kentucky Derby? He seems to have trouble getting out of the gate and he lost ground in the stretch of his last two 1-1/8 miles races. Another longshot and another colt I will pass on.
Gray Magician: I doubt that Peter Miller will secure his first Derby win with this colt. In fact he might be the longest shot on the board when the gates open. He has one win in 8 career starts, was beaten by Plus Que Parfait in Dubai (you know how I feel about horses going to Dubai to race), was 5th in an optional claiming race in January and does not have the breeding to get the 1-1/4 miles. Again, I will pass.
Spinoff: Todd Pletcher’s 2nd entry in the race, this colt has hit the board in all 4 of his career starts. He was 2nd in the Louisiana Derby to By My Standards, after grabbing the lead in mid-stretch. In that race he finished ahead of Sueno and War of Will. His speed figures have improved with every start as the distances have increased. He is a son of Hard Spun, a horse who ran 2nd in the Derby so I think that the distance should not be a problem for him in the Derby. He will likely be double digit odds in the Derby and might be a sneaky price horse in the tri or superfectas. However, I don’t think I will be playing him in the exotics as there are other colts that I prefer over him.
Master Fencer: This colt got into the Derby by way of a racing series in Japan. He certainly seems like he can handle the distance as all of his 6 career starts in Japan have been at distances of a mile or longer, including two 1-1/4 mile grass races. All that being said, I have no idea what his competition was in Japan and I will have to pass on this colt.
In the event that there is a scratch or two before the derby, these two other colts might get into the race.
Bodexpress: He is trained by Gustavo Delgado, a trainer I know nothing about who has only started 36 horses in races this year. Bodexpress is still a maiden after 5 starts. The only reason he might get in the Derby is that he ran 2nd in the Florida Derby at odds of 71-1. His breeding suggests that he will not be able to handle the 1-1/4 miles in the Derby. Three maidens have won the derby, the last one being Brokers Tip in 1933. Eleven maidens have started in the Derby since 1937 and the best finish of those was 8th place. Can’t even fathom betting on him – even with someone else’s money.
Signalman: This Ken McPeek trainee has been fairly consistent in his 7 lifetime starts, being in the money in 6 of those races. However, he has been beaten by 7 other Derby entrants in his races, but he has been in the money in 3 races over the CD surface, including a win in the Kentucky Jockey Club and a 3rd in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. If he gets in, he will likely be at double digit odds, and I might have to give him a long, hard look in the exotics.
Now the moment of truth, how will I play the race? It will be tough to leave Omaha Beach out of any discussion as to whom might win the race, but I have concerns about him as stated in my analysis. I have always liked Vekoma, but again, I think that his way of moving through the stretch may not serve him well. I will probably make a win bet on either Tacitus or Game Winner with a slight edge to Game Winner. So, my bets might look something like this - a win on Game Winner, an exacta box using Game Winner, Tacitus, Roadster and Omaha Beach. I will play a 5-colt trifecta box with these four plus Vekoma. OK, I know what you’re thinking, “This is a very chalky group of bets” I know that but the goal is to cash tickets and with this group of colts it is hard to look past the ones I have listed to find a “live longshot”. This is a very competitive race. Any one of 7 or 8 colts could easily win, so as usual I reserve the right to change my mind and make different bets than those listed above. Hopefully everyone will enjoy the event and maybe I will come home a WINNER!!!!!!!!!!
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