Category Archives: Selections

Daily selections from racetracks around the county

Breeder’s Cup Del Mar 2017 – Friday

The first day of Breeder’s Cup 2017 looks very competitive, and includes a talented European contingent. Let’s take a look at the Friday races.

Race 5 – Marathon

  • 7 Hard Aces is the early favorite, and deservedly so. He was second in this race last year and should have no trouble at today’s distance. He’s also been competing against graded horses all year. He’s reasonably comfortable at Del Mar. Hard to imagine he doesn’t run in the top three.
  • 3 Destin was very good as a three year old, but he’s only had three starts this year, the last one a disappointing 5th in the JCGC. He’s not raced at a mile and a half or farther since just missing last year’s Belmont. He’s bred well enough for the distance and I like his pressing style. Pletcher is a clever trainer and I think maybe he had a plan with Destin. I’m going to take a (small) stab with him.
  • 4 Estrechada is listed at 3-1 on the morning line, which is a sign of the strength of the field. The switch to Javier Castellano two races back seems to have made a difference and even though his last four races were on the turf,  he’s shown he can handle the dirt. I think he has to be used in the verticals
  • 1 Archanova has had something of  down year with no wins in six races, but has shown a little bit more talent racing at longer distances . Hs last two races were encouraging, especially the Birdstone at Saratoga at today’s distance. I couldn’t put him in the top three – especially if he is anywhere near the 4-1 morning line odds – but it wouldn’t be a total surprise if snagged a minor piece of the purse.
  • 8 Dressed in Hermes is a back hole prospect.
  • My selections are 7 – 3 – 4, with 1 and 8 backhole prospects.

Race 6 – Juvenile Fillies Turf

  • This should be one of the more competitive races in the Breeder’s Cup. My advice is to start with the horses that have done well in the top prep races – Moyglare Stud Stakes and the Cheveley Park Stakes in Europe, and the Miss Grillo, Natalma Stakes and Jessamine in North America. While European horses haven’t done much in this race since it was instituted, things might be different this year with half the field having started across the pond.
  • At one time the Miss Grillo was THE prep race, but in the last couple of years Miss Grillo winners have not been as dominating. Still, it gets most of the top 2 year old grass fillies in New York. There is nobody better at prepping a young turf filly than Chad Brown and that is where I am going in this race. 8 Significant Form is making her third start in this race and clearly this is what Brown had in mind for this horse.
  • 2 Happily is one of Aiden O’Brien’s top young fillies, having won the prestigious Moyglare Stud Stakes and Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere, both Group 1 races. Two issues to consider with this horse: all but one of her races was on a softened turf, and the Euros race turf sprints on the straight. Experience around turns is often an important element of winning these races. Still, she is a talented horse and gets the nod for second.
  • 1 Best Performance started out on the dirt and that is where her only win came. Since then she has not been able to finish first, but her four seconds in a row suggest that she’s got a lot of talent. Certainly at the odds she’s worth putting into the verticals.
  • 11 Rushing Fall is the other Chad Brown horse. She won the Jessamine at Keeneland on the soft turf and should be running well in the stretch.
  • There are at least five other horses who have a chance to make the exacta/trifecta. 13, Juliet Capulet, 12 Dixie Moon, 6 Orbolution, 7 Capia Temptress, and 10 September.
  • My selections are 8-2-1-11.

Race 7 – Dirt Mile

  • This figures to be an exciting race. Sharp Azteca, Mor Spirit, Battle of Midway, Cupid, Accelerate, and Practical Joke are all  good enough to win. I’m going to put 3 Sharp Azteca on top. He seems to be in top shape – check out the work at Del Mar of 58.3. There is plenty of speed in this race, although none of them should touch the top choice if jockey Paco Lopez decides to let him run loose.
  • 9 Battle of Midway is an interesting horse. He should be tracking the front group and clearly he’s a better horse at a mile than at longer distances. He’s listed at 10-1 in the program, but I expect the odds to be higher.
  • 6 Mor Spirit is 3 for 3 at the mile distance, including an explosive victory in the Met Mile. Unfortunately that race completely depleted him and trainer Bob Baffert gave him close to five months off. If he’s recovered, he’s a major player. Mike Smith stays around for the ride and that is a plus in these big races.
  • 8 Accelerate is the hometown horse, with 2 wins, a second and a third in four starts at Del Mar. He’s aptly named since not only can he run near the front, he can close with burst. He’d be no surprise in this affair.
  • The other horses I’ll look at in the verticals are 2 Giant Expectations, 5 Awesome Slew and 10 Practical Joke.
  • My selections are 3-9-6-8

Race 8 – Juvenile Turf

  • Another race where there are a lot of contenders. I’m going to go with one of the Euro’s, 1 Mendelssohn. Of all the Euros, I think he’s the likeliest to adapt to the Del Mar Turf. He went off at 50-1 and finished a strong second in his prep, the Group 1 Darley Dehurst Stakes at Newmarket. He seems to be on the improve, and while you won’t get 50-1 I’m sure he’ll be bettable.
  • 13 My Boy Jack is the West Coast entrant here. He’s only won one race, the West Coast Prep for today’s race, but he definitely looked like a horse on the serious improve. He’s lost a couple of times to Encumbered, but I like his chances of turning that around.
  • 6 Masar is the lowest odds Euro coming into this race. He really came into his own at Chantilly in France, and while he might be underlayed at 9-2, he looks to have good outs.
  • 9 Encumbered is 15-1 on the ML, but he’s a better horse than that. He was buried in the Front Runner, but that race was on the dirt. In his last two races on the turf he was a solid winner. I think he might be ignored because of that last race, but he seems to love the Del Mar turf and that makes him a real contender.
  • Other horses to look at include 2 Untamed Domain, 5 Masar, 7 James Garfield, and12 Hemp Hemp Hurray.
  • My selections are 1-13-6-9.

Race 9 – Distaff

  • Of the Friday races, this may be the most predictable. There are three horses at 15-1 or better, and they should be. The other five horses are between 5/2 and 9/2. It would be an enormous upset if one of those five horses didn’t win the race. I’m putting 5 Elate on top. She looks to be on top of her game, crushing a field of seven in the Beldame and dominating in the Alabama. She’s a 3-year old that seems to really be coming into her own.
  • 2 Stellar Wind has been beautifully handled by trainer John Sadler. She has the appearance of a horse with some physical issues, but if Sadler has her at the top of her game, she’s a major contender.
  • 4 Abel Tasman has had a very good year, not finishing worse than second in any of her six races. She’s 2 for 2 at the distance and one out of two at Del Mar.If there is such a thing as home field advantage it might be this horse.
  • 6 Forever  Unbridled is a grinder that is almost 50% win for her career. She’s only had two starts this year, but they were both wins. I like the change of riders from Rosario to Johnny V.
  • 7 Paradise Woods has some backhole chances.
  • My selections are 5-2-4.

Belmont October 28

Race 1

  • 5  Rose Garden
  • 7  Ormolu Lu
  • 6  Double Cast
  • Secondary (1)

Race 2

  • 3  Saratoga Wildcat
  • 1/1A Conquest Twister/Major League
  • 4  Set the Trappe
  • Secondary (2, 5)

Race 3

  • 3  Throw the Deuce
  • 10  Chasindamoney
  • 1  Thank You So Much

Race 4

  • 5  Taoiseach
  • 10  Nonna’s Boy
  • 6  Point Hope
  • Secondary (2, 7, 9)

Race 5

  • 11  Fast Boat
  • 5  Blockade
  • 6  Witch Doctor
  • Secondary (3, 7, 8, 9)

Race 6

  • 2  Danyelli
  • 7  Mo Shopping
  • 5  Tap Tap Taparoo
  • [13  Spirit Fly]
  • Secondary (3)

Race 7

  • 5  Time and Motion
  • 7  Off Limits
  • 12  Decked Out
  • Secondary (1, 2, 3, 10)

Race 8

  • 3  Miss Sky Warrior
  • 2  Tejana
  • 7  Eskenformoney

Race 9

  • 11  Divining Rod
  • 10  Mr. Crow
  • 1  Tale of S’avall
  • Secondary (5, 7, 9)

Race 10

  • 1  Way Early
  • 6  War Chest
  • 4  Bourbon Currency
  • Secondary (2, 8, 9)

Belmont October 14

Race 1

  • 1  Rematin
  • 3  Buddy Anthony
  • 6  Northern Grey
  • Secondary (2)

Race 2

  • 6  Kulin Rock
  • 2  Now in a Dive
  • 8  Falistar
  • Secondary (1)

Race 3

  • 5  Sleigh Ride
  • 2  Tiz the Light
  • 1  Total Control

Race 4

  • 5  May Flowers
  • 2  Vigor
  • 9  Epping Forest
  • Secondary (1, 3, 4)

Race 5

  • 3  The Great Samurai
  • 8  Bancroft Hall
  • 1  Professor Snape
  • 7  Two Down One to Go

Race 6

  • 11  Sea Foam
  • 3  Encryption Key
  • 2  My Mr. Wonderful
  • [13  Nolinski]
  • [15  Barbarossa]
  • Secondary (6)

Race 7

  • 8  Theycallhimthekid
  • 1/1A  Very Very Stella
  • 6  Grand Sky
  • Secondary (2, 3, 11)

Race 8

  • 6  Engage
  • 2  Happy  Like a Fool
  • 4  Mojovation

Race 9

  • 3  Thais
  • 4  Party Boat
  • 7  Bellavais

Race 10

  • 7  Bellows
  • 1  Spring Emperor
  • 3  Cosmic Thunder
  • Secondary (5, 9, 10)

Belmont October 7

Race 1

  • 3  Night Time Lady
  • 4  Cocktail Countess
  • 3  Brattata
  • Secondary (7)

Race 2

  • 1  Hookup
  • 4  Patternrecognition
  • 3  Copper Town

Race 3

  • 5  Disco Partner
  • 1  Snowday
  • 2  We Deer You

Race 4

  • 6  Freedom Warrior
  • 9  Power Boss
  • 2  Ambassador Jim
  • Secondary (1, 3)

Race 5

  • 4  Krampus
  • 6  Hembree
  • 9  California Swing
  • Secondary (2, 8)

Race 6

  • 6  Allured
  • 9  Kurosawa
  • 8  St. Augustine
  • Secondary (2, 4)

Race 7

  • 8  Tale of E Dubai
  • 4  Story to Tell
  • 6  Helooksthepart
  • Secondary (1, 5)

Race 8

  • 1  Kowboy Karma
  • 6  Good Magic
  • 8  Aveenu Malcainu
  • Secondary (3, 7, 11)

Race 9

  • 6  Bricks and Mortar
  • 2  Yoshida
  • 4  Frostmourne
  • 7  Hieroglyphics
  • Secondary (9)

Race 10

  • 4  Pavel
  • 3  Good Samaritan
  • 7  Keen Ice
  • Secondary (5)

Race 11

  • 7  Red Knight
  • 1  Storm Prophet
  • 12  Jupiter Rising
  • Secondary (3, 4)

Belmont September 30

Race 1

  • 4  Battle Ready
  • 7  River Deep
  • 2  Valdocco
  • Secondary (5)

Race 2

  • 5  Tipsy Kitten
  • 7  Harlan’s Quest
  • 4  Lone Trader
  • Secondary (1, 10)

Race 3

  • 3  Road to Meath
  • 6  Avery Island
  • 2  Biblical
  • Secondary (1, 7)

Race 4

  • 3  Funtastic
  • 5  Sogio
  • 1  Hot and Heavy
  • Secondary (4, 6, 8)

Race 5

  • 4  Beasley
  • 6  Always a Suspect
  • 3  Favorable Outcome
  • Secondary (1)

Race 6

  • 5  Mr. Euro
  • 8  Consumerconfidence
  • 2  Peculiar Sensation
  • Secondary (7)

Race 7

  • 5  Mr. Crow
  • 7  Mr. Hideaway
  • 2  El Deal
  • Secondary (1)

Race 8

  • 5  Voting Control
  • 4  Seabhac
  • 6  Maraud
  • Secondary (1, 8)

Race 9

  • 1  Elate
  • 5  Money’soncharlotte
  • 7  Eskenformoney
  • Secondary (2, 3)

Race 10

  • 4  Sadler’s Joy
  • 3  Oscar Performance
  • 6  Ascend
  • 8  Mekhtaal
  • Secondary (1, 5, 9)

Belmont September 23

Remember selections are for a fast/firm track.

Race 1

  • 6  City of the Dead
  • 5  Dream Fever
  • 1  In the Mood

Race 2

  • 4  Warranty
  • 2  Fahan Mura
  • 5  City Section
  • Secondary (3, 7, 8)

Race 3

  • 2  Sassy Little Lila
  • 5  Off Limits
  • 4  Time and Motion
  • Secondary (1)

Race 4

  • 3  Bar None
  • 4 Guick
  • 2  The Orphan Miracle
  • Secondary (1, 6)

Race 5

  • 4  News Alert
  • 1  Tommy T
  • 2  Switzerland

Race 6

  • 7  Runaway Posse
  • 9  Spectrolite
  • 12  Portando
  • Secondary (3, 4)

Race 7

  • 4  Wake Me Up at Noon
  • 11  Congruity 
  • 12  Robin Hood
  • Secondary (2)

Race 8

  • 8  Rapt
  • 3  Gauguin
  • 10  Aquaphobia
  • Secondary (2, 9)

Race 9

  • 4  Divining Rod
  • 3  Ross
  • 5  Sharp Azteca
  • 1  Tom’s Ready

Race 10

  • 12  Zigmund
  • 6  Diamond Setter
  • 9  Brockmoninoff

Belmont September 16

Race 1

  • 6  Shadow Surprise
  • 5  Bar None
  • 3  Helluva Choice
  • Secondary (1, 4, 7)

Race 2

  • 6  Love Your Buttons
  • 4  Admirals Cove
  • 10 Culture Carrier
  • Secondary (2, 3, 8)

Race 3

  • 4  St. Augustine
  • 1  Prolific
  • 3  Debating

Race 4

  • 1A/1 – Doinwhatshelikes/Ritzy Lass
  • 6  Littlemissbusiness
  • 3  Josephine’s Moment

Race 5

  • 4  History Supreme
  • 8  Wild and Funny
  • 5  Rushing Fall
  • Secondary (1, 6)

Race 6

  • 9  Fiscal Discipline
  • 8  Weekend Hottie
  • 5  Silly Numbers
  • Secondary (2, 3)

Race 7

  • 9  Gio’s Calling
  • 3  Mannerin Aamer
  • 10  Black Tide
  • 2  Cerise’s Princess

Race 8

  • 2  Meantime
  • 1  Harlan Punch
  • 9  Clubman
  • 11  Spieth
  • Secondary (6, 3, 4)

Race 9

  • 6  Uni
  • 3  La Coronel
  • 8  Vue Fantastique
  • Secondary (2, 4, 10)

Race 10

  • 11  Cloud Control
  • 12  Performance Bonus
  • 8  Carribean
  • 4  Cordero
  • Secondary (1)

Belmont September 10

Race 1

  • 7  Kentucky Dancer 
  • 5  Call Her Karma
  • 3  Making Havoc
  • Secondary (1, 2)

Race 2

  • 10  Voting Control
  • 11  Ambassador Jim
  • 2  Power Boss
  • Preferred first time starters – 6 Raise Em Up and 8 Arch Value

Race 3

  • 1  Dwizard
  • 7  Givetheman a Cigar
  • 3 Zonic
  • Secondary (6)

Race 4

  • 5  Air Vice Marshal
  • 8  Homewood Field
  • 7  Lucullan
  • Secondary (3, 6)

Race 5

  • 8  Reconsider It
  • 1  Prima Attrice
  • 5  Wish Upon
  • [11 Kat O Mine]
  • Secondary (3, 7, 10)

Race 6

  • 7  Gotta Curlin
  • 2  Copper Town
  • 5  Fuel the Bern
  • Secondary (1, 4, 6)

Race 7

  • 7  Tiznoble
  • 5  Polar Axis
  • 1  Rapscallion
  • Secondary (3, 10, 12)

Race 8

  • 6  White Flag
  • 7  Big Handsome
  • 5  Proforma
  • Secondary (1, 2, 3)

Race 9

  • 3  Parade
  • 7  Knarsdale
  • 6   Jamyson ‘n Ginger
  • Secondary (5)

Race 10

  • 9  Sly Ranger
  • 1  Crazy About Jazz
  • 7  Veil Dance
  • Secondary (11, 8)

Belmont September 9

Race 1

  • 2  My Golden Rose
  • 7  Nisha
  • 6 Claivoyant Lady
  • 4  Gobi

Race 2

  • 10  Devine Entry
  • 7  Factor This
  • 9  Triangulate
  • Secondary (6)

Race 3

  • 1  Portfolio Manager
  • 3  Carlino
  • 6  Cinderela El Crome
  • Secondary (ALL)

Race 4

  • 5  Coal Truth
  • 6  Super Sermon
  • 1  Allured
  • Secondary (2)

Race 5

  • 1  Kahrumana
  • 7  Scheme
  • 10  Fancy Kitten
  • 5  Vagabond
  • Secondary (2, 4, 8)

Race 6

  • 1  Wake Island
  • 5  Length
  • 3  Speighgal
  • Secondary (6, 8)

Race 7

  • 3  Itsinthestars
  • 11  Treatherlikestar
  • 12 High Jingo
  • Secondary (4, 6, 7, 9)

Race 8

  • 6  Far From Over
  • 1  Backsideofthemoon
  • 3  Conquest Windy city
  • 2  Doyouknowsomething
  • Secondary (4)

Race 9

  • 3  Blacktype 
  • 4  Camelot Kitten
  • 9  Night Prowler
  • 8  Revved Up
  • Secondary (2, 6, 7)

Race 10

  • 11  Tu Exageres
  • 6  Minerology
  • 7  Asphalt Paving
  • Secondary (2, 4, 5, 8)

Saratoga September 2

We’re going into the last weekend of the Saratoga meet with a good 12-race Saturday Card. I was there on Travers weekend and had a great time.  On to the Saturday card.

Race 1

  • 5  Lookin at Blessing
  • 9  Borse Vento
  • 1  Driven by Thunder
  • Secondary (6)

Race 2

  • [12  Voting Control]
  • 9  Telecommunication
  • 4  A I Initiative
  • 2  Let’s Go Mick 
  • Secondary (3, 6)

Race 3

  • 3  Bluegrass Jamboree
  • 9  Frosty Gal
  • 6  Quick on the Draw
  • 7  Never Hungover
  • Secondary (4)

Race 4

  • 2  Shalako
  • 11  Turbo Street
  • 7  Dancetrack
  • Secondary (1, 5)

Race 5

  • 3  Funtastic
  • 1  Lunaire
  • 8  J. S. Choice
  • Secondary (2, 4, 5, 6)

Race 6

  • 9  Lionite
  • 6  Bourbon Resolution
  • 5  Slot
  • Secondary (2, 7)

Race 7

  • 6  Gift Box
  • 3  Warrior’s Club
  • 1  Still Krz
  • Secondary (2, 4, 8)

Race 8

  • 4  Create a Dream
  • 6  Thais
  • 2  Wild About Harry
  • Secondary (1, 5, 12)

Race 9

  • 4  Bricks and Mortar
  • 9  Rocketry
  • 8  Makarios
  • 2  Yoshida

Race 10

  • 4  Pure Silver
  • 1  Separationofpowers
  • 3  Lady Ivanka

Race 11

  • 2  Gun Runner
  • 1  Neolithic
  • 3  Rally Cry
  • Secondary (4)

Race 12

  • 7  Sarandia
  • 8  Harmonize
  • 4  War Flag
  • Secondary (2, 3)