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HRN Original Blog:
Handicapper's Corner

Mizdirection Rolls Again in the BC Turf Sprint!

Mizdirection repeats in the BC Turf Sprint!
Photo: Don August

In another dynamic performance on Racing’s championship weekend, Mizdirection repeated in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint. Sent off at the 5/2 favorite, Mizdirection laid closer to the pace this year, but similar to last year, closed stoutly on the outside to win going away. The 5-year-old Mizzen Mast mare was 4th early, moved up through the turn to engage the leaders and won by a half length.


“If you give her a shot and something to run at, she usually gets the job done,” co-owner Jim Rome, said.


With the win, jockey Mike Smith, increased his lead as the Breeders’ Cup winningest rider by notching his 20th victory in the event. “I broke better this time (compared to last year’s race).  Much more alert. I took advantage of the break and I took the rail right away, which is the best place to be turning right.  You get a lot of momentum coming out of that turn going left.  Man, she was right there. I was worried I might have been a little too close, but I’m glad I was because the lead horses weren’t stopping. Reneesgotzip wouldn’t give up.”


Mizdirection’s target this year was the same as well. 4-year-old filly, Reneesgotzip sprinted clear early on through fractions of 21.47 for the first quarter mile and 43.36 seconds for the half mile split. When encountered by Tightend Touchdown and Mizdirection in the late stages, Reneesgotzip dug down, but just could not hold the lead. She finished in a dead heat for second with Tightend Touchdown as the $4.50-1 second choice.


“We’re disappointed, but not in the filly. She ran a winning race. The post (No. 4) cost us. Being drawn inside hurt us, but the filly ran a winning race. She just got out-nodded. “She did everything she could do and Edwin (Maldonado) rode a great race. We knew with the seven-horse (Tightend Touchdown) in there that he would press us and he did. I’ve got no complaints,” trainer Peter Miller.


Tightend Touchdown was the only Eastern based horse to hit board. He tracked Reneesgotzip early, and raced gallantly between her and the winner down the stretch to salvage a portion of the place. “He ran good. I’m very, very happy. From what I saw he had a great trip. I’ll settle for the deadheat. This is even better than I first thought. This is a dream come true. I can see how people get hooked on this,” trainer Jason Servis.


Going forward, plans for Mizdirection are to travel to Kentucky next week and be sold at auction in Keeneland’s Breeding Stock Sale. “She loves it here, eh? She loves Santa Anita. She’s seven-for-seven on the turf. She’s really tenacious, but it’s quite sad that she is getting on a plane tomorrow and heading for the sales,” trainer Mike Puype.


If this turns out to be Mizdirection’s final time on the track, she retires with a record 11-4-1 from 17 starts and earnings of $1,719,621.



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Meet Jasen Mangrum

My interest in the Sport of Kings goes back over 25 years with my father taking me with his friends to the old Ak-Sar-Ben Race Course in Omaha, NE.  From those early experiences I was able to read the Daily Racing Form before the age of 10.  Once The Woodlands opened in Kansas City in 1988, I became totally hooked on the sport studying racing charts after homework and tennis practice.  In recent years, with the explosion of handicapping tournaments, my love for handicapping the races has risen to a new level.  Primarily focused on New York, Chicago and Louisiana racing, I have now been forced to study races far and wide in attempt to find “cap horses” in the tournaments I play.  I have also dabbled in horse ownership within syndicates and on my own.


My fondest memories in racing include Silver Charm’s 1997 Kentucky Derby victory.  Both my father and I selected him, which made for a memorable day.  The best race I’ve seen was Tiznow’s first Breeders Cup Classic win in 2000 when he outdueled Giant’s Causeway down the length of the Churchill Downs stretch.   My biggest windfall as a gambler was a pool-scooping pick-4 win, paying over $6,600 at The Woodlands in 2005.


The point of this blog is to get everyone out there a few winners, but also to go in depth at how I come to the conclusions that I do.  From week to week, I’ll explain angles I think are important to locate winners.  I encourage others to post picks they like too, but please explain how you come to your conclusions.  That way everyone can learn a little more about this great game, and add another weapon to their handicapping arsenal.-Best of luck, Jasen Mangrum

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