Photo: NYRA / Adam Coglianese & AE Duck Dynasty
On Saturday (Feb. 1st) in the Big Apple, the Big A has a nice 10-race card which should attract a nice crowd thanks to the influx of sports fans in town for Super Bowl XLVIII. The feature race, the $250,000 Withers Stakes
for 3-year-olds, is the only Kentucky Derby point system
prep race this weekend, worth 10-4-2-1 points to the top 4 finishers.
Considering this 1 1/16 mile event only attracted 34 nominations in which just six (6) made it to the Entry Box, makes one wonder if these lower point system races carry much weight with connections of promising 3-year-olds. After all last year, the first using the point system to determine the pecking order into the Derby starting gate, saw the runner-up Golden Soul
get in with just 14 points.
A pair of NY-breds caught the eye of Aqueduct Morning Line odds-maker, Eric Donovan, as he believes #5 – Samraat
(7-5) and #1 – Uncle Sigh
(9-5) will take the lions’ share of the action at the windows. Both have won races exhibiting a front-running style, but without much competition, as did #2 – Street Gent
(12-1) when breaking his maiden in his fourth career start. In here if their pilots, Jose Ortiz (Samraat), Pablo Morales (Uncle Sigh) and Irad Ortiz, Jr. (Street Gent) aren’t wise, they could easily set the race up for one of the other three… #3 – Scotland
(8-1), #4 – Classic Giacnroll
(5-1) or #6 – Honorable Judge
HOW I SEE IT
: Having the rail, Uncle Sigh will have to gun from the gate to the lead, joined by Samraat on the first turn. From there, the race is in the hands of Morales and Jose Ortiz, whether they both can harness their mounts speed early, then see who has enough left in the tank for the stretch drive.
Street Gent will be joined by Scotland and Honorable Judge in the second flight as Cornelio Velasquez will hope for a pace meltdown when he asks Classic Giacnroll for his best strides in the late stages of this contest.
The pace meltdown will occur, Classic Giacnroll will benefit from it and having his 3rd start off layoff should find him in top form for his first graded stakes win, while Scotland remains a maiden with his 3rd runner-up effort in 4 career outings and Street Gent completes the Trifecta, leaving the two NY-breds to return to race against “their own kind” in the future.
: $10 WP #4 and $2 Exacta Box 4-3-2
On Thursday (Jan. 30th) at Laurel Park
, apprentice Trevor McCarthy
rode three (3) winners. The one which was quite amazing was in Race 3 aboard #3 – Chi Chi’s Pride
. Shortly after leaving the starting gate, McCarthy lost the irons when the 4-year-old gelding broke right and then quickly left. Here’s the “wild ride”…
Recapping my previous blog posted selections at Laurel Park selections from Saturday, January 25th had 5 winners from 9 races (2 Top Selections; payoffs in BOLD
) having $2 WIN pay-offs of $4.20
(1st race), $4.40 (2nd), $6.20 (3rd), $2.60
(4th). and $26.80 (5th).
The BEST BET of the Day
(3: 0-0-2) Jessethemarine
(6th race: 7-2 M/L; 9-2 PT) stalked the pace three to four wide while under a light hold, took closer aim past the 3/8 pole, came under pressure into the lane, but failed to kick on and faded to finish 5th.
The LONGSHOT PICK
(3: 1-1-0) Javerre
(7th race: 6-1 M/L; 9-2 PT) bobbled leaving the starting gate, was then rushed up to prompt the early pace-setter and had nothing left in upper stretch and gave way, finishing 6th.
– the BEST BET of the Day selection will never be a M/L favorite and the LONGSHOT PICK will simply be the runner having the highest M/L odds among my top picks for an entire card.
: Statistics provided for the BEST BET and LONGSHOT PICK in parentheses represent the Number of Picks: Wins-Places-Shows. For example, the BEST BET (10: 1-2-3) was picked 10 times resulting in 1 winner, 2 places and 3 shows. In the past, I would reset these numbers at the start of each meet. For 2014, I reset these numbers on Jan. 1st in order to chart results on a yearly basis.
Full card selections for Saturday, Feb. 1st at Laurel Park
posted below are based on a FAST dirt track as the forecast calls for sunny skies with temps in the low 40's. Selections posted were handicapped based on making multi-race wagers such as DOUBLE’s, Pick-3’s and Pick-4’s using all three (3) listed for each race in each leg.
1st race – $8,000 Maiden Claiming for 4 y.o. and up – 5½ furlongs
#6 – Giant’s Fantasy (2-1)
#1 – Vanna’s Go Point (4-1)
#7 – Irish Beau (3-1)
2nd race – $6,250 Claiming for 4 y.o. & up – 6 furlongs
#7 – Cherokee Empire
(3-1) *** BEST BET ***
#3 – August Osage (2-1)
#2 – Brady (20-1)
3rd race – $25,000 Claiming N2L for F&M 4 y.o. and up – One mile
#8 – Curly W (6-1)
#1 – Breezy Girl (7-2)
#3 – I’m Smokin Hot (5-2)
4th race – $25,000 Maiden Claiming for F&M 4 y.o. and up – 7 furlongs
#5 – Royal Sparkle (5-2)
#4 – Mindfulness (6-1)
#2 – Kevin’s Kool Kat (7-2)
5th race – $5,000 Waiver Claiming for 4 y.o. and up – About 1 1/16 mile
#9 – Harmonizer
(8-1) $$$ LONGSHOT PLAY $$$
#7 - Pretty Mr. D --- SCRATCHED ---
#5 – Sky Maggy (7-2)
#3 – Cattail Creek (5-2)
6th race – $50,000 Optional Claiming for 3 y.o. fillies – One mile
#5 – Tupancy Links (6-5)
#4 – Star Omega (10-1)
#1 – Fleet Sixteen (9-2)
7th race – $5,000 Starter Alllowance for 4 y.o. and up – About 1 1/16 miles
#3 – Secret Jackpot (5-1)
#2 – Plymouth Square (4-1)
#1 – Shamroge (5-2)
8th race – $25,000 Optional Claiming for F&M 4 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#3 – Frivolity (7-2)
#1 – Mountain Echo (5-1)
#7 – Henny’s Hurricane (6-1)
9th race – $5,000 Claiming N2L for 4 y.o. and up – About 1 1/16 miles
#5 – Dry Run (3-1)
#7 – Snappy (15-1)
#3 – Bear’s Accountant (7-5)