Wednesday's Bailout Special: It's a 'New York Style' Keeneland pick

October 08, 2019 06:12pm
During Keeneland’s Spring Meet, I introduced my “Bailout Special” which, simply, is a handicapping piece that highlights which horse I think will win each card’s finale.
Had a bad day at the track? Use the “Bailout Special” to get some of that money back. Have a good day at the track and want to finish strong? There’s the “Bailout Special.” Maybe you’re looking for a bold single to end a Pick 4 or Pick 5 sequence. Use the “Bailout Special.” The horse I land on won’t always be the horse with the best perceived value. Neither will it be the horse I think “could win if the pace scenario sets up perfectly.” My selection will be the horse that I think has the absolute best chance to win the race regardless of projected odds. Were some of my winners (I went 7-for-16 in the Spring Meet) the prohibitive favorite? Yes. Were some of the winners so-called easy selections? Yes. But the goal is to pick the winner of the last race of the day at Keeneland every day they run. I’ll have some horses scratch, and if the weather is bad and the finale comes off the turf, there may not be a pick to play. For the first weekend of this fall meet my selections finished second, second and first from Thursday through Sunday. On opening day, I actually chose an also-eligible that made it into the race; my other choice won it. We’ll look for another victory as racing resumes Wednesday. Race 8 $30,000 maiden claiming 3-years old and up 7 furlongs on dirt; post time 4:57 p.m. ET There are only eight races on the Wednesday card and, of course, the finale looks like the toughest one to handicap. We have some horses dropping in class and others that don’t look like they don’t belong. The beauty (or bane, depending on your point of view) of handicapping Keeneland races is that owners and trainers want to run at Keeneland because of the nature of the boutique meet. Sometimes horses get entered in races that they don’t have a chance to win just so the owner can say, “We raced at Keeneland.” There are maybe four or five of the 12 horses in the field that can make quite a case as the race winner. Panforte Di Siena (post 4) is coming off the 84-day shelf after finishing fourth in a sloppy main track $90,000 maiden special weight race at Saratoga in July. Now he’s in for a $30,000 claiming tag. What happened? I’m not going to bet him here to find out. Holly Sun (post 5) is coming off a much longer layoff. He was last seen in February at Laurel where he finished third, beaten by 3 ¾ lengths in a $40,000 maiden special weight race. He had what looks like a decent workout on September 21, but his last racing action was 244 days ago. If he beats us, he beats us. I’m pretty intrigued by Ready and Rich (post 7). He’s dropping from a $50,000 maiden claiming race at Churchill Downs last month when he finished fifth, beaten by 10 ½ lengths. Although he has yet to break his maiden in 16 tries, he has finished second seven times and has hit the board in more than half of his starts. At 10-1 on the morning line, he may have value, but as described above, I’m simply looking for the horse with the best chance to win. Sneads (post 10) checks a lot of boxes for me. He has finished in the trifecta his last two starts, is dropping in class, is cutting back in distance and has shown to run strong late. He would be my second choice. I’m going with New York Style (post 12) as my “Bailout Special” on Wednesday at Keeneland. He only has two career races under his belt, but also has what I feel is the most upside here. He showed speed in his debut and tired in a six-furlong sprint in August at Ellis Park. He gets a pass for that.  In New York Style’s next race for trainer Rodolphe Brisset at Kentucky Downs, he did not break for the early lead, and was held back deep in the pack for most of the race, being unleashed at the top of the stretch. He made up a lot of ground in that mile race, and races at Kentucky Downs seems to measure longer than they actually are because of the undulating nature of the turf course. New York Style was seventh, back 7 ½ lengths at the top of the stretch and made up three positions and about three full lengths to end up fourth beaten by 4 ¾ lengths. He faced quality runners that day. New York Style is the “Bailout Special” play for Wednesday given I feel he has the best chance to parlay his drop in class, cutback in distance and experience with the jockey into a win.


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