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Sunday, October 02, 2005

Sunday Night Notes - Oct 2

- When it comes to first-time starters, I for one generally let the board be my guide, but there are times in which betting on pedigree without looking at the odds can result in some nice mutuel surprises. At Belmont on Sunday, Kiaran McLaughlin sent out a first-out two-year old filly named Capote’s Crown. She’s by Capote out of Majesty’s Crown (Magesterial). That makes her a half-sister to multiple graded stakes winners Smoke Glacken and Smokey Glacken, the latter of which returned to form to take the recent Floral Park Handicap at Saratoga. Yet Capote’s Crown was 10-1 morning line, went off at a whopping 21-1 and won off by 2 ½ in a manner that her pedigree would suggest she was capable of. McLaughlin doesn’t win with many two year old first timers. According to Formulator, this was just his third in 57 starters going back five years. If you liked Capote’s Crown on her breeding, that could have been a case of more information than you needed to know.

Finishing second was another royally-bred firster, Inda, trained by Shug McGaughey. She’s by A.P. Indy out of Queena, which makes her a very expensive half-sister to graded winners Brahms and La Reina. Inda was a bit dull at 7-1, but completed a $323 exacta. The bettors instead opted for a couple of fillies with form, including Preciousness, making her second start for Pletcher. I’ve been noting how well he’s been doing with second-timers and this seemed a likely candidate, but besides not really getting bet (5-2 morning line favorite but stuck at 4-1), she was sweaty underneath in the paddock, and glistening with sweat all over by the time she got on the track. I’m far from being expert in making evaluations based on appearance, but this one seemed like a textbook example. Also, her tongue was hanging out of the side of the mouth, and while I have no idea whether that has any implications, it made her look goofy and not like a horse I wanted to invest my money in. She actually ran fairly well, but came up 3 lengths short in third.

- He’s Got Grit looked a bit like Lost in the Fog exploding out of the gate and taking the highly-touted two year-old Dr. Pleasure out of the game from the start, and that was really it as he went on to take the Cowdin and run his record to four for four. He slowed down steadily after the first quarter, but the race was already over as Dr. Pleasure was under a futile drive going into the turn. Steve Asmussen trains this ultra-speedy son of Songandaprayer out of a stakes winning With Approval mare. He has some unusual inbreeding – he’s 3x4 to both Caro and Well Decorated, names you don’t usually see duplicated in pedigrees. I wouldn’t think he’s a Juvenile contender having not run longer than 6 ½.

- Sensation was a disappointment when well-bet in the Spinaway, but bounced back to take the G3 Astarita in a time nearly a second faster than that of He’s Got Grit. The Juvenile Filly division got a little more wide open with the defeat of Wild Fit in the G2 Oak Leaf Stakes at Santa Anita. Winner Diamond Omi (Giants Causeway) is a half-sister to the 1996 Juvenile Filly winner Storm Song.

However, keep in mind that the Juvenile Filly will be run around one turn at Belmont, and while Diamond Omi has improved for Baffert around two turns, Wild Fit closed to win in sprint distances at Del Mar, and may absolutely love the route at Belmont. And anything that will make Folklore take more money will result in that much more value on the filly that wins.

1 Comment:

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