- Hope everyone is having a nice holiday weekend. Sorry for no posting the last couple of days, but the holiday season is upon is, for bettor or for worse, and the Head Chef is demanding my time and attention. I was at least able to make it to Aqueduct on Thanksgiving morning, and the sun seemed to break through just around the time I stepped out onto the apron around 11 A.M. It was all downhill from there from a betting standpoint anyway. There’s nowhere else I’d rather have been, but man, I was absolutely nowhere, up the track in races from four different tracks, as the lackluster live racing had me looking elsewhere.
Friday was a culture day, and one thing I can tell you is to choose a day other than the day after Thanksgiving to go to the Met, especially when Vincent Van Gogh l is in town. If NYRA got a hold of one of these babies, they wouldn’t need slots until 2009.
So I was out and away from racing, and wasn’t home in time for the Clark from Churchill and thus did not get a bet down on Magna Graduate ($10.00) nor on the exacta I’d picked right here. However, a mere cash reward is more than compensated for by not only being able to say I had it right, but having put it out there for all to see in advance of the race. I don’t bet in a way that my life is going to change whether I lose or win (though the upside is theoretically limitless, so just being able to tell people that I won is half the fun. (And on the other hand, don't you hate it when people ask you how you did, and you have no choice but to just go, “I lost,” because your colleagues at work wouldn’t understand about how your horse was five wide into a hot pace and was savaged by a filly in heat while rallying in the stretch.) So I was pleased to see that at least Walter in Las Vegas got a bet down.
While I unfortunately can’t buy any Xmas gifts with the satisfaction I earned, perhaps I can cash in today. Magna Graduate’s win is certainly flattering to Scrappy T, who he beat by ¾’s in the Discovery on Breeders Cup day. The 105 Beyer he earned that day equaled his career high, and I think he can move forward here in his first try against older horses....and he's 8-1 morning line, oh my! Certainly Badge of Silver would be tough on his best day, but he’s raced just once since April, a pointless 6th against Saint Liam in the Stephen Foster back in June. Frankel said, "He's ready.....He might be over-ready. He's breezing very good." [DRF] Sounds like he’s already making excuses.
As for the others, I’m just not scared of Host (0-1 lifetime on dirt), Imperialism (good money after bad), Mass Media (one for his last nine), Gygistar, or even Silver Wagon going first time for Dutrow (filling in, ironically, for the suspended Ralph Ziadie). I don’t think any of these are really in peak form right now, while Scrappy T, one of just two three-year olds here, could very well be sitting on a career best race in this, his third start off the layoff. I’ll be all over him if he’s anywhere near that 8-1 price.
- Too late for Indian Vale to jump into the muddled picture for three year old filly champion, but she easily handled the field of older mares in the Falls City at Churchill on Friday. When’s the next time we’ll see 2-1 on this one? Scary to read that she still has more to learn:
Velazquez said Indian Vale will be even better with maturity "and she gets a little more serious about things she needs to do." He said she still switches her leads back and forth. [Louisville Courier-Journal]