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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Notes - March 29

- The roles will be reversed in the Florida Derby as Barbaro draws the awful ten post, and Flashy Bull, stuck on the outside for the Holy Bull and Fountain of Youth, gets an ideal spot in post two. Barbaro’s trainer Michael Matz took the draw in stride - "Heck, if he gets that for the Kentucky Derby we'll be happy." [DRF] He also knows that Barbaro has no need to win the Florida Derby. He has enough graded earnings, and can get the race he needs without necessarily being first under the wire.

It will be eight weeks – 56 days - since Barbaro’s last start when he goes to the post on Saturday. Since his debut race, his races have come off layoffs of 46, 43, and 34 days. Taking a look at Matz’s stats on Formulator, over the past year he’s won at 27% in the 31-60 day layoff category (24% without Barbaro’s three wins). If you narrow it down to the 55-60 day range, more applicable in this case, he has four winners and a second with ten such starters over the last 12 months. So he certainly is capable of keeping his horses sharp without racing, which he’s going to have to do to pull off a Derby win with this strategy. But this all assumes that Barbaro is in this class racing over a dry fast dirt track which he has never raced on before.

- The Wood has lost one contender and gained another, but the result seems to be a net loss. Strong Contender will opt for the Blue Grass instead, and that’s a bummer for us here in the Big Apple. As much as I’d like to consider him a serious Derby contender, it’s hard to believe that Ward can pull this off with a horse that will be making his third start just three weeks before the big race. Added to the Wood is Tampa Bay Derby winner Deputy Glitters. According to the Form, other horses considered definite for the Wood are Bob and John, Greeley's Legacy, Keyed Entry, Like Now, Scanlon's Song, and Showing Up.

- Nine out of the ten race card at Gulfstream on Wednesday were claming races, four of those of the maiden variety. I guess they’re saving the good races for Saturday. Thursday sees the return of Grade 1 winner (Frizette) Balletto (Timber Country), making her first start since running second to Sweet Catomine in the 2004 BC Juv Fillies; she had colic surgery last year. Her second dam is champion Althea.

- Walter is as hot as Jaromir Jagr (well, almost) with those two furlong baby races at Santa Anita, tabbing Erin’s Kristina ($6) today. Neil Drysdale took the finale with maiden winner Trade Only, graduating on the turf in her 4th start. She’s by Unbridled, out of a Danzig mare who is a half-sister to A.P. Indy.

- You gotta love those British bookmakers – Cashmans has installed champion Rock of Gibraltar, a seven time Group 1 winner, and second at 4-5 to longshot Domedriver in the 2002 BC Mile, as the 4-6 favorite to be the leading first year sire of winners in Britain and Ireland this year. He’s by Danehill, out of a Be My Guest mare, which makes him 3x3 to Northern Dancer. In addition, he has a 3rd cross of Northern Dancer’s dam Natalma via his half sister Spring Adieu, making him 4x4x4 to that broodmare.

6 Comments:

Walter said...

...more baby race stuff...it's a good thing Larry Z isn't entered today, because i have some hella-good reports on two of the entrants here, Warren Road (3/1 ml) and Hot Flame (9/2 ml)...both look speedy, and they're hard to seperate, but i'll give a slight nod to Hot Flame...Atkinson was aboard for his Mar 20 drill, btw, and he's named to ride here...more likely i'll be using an exacta box than betting either one to win, but let's check those prices first...as an added bonus, the red-hot Ward/Baze combo send out the 2/1 ml favorite, Seattle TR...no doubt that one will pull a ton of money, and i have a negative report on that one...he dosn't appear to be that quick from the gate, and also note that he hasn't been keeping company with Yo Joan/Erin's Kristina/Partywithlarryz...as far as i know, anyway...there should be good value on the Warren Road/Hot Flame combo today, and i'd say it's better than 50% one of those two wins it...hmmm, maybe a two-horse entry if odds permit?...might not be a bad idea if both horses are 3/1 or better...

Walter said...

...hey Alan, i noticed the Rock of Gibraltar prop also...isn't that cool???...just goes to show you how much more important horseracing is in Europe, compared to here in the States...for instance, if i walked into any racebook here in Vegas, and wanted to bet on say, Buddha to be the leading freshman sire, well...they'd probably have security escort me off the property...as soon as they got done laughing, that is...truth be told though, as much as i bitch about the Vegas books' cluelessness when it comes to horseracing, it actually works to my benefit...for instance, i mentioned previously that Aladdin/Planet Hollywood waited 10 days before finally dropping Discreet Cat's 75/1 odds after he won his return prep so stylishly (they dropped him to 30/1)...well, i was passing thru there on Sunday night, practically two days after his huge UAE Derby run, and i stopped in the sportsbook to check on his price, curious if they'd moved it...nope, he was STILL sitting there at 30/1...lol, how freaking slow can you get???...i was in there yesterday and they have a new sheet out, and Discreet Cat is down to 12/1 now...i'll bet you money they didn't adjust the number until Tuesday morning, when they received Wednesday's Racing Form with a big picture of Discreet Cat looking at them from the front page...btw, as for Rock of Gibraltar, boy, was he a good one...a great one, really...i regret to say, i stood to win a lot of money on his failed Breeders Cup try...talk about a huge disappointment...that's gambling, though...and i certainly don't hold The Rock responsible...despite being taken WAY too far off the pace by Mick Kinane (still no clue what that was about), The Rock was gonna win that race easy...that is, until Landseer FELL DOWN right smack dab in front of The Rock as that one was launching his move...it's amazing that Rock of Gibraltar didn't trip right over the top of him...so after slamming on the breaks and veering off-course to avoid the fallen horse, he launched his rally all over again and was flying at Domedriver as they hit the wire, falling a neck short...if they run that race 100 times, The Rock probably wins it more than 90...which brings me to the dumbest thing i've ever heard in any racebook or racetrack (and i've heard some whoppers)...it was the day after the Breeders Cup, and i was in the Riviera rcaebook, and i heard some idiot boasting to his friends, "i KNEW Rock of Gibraltar had NO SHOT!!!"...umm, yeah...

...ps...a lot of people talk about how the Drexel guys would've gotten away with their "Fix Six" if Volponi hadn't won the Classic, becauuse there likely would've been several winning tickets out there, and their's would've escaped scrutiny...same deal if Rock of Gibraltar had won the Mile, because everyone and their brother probably had him singled...funny how things work out, isn't it?...btw, i forgot to mention, Landseer had broken his leg in the Mile (which caused the fall), and was euthanized right there on the track...and guess what?...he showed up on Bally's BC Mile sheet the following year...unbelievable...

Anonymous said...

Walter, Great call again on Hot Flame. Unfortionatly the 2-3-5-6 did not run second. Oh well-have a couple doubles working. Keep them coming. I'm waiting for larryz.
Byanose

Walter said...

...thanks Byanose...as you probably saw, Hot Flame ($9.40) popped the gate with Paul Atkinson and ran off to win by open lengths (no easy task going two furlongs)...he was even slightly geared down at the wire...looks like the quickest baby seen so far...as for Warren Road, he broke fine, but he just didn't show any speed and finished well-beaten...not sure what that was about...luckily, i took my own advice and bet them as an entry (though i did also bet an exacta box)....incidentally, 3/2 favorite Seattle TR finished off the board as well... 8^)

Anonymous said...

Well, I had a $10.00 double with fire crakel so I will put the $50.00 to win on Fair fortune today at oaklawn. We shall see.

Anonymous said...

That glue bag has no business in the Arkansas Derby. Wish I could have seen the odds before I wasted my $50.00. Byanose