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Saturday, August 18, 2007

Saturday Morning Notes - Aug 18

- A couple of readers have written in about an inside track bias at Saratoga over the last couple of days. The track does certainly to be playing fast for those 5 1/2 furlong races in particular. A day after a two-year old filly set a new track record of 1:03.26, two winners cracked the 1:04 mark - a three-year old NY-bred filly, and Trombetta's first-time baby that hopefully some of you caught at 6-1, as I did not.

As far as the inside bias goes, I will keep that in mind as I check out the early results. But I'm not a big bias guy unless the evidence is overwhelming, and for one thing, with all the grass races the last two days, the statistical sample is not that large - there were only eight dirt races in total. And while the speed did well, I don't think that any of the results were aberrant - though we won't know until later on regarding those two impressive juvenile winners - and the winners were not all on the rail. Besides, even if there is such a bias, it wouldn't dissuade me from Panty Raid at this point; not at a mile and a quarter with the pace scenario that I'm envisioning praying for. I'm more concerned about the Toddster's cold streak.

Other than the Alabama, I don't really have any brilliant ideas about this lackluster Saturday card. The two mile race in the 4th takes away the early pick 4 and all the mid-card multi-races out of the game for this horseplayer.

Nerve looks like a really suspicious dropdown in for 35K in the first, doesn't he? He just won a stakes, albeit a weak one against three rivals, in June, and is coming off a second for 75K. I prefer droppers like Mount Wilton, shipping in from Churchill, where he debuted for a 30K tag before an allowance win, and then an OK third stepping up.

Mott looks like he could have another winner in the 5th in Fancy Fusaichi, cutting back in distance in a dismal field.

I'm giving a look to My Michael, stretching out on the turf for Hushion in the 6th. He's shown a good closing kick in sprints. He's by War Chant, out of a mare by Majesty's Prince, a distance loving favorite of mine from the early 80's who won the Man O'War and the Sword Dancer twice each.

And in the Yaddo Handicap, I'll be keeping an eye on J'Ray. If Pletcher can't win this NY-bred stakes with this filly, Factual Contender notwithstanding, then maybe then I'll have second thoughts about backing him in the Alabama! In any event, best of luck at the races today!


inthebeginningtherewasace said...

FYI, Highland Cat is racing in the 6th at Laurel, 9-5 on the line in a 15k n2l over the main track at a mile.

I agree, the Saratoga card is not that great. The Alabama is an "All" for me.

jeff said...

A few more Spa repeaters to watch on Sunday:

In the 1st, She's My Sunshine made a late rally last out, but seemed uncomfortable on the hedge and finished 4th.

In the 2nd, Forest Trail broke outside, and put in a strong, though swerving, stretch run for second.

In the 4th, Grand Champion moved well into a fast pace, held for 3rd.

alan said...

jeff - i was looking at She's My Sunshine too. Pace was slow and she closed into strong closing fractions too. And Grand Champion lost to a couple of horses who seemed eligible to run the big races they did for A. Dutrow and McLaughlin.