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Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Odd Odds

This year is the easiest time I've had tossing the Derby favorite since Empire Maker in 2003. I kinda knew I would regret it when I bet against Street Sense and Big Brown. But in the case of I Want Revenge, if he's really 3-1 - and I have my doubts about the morning odds in general - I won't give it a second thought. That does not, of course, mean, at least in this particular case, that I think he's a bad horse, or that I'd be surprised if he won. But at that price - or even up to 4-1, 9-2 or so - given the generally lame quality of the horses he beat in New York (though I guess I must reluctantly admit that Mr. Fantasy gets some props), as well as the usual possibility of traffic troubles and general mayhem along the way in the big field, I'll just take my losses and move on to the 12th if he wins.

Likewise, though to a somewhat lesser extent, for Pioneerof the Nile at 4-1. As for Dunkirk, also, do you really think he'll be 4-1? I love this horse, I thought he was a monster in defeat at Gulfstream; but I can't bet him at odds like that, in his 4th career start and having run just once in the last ten weeks....though I will certainly be saving with him in exotics.

And maybe it's time for me to hang up the laptop, but....I just don't get Papa Clem being 20-1...and you guys got on me when I said that I wouldn't be shocked if he wasn't too far off Baffert's horse on the tote; OK, so, maybe I have a gaffe every once in a while. But forget Mike Welsch for a moment, I'm saying, it's right there in black and white! Here's a son of Smart Strike who has turned it around since stretching out to two turns, beat I Want Revenge, lost by a half length to Pioneerof the Nile, got spanked by Friesan Fire on a sloppy track at Fair Grounds, but held second and bounced back to win the Arkansas Derby with a career best Beyer of 101. My point here is more that he's going to get bet because of positives in his form which are plain for all to see than that I think he's the likeliest winner of the race. But if he's really 20-1, I'll have a nice bet on his nose.

Oh, and about that horrible workout, Haskin reports today:

Yesterday, I mentioned that after observing Papa Clem’s last work, I was of the firm belief the rider misjudged the finish line. I finally was able to speak to trainer Gary Stute, who confirmed that the rider did indeed misjudge the finish line. Stute will give the colt a good quarter-mile blowout, going out three-eighths on Thursday to help make up for that. []


Anonymous said...

Alan - dude,
You are really stretching. Now Haskin's is your man on the scene? He, like your Papa Clem play, is delusional. Fairy tale world. Of all people – Haskin’s???

Michael said...

I don't like I Want Revenge at 3-1 either, but I'm with you, no way Papa Clem is 20-1... these morning line odds are way off this year.

steve in nc said...

The Ark derby came up pretty strong on Sheets. Now if you're interested in Papa Clem, how about including Summer Bird at a huge price?

I'm going to take the weasely route (but truthful in this case) and say it looks really wide open to me. The only 3 that would really shock me if they hit the board are Mr. Hot Stuff, Mine that Bird, and Desert Party.

I Want Revenge and Dunkirk
Will be bet to the moon,
May have peaked too soon,
But I'm using them,
And Papa Clem
(National Poetry Month, ya know)
And keying West Side Bernie...

with decent #s and the best Sheet pattern. If all I had was DRF to go by, I'd never pick him in a million years.

DiscreetPicks said...

I was in the Wynn race & sportsbook in Las Vegas this afternoon, and they had "futures" on the Kentucky Derby and Triple Crown, as well as an assortment of head-to-head matchups. I thought you guys would enjoy seeing them, so here they are...

KENTUCKY DERBY (with Triple Crown odds in parentheses)

I Want Revenge 7/2 (14/1)
Pioneerof the Nile 4/1 (20/1)
Dunkirk 9/2 (20/1)
Friesan Fire 6/1 (30/1)
Desert Party 12/1 (60/1)
Hold Me Back 15/1 (85/1)
Chocolate Candy 15/1 (100/1)
Regal Ransom 18/1 (125/1)
General Quarters 20/1 (125/1)
Musket Man 22/1 (125/1)
Mr. Hot Stuff 25/1 (150/1)
Papa Clem 28/1 (150/1)
West Side Bernie 30/1 (150/1)
Advice 50/1 (250/1)
Join in the Dance 50/1 (250/1)
Summer Bird 50/1 (250/1)
Mine That Bird 60/1 (400/1)
Flying Private 75/1 (300/1)
Nowhere to Hide 75/1 (300/1)
Atomic Rain 75/1 (300/1)


Pioneerof the Nile -130
Dunkirk +100

Chocolate Candy +110
Hold Me Back -140

Musket Man -130
Papa Clem +100

Flying Private +155
Summer Bird -185

Dunkirk +125
I Want Revenge -155

Pioneerof the Nile -140
Friesan Fire +110

Regal Ransom +150
Desert Party -180

Mine That Bird +110
Advice -140

Pioneerof the Nile +110
I Want Revenge -140

Mr. Hot Stuff -110
General Quarters -120

alan said...

>>You are really stretching. Now Haskin's is your man on the scene?

I know, I'll say anything to try and prove a point. :-/

Anonymous said...

Thursday night 9:00 on CNBC..
Kentucky Derby, Run For The Roses and the Business of Horseracing.

Tim said...

You can automatically toss the 6 horses that have only one win. In fact, it should be a prerequisite that you have more than one win to enter the Derby. Take the field size down to 15 and make it a real race. I may be proven wrong but this is ridiculous. Just my 2 cents.

Glimmerglass said...

I have to concur with a general sentiment that Mike Battaglia was a bit unrefined with his morning line odds. Is he really trying to say only 'Nile', 'Dunkirk', 'FF' and 'Revenge' have a shot and the rest may as well be one lump of 'all others'?

The field looks the most open it has in years and it should be a very good race for those who can deal with an off track. Not sure if Chocolate Candy, who I have in a few future wager combinations, will do in it.

I'm wondering who NBC will focus on almost exclusively as they tend to do only and take a huge risk that horse will hit the board. Do you go with an always camera friendly Baffert or focus on Joe (with minimal Mullins exposure) or opt for the feel good Tom McCarthy and General Quarters?

Joe Talamo did put in a nice effort yesterday in his first ride ever at Churchill to a win.

Erin said...

Thanks Discreet Picks, for those odds.

I agree the ML on this Derby is off and look like they were made in five minutes or less.

The Vegas odds are much more what I expect to see, with a few exceptions -

Papa Clem around 10-1 (and you can have him Alan)
West Side Bernie 15-1
Gen Quarters 10-1
Chocolate Candy 8 or 10-1
4 or 5-1 on Friesan Fire.

Anonymous said...

Steve Christ has a nice blog defending the morning line, fairly scientific and very interesting.

Fact is, in prior years, the top four horses have taken 80% of the money, and that is the presumption used when creating the line.

steve, you would be shocked if Desert Party hits the board, but not Regal Ransom? On what basis? Year old figures in the States?

Yet you key West Side Bernie, who would have been beaten five plus lengths by IWR if the latter had a decent trip?

I have only the racing form and West Side Bernie is on my ticket but not in the top spot. No logical reason he should turn the tables on the favorite, but he did run second to IWR and deserves to be included underneath. And no logical reason Regal Ransom, with a true pace this time, will finish ahead of Desert Party.

Not picking a fight, but attempting to illustrate how figures can distort reality. If you just watch the Wood and the Dubai race, you will see that DP and IWR are superior animals.