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Monday, September 07, 2009

The Late, Late, Late Pick Three

Drove back home after the races yesterday, though not before stopping at Saratoga Springs State Park for one last BBQ. Lots to say about the Woodward and the rest of the weekend, but there's just one last chance to get even, so let's get to it.

[Well, I spent all this time on these races and writing this post, and now my 9th race single and top selection in the 11th are both scratched. Damn, I'm pissed!!! Well, I'm letting this fly anyway, just because I wrote it, and will weigh in with a revised pick three suggestion at the bottom]

In the 9th, the Glens Falls, Winter View (5-1) looks to bounce back for trainer Jonathan Sheppard after finishing sixth, albeit by 1 1/2 lengths, in the Dick the Delaware. Five-year old daughter of Thunder Gulch was two wide first turn, three wide on the second, and widest of all while circling the field on the final turn for home. I think that the failed to menace comment in the Form understates the threat she seemed to pose rallying down the center of the track. However, it was a fast pace, a 12 second final furlong after a slow pace, into which she was trying to rally and she fell a bit short as mentioned behind winner Caprice (4-1), who saved ground every step of the way. Julien Leparoux, who was aboard for the mare's three prior race, all wins including two graded stakes, is back in the saddle here.

Bubbly Jane
(10-1) won an overnight stakes at Belmont in her last, and that race has come back strong - second place Borrowing Base was third by 3/4 in a restricted stakes; third place finisher Belle Allure was a big second here the other day in a similar affair; and 4th place finisher Nehantic Kat won the Yaddo; money prospects. Mushka (7-2) may have a slight class edge and is reunited with Kent; but she's never won in eight tries in turf stakes races and may very well be overbet in this spot.

The 10th is the Grade 1 Hopeful for two-year olds. A reader mentioned recently how it used to be that juveniles already had established form to decipher in stakes races this time of year. But like the once-significant two-year old stakes at Arlington and Monmouth over the weekend, this race mostly qualifies as an entry-level allowance.

But one exception here is Backtalk (5-1), winner of three in a row, including the Sanford here way back in July. Not only did he run by the competition after being extremely wide on the turn, he physically towered over his opponents. Son of Smarty Jones and half-brother to graded winner Bsharpsonata should have no problem with the added ground, and has the tactical speed and a long ways on the backstretch to get good position from the 13 post. Enumerate (6-1) overcame trouble to battle the top choice and finish within a neck; modestly-bred son of Proud Accolade tries to make it three out of four of the weekend's Grade 1 stakes for Asmussen (who used to train Pyro, the 4th one).

After that, it's just a guessing game really with horses coming out of maiden wins and stakes at lesser tracks. Prince Rooney (9-2) beat nothing in the stakes at Mountaineer, but sports a classy Beyer for Asmussen. Dublin (8-1) has the best Beyer of the maiden-breakers; 4th place finisher Discreetly Mine came back to win by six. Overlap (15-1) earned a more modest number in his graduation, but won in a classy manner cruising around the field four wide on the turn; runner-up Fayoum finished second by a neck in his next race. By Chapel Royal, Overlap is a half-brother to the Louisiana Derby winner Kimberlite Pipe.

In the 11th, Senegal (6-1) gets a firm turf course, and his best career effort has come under these conditions. Son of Will's Way got caught three wide in that effort two races back and finished determinedly to get the show spot over Todo K (7-2). The latter turned the tables on a soft course last time, though he failed by a nose after a grueling stretch drive and makes his fifth start in nine weeks. Western Connection (5-1) has been pretty consistent on grass, finishing just behind the aforementioned two in his last two. Johannesbull (3-1) rallied a bit after a slow start in his only try, at Gulfstream in January. That race has come back to be very weak; stand against.

Pick three -

Race 9 - 6
Race 10 - 13 (A)/6/8/10/12
Race 11 - 7 (A)/9

Well, this now goes from a big play to a little fooling around wager. I'm going to single Bubbly Jane in the Glens Falls - just think that the top contenders are all flawed, and that the field is uninspiring. She comes out of a good race and looks like she'll handle the added ground. I'll stick with my Race 10 selection, and go unenthusiastically for the 5 and 9 in the finale, sticking with my intention to oppose the morning line favorite. Good luck and have a great day.

1 Comment:

onecalicocat said...

I'm no expert but I thought Backtalk was poorly ridden in the Hopeful.
He was immediately taken back to the rear of the field and as soon as he got back there he was immediately hustled up on the outside. I don't see how that kind of yo-yo ride helps a horse.
It's a shame his regular rider was suspended because I think Mena would have given Backtalk a much better ride.
As it was, Backtalk ran out of gas about 100 yards from the finish and couldn't even hold on for third.
Overall, I think Backtalk ran about a mile in a seven-furlong race.