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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Giving Up on the Big A

Yeah, not much posting lately, I know. Got back from Florida Tuesday night and been pretty busy since then, taking in a couple of movies, and checking out Toronto's Fucked Up in Brooklyn on Friday night; raging hardcore lives, an awesome show! And then there's the Olympics too! (Yes, I'll be watching the US - Canada hockey game rather than tapping at the keyboard tonight!)

Not that I haven't been looking at some races to discuss; but man, these Aqueduct races have been so depressing that I inevitably end up with no picks and nothing to say. I mean, I've tried to stay loyal and local, but I just can't take it anymore. If I'd concentrated on Gulfstream yesterday, I guarantee I would have given out that Eskendereya in the Fountain of Youth. And, sorry for the redboarding, how can Buddy's Saint be 9-5 in that race, seriously!

So let's try a couple of price plays down at the Gulf later this afternoon. In the 8th, Who Plays Brahms (8-1) gets some much-needed, and pretty significant class relief in a restricted claimer in which the main contenders have burned a lot of dough of late. This four-year old daughter of Brahms is winless in her last seven, and in five career races on turf; but she always tries and gives a decent account of herself. In her last, she ran evenly behind Absoulute Heaven, who stepped up in class and missed by a neck in open 50k company yesterday. Chris DeCarlo is back in the saddle, and he seemed to fit well two back when she missed the place spot by a head to Encanto Park, who would kill this field. She'll have to keep a bit closer to the front in a race which seems paceless on paper, but I think she should run well at a good price. Watch Smartly (4-1) came up short moving up to this class in her last, but was used early chasing a loose front-runner. Selene's Delight (3-1) gets up from time to time, but late-running style may be compromised by a slow pace.

In the 10th, Tap Dancing (8-1) figures to get a nice jump on this field from her inside post in a race in which the top contenders are closers stuck in the outside posts. A lot of layoff lines for this son of Pleasant Tap, but this time he's back in a month after his sharp front-running effort at this level over the track on Jan 24. Note the nearly exact replication of the workout pattern going into that race, with the five furlong move a week prior.

And another note from Saturday's card - in the third, Streaker ($13) was a well-bet and determined first-timer from Shug, first putting away the speedy Alivie (my bet), and then turning back a stretch challenge from the overbet (3-5!!) money burner Muhaawara. This filly is by Forest Wildcat out of Matlacha Pass (Seeking the Gold), which makes her a half-sister to Shug's ill-fated Pine Island. Different running style, but similarly resolute. Here's her win in the 2006 Alabama.


DiscreetPicks said...

Santa Anita - Race 9

#9 My Boy Walsh (4/1 ml)

Well-bred gelding had to take up a bit at the start when a horse came over on him, causing him to drop to the rear early, but he immediately kicked into gear and flashed a strong burst of speed to move sharply up the rail and into a stalking position right behind the leaders. He even looked a little a green, throwing his head around on two occasions (might have just gotten some kickback, hard to say). Got kind of stuck in that position waiting for an opening when turning into the lane, then it appeared he was about to make his move through a tiny opening inside when he got completely shut off by a horse coming in on him, in fact i had to check the head-on to see if he had actually gotten knocked into the rail (he didn't, but it was pretty close). That's the reason he dropped back to 10th at the finish; it wasn't because he tired. Looked as though Garcia thought there might've been a problem in the very late going as he completely eased the horse, but he's entered back just three weeks later and has worked a best-of-37 bullet in the interim, so apparently he's doing just fine. Gets a more favorable draw this time, and as long as he breaks okay i would expect he'll show keen speed here, perhaps going straight to the lead. Horse definitely has some talent, and thanks to the very low Beyer and 10th-place finish, should offer a very nice price here. I was a bit surprised to see him listed as the second choice @ 4/1, but i definitely understand it. Shouldn't go off much lower than that, and could even be a good bit higher. Expecting a good run at a good price.

Anonymous said...

Another ugly trip. The horse or jockey is jinxed.

DiscreetPicks said...

Had some trouble at the break once again, and ended up far off the early pace. Couldn't recover.

steve in nc said...

I hear ya about AQ. For years, the inner meet has been my best. But the quality of last few cards I've tried have just been dismal. Kind of reminds me of going to the trots at Monticello.

Kevin said...

Haven't given up on Buddy's Saint. Saturday's race is a throwout. Poor race riding decision by jock, and he was the recipient of some rough competitor treatment.

I'll trust Levine. If he keeps him in the competition, he is still my choice.

DiscreetPicks said...

Hard to know what to make of Buddy's Saint. He did get knocked around pretty badly. I think what's most telling is that he wouldn't have run THAT bad without some kind of major excuse, so it's clear the bumping incident affected him greatly. Haven't gone over the replay yet, but i noticed it during real-time and it looked pretty ugly.