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Saturday, February 05, 2011


In the Donn Handicap, Morning Line (3-1) stretches out to a mile and an eighth, perhaps his best distance, for the red-hot Nick Zito barn. Pressed to a 22.1 second quarter in the one turn, one mile Hal's Hope, this four-year old son of Tiznow weakened late for third, but should be better for the effort in his second start off a layoff, especially if his two quick half mile works at Palm Meadows since then are any indication. This is the distance at which he won the Pennsylvania Derby last summer, and one would think that a son of Tiznow, out of an AP Indy mare, would appreciate the longer route. That's what Sheikh son Sheikh Rashid was thinking when he purchased a share of the colt this past week.

"We're looking for a World Cup horse," said Trevino. "Morning Line was very good at the end of his three-year-old campaign, and from looking at his pedigree, we don't think he's a miler." [Racing Post]
A good inside draw makes him a candidate to control the pace from the outset here. (Not getting intimidated in that respect by Square Eddie's front-running return over the freaky-fast Santa Anita strip.) Price could be a square one too, as the overrated Fly Down and the one-time Derby hopeful I Want Revenge figure to take some action on the tote.


Figless said...

Fly Down towers over this field, the only consistant Grade 1 performer, he always finds trouble however, clearly at this point somewhat his own fault.

There should be enough pace here to set up his late run for at least the place, cant leave off the tickets.

But I am not confident enough to bet him to win as the favorite, if he drifts up to 3-1 will consider.

So I am going to try I WANT REVENGE! And I do.

Was live at 56-1 with him in the Derby Futures pool, still steaming.

Today he will return running.

Dutrow has had plenty of time with him. His return last year, losing to haynesfield by only 4 lengths makes him competive here. Something clearly went wrong in his next start, a throwout.

LOVE the switch to Dominguez, who probably would be on six favorites today at Big A but opts to fly south to ride this one.

Should work out a perfect stalking trip behind what appears to be a contentious pace, counting on the speed favorinig nature of the track to get him to the wire ahead of the fast closing Fly Down and Giant Oak.

ML will take way too much money due to the all the publicity this week, and the Sheikh has not exactly had a good eye for business lately, horse or otherwise. He is just desperate for a starter in his signature race.

I mean, he lost to Soaring Empire, Rule and Dakota Phone in his last two races.

The Hal's Hope was barely a legit G3 race, and he and Rule couldnt even win it, against both here.

IWR over FD and GO.

steve in nc said...

Meanwhile up at AQ, the mad bomber is back. #5 Stopbluffing in the first (who does look the best) went from 5-2 to 3-5 in the time it took me to help move a couch next door, with no changes in exotic pools. Too bad I like him best. Other outside possibilities are inflated now in the win pool. Hope he plunges all day.

steve in nc said...

I wish I could book that bomber's bets. I've now seen 4 of them, all losers. The 5 came out of the gate all wrong and lost all chance. Ran a decent 3rd, but all that action was in the win pool

El Angelo said...

I'm not sure Fly Down is overrated. He wasn't as good as Zenyatta, Blame or Afleet Express last year, but nobody in this field is as good as that troika. I'll excuse his JCGC loss to a loose-on-the-lead Haynesfield and think he's a huge factor both today and this year, and like him to win, especially with a lot of early speed in the race. I also like Ron the Greek to run well at a price.

Figless said...

What I learned from the Donn;

Square Eddie is a sprinter.
Eldaafer is a marathoner.
Hear Ye and Ron The Greek are Alw horses.
Fly Down IS overrated.
I Want Revenge is not the same, but has a lot of heart.
Rule and Morning Line ARE milers.

Giant Oak is a force to be reckoned with. I liked him a bit in here but thought the speedy favoring nature of the track would beat him.