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Monday, July 11, 2005

Lava Man

- Lava Man's 8 3/4 length margin of victory in the Hollywood Gold Cup was the widest winning margin in the 66-year history of the race. Though trainer Doug O'Neill conceded that "It was a lackluster field," [DRF] he got the mile and a quarter in 1:59.63 and earned a Beyer of 120, wow! 120? That puts him in exclusive company this year - Ghostzapper's 122 in the Met Mile, Bellamy Road's 120 in the Wood, Commentator 121... and Lava Man 120? It seems like those 120's are getting easier to get, like in the Olympics when one skating pair gets all 5.9's and then everyone starts getting them. I don't know if I'm buying this horse as of yet, are you? Mike Watchmaker in the Form (sub. Only) notes that he adds some depth to the handicap division, as does Surf Cat to the 3 year olds:

Bellamy Road is capable of having a big fall at his home base of New York, but he still does not have a published workout since the Derby.

There is less reason for optimism for other prominent names in the 3-year-old male division. Declan's Moon, last year's champion 2-year-old, is out until at least October. Kentucky Derby upsetter Giacomo is through for the year following surgery after his loss in the Belmont. Derby runner-up Closing Argument has no published workouts since May 16, while Florida Derby winner High Fly has no works since the Preakness. The fast Peter Pan Stakes winner, Oratory, is out for the year at least, if not for good, after recently undergoing surgery.
- Delaware Park is introducing the Choose Six next week in which bettors can pick 6 in whichever races they would like. I can't grasp now how this bet would possibly work as far as payoffs or strategies go. Payoffs will be divided evenly among all winners--the return is the same for all combinations--at the conclusion of the day's races. The pool continues to grow if players buy back in. There's also talk of a Group Bet, which will group horses in each race for wagering purposes in an attempt to lure novices. [Bloodhorse]


Anonymous said...


I've got a basic question.

The day before you wrote "The top three betting choices in this race were first-timers, but one of them was being bet the way I like to see, on the nose in the win pool." I imagine you are watching the win pool for each horse and comparing them. And if you see an larger disparity on one horse you take note?



Alan Mann said...


I watch the win pools in relation to the show pools. It's an angle I picked up from Tom Ainslie years ago - the theory is that the public bets horses to show in roughly the same proportion as to win, so if you see a horse getting bet disproportionately in the win pool compared to its show money, it indicates that it's the so-called "smart" money betting the horse "on the nose." So I'll take note of this, depending on the kind of race (I pay more attention in maiden and 2 yo races, or a turf race with horses trying the grass for the first time, or horses coming off a layoff, etc.,), and the trainer. I also look at the pp lines - sometimes a horse always seems to get overbet so I'd tend to disregard the action in those cases. I've found this to be a consistent way to identify "live" horses.

Thanks for reading!