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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Notes - Nov 2

- Tom Albertrani is unfazed by Balleto's outside post draw, and blames her close losses on her difficulty in changing leads.

"Because she has that tendency of just wanting to hesitate a little bit in her races, it causes her to lose that momentum she needs that makes the difference between losing and winning by a head or so. It might have cost her a couple of races this year." [Bloodhorse]
However, despite that, it still seems to me that she had Spun Sugar and Fleet Indian absolutely dead to rights, and I wonder if the issue is more in her head than her legs. But having said that, it seems to me that she and Pine Island are the horses with the most upside in the race.

- Steve Davidowitz has some tips on identifying false favorites in his latest column in the Form's paid DRF Plus section, and talks about the Juvenile:
The favorite may have no discernible edge over a field loaded with fit and ready rivals.

In the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, for example, morning-line favorite Circular Quay and second choice Principle Secret are both promising youngsters with good efforts at the Juvenile's 1 1/16-mile distance. But there is little separating them from a large contingent of lightly raced, improving contenders. These include graded stakes winners Great Hunter, Scat Daddy, King of the Roxy, and Stormello, as well as graded-stakes-placed Pegasus Wind, C P West, and Street Sense. Given the depth of competition, taking anything less than 5-1 on either Circular Quay or Principle Secret would seem to violate all sensible rules of value betting.
I know a lot of people, including myself, who will be happy if Perfect Drift's trainer Murray Johnson is prophetic about the odds for the Classic.
"For him to be even money he'd have to have such a huge percentage of the pool....I think he'll be 2-1 or better. But then you're getting fantastic prices with horses like Suave (30-1) and Perfect Drift." [Louisville Courier-Journal]
Whoa, 2-1? Or better? I'd take some of that action, wouldn't you?


Anonymous said...

John Asher was on the radio here this morning, and said that he expected Bernardini to go off around 9/5. I think he's far more likely to go off @ 4/5. I guess we'll find out on Saturday.

Anonymous said...

News You Can Use:

I read a brief article that included some quotes from Michael Tabor, owner of Hurricane Run. He says that Aiden O'Brien told him that Hurricane Run is "in tip-top shape". Hurricane Run is also fortunate that it rained on Wednesday. According to John Asher @ Churchill, the turf course will likely be listed as "firm" by Saturday if it stays dry between now and then, but he also said that there'll still be some moisture in it. "On the soft side of firm" is how Asher put it.

Anonymous said...

This from Ed Dunlop, trainer of Ouija Board:

"The ground was better today (Thursday) than it was yesterday, but it is still on the slow side. Two dry days will hopefully result in good English ground, but i don't think we are going to get the firm surface we want."

Anonymous said...

Alan- I know you've said you like Pine Island, and I can see why, but I have a quick question re. Spun Sugar: she has a distinct pattern of alternating figures, with the "good" race scheduled next. Is there any rhyme or reason to explain the ups and downs? Is it possible she'll move forward significantly second off the layoff?

Anonymous said...


Thanks for keeping track of the turf condition, it is something many handicappers tend to overlook on a day to day basis (see Intergalactic's win in Aqueduct finale on Wed).

It is especially important for the BC, and I translate "good English ground" to "soft" American ground, no matter what the tote board indicates. While the weather will be nice, the days are short and cool in KY, not enough sun to dry this course out in time.

Throwaway, I have no explantions for Spun Sugars pattern but do beleive she will be on her A game Saturday due to her stablemate's owner naming her as the filly to beat.

Anonymous said...

On subject of news you can use,why would Aiden OBrien be commenting on Hurrican Run, he is trained by Andre Fabre isnt he? Fabre is not even making the trip over for the race, did not sound like he was happy the horse was running.

I didnt see it posted here, but I also read a comment that Librettist came out of her last race lame. Allegedly training well but a little short for this race, which explains Dettori's choice of his inferior entrymate.

Anonymous said...

GOOD CATCH. It was indeed Andre Fabre that Tabor was referring to, not Aiden O'Brien. I must've gotten my A's mixed up. Sorry 'bout that. And i had no idea that Fabre wasn't @ Churchill. That's certainly interesting, thanks for that.

Anonymous said...

Almost forgot. It's true, Librettist was reported to be lame after his Queen Elizabeth run. I saw reports no more than a week later however that he had recovereed, and seemed to be doing fine. It's bee smooth sailing for him ever since, at lesat up until this Dettori deal reared it's ugly head. Good point about the two things possibly being connected, i hadn't considered that. Perhaps he's not quite as sound as he's reported to be. In any case, i've pretty much thrown Librettist out at this point. I'm not expecting too much out of him.

Alan Mann said...

You could explain Spun Sugar's figs by noting that the two good races were two turn races, and the two slower ones were a one turn at Belmont and the Spinster on Polytrack.

I dunno guys, I don't like her so much. Her win in the Go For Wand was not that visually impressive to me. I thought that it was a hustling, ground-saving ride by Luzzi and a filly in Balletto, who doesn't seem to want to win, that played a large part in the race.

Anonymous said...


I am leaning to SS based on the two turns theory and the feeling that she will fall into a perfect stalking trip. While she has not been visually impressive, her best figures put her in the mix and she will provide value as compared to Balletto.

Would be terrific to see Luzzi in the winners circle in a race like this.

Alan Mann said...

>>Would be terrific to see Luzzi in the winners circle in a race like this.

On that I totally agree.

Anonymous said...

A harbinger of things to come? Todd Pletcher had Cowtown Cat a 1.5 Million dollar purchase in the G3 Nashua today at Aqueduct. Stumbled coming out of the gate, moved up into contention before the quarter and proceeded to back himself out of a tight spot approaching the turn. Never was in it. 2-1 co favorite. With 18 entries tomorrow, I would say Todd's rep is somewhat on the line. He better win something. Circular Quay might be his best chance, loves CD. He personally likes Octave, heard during a TVG interview yesterday. English Channel warrants respect, especially with his rabbit, Stormy Atlantic in the race to assure an honest pace, not so fast as to favor the Euro's. Good Luck to everyone tomorrow, Nick