RSS Feed for this Blog

Friday, April 06, 2007

Getting Liquid Again

- Not a real strong edition of the Santa Anita Derby this year. I don't like to be a chalk player, but I'm think that Liquidity has an excellent chance to bounce back from his disappointing 6th in the Louisiana Derby. Remember that Doug O'Neill said afterwards that "he didn't train him as hard as I should have." It seems as if O'Neill is making sure not to make the same mistake again. Liquidity (Tiznow) has had two solid trials since then, most recently a bullet six furlongs over the Cushion Track. He seems to love Santa Anita, the scene of his second to Ravel in which he got a Beyer of 102.

Taking a look at some others: Sam P. (Cat Theif) is part of Team Todd's 'C' team. He's a nice horse and all, and he's plugged along steadily for nice seconds against Any Given Saturday and Great Hunter. But though he earned a solid 99 Beyer in his last, he seems a bit one-paced to me, and I don't see him getting more than a minor share.

Russell Baze had to work hard on Bwana Bull from the 3/8ths pole to beat a mediocre field in the El Camino Real. He's won three in a row, and four out of five. Hard to argue with those results, but he's never faced top competition, and even if this race doesn't qualify as such, I still figure him for only a minor share.

Boutrous has improved his figs, but he has a few lengths to make up even on the two mentioned above, neither of whom I like on top.

Level Red is another aspiring allowance horse trying to be more than he probably is. He did run fairly well behind Cobalt Blue in the San Felipe, but like others in this field, I just don't see him having the necessary class.

King of the Roxy is the key to the race, and the key to King of the Roxy is whether he can handle two turns. If he can, he could certainly end up in the winner's circle. His dismal Juvenile is excusable, though not a great sign. By former Texas-, and now Kentucky-based sire Littleexpectations (by Valid Appeal) out of a Bold Forbes mare, the pedigree says 'speed,' even though his broodmare sire somehow lasted to win the Belmont. He does however, have a good deal of stamina in his distaff pedigree, and might be able to contend on what I see as a decided class edge on most of the rest of the field.

So as I said, I like Liquidity. I'm not real excited about any of the wagering possibilities, really. I would like Sam P for second, and would even save with King of the Roxy on top, but there won't be any value in those exactas. Looks like a race to watch.


Anonymous said...

I am going with the only two stakes winners in this race.

KOTR won the Hutch for fun, didnt beat much but it is a G2 and he was not weakening late, he can get the extra 3-16.

BB has not been facing much but won a G3 in his last, this race is sadly about that level.

Medici Code is interesting, late Triple Crown Nominee gets Lasix and is undefeated and unchallenged since being gelded. Worth a try.

Box those three.

Liquidity continues to be overrated after his very slow paced placing in the Sham. Will face more pressure here so should fold like a tent. Besides, ONeil hasnt been around long enough to have all these Derby starters.

Sam P beat a bunch of Alw horses placing in the Lewis. Why are these Cali races so poor this year, are there just too many of them?

Shame two of these will have the earning to run in KY, none deserve a starting berth.

Mr. Ed

Anonymous said...

Liquidity is a play against for me. Notice that his poor effort at the FG was due to a fast early pace. With Black Seventeen in the field expect a solid pace up front. If BS runs a sub :47 opening half then Liquidity has no chance. Seems like O'neil should have sent Liquidity to Hawthorne and kept Cobalt Blue at Santa Anita. The latter appears to be lone speed in the Illinois Derby, a race that Liquidity could have set a slow pace with little pressure.

The pick for me is Sam P. I am a total anti-Pletcher guy but this horse just stands out here. He improved second time out off a 2+ month layoff, adds blinkers and gets Dominguez (37% w/ Pletcher). He earned a 99 BSF last out behind a quick early pace, something that Liquidity failed to do in Louisiana. To fill out the exacta I will go with Bwana Bull. He has done little wrong since being stretched out (4 for 5) and earned a solid 89 BSF behind a hot pace at Bay Meadows, the same figure that Liquidity earned last time. However, while the later will likely be around 2/1 the former will be at least 5/1.

For the bottom part of the tri and super I will use Court the King, Boutrous, Level Red, Tiago and Medici Code in the three hole and add Liquidity, King of the Roxy (who appears suspect at the distance) and Black Seventeen in the four hole.


Harl said...

Is it just me, or does it seem that John Velasquez may just be a little overrated and shouldn't have the first-call opportunity for Pletcher? Take a look at SCAT DADDY. Velasquez kept that runner well back in the Fountain of Youth and had it not been for a fast pace up front, he may not have had a chance to catch the leaders with his later run. Then, in the Florida Derby, with Prado aboard, SCAT DADDY is much closer to the pace (did STORMELLO go that much slower) as I expected NOTIONAL to be in front of the DADDY in the early portions of the race. This change in tactics appeared to help SCAT DADDY hold off NOTIONAL in the stretch.

Then, as Lenny points out above, when Dominguez and Pletcher hook up, they're winning at a 37% clip. It seems with Prado, Dominguez, and even Garrett Gomez, Pletcher has better options all over the place than Velazquez.

Brett said...

I had King of the Roxy and then a horse came out of no where and stole my joy. Mike Smith annoys me sometimes. Nice race by him and Thiago though.

Anonymous said...

I did the unfathonable, had a big bet on KOTR and dissed the gods of racing by yelling "hes home" when i didnt say anyone running at him on the outside. Sure enough, the seas parted and on through came Mike Smith of all jocks to run him down. Ouch.

At least bailed out right after on Cowtown Cat in ILL at a ridiculous 9-2.

Alan Mann said...

>>I did the unfathonable, had a big bet on KOTR and dissed the gods of racing by yelling "hes home" when i didnt say anyone running at him on the outside.

Ouch. The last time I did that was in the Sanford last summer when Teuflesberg seemed to have an insurmountable lead at the sixteenth pole, only to get run down by Scat Daddy. Lesson learned.