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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Saturday Morning Notes - July 19

- In the 8th at Belmont, Diamondrella (4-1) (Rock of Gibralter) climbs the class ladder while making her third start off the layoff for trainer Angel Penna. This filly showed vast improvement from prior form, with two bang-up closing efforts from mid-pack. Two back, she missed by a head (to West of Gibralter, also in here) in a race that produced two other subsequent winners; and she won her last under a confident ride by Maragh, getting the last two furlongs in 11.3 and 11.1. The two career tops may be cause for concern, but she's had five weeks off, and four breezes since that last effort. Beatrix Kiddo (5-1) was 8th at 7-2 in a Monmouth stakes, now drops to the level at which she missed by a neck two back after some traffic problems on the backside. West of Gibralter (6-1) should appreciate the cut back in distance, and would be an overlay at her ML odds.

That's it for the "official" picks, but a few horses worth a mention. In the second, Richard Violette has first time starter Portable Alpha (3-1), a three-year old colt with a most unusual pedigree. This horse is closely inbred, 3x2, to Cox's Ridge, one of my all-time favorites (as in, I cashed a few tickets on him). He was a successful sire with 53 stakes winners, but one doesn't generally see horses inbred to him, no less so incestuously. This son of Hook and Ladder sold for $397,000 as a two-year old in training last March, so it's taken quite some time to get him to his debut today.

In the third, Golden Weekend is listed as the 9-5 favorite despite never having run on grass. I think the favorite's role will go to Poronui (3-1), from the blazing Clement barn. Son of Rahy returns to grass, and nice turf pedigree here. Out of the G1 winner Fantastic Look, he's a full brother to the G1 turf winner Designed For Luck.

Music Note will be solidly favored in the CCA Oaks, which may or may not be part of the Triple Tiara, and who really cares anyway? But Acoma (2-1) comes in with the highest speed figure, a 99 earned in the G3 Dogwood at Churchill. She's a daughter of Empire Maker, out of a stakes winning Danzig mare, and she's a half-sister to the Super Derby winner and current sire Arch.

Reader onecalicocat is excited about a local sighting of a Smarty Jones baby; Me You and Her goes in the third at Monmouth. This filly is a half to a French stakes winner, and a daughter of an unraced Deputy Minister mare who's a half-sister to the G1 winner You And I.

And finally, Foolish Bid goes for Kasey K in the 9th at Philly Park today, returning to the two turn distance which he far prefers. He's fit and ready to go, and looks like excellent value at 9-2 in my opinion. Good luck everyone and have a great day!


Anonymous said...

The Cox's Ridge's are notoriously tempermental, interested to see how he behaves.

Keep these little pedigree gems coming.

Anonymous said...

Nice call on Diamondrella Alan. Singled in my pick 4

Anonymous said...

Any word on what happened to West of Gibraltar? During the race seems as if she was pulled up.