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Monday, August 01, 2011

Monday Morning Notes [UPDATED]

Three more winners for Pletcher on Sunday, as he extends his hitting streak to the first nine days of the meeting. The Toddster now has 14 winners from 40 41 starters, batting an even .350 341. Seems unfair that he'd been given Sidney's Candy ($2.60), who controlled the Fourstardave from start to finish in his first start for the barn; kinda like tax cuts for the rich. His other two winners were class dropping claimers Never Right Joey ($8.70) and Writingonthewall ($5.80), both for Mike Repole, who had a pretty nice weekend I suppose.

Pletcher stands a pretty fair chance of extending his streak to ten days on Monday with Counterparty (1-1) in the 5th. This filly comes off a debut win with an inflated Beyer, which often leads to underlays in the subsequent first try against winners. But this daughter of Exchange Rate recovered from a troubled start to effortlessly circle her opponents, including subsequent winner Joonbi, on the turn on the way to a dominant win with an 82 Beyer. That effort, not to mention the way the trainer and jockey John Velasquez are going, puts a damper on motivation to try and beat her in a race in which none of the others who have been racing against winners have particularly distinguished themselves since their own graduations.

But here's a mention for the other maiden graduate here, Bid a Moon (8-1). Her last was rather similar to that of Counterparty, as the daughter of Malibu Moon moved with the greatest of ease some four wide around her opponents, which also included Joonbi, on her way to a dominant win (albeit 17 Beyer points slower than Pletcher's filly). Bid a Moon has some experience too, and has shown a consistent closing kick in her dirt races, including one at a mile and 40 yards. Thinking that seven furlongs should be no problem, whereas Counterparty will be stretching out a furlong while she steps up in class. Not a great post for this distance, so I'm thinking of Bid a Moon mostly to create some value in the exacta with the favorite, though she might be worth a few bucks on top as well for Clement, also off to a good start at the meet, at least for a mere mortal trainer (9-2-2-1).

UPDATE: Had a chance to look at today's Amsterdam, and I think the Toddster has a pretty good shot in here too (at least if the threatened rain holds off and the track is fast), with Travelin Man (9-2). Note that, in his two wins, he broke from middle posts and was able to stalk the pace from the outside; whereas in his three losses (one of them at an unsuitable distance in the Derby Trial), he broke inside and found himself being dueled into submission from the outside. His second to the speedy Flashpoint in the Hutcheson was certainly no disgrace, as he continued on after dueling that one and bested some nice horses. Now, it's not exactly clear who he will be able to stalk here; perhaps the returning To Honor and Serve; but in any case, Johnny V should at least have options breaking from post 6, and could control the pace on his own terms from there. His last win, in the Swale at Gulfstream, came against what turned out to be a very strong field, with runner-up Indiano recently taking the G2 Carry Back, third place Little Drama taking a stakes at Philly in his next start, and the other two placing in stakes races since then.

- A sharp reader noticed that I jumped the gun and erred regarding Stay Thirsty's Beyer in the Jim Dandy. He earned a 106, rather than a 99. Better to bet against him in the Travers with.


Anonymous said...

I like Caleb's Posse at a price in the Amsterdam today. He has been running in routes all year and he's probably a one-turn animal. Plus his sire debuted at the Spa in 1:08 and 4. Remember that commercial they used to play ad nauseum for Posse. Durkin: "And Posse debuts in 108 and 4. Woo!" -jp

Anonymous said...

Amsterdam is a nice race for a Monday. All this pace talk and no mention of Wine Police? He was on the track with some big names last year. I'll go with him after watching his replays.

Alan Mann said...

Way to go, jp!!