McLaughlin/Ekati 2015 win update

Continuing the plan for 2015, I am covering each of the wins by trainer Kiaran McLaughlin.  Since the last post, he’s succeded with a nice percentage to begin 2015. Here are those stories:

ELNAAWI is a 5YO son of Street Sense and Pilfer, who runs routes against older continuously. Wintered at Gulfstream with good success against optional claimers, he moved to the NY area tracks, finding a home at  Monmouth. He got his 3rd lifetime win in his first visit to Monmouth, 8.5 furlongs vs 30k optional claimers. The anted was upped as he would be entered in better races ever since. He’d produce fast results but just 2 podium finishes, a 3rd in the 100k Yankee Affair, and a win 2 races back in an 80k OC race at Keeneland, switching from turf back to dirt. He garnered 3 works before that race, the first of which was quite fast. Despite winning out as the favorite he would  be a 4-1 choice in the Queens County on Aqueduct’s inner dirt track, going an extra half furlong and moving up in class. He also garnered the rail, where he won his last race.. Despite 2 great works plus a layoff of nearly 2 months, he didn’t factor at all, finishing 6th of 9.    So we come to January. in December he breezed 4 furlongs in 48-1, 6th best of 52. This was in preparation for the Native Dancer at Laurel Park, as he would cut back half a furlong. Maybe it was a matter of finding the right field. He had posted Brisnet numbers of 90+ since June. Before this race, he was the 6-1 co-4th choice via the morning line. Maybe enough people figured that his relatively weak late pace last time would hinder him again today.  Something in his favor was the muddy conditions. Lifetime he posted a win and  a 3rd in 2 such races.

What else? The cut back in distance prior to a win as he did in October was a good sign. Possibly having a win last January suggested a winning seasonal factor. He was also shipping from Aqueduct, a move that earned him his 2 prior wins.
He would win the Native Dancer by 7.25 lengths with a great stretch run, going against his early/pressing style. He was 6th and wide until 3/4, then surged to command afterward. He went off at 5-1 odds, and returned $12.20 for win. Elnaawi is owned by Shadwell Stable and was bred in Kentucky by Siena Farms.
****
Another 5YO Street Sense horse won for Kiaran this week:
WEDDING TOAST  had 6 lifetime races, all at the NY track, debuting at a sprint, routes since, mainly vs older. She had one start last year, running 2nd in a 100k event. In 2013 she had a 4 race win streak, including the Grade 3 Comely. Outside of her debut, she was always favorite or nearly so. Brisnet scores have alternated from 98 to 99 in his last 4.
In preparing for the 7 furlong Miami Shores Handicap, a 60k races for fillies/mares 4YO+ at Gulfstream, she was on layoff since April, and put in 8 works, all at Palm Meadows, mostly 4 and 5 furlong efforts. She was made the morning-line favorite at 2/1.   The race itself was whittled down to 7 horses from 12.  She entered this race as the major speed threat.  She dueled with lone speed Best Behavior for half the race, maintained speed through the stretch, and won by 1.25. She was better than even money at post time, and paid $4.20 for win.
She is owned by Godolphin Racing, bred in Kentucky by Darley.
*****
1/17/15
Here’s the latest McLaughin wins:
STRIKE TONE made her debut appearance against seasoned 4YO fillies, all going 8.5 furlongs on Gulfstream Park’s turf course on 1/14.  He worked out 12 times plus in preparation, the last 8 at Palm Meadows. He also would be one of 2 geldings in the race.  Average winning distance from his sire and dam impressed most (Street Cry, 7.9, and Pleasant Chimes, 7.7) Jockey Julien Leparoux had 4 wins and a 3rd in the last 7 days, this on top of Kiaran’s 3-14 record thus far in 2015.  She was entered as 4th choice of 8 at 9/2 morning line, then was bet down to 3rd choice at post time after 2 scratches.  On a ‘good’ track surface, she ran near the back early, then made up a lot of ground from the 6 furlong point to the early point in the stretch, successfully fending off Steel Sky to win by a head.
Strike Tone paid $7.40 to win. She is owned by Goldolphin Racing, bred by the estate of Edward Evans in Virginia.
TAGLEEB is a 4YO colt who had 5 lifetime races, all except maiden debut in turf routes, last 3 in less than ideal conditions. Was 6th of 7 in debut at 83k, then switched jockeys to A Garcia, first time at route and turf this past summer in Saratoga, was 4th of 11. He showed one good workout of 3 in prep for that. In September at Belmont after one strong work, he dropped to 75k maiden, switching back to Joel Rosario, and was entered as post time favorite, finishing 2nd of 10 in a 5-wide effort. Also he posted a strong 87 Brisnet there.
In October he was shipped to Keeneland, and finally broke maiden with Leparoux aboard, again as the post-time fave. He was branded as a deep closer upon this first win.  Following a 2 month layoff and 3 great works out of 5, he posted a 100 Brisnet at Gulfstream, finishing 2nd. in a 37k allowance race.  So there were patterns here, including handling an off track as well as turf in general, seeing how well he responded in training.
On 1/17 he was 5/1, 3rd in the morning-line, bet down to 2nd at post time.  Since he was coming off a sharp gain in pace from his prior race, there was reason to second-guess that, especially since he’d be dependent on pace with his deep closing style. Certainly, coming out of 100 Brisnet in last race (1:35:4 at a mile) he couldn’t be discounted easily.  Tagleeb had a great run, making his move at the 3/4 point in this 8.5 furlong race, tho was uneven at the turns, winning by 1.75 lengths.
Tagleeb is owned and bred by Shadwell in Kentucky.

*****
As for Tale Of Ekati progeny, you may already know about the success of Ekati’s Phaeton in the Old Hat Stakes at Gulfstream on 1/3, giving TOK his first stakes winner.  Per Brisnet.com, 2-turn races are in her future, and is being considered for the Forward Gal Stakes on 1/24 back at GP.  She is one of 31 nominations for the Grade 2 event.

SENNA is one of the latest TOK winners.  This 3YO colt broke maiden in his 4th try, running a mile for a 79 Brisnet on the Golden Gate dirt. He was snapped up by Dan Markle, and was then entered in a mile 40k allowance race 20 days later. This late runner won off the switch from Del Mar’s all weather to Golden Gate’s dirt.  First race under Markle, he had some traffic trouble and couldn’t run up front.    So we come to 1/16, going beyond a mile for the first time, and returning to the all-weather surface of Golden Gate. He came in with the best Brisnet winning score on the track of the 7-horse field, tho was a cheap 5th-choice in the wagering out of 6 at post time.  No lone speed in the field either but Senna was the one horse who seemed to have the edge among the closing types.  He would run competitively, yet wide, on all turns.  When he did settle, he was plenty fast, and won by a narrow neck over Many Routes, who nearly wired the field.  Senna paid $12.60 to win.

Periodic update on Kiaran McLaughin & Tale Of Ekati progeny winners

One resolution I want to keep is keeping you informed on entries/results of Kiaran McLaughin and Tale of Ekati. (see my earlier post about these choices) Every horseplayer has their favorite horses and sire lines, and choice personnel alongsides.  With that, I am to track every recent winner by McLaughlin to find trends that may predict future success.  With TOK, I’m just a big fan, and am eager to see his first crop of now-3YOs to win a stakes event.

Kiaran’s first winner in 2014 is this:

PALESTRINA in 11 lifetime races had 3 2nds, 2 3rds, one of each in her last 3. The 4YO daughter of Medaglia d’Oro and UK-bred Maiden Tower has run versus fillies in routes her entire visible career, the majority away from classic dirt, and the last 5 against older. Was introduced to Lasix 5 races in, and responded with 3 2nd place finishes in 4 races. After a beaten favorite finish in June 2014 at Monmouth, she was transferred from dirt to turf. She entered the 6th race at Laurel on 1/1 as the morning line favorite. Her last race was in September at Delta Downs vs 30k maiden runners. Today’s race was 8.5 furlongs, up from 1 mile 70, first time vs 4YO and older. She was also the lone horse given any weight allowance, carrying 119 instead of 124. She had gone the longest stretch of time before stretching out than this field. Also, she  put in 4 works for this race, 2 very fast, one a bullet.   Palestrina was steadied twice in this race, had a tough break, led out at the half-mile, ran comfortably at 6 furlongs, slowly gaining amidst a stubborn challenge from eventual 2nd place finisher Judy Legend.    Palestrina is owned by Godolphin, bred by Darley in KY, ridden by Michael Ritvo.
Kiaran has horses in action at Aqueduct (MSW), Gulfstream (Mucho Macho Man S), and Laurel (Native Dancer S) on Saturday. Sunday: 2 at Aqueduct (MSW, Ruthless S.), and one at Gulfstream (MSW). Wednesday 1/7: 1 at Aqueduct (allowance optional claimer), and two at Gulfstream (MSW, Miami Shores H).

TALE OF EKATI progeny coverage begins here as I tell you about each horse running in recent and upcoming races:
PEACHES N’ BRANDY is TOK’s first 3YO winner, right on 1/1.  Making her 2nd lifetime start, 2nd try at 30k vs other fillies she was established as 2nd choice via morning-line. She posted a 68 Brisnet in her debut, close to the action throughout the 6 furlong run on Del Mar’s all-weather surface. In fact she was posted 2nd through 4th in that race fielding 12 in all.  She was up for a 30k tag for the first time and put in relatively fast work on 12/22.  This closer ran pretty much wire to wire for the 6 furlongs on Santa Anita’s dirt track, dueling early, then pulling away for a near 4 length finish.
Next TOK horse to run is the pride and joy of the crop, Ekati’s Phaeton, entered in the Grade 3 100k Old Hat Stakes at Gulfstream, race 4, 6 furlongs. It will be the latest attempt to get TOK a debut stakes winner.  Ekati’s Phaeton makes her 5th career race, all at GP, first Graded effort, and drops from 122 to 114 lbs.  Posted 2 fast works since her last race, a 2nd in the House Party Stakes on 11/29. She is one of 4 sprinters in the field, a style that is greatly favored so far during the meet, not to mention an outside post which is doing marginally better than others. 3rd in the morning-line listings at 9/2.

Back later for my picks for The Racing Biz free handicapping contest: 8 races at Laurel, including 4 stakes races, and 2 at Parx.
***

Enlightened Derby/Oaks Trails update, plus bonus stakes analysis

Covering a lot of ground today, with 2 races on the Enlightened Oaks and Derby Trail combined, plus a race by Tale of Ekati’s top 2YO, and a look to today’s Claiborne Breeders Futurity, which is part of the Million Dollar Finish series.

Let’s start with Keeneland, which doesn’t enter the picture for either of my Trails until near the very end, hosting the Blue Grass and Ashland Stakes in April.  For the Million Dollar Finish, I have to basically attempt to pick the order of finish for the top 10. I basically have to be psychic. If I pick a horse for 2nd and he/she wins, I get nothing for it. It’s not right.

Here’s how I see the top 3 in the Futurity:
6 BOLD CONQUEST was 2nd in the Iriquois (Grade 3) last time, after winning maiden race prior. I like him based on pace progression. Debut race was 76, then small new top of 80 to graduate, then surge to 89 in the Iroqouis, which was his debut at a route  and first close to home in KY.  The 89 is also best in this field for distance. Switching back to Rosie Napravnik for this.  1st or 2nd in 3 lifetime. ML: 9/2. Me: 7/2. Contender, favorite.
8 DEKABRIST won the Kodiak Island at Gulfstream this spring, just after his maiden debut win. Was not a factor in 3 stakes efforts since…no help with gain in class nor in distance or jockey. Trainer Gennadi Dorochenko managed a 2.33 ROI with Graded stakes entries this year, with 1 win and 6 placings. Did manage a gain in Brisnet from 52 to 65 in the Iroquois last out. ML odds: 50/1. Me: 6-1. May prove to be an overlay.
7 CONQUEST TSUNAMI is undefeated in 4, ships from Woodbine, switches from turf and actually makes dirt and route debut here. Always in the lead in the last 3 starts. Won the Colin and Victoria Stakes, 125k each, top class win of field. Won an allowance, presumably as prep, last time out.  Debuted at Keeneland with 81 winner. Only horse with prior race on this track. Faces a big field for the first time.  Will be in the mix.  ML: 9/2. Me: 7-1. Contender at a price.
Here’s the rest of the top 10:
4th: 10 Hashtag Bourbon
5th: 12 WV Jetsetter
6th: 1 Tough Customer
7th:2 Firespike
8th: 4 Mr. Z
9th: 11 Keen Ice
10th: 5 Carpe Diem
Tale Of Ekati in the spotlight now, ranked 19th in first-crop foals, 6 wins in 21 races, yet no stakes wins. That stat may change today, as his lone two-time winning progeny, Ekati’s Phaeton, is in the Our Dear Peggy Stakes at Gulfstream.  In fact she’s the ML favorite at 3/1.  Here’s how I rank the top 3:
10 FROLIC TO THE WIRE I like most for her pace progression; alternating fast/slow races, coming out of a small new top of 79, in an optional-claimer at the 75k level just 7 days ago.  In that race she was switching from route to sprint. She disappointed in the Pocahontas (Grade 2) at her one try at route, as well as her only race away from Gulfstream.  She’s back to a route here and top company and is aiming to post a consistent score here. I think she will. This will be her debut on grass as well. ML odds: 12/1. My odds: 9/2.  Overlay.
11 KITTEN’S TOP CAT has 2 races at GP, breaking maiden status against 43k fillies, and a convincing win in the mud in a mile effort. That race was scheduled for grass but was taken off turf.  Today’s weather suggests another off track condition which can help her chances. 4 works since last all here, last 1 around dogs was competitively fast at 5 furlongs. Considering her outside post, she may prove fastest of these.  ML odds: 20-1. My odds: 5-1. Overlay.
3 NAVAJO KITTEN is the other Kitten’s Joy offspring here. 2 races on GP’s turf, graduated last out with 83 Brisnet, best turf score of the field as well as for the track. That race was a dead-heat along with the #8 horse, Red Sashay. She has more of the historical/inherent ability to win. Best average winning distance from pedigree too (Kitten’s Joy/Indyan Lisa, by Lemon Drop Kid). ML odds: 5/1. My odds: 6-1.
As for Ekati’s Phaeton, I don’t have her factored at all. She does have the one win in the field beyond maiden and certainly did better in that race than her debut but  this is a big class jump, and her first time at a route. ML: 3/1. I say she is best avoided. I would not mind including her in exactas and such but I think we’ll see a real surprise in the top 3.
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The Enlightened Trails are at Beautiful Belmont today,  the Frizette for fillies, the Champagne for the colts.   Track is downgraded to sloppy. .The Grade 1 Frizette has 7 fillies going 1 mile, 500k at stake.   Here’s my contenders:

1 CAVORTING won the Grade 2 Adirondack at Saratoga, that after her maiden debut win at Belmont.  First shot at a route, and was on the bench 8 weeks. Had 3 works here, 1 very fast.  Jockey Irad Oritz Jr. has 9 wins and 16 placings in the last 60 days with trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, for an ROI of 4.82.  Brisnet gained from 86 to 99 here.   Stalking-type horses running a mile on the dirt are winning 43% during the meet thus far.  ML odds: 5/2. My odds fully agree.
2 WONDER GAL was 3rd in the Adirondack, and won her debut in the Lynbrook by 14 lengths. Also first time route distance. The 91 Brisnet is the best score on Belmont of this field.  8 weeks off should not be an issue.  Best work tab coming in….5 works, last was 1st of 3, running 5 to 7 furlongs in last 4.  Probably fastest of the field respective of post (Adirondack speed was 93 from a rail start). ML odds: 6/1. My odds: 9/2. Contender.

3 RING KNOCKER has 2 2nd place finishes in sprints at the 83k maiden level at Saratoga, retains jockey Jose Lezcano for this race 7 weeks later. This is a tough jump up in class. If anything, she gained from 84 to 90 between both races. One of the 3 stalking-types benefited by track bias. Gets Lasix for first time. ML odds: 15/1. My odds are about the same, 17-1.  Dark horse.
4 FEATHERED  also comes out of a pair of 83k maiden sprints at Saratoga graduating last time by 9 lengths, and increase in Brisnet from 83 to 97. Best average winning distance from pedigree (Indian Charlie/Receipt, by Dynaformer). Top jockey/trainer combo here.. Javier Castellano 18% wins, Todd Pletcher a sharp 26%). 3rd of the 3 stalkers in the field.  ML odds: 7/2. My odds: 6/1. Contender at price.
5 CAYMAN CROC won lifetime debut at the 30k level, a mile scheduled for turf, changed to dirt, at Delaware, taking place 53 days ago. Brisnet of 81 is strong for this field at the mile distance.   Should have no rust here.  Best trip of field coming in….sprinting at or near the lead for the entire mile, winning by 1.5 lengths.  ML odds: 12/1. My odds: 17-1. Dark horse.
6 CONDO COMMANDO has 250 EOT points for winning the Grade 1 Spinaway at Saratoga, and can share or gain the lead in the EOT with a placing here. Debut race was very similar result, sprinting and leading much of the race, winning by double digits.Given that the Spinaway was in the mud, as we’re sloppy today, she may well have the off-track advantage. Based on her early speed, she seems to be the speed of this field.  ML odds: 2/1.  My odds: 3/1. Contender.
7 BY THE MOON picked up the pieces from CONDO COMMANDO in the Spinaway, earning 100 points. Won debut race also at the Spa, winning an 83k maiden race. Michelle Nevin has trained 3 horses going  sprint to sprint to route, with 1 win and 3 placings for return of 2.53.  ML odds: 8/1. My odds: Worse than 20-1.  Stay away.
Top 4
1 Cavorting
6 Condo Commando
2 Wonder Gal
4 Feathered
Overlays: None.
Not expecting much in the way of value in this race.
The Champagne Stakes is also at Grade 1, 500k for 2YOs going a mile.1 EL KABEIR graduated from maiden status in style, a 100 Brisnet over 7 furlongs and a 10 length margin of victory. First time with Lasix certainly helped. Best AWD numbers here (Scat Daddy/Great Venue, by Unbridled’s Song). Best works of the field. 3 works at Belmont, 2 of them bullets, and the 3rd nearly so. Stalking-type horse that can succeed here as per the abovementioned track bias.  ML odds: 5/2. My odds: 5/1. Contender.
3 I SPENT IT has earned 100 EDT points for being 2nd in the Hopeful at Saratoga. That race was actually a bounce, as he had won his prior race, the Grade 2 Saratoga Special with a 99 Brisnet. His stalking style makes him the speed of the field. Also should progress further and bounce back in this race. His 77 from a middle post is actually best among those making a start from a general set of posts (that is, comparing those with prior inner, middle or outer posts).  Another stalker type that can succeed here.  ML odds: 6/1.  My odds: 7/5.  Favorite, contender and overlay.

5 THE TRUTH OR ELSE took 4 tries to graduate from maiden winning with his first appearance on dirt last time out, going a mile in his fastest lifetime appearance, an 87 Brisnet score.  That score is fastest at the distance of the field.  Certainly a risk to bounce here, as his prior races were in the 70s, tho that may be overlooked because those were grass races. ML odds: 10/1. My odds: 9/2. Contender, overlay.
6 DAREDEVIL won his lifetime debut, a 75k maiden race, by 6.25 lengths, and a 92 Brisnet.  That score is fastest of this field at Belmont, as well as best on an off track. Top jockey/trainer combo (Castellano/Pletcher again).  ML odds: 2/1.  My odds: 3/1. Contender.
Top 4:
3 I Spent It
6 Daredevil
5 The Truth Or Else
1 El Kabeir
Good race for value, with overlays 3 and 5 factoring in my top 3.

Laurel Park, Belmont Stakes handicapping contest entries, Enlightened Trail recap

Today a look at the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Beautiful Belmont, and a full look at my top 3 for Leg 7 in The Racing Biz’s Maryland Handicapping Series.
For the Enlightened Derby Trail tomorrow I’ll analyze the Gottstein Futurity for my new home track of Emerald Downs, right on time for closing day. I’m actually moving to Tacoma WA at some point in October.  Beyond this race, Belmont will have their opportunity to shine on both Trails, with the Champagne and Frizette Stakes on 10/4.
Here are my top 3 for the contest races at Laurel:
Race 3: 9-2-11
Race 4: 2-7-6
Race 5: 1-10-2
Race 6: 3-5-2
Race 7: 4-2-5
Race 8: 10-1-7
Race 9: 6-5-3
Race 10: 5-8-13
Race 11: 11-8-10
I selected a value horse per morning line in races 5, 7,8, 10, and 11. 7,8, and 10 I have rated very close.   The one race that’s closest to a lock is race 4.
I used jockey/trainer standings alone to judge the finale, and I used my full arsenal of variables for the others.
Race 9 at Belmont: 3-1a-5
Race 10 (see below…)
Only my top horse counts for the contest, for a mythical $2 Win-Place wager. Top money earned wins a bag of swag, top 5 win an extra entry for the grand prize of the series.
In a recap of the prior EDT race at Presque Isle, 2 of the 3 horses with prior Trails were a factor.  Less Than Perfect gets 100 points for first place and now has 125. Bourbon Cowboy adds 50 to his total, which is now 75.  Draw Night joins the trail with 25, and Breakin The Fever 10 for his 4th place finish.
TALE OF EKATI: Pleasant Tales makes her racing debut in Race 5 at Churchill, an MSW race, 37k, 7 furlongs for fillies. Already she is listed at 15-1 morning line.   Does she have a chance?  Not at all. She doesn’t measure up at all in any of the variables I use, especially considering the poor record of trainer Dallas Stewart.  I see the race run as 3-11-10  Another first-timer, False Positive, will be at Belmont in an MSW race, 60k, 1 mile.
Later today I’ll take to Twitter to present picks for Emerald and Remington.
Now for the Jockey Club Gold Cup:
Just 5 of the 12 horses seem to have any real chance. This race is 10 furlongs, 3YO+, Grade 1, $1 million:
1 MICROMANAGE won the Grade 3 Skip Away and the ungraded Birdstone. Cuts back 2 furlongs tho moves up in class, along with a rider switch to Luis Saez, Track bias in his favor: In dirt routes here, stalking horses are winning at a 39% rate. Rail horses are winning 22%.  Ping-pong movement in Brisnet speed figures: A 111 in the Brooklyn, a 96 in the Suburban, a 105 in the Birdstone, then a 98 in the Garland Cup at Parx last time out.  I’m predicting a bounceback here. ML: 20/1. My odds: 5/2. Contender at a price, and overlay.
8 TONALIST is the Belmont Stakes winner as well as the Peter Pan. Christophe Clement removes blinkers for this race. Best track performance of the field, a 108 in the Belmont. Best jockey/trainer aboard: Joel Rosario 30% wins, Clement 25%. I’ve rated this stalker as fastest of the field.  Also 3 great works here since the Travers, 2 of them were bullets, and those were on soft ground at that. My suspicion is that he’s more of a true mudder but we’re fast and firm today.  ML odds: 4/1. My odds: 8/5. Favorite, contender. Might end up being an overlay, a cheap one at that.
9 STEPHANOATSEE stretches from 9 to 10 furlongs. Hasn’t won since 2012. Best average winning distance from pedigree here (AP Indy/Oatsee, by Unbridled). Progressed in pace to score a 101 last time out in the Woodward, just ahead of his 2013 best.  ML odds: 20/1. My odds: 6/1. Outside contender, and overlay.
10 VE DAY won the Travers and the Curlin, part of a 4 race streak where he emerged from top maiden company. Keeps Javier Castellano for this race. He and Jimmy Jerkens have 2 wins and placings in the last 60 days, for an ROI of 9.13 in a small sample.  Sharp increase in speed from 92 to 102 Brisnet. 3 works at Belmont since, 1 very fast. Seems acclimated to dirt after running turf in first four. ML odds: 5/1. My odds: 6/1. Contender.
11 MORENO won the Whitney 2 races back. Junior Alvarado has 1 win and 3 placing riding for Eric Guillot in last 60 days, for 3.50 ROI.  ML odds: 7/2, listed as the lukewarm favorite.  My odds: 20/1.  Dark horse.
Top 4:
8 Tonalist
1 Micromanage
10 VE Day
9 Stephanoatsee
Overlays: 8,1
Predicting strong value upfront for this one.

Enlightened Trail update, and, adoption time

Here I examine this week’s Enlightened Derby Trail races, and thoughts about adopting a trainer and horse as official favorites, and how it’s become rather necessary for me.

Taking you back to 2007, when I began the matter of attending the local tracks in NYC, I fondly recall the day as July 7, and there was certainly enough people wanting to bet on #7 in the 7th race. First race I ever wagered, I hit a few straight tickets, and I became hooked. In race 2, one of the horses I may or may not have wagered on was Charles Fipke’s Tale Of Ekati, making his fateful debut…which you can see here

Here is the page on Bloodhorse  http://www.bloodhorse.com/stallion-register/stallions/136014/tale-of-ekati

Something about his workouts must have been attractive enough for the public to bet the first-time starter down to even money. I only recalled the horse later when he was entered in the Breeders Cup Juvenile, which he managed a 4th place finish. His career would continue to 2 of the Triple Crown races, and was entered in Graded races for his entire career outside of the maiden race I and 13,000-plus bore witness to. He showed some trouble in a number of trips but for the majority of those races managed to survive those, and even win some. How can one not love a classy horse who often finds his/her way into the money even if he, or she, doesn’t win, at the top level?
So why the adoption? I guess it’s because it’s a kinda personal connection, even though I have nothing but my first live race visit to go on. You tend to remember the first horses you see that win, and especially those that win by 7 lengths.
I’m tracking all the progeny of TOE, and will report on notable workouts and upcoming entries….maybe even fill you in with analysis of races his 2YOs are in. I’m happy because this is his first crop, and he’s ranked #13th by Bloodhorse in that category He’s got 6 winners, and one with 2 wins named Ekati’s Phaeton. 2 of TOE’s fillies are in action on the 25th, one on the 27th.
As for trainers, I’m going to adopt KIaran McLaughlin, who has a long history of racing winners in several countries. I believe he trains many horses for the NY tracks, as he’s based very close to NYC. I chose him for study in part because he helped to inspire the Enlightened Derby and Oaks Trails. You can read the quote that started it all in the EDT/EOT page of the website. I wanted to choose a NY-based trainer because I figure to access more free past performances from those running there.
I still have my copy of Dave Litfin’s book “Expert Handicapping: Winning Insights Into Betting”. He advocates clipping past performances of horses that were to win races of the trainers I’m tailing, and note certain variables besides. So this will be, from hereon in, my task…and we’ll see what tendencies present themselves!

EDT update:
4 of 42 horses who scored on my Trail were nominated for this week’s EDT race, the Fitz Dixon Jr. Memorial, run at Presque Isle Downs, 6.5 furlongs for 2YOs. 3 of the horses made the show, based on lifetime earnings:
Duff, 3rd in the Mountaineer Juvenile,
Bourbon Cowboy, 4th in the Arlington-Washington Futurity, and
Less Than Perfect, 4th in the Summer Stakes
The one that didn’t make the cut was Gotta Get Paid, who was 2nd in the Evangeline Downs Star and likewise in the Mountaineer Juvenile.
For the next post I’ll give you my analysis of contender for the Fitz Dixon, and, if possible, the TOE fillies in their races for Thursday.