Enlightened Trails selections (Canterbury, Woodbine)

Woodbine is the setting for the most 2YO stakes races in North America, year after year. The big showcase is this weeekend, featuring the Woodbine Mile.  For this blog, I focus on the Enlightened Trails, with 2 races, plus a race at Canterbury Park.
There is so much to get to as I’ll be away working both Saturday and Sunday, which sees me in a free private DRF contest on Sunday, and another freebie via 123bet.com at Woodbine. Lots to type, not much time to get the words in!

At Canterbury, there is the Shakopee Juvenile, a race for 2YOs going 6 furlongs, in a 75k purse.  Top 3 horses are Irish Beauty, Warrior’s Kid and Even Thunder.
Irish Beauty broke maiden status in 3rd try, then was 4th in a 40k ungraded stakes event here last time out on 8/27. Last 3 races represent a pace plateau of 70.  Competitive turn time compared to others, she won her only race via stretchout.

Warrior’s Kid has prior points from his run in the Prairie Gold Juvenile

Now to Woodbine, and the Natalma Stakes, a Grade 1 event for 2YO fillies going 1 mile on Woodbine’s turf course, with a 250k purse. Top 3 here for me are Tapa Tapa Tapa, Victory to VIctory, and Stormy Perfection.
Tapa won in 2nd try vs 56k maidens, then won a 74.5 allowance race in turf debut.  All races in mid-80s, best speed figures in general for this field, as well as for surface and track.

Finally in the Summer Stakes on Sunday, for 2YO colts going 1 mile on the turf, 400k purse, my top 3 are Conquest Sure Shot, Harlan’s Harmony and Conquest Farenheit.
Conquest Sure Shot won in 2nd attempt vs 83k maidens, then exploded in pace in a 74.5k allowance effort last month here. Track bias is favoring early closers and rail position based on 33 turf mile races thus far here.

Stakes/Race analysis (multiple tracks)

Today I cover for you 8 stakes races, the only Graded stakes races in the country,
First we go to Del Mar for 3 of them:
The Del Mar Oaks is 9 furlongs on the turf course for leading 3YO fillies.  My top 3 here are Cheekaboo, Lynne’s Legacy and Decked Out.
Cheekaboo is 8 of 9 in the money lifetime, with a win in the Honeymoon Stakes at Santa Anita 2 races, and the Campanile at Golden Gate in May.  Shares in best distance and turf speed figure (Honeymoon was 98, her best lifetime effort). Bounced to a 90 in the Sandy Blue last time out at Del Mar on 7/17. Had some traffic trouble early in that race; I feel she can bounce back from that figure and have a better run here.  Best works of the field too, with 3 fast local ones.
Overlay pick: Lynne’s Legacy 6 of 9 in the money, took 8 tries to break maiden, did so 2 races back at Santa Anita on 5/29, going at today’s distance. Followed up with a 65k allowance race win on 7/21.  Forged new top in that race, tho leaves her as a bounce risk. Also ran much better at 2nd call than in previous.

Next is the Del Mar Handicap, 9.5 furlongs on the turf course for 3YOs+.  My top 3 are Ashleyluvssugar, Flamboyant and Metaboss…which are also the top 3 per morning-line as well. Can’t expect this race to be all profitable.
Ashleyluvssugar has 6 wins in 15 races, including the Charlie Wittingham and the San Luis Rey.  Best speed figure for distance (103 in last year’s United Nations) and turf (108 in last year’s San Luis Rey). 97 last time out in the Eddie Read, finishing with a 4-wide move.  Solid high 90s numbers last 3 races.

No overlays in this race, which seems wise to avoid.

Next is the TVG Pacific Classic as Del Mar welcomes back champion horse and home-bred California Chrome.   Top 3 are Dortmund, Hoppertunity and Imperative.

Media is really focusing on Beholder vs Chrome, but I have Dortmund as that other favorite to prevail.  8 wins in 11 races, 2nd start of 2016, winner of the Los Alamitos Futurity, RB Lewis, San Felipe, Santa Anita Derby, the Big Bear, and the Native Diver 2 races back here on 11/28. Forged and set up new speed figure record of 108. Made the most of a game effort last out in the San Diego as he drifted in the stretch, losing to Chrome in the San DIego.  Turn time looks good compared to others.  Pattern of triple digits in last 3 races.
Overlays:  Win The Space hasn’t won yet in Graded company but his race pace numbers should cause serious looks.  103 lifetime best in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita, then 2nd here in the San Diego. Possibility of bounce from that number.  Turn time gain plus lower speed figure suggests he has more coming.
Imperative has poor 14 of 32 races in the money record, and no wins in the last 18 months.  I like that he gained 2.25 lengths on the leader last time out in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita, and also has the best works of the field, 6 works here, 2 bullets.
Now I shift to Monmouth for the Monmouth Oaks, Grade 3 100k event at 8.5 furlongs for top 3YO fillies.  Top 3 are pretty much the morning-line selections: Unbridled Mo, Mo d’Amour and Tejana.
Unbridled Mo broke maiden in 2nd start here on 5/29 (36k level), then won an 20k optional claimer race at same distance of 1 mile and 70 yards.  Waiting since early July to stretch out. Top AWD numbers in the field (sire Uncle Mo, dam Unbridled Waters, out of Unbridled).  Forged and matched lifetime best of 86 in both wins.  4 works at Monmouth since last, 3 of the 4 very fast.
Overlay: In a race with favorites up front, there’s a small chance that Hi Holiday might be overlooked. Best pace form of the field, setting small new top of 85 last time out in a 30k optional claimer on 7/23.
UPDATE: Hi Holiday a scratch, so no overlay in this race now, no change in the order. 
Up we go north of the 48 to Northlands and the Grade 3 Canadian Derby.  This race is for top 3YOs, 150k, 9.5 furlongs.  My top 3 are Hold That Giant, Access This, and Ruck.
Hold That Giant is one of 2 overlays I see here and a longshot pick for me.  Winner of the Edmonton Juvenile in 2nd start.  2016 campaign sees a positive change in speed figures, all in the 80s.   Might be fastest of these horses by run style if any of the also-eligibles don’t run.  Trainer Tim Rycroft (21 % winners here) has done the most of any trainer for his horse (class, distance change). Waiting since 7/16 to stretch from 8.5 furlongs.  Impresses with 1 second turn time gain between last 2 races. 2 bullet works since last race.
The other overlay here may be The Accuser. Set small new tops of 74, then 79, then big gain to 86 last time out in a 50k ungraded stakes event here 7/16. 3 works since then, all at NP, 1 very fast.
UPDATE: Scratches to two of the also-eligibles change my order a bit: Hold That Giant, Ruck, Access This my solid top 3, with an upset looming. 

Next is the Spa, and the Fourstardave Handicap, a race rescheduled from last week.

My top 3 here are Grand Arch, Tourist and Ring Weekend. I’m reversing my top 2 in so doing, going with a value horse over 2 favorites.
Grand Arch has an impressive 21 of 26 in the money, with wins in last year’s version of this race as well as the Shadwell. Drops 6 lbs for this race. Won the last 2 times he’s dropped significant pounds. First race after reclaim by Bryan Lynch. Best workouts of the field, with 6 in all, 2 very fast.
King Kressa remains the overlay of the field.  108 Brisnet is lifetime best as well as best for the Spa, the distance and turf course.  Moved from 93 to 100 last time out wining the Forbidden Apple at Belmont, hanging on to win by a nose.
UPDATE: With scratches to 3 horses, my new top 3 are Tourist, then Grand Arch (back to my original top two then), and A Lot.   King Kressa still an overlay.   Tourist is an early-presser type, whose style has won 5 of 10 races during the meet at the mile, and 11% for the range of posts starting from the 4th out. Fastest overall speed figures and rather consistent ones too 
Also at the Spa is the Grade 1 Alabama Stakes, 10 furlongs for top 3YOs, 600k.  Songbird is the big lone favorite, and I’m taking a firm stand against her. My top 3 are Go Maggie Go, Going For Broke, and Weep No More. It’s a logical 3 that might not be much value but plenty for sure between them.
Go Maggie Go comes off layoff for the first time…don’t expect any rust here; after all, she did win her first career start….then wins in the Gulfstream Park Oaks and the Black Eyed Susans. Ships from Belmont, following layoff and a 4th place finish in the Acorn. Best works in the field, 4 in all, 3 at Saratoga, 1 bullet. Turn time is easily the best of the field.
Overlays: Weep No More bounced to 87 last time out in the Coaching Club American Oaks here in July. Only deep closer threat in the field, generally on a somewhat quickening pace as the race takes shape. Did gain a bit on the leader and winner Songbird last out by the 2nd call. It was also her first race since layoff, and she improved slightly at the 2nd call as measured by speed figure.
Flora Dora recovers in pace, with a 93 last time out in the CCAO, setting slight new top in the process. Took a 3-wide path while finishing a distant 3rd. The recovery angle suggests she can improve even more from the 93. Just after layoff to start her 3YO campaign, she had an 88 but did not improve on that since then.
Finally we go back north to Woodbine and the Play the King Stakes, a Grade 2 event for 3YOs+ going 7 furlongs on the turf.  My top 3 are Tower of Texas, a longshot play, over 2 pre-favorites, Ami’s Flatter and Green Mask.
Tower Of Texas, in fact is my lone overlay.
13 of 17 in the money, with his last win in the King Edward Stakes (grade 2) here in June 2015. Was nosed out of a win in last year’s version of the Play The King.  99 speed figure is best for the distance and Woodbine of this field. 21.8 turn time from his last 2 races and .6 second gain is the best mark of the field.
UPDATE: Green Mask a morning scratch. I’m inserting Dimension as 3rd choice in a race with a fair amount of value attached. 

2015 Queen’s Plate analysis

Had a rather successful day at Emerald yesterday, with no pick worse than 4. In the Juan Gonzalez, Stays In Vegas indeed won out, and ibelievewecanwin did find her way to 3rd.     Also, I wagered actual money on the big Belmont Oaks.  My plan was to identify the overlays and play them to win plus faves over them in exactas.  Depending on odds, I’d play the top 3 in exactas to each other. My bets were these:
1,4,12/2  2/1-3-4-12 exactas
win: 1,3,4,12
$15 total wagered.
#2, Lady Eli was the sole favorite  at 80 cents to 1 dollar. I love beating one favorite as it makes the other pools that much more attractive.   So I had my picks Pine Needles, Darling Duchess, Sharla Rae and Itsonlyactingdad involved in exactas and wins.  The result? 2-4! Itsonlyactingdad at 35-1 closed well in the stretch for 2nd behind the favorite, and the $1 exacta paid $39.75.

I hope to continue the trend with today’s big race north of the 48, the Queen’s Plate, worth $1 million tho is actually an ungraded stakes race for Canadian-foaled 3YOs.  With a 13-horse field, there are a number of options but here’s my top 3:
AMI’S FLATTER had placed in the Florida and the Tampa Bay Derbys. Only won her maiden debut here. Responded well when introduced to Lasix and blinkers in the Tampa Bay, but blinkers will be off this time.  Layoff should not be a problem as he did win that first lifetime race. Gained nicely in turn-time last time out by 2.8 seconds in the Marine here on 5/16. Registered a lower speed figure too,so maybe there’s something extra today.

On the other side of the starting gate, Shaman’s Ghost won the aforementioned Marine, 3rd straight win. Broke maiden status winning upon layoff. This deep closer has the best speed numbers per pace in the field. Best work tab too, with 4 works put in at Woodbine.  I like the pattern of speed figures in his last 3 races, 87, 88, 90. Shares in best turn time last race, at 23.6 seconds.
Breaking Lucky my 3rd pick is the best of 3 overlays I see here. Won his maiden debut first time on the poly at Woodbine, then a 2nd in an optional-claimer for 75k, then 7th in a 58.6k allowance race.  All four lifetime races with blinkers on, but they come off today.  Prior win stretching out, and owns a bullet work since last race.  Also, James McAleney returns to ride (he rode the horse’s lone lifetime win).
My suggested odds:
Shaman’s Ghost 7-2. Ault 9-1. Academic 7-1. Danish Dynaformer 29-1. Breaking Lucky 5-1. Easy Indigo 14-1.  Ami’s Flatter 3-1.
Overlays in this race based on morning line: Ault, Breaking Lucky, Easy Indigo.
Watch for updates on my Twitter feed at @idealisticstats
Will be turning shortly to Emerald Downs as I handicap and select horses for the last 6.

Today’s quick stakes analysis at Woodbine

Today, a quick look at 4 major stakes at Woodbine International. Being the first of these 4 are running in less than an hour, I’ll give you just analysis for the top selection, and capsule top 3 selections.

First is the strongest event of  the day, the Grade 1 Canadian International, 12 furlongs on the Woodbine turf, for 3YO+.
10 REPORTING STAR has been a mainstay at Woodbine since May. 4 lifetime wins, had a 3 race streak here, and never out of the money in over 18 months. 17 starts, 4 wins, 4 2nds, 7 thirds lifetime.  Comes out of a lifetime best Brisnet of 105 in the Grade 1 Northern Dancer…preceded by a prior lifetime best equaling 100 in the Sky Classic. The 105 score is the best for the track of this field as well as for an off track (track is labeled good at this moment)2 great works here at 5 furlongs since the Northern Dancer.  Considering pace shape he appears to be the lone early speed threat. Excellent trip last time out sprinting over 12 furlongs, and returns to an outside post where he’s won before. Overlay.
Top 3 are
10 Reporting Star
2 The Pizza Man

4 Brown Panther

Next is the Grade 2 Nearctic Stakes, for 3YO+, 6 furlongs on the turf.
4 PASO DOBLE comes out of 2 straight ungraded stakes wins at the 125k level. In the money for 5 straight.  Sheds 5 lbs for this race, and shows some good promise from his 2 works at 4 furlongs since last. Gained 7 points in Brisnet speed last race to near lifetime best of 97, and a good trip at that. This 8YO gelding is the lone speed. Track bias in his favor: In 17 turf sprints, sprinters have won 9 of the races. 3 wins have come between posts 4 and 7.  Overlay.
4 Paso Doble

8 Black Hornet
5 Excaper
More value in front in this one, which I think is the closest finish of the 4 races.
Next here is  the Grade 3 Ontario Fashion Stakes, fillies/mares going 6 furlongs on the all-weather surface.
1 GOLDSTRYKE GLORY ships back from Saratoga. Winner of 2 ungraded stakes at the 100k level. 3 wins at Woodbine, including a winning  effort in one such 100k race a year ago. The 99 Brisnet there is best at Woodbine of this field. This sprinter is definitely the top speed of the field, and almost always leads by the top of the stretch. Great work tab; 4 since her last race, 3 very fast, one a bullet.  Sprinters on the all-weather in sprints are winning 39% of the time, and 16% from a rail post during the meet. Deserving favorite.
Top 3:
1 Goldstryke Glory
8 Cryptic Message
3 Silent Treat

FInally there is the EP Taylor Stakes, Grade 1 race for fillies/mares at 3YO+, going 10 furlongs on the turf.

6 DECEPTIVE VISION won the Canadian Stakes here last year, and has placed in all 7 lifetime races between here and Fair Grounds.  His run in the Canadian was an outstanding 107 Brisnet over 9 furlongs, best on this track of the field.  Top jockey/trainer combo in the field (Da Silva 20% wins, Malcolm Pierce 29%) . Early-presser type that appears to be the speed of the field.  Track bias may be in her favor: 5 of 9  turf races at 10 furlongs here have been won by her style.  Also might be best suited at her middle post.
Top 3:
6 Deceptive Vision
8 Meri Shika
3 Just The Judge

Keep up with me on twitter at @idealisticstats for any updates.

Woodbine race analysis for 9/16/12

From the 6 races yesterday to 9 races today at Woodbine! Yesterday I was able to identify 2 winners, did not hit exactas.
I am liking Woodbine’s coverage the more I watch. They can save the fancy flash and dash of the graphics but solid no-nonsense analysis from usually 1 or 2 female analysts, the main one Dawn Lupul who studies body language. Also there is Jeff Bratt who looks more at pedigree. Both take their time studying each horse, which is useful, plus insights into multiple-race wagers. I am prefering Woodbine over Arlington in terms of TV coverage.
Top trends from the week of racing look similar to yesterday. Horses who benefit from the track bias via run style or post position have the best advantage..15 of 27 horses managed to garner the first 2 positions in a 30 race sample. Horses without reported works since their last race are finishing 1st or 2nd 48% of the time. And horses who have sharp speed figure increase from prior race and who could therefore ‘bounce’ are at 41%.
I’ll give you my thoughts about the top 2 horses in each of 9 out of the 11.
No wagers on this one, and I won’t bother you as to my actual picks but I will give you the scenarios that I am working with:

$2 win bets on any horses in my top 3 selections that may go off at worse than 5-1.
$1 exactas between my top 3 selections.
If my 4th selection is likely to run at worse than 9-1, I will wager that horse to win ($2) and put my top 3 selections (PLUS any favorites…horses that are running better than 4-1) over that 4th selection.

Race 1: 6-3-7. 1,4 are best of the rest; will certainly use either or both as the 4th selection bonus if applicable. #6 has the best overall score across all races, that is POSTER LADY. One start, one rallying 2nd place finish over 5f here. Then got claimed, and now is back, just 2 weeks later, with better maidens to tackle. Best track speed of these, and best all-weather score of 81. Based on that one race, she’s likely a dead closer. No works since that race on 9/1. Also has Da Silva as the jockey with Chircop as trainer; best combo of the field. This is likely the chalkiest race of the 9 I’m covering for you. Also here is D’Wildcat Gold, who will be helped by the track bias, favoring positions 1,2,3. She is the lone horse who forged a new best race recently, a 76 in her 3rd lifetime start, that one on 8/18 going 6f.
Race 2: 1-7-3-6. Really like the value here on top with ADREAMANDAPRAYER. This mare has best track speed, a 95, which was scored last year. She’s also the lone speed. Woodbine sprinters are winning 6f races at a 32% clip for the meet, and 42% this week. ROI angle too: Jockey Tommy Wong has raced 8% winners and 24% in the money in 25 races this year when he’s ridden a sprinter for a return of +6.78. ERMA LEE increased from 81 to 87 in last race and was promptly claimed right after. She had an all out run but failed to hold in a 6f 18k claimer.
Race 3: 3-7-9-8 Value will mix in with the public choices here. 11 going at it, and I can’t really throw out any one of them. WHERE’S JOHNSON is the fastest of these, with a 98 winner last year here. Has jockey/trainer combo of Da Silva (20% wins) and Biamonte (22%). FATHOM’S END is on first start after claim. He went from 75 to an 84 last out, a 6.5f 16k claim event. Dueled and just missed winning that one.

Race 4: 4-2-7-8. Ton of value in these 4, tho the race ultimately sees 2 horses dominate. I’LLTHINKABOUTIT has a winning 93 Equibase score over this track from earlier in the meet, which is also best of the all-weather types. Early-pace type who has been in the top 4 in her last 7 races…last 6 were regional fillies/mare allowance races. Comes out of a 5f race where she briefly led in the stretch upon making up a lot of ground in the backstretch, but used up all her strength by that time, going a bit against type. OUR DARRILYN has more of the form edge. She forged a lifetime best of 83 last time, narrowly beating her 3YO top score of 82. No works since that race on 8/31, should be ready to win today, and has Da Silva in the irons plus trainer Michael Mattine.

Race 5: Canadian Stakes: Very competitive race between my selections of 9-8-5-1. KAPITALE has raced only in Germany and Italy, and then ran her US debut at nearby Arlington. Generally I would be wary of a horse who had did well first time in North America because the 2nd or 3rd start usually is a big downfall. That debut, in the Grade 1 Beverly D for fillies saw her run a 4th place finish and ran rather wide for much of it. She needs the right trip, really, as she’s an absolute closer type,with enough speed to suggest she could be fastest of all. INDIAN POND had forged a 101 lifetime best Equibase number last time out in a G2 event 2 months ago here. She gets the benefit of having Da Silva aboard, along with trainer Mark Casse.

Skipping to race 7, the Ontario Derby. Also competitive between top 3. My top 4 are 7-3-8-2. Some good value behind the likely favorite STEALCASE. His pace totals from the last 3 races (95, 101, 95), all graded events, suggest his late-running style will help him to prevail. Patrick Husbands rides, Mark Casse trains, certainly the best jockey/trainer combo here. ULTIMATE DESTINY gets help from the track bias: Early-pace horses are winning at 9 furlongs on the all weather at a rate of 35% for the meet, and one win in one such race this week. No works since his last race on 9/2.

Race 8 is the Northern Dancer Turf, 12 long furlongs. 6-1-8-2. Lots of value behind my choice to win, the 10YO Musketier. Lifetime best of 111 scored 2 races back here in a G3 event, also at this distance. This dead closer has great stretch numbers as well from his last 3 races. There are 4 such absolute closers in the race. Track bias suggests closers will win at 12 furlongs. They have won 2 of the 3 contested this meet. With a lifetime best this soon, plus a slightly off race since, he has every reason to win here. CELTIC CONVICTION has more of the form angles going on. He had forged a lifetime best of 100 and finished in the same race Musketier had won in back on 6/24. That score pushes past his 3YO best of 98. No reported works since last race on 9/3.

Race 9: 4-11-10-6. MO JO QUEEN likely public favorite in a rather chalky wagering race here. Best track and all-weather speed shared with 2nd choice GALLOPING D’AMOUR. Mo Jo Queen has a winning 93 effort here on 6/17. Early pace type with the fastest pace of the field (2nd call numbers are all in the 90’s, running at 6f). Jockey/trainer combo of Patrick Husbands and Audre Cappuccitti are tops. GALLOPING D’AMOUR matches the 93 score from an 8/25 7f race just 2 races back. He has the recovery angle going on: Was laid off from 5/13 until 7/7, ran and 86, then cooled to an 82, then the 93, then back to an 85 in her last start. ROI angle: trainer Daryl Ezra has 11% of races won and 50% in money when running a horse going from sprint to route and to sprint again, a return of +3.65.

Race 10 is the featured Woodbine Mile. I see this race as close between just 5 of the 9 combatants. 1-3-4-8 are how I see the finish, as I call for the upset and huge value throughout. RIDING THE RIVER has best track speed, a 105 achieved in the King Edward Stakes on 6/24. He goes from sprint to route, which I never value all that much on this track. Has best jockey/trainer win % combo in Husbands and Cotey. WISE DAN is very likely the favorite tho. He’s an early pace type, and has the fastest pace numbers to his style in the field (114, 114, 119 from his last 3 2nd call numbers). Moved from 102 to 110 in his last start, the Four Star David at Saratoga. ROI angle: Charles LoPresti has a +2.47 return on shippers…26% wins, 47% in money.

Enjoy the show! I’ll be on twitter at @radiocblue shortly for mini analysis and further selections.

Woodbine race analysis for 9/15/12

Woodbine is front and center in Sunday’s racing headlines with 4 Graded events, tho there there are also 2 Graded events on their turf course for today, 2 of 6 races I will analyze for you here in this post. Tomorrow’s post will feature my analyzing of 9 out of 10 races.
I was able to analyze just 24 races this past week, Saturday to Friday. I took a look at Friday’s action, which went through a lot of changes as rain set in..3 races were taken off turf and there were residual program changes that made for a lot of back-checking of my work. I’ve been followed on Twitter by freelance journalist Adam Hickman (@ahickman2), who specializes in all aspects of Canadian racing. I shared in his disappoint re a horse in Friday’s race 3, Vino Del Toro, who was chasing the leaders in the back of midpack. Vino Del Toro is a horse who was used to running on or very close to the lead in prior races. He seemed to think the fix was in. I’d agree, as the horse sported the best jockey/trainer combo of the race in Patrick Husbands aboard. Just no excuse, really. Anyways….
As with prior weeks, I will examine the success rate of the eventual top 2 horses across a number of variables and plan accordingly. I bet only wins and exactas for this purpose.
24 races into the week, not all variables came into focus. In fact, I couldn’t handicap a single turf race, as there weren’t any to work with.
Dr. Roman’s awesome website www.chef-de-race.com explores dosage in horses, and also profiles trends per racetracks, a favorite toy for me to use. I reserve this variable for the major stakes of the year. One angle that’s pointed out is that Woodbine is high up on the list of tracks where it’s difficult for sprinters to move up to routes. I examined this variable during the week. Indeed, these horses during the week were 0-for-11 in reaching the top 2 positions.
Best trend: Track bias, based on run style and post position. When Equibase reveals a clear bias for both meet and week, I take the bait. And, sure enough, 9 of 16 horses who fit the track’s strengths did finish in the top 2 positions.
Other strong trends:
The ‘bounce’ angle, or at least the threat of. Horses with a sharp increase in their Equibase speed figures from prior race finished in the top 2 spots 45% of the time.
Horses who dueled for the lead and lost would finish in the top 2 at Woodbine this week at the rate of 41%.
Horses without workouts before today’s races are in the exacta position 41% of the time as well.
I’m handicapping 6 of the 10 races today, including the two big Graded stakes races that are on the turf.
I won’t be littering your timelines with my mythical wagers, but I will provide mini-analysis duplicating what I type here. I also remind you of how I will wager:

$2 win bets on any horses in my top 3 selections that may go off at worse than 5-1.
$1 exactas between my top 3 selections.
If my 4th selection is likely to run at worse than 9-1, I will wager that horse to win ($2) and put my top 3 selections (PLUS any favorites…horses that are running better than 4-1) over that 4th selection.

Now for the analysis itself. I will be updating this as program changes occur before first post:

race 1: 2-5-6-3 ROCKINMEBABY has run exclusively at Woodbine in 11 career starts at age 3. Best winning track Equibase number, an 87, tho that was scored just about a year ago. Also, naturally, best all-weather number of the field too. ROI: jockey Justin Stein and trainer Nick De Toro have done 2 other races in the last 60 days, winning 1, placing in the other, for +4.25. Bounce is possible. SPECIAL SELECTION has the dreaded sprint-to-route move here (as does #6, GOT YOU COVERED). Going at it with the best jockey/trainer win % of the field (Eurico Da Silva & Abraham Katrayn). Increase in speed from 72 to 82 last race. No works since that 82 run on 9/5 here. Got You Covered, an early pace type, has the best pace numbers of the field. In the top 4 last 5 races. Moved from 71 to 79 in last race, also 9/5, and also no works since. ROI: trainer Katerina Vassilieva has ROI number of +8.60 and +8.10 this year with a few horses moving from sprint or sprint-sprint to route. SO LONG GEORGE has more form going on than pace…going from 78 to 86 last time out on 8/5 here, forging new lifetime best effort.

Race 3: 3-6, then 4-5-7 best of the rest. Never is there a greater challenge than having to handicap a race with all first-time starters. Nevertheless I do see a few angles. There is track bias favoring posts 4 through 7 (13% for the meet, 14% for week.I know, it’s low, but consistent). ROI angles: GOLDSTRYKE GLORY (jockey Tyler Pizarro and trainer Terry Jordan are 2-for-2, ROI of +4.85 in races in the last 60 days). PAINTED PONEY: trainer Charalambous has 15% wins, 23% in money, +2.74 for horses making debut in an MSW race. ANGELINTHEEVENING has the best jockey/trainer combo here in Patrick Husbands and Jordan
race 4: 5-3-7-1 Horse-for-course angles match well here up front. AWFULLY SINFUL forged lifetime best speed figure of 90 3 races back here in late July. Dead closer who has best pace numbers of the field. The other is NAME IN LIGHTS who comes out of a failed bid for the lead, making two good moves in her last race to contend early and mid-race.
DARLING DELILAH has the jockey/trainer edge (Husbands with 22% wins, Casse 20%). CARRTOWNS KATIE forged lifetime best 3 races back in early July. Led all the way until finish in an 8.5 furlong race last time out.
race 6 is the Grade 2 Natalma Stakes, with 15 2YO fillies entered. All but 3 horses have come out of sprints, those exceptions are horse 1,2, and 9. Selections are 7-5-4-9. SPRING VENTURE has the potent connections of Husbands and Casse (see above). Also best winning track speed of the field here, an 83 in her first start, 7 furlongs on this turf on 8/18. DANCING FOR GLORY contended late in her first start, 5.5 furlongs at Saratoga, tho 4th most of that race; this late runner could surprsie. RUTHERFORD RD increased speed figure from 58 to 74 last time (and first on turf) , forging new lifetime best of 4 races. Most experienced of the field. ROI angle:jockey Bridgemohan and trainer Doyle have worked together in 3 races in the last 60 days, winning 2 for a return of +21.77. KITTEN’S DUMPLINGS comes off first-time run, an 8.5 race over a sloppy Saratoga course, winning from well off the pace. Her last call pace number is 102, overall pace of 89, must be considered.
Race 9 is the Grade 2 Summer Stakes, for 2YOs. All but #4 come out of sprints to run this miler. 8-1-2-3 are my selections. INDIANO JONES owns best track speed here, an 85 in his last race, plus has Husbands-Casse. Might bounce tho as he improved off debut start of 70. BEAR’S FUR contended in a 6f race last time out, yielding in stretch after being bumped around some. BEST PLAY is the big closer threat, who debuted with an 83 score, and a last-call number of 108. I’M BOUNDTOSCORE forged new top of 87 last time out after 4 lifetime races.
Race 10: Again with the home-track angle: 1-2-7-10 are my picks. CITY TRIP, with BEWITCHING LADY each have contended here with 82 speed figures at Woodbine, doubling as best all-weather scores of this field. Further, City Trip has best overall pace in the field. An early running type, she’s scored in the 70’s last 3 races. Bewitching Lady gets points for forging a lifetime best 82 last time out in a game 6.5f effort. Also she increases from 58 to 82..might bounce from that. WHEN FLASHING ran a route for the first time, and did well for his late-running style, just 2 lengths behind winner, remained in 2nd place tho 7 behind, didn’t have enough kick. JENNY COME LATELY makes mild speed increase from 70 to 76 in last race and still under influence of form recovery from an 18-month layoff. Her 76 score also is lifetime best.
I will update these selections and this post once the program change roll in.

Remember to follow yours truly at @radiocblue for mini-analysis and updated selections.

Stakes analysis for several races today

This post contains my analysis on 6 graded events listed for today.
While waiting for Belmont Stakes Day, I’ve started long-term analysis on exactas and how I can possibly spot a triple-digit payoff on them in advance. Having hit a couple of them before, I want to be ahead of this curve if I can.
What exactly am I doing? I am looking at the results of most major and some minor tracks, spotting the top several $2-rate payouts on exactas, then reverse-engineering by handicapping the race to see if I could spot the proper contenders and also see what variables might have contributed to a particular 1-2 finish. I plan to examine a total of 90 races. I’m up to 12 through Friday. By mid-July I expect to complete the analysis.
Now for those stakes races:
at Woodbine: Nassau Stakes
Forest Uproar has the best winning Brisnet # at Woodbine, a 98, which she earned in a G2 race last summer. Fantastic Cousin is a lifetime sprinter moving up to this route distance of a mile. Woodbine is not kind to horses making this move. Her jockey GL Olguin aligned with trainer Reade Baker just once in the last 60 days, and winning that race for an ROI of +20.60. Roxy Gap is also hindered by the sprint-to-route move here. She does get the best winning jockey trainer combo in P Husbands (21%) and Mark Casse (21%). Last race was a G2 stakes win just 3 weeks ago here.
Inglorious has won at 12 furlongs, tied with Marketing Mix for longest distance win of the field. Inglorious is the lone closing horse of the bunch; that fact alone may give her an edge. She’s already the fastest horse to her style, with 2 triple-digit Brisnet scores in the stretch last two races.
Marketing Mix also won at the Grade 2 level, a race at CD last autumn, and threatens to bounce off her 100 Brisnet number (G2 race last month also at CD). She also has best lifetime Brisnet on turf, a 101
Selections: Inglorious, Marketing Mix, Forest Uproar. The morning-line odds do not look promising with value in this race.
at Belmont:
Vagrancy Handicap
This is really a 2-horse race amongst the 6 entered. Belle Of The Hall should be a good surprise. She and the other major contender, Nicole H. own best winning Brisnet # for Belmont at 102. Belle Of The Hall gets the rail position, which has won 24% of the time during the meet, and 33% during the week. Also has the best speed figures on an ‘off’ track such as today’s race will be, a 102. Further she gets the best jockey/trainer combo in JJ Castellano and Tom Albertrani. Nicole H.’s edge comes from winning at the G2 level previous (last year’s Distaff Handicap at Aqueduct), and has the fastest current pace of all horses here (109 and 106 2nd call numbers in last 2 races).
CC’s Pal is the only other who might rate; she has won at 9 furlongs, longer than the other horses have, tho this race is just 6.5 furlongs. Neither CC’s Pal nor Nicole H. worked out before this race. Nicole H. went from a 91 to a 100 score in her last race on 5/26, likely to bounce.
Selections : Belle Of The Hall (early morning line value of 8-1), Nicole H, CC’s Pal.

at Betfair Hollywood Park (I haven’t gotten used to typing Betfair yet): Californian Stakes

Game On Dude comes out of a terrible 12th place finish in the G1 Dubai World Cup 3/31. Well suited to the 9 furlong distance, and has won at 10 furlongs (2010 Santa Anita Handicap). Multiple G1 victories. Morning Line won last year’s Carter Handicap, also G1. Shares the best winning Brisnet at BHP with a 104 win, which was in her last race, a Grade 2 race, 5/5. Prayer For Relief finished in that race to him. Both also earned best all-weather Brisnet numbers of this field, a 103. Both horses could bounce from these efforts, having gained sharply in Brisnet from their prior races. Yet Prayer For Relief just pushed through his 3YO best (100) and he might actually be improving, suggesting great form. He also has best jockey/trainer combo of Bejarano (29%) and Baffert (42%). Kettle Corn, the lone dead closer seems to have the fastest pace of these, in the money last 5 races.
Selections: Prayer For Relief, Kettle Corn, Morning Line. No value here.
Last 3 are at Churchill Downs, under the lights.
Winning Colors Stakes
Good Deed forged lifetime top in her last effort, the 8 Belles Stakes, last month. Still lunder influence of prior effort to that, a 98, Both races pushed past her 2YO best of 97. She led in the 8 Belles until the stretch, finished 2nd. Gleaming is the best in class, winning a 118k statebred race for fillies last year. Beat The Blues could bounce from her last race, moving from an 86 to a 98 (Carousel Stakes win last time out). 2nd in last year’s version of this race, losing by a neck, and posting best Brisnet on this track of this field, a 102. Honey Chile is easily best in form: This sprinter was caught in deep stretch last 2 races. Jockey CJ Lanerie has worked with trainer Wayne Catalano twice in last 60 days, and has won 1, in the money both times. ROI: +2.30. Page Springs is another sprinter who lost speed duels in her last 2 races. She might bounce down from an 85 Brisnet in her last race. Lifetime 5 wins in 7 races, winning first 5 races. Island Bound also with good ROI angle: jockey Leandro Goncalves has worked 10 races with trainer Ian Wilkes, winning 4, while being in the money 6 times. ROI: +7.26 Has won at 7 furlongs. Also winning at 7 furlongs is Fortune Play. She appears to have the fastest speed numbers to her run style in this field.
Track bias for 6 furlongs on dirt here at CD favore pure speed, winning 51% during the meet, and 44% this week. This gives an advantage to Good Deed, Honey Chile, and Page Springs.
Selections: Fortune Play, Honey Chile, Beat the Blues. Pretty good value in this race.

Aristides Stakes:
Global Power has the only route wins of the field, which may help in regard to running 6 furlongs. Noble’s Promise is the defending stakes winner, and owns the only Graded stakes victory of the field. Also gets best jockey/trainer combo of CJ Lanerie (24%) and Ken McPeek (18%).

Will’s Wildcat won last year’s Jimmy V Stakes on this track with a 111 score, best of the field at CD. Comes out of the G2 Churchill Downs Stakes as well. Whiskey Rebellion is fresh off reclaim by Akiko Gothard, very positive angle re form. While under Gothard’s initial care, he was 1st, then 4th, then claimed by Amalio Garcia, winning 3 straight after an initial 7th place effort. Also..a risk at bouncing, going from 96 to lifetime best 104 in last 2 races, actually 3rd straight increase in Brisnet, all done at Mountaineer. No works since that 104 effort 4/24. Cash Refund was 2nd for much of his last race but didn’t kick in the stretch. He does own great speed figures for his mid-race style, usually in the triple-digits.
Selections: Cash Refund, Whiskey Rebellion, Noble’s Promise, as I call for 2 huge value horse to finish ahead of a favorite.
Early Times Mint Julep Handicap:
Bizzy Caroline should have no problem handling 8.5 furlongs; this late pace runner had won at 9.5 furlongs previous, while the rest of the field hasn’t. Winner of last year’s G3 Regret Stakes. True horse-for-course, 2 wins in 3 life races at CD, best Brisnet of 101 here in the aforementioned Regret. Artemus Kitten scored a 100 2 races back in the Bayou Handicap at Fair Grounds…just past her 3YO best of 95. Bounced off that effort with a 79 in an optional claim 80k race at Keeneland. I am suspecting she’s still in the influence of exploding to 100 and should bounce up again. Heavenly Landing won a G3 race earlier this year at Gulfstream, running in Graded company last 4 races. Best jockey/trainer combo in CJ Lanerie (again!) and Ed Kenneally (29 win %). Might bounce from her 97 effort in a G2 race last month. Hard Seven comes out of a G2 race in April, finishing 3rd. Ravi’s Song has 2 different ROI angles worth looking at: Jockey Mena has worked with trainer Carl Bowman on 3 races in last 60 days, with 1 win. ROI: +6.73. Also, Bowman has run 23 horses this year, winning 17%, in the money 26% for a barely break-even score of +2.01. Snow Top Mountain won a G3 event in February at Gulfstream 2 races back. She has best turf Brisnet number of the field, a 105 in that G3 at Gulfstream. She has the best pace numbers for her dead closer style of the field.
Selections: Snow Top Mountain, Bizzy Caroline, Heavenly Landing. Decent race to play.
Not wagering $ on these races!

Next week I’ll give you my analysis of the entire Belmont card for Belmont Stakes Day. I’ll also reveal some early trends, should any pop up, in my hunt for triple-digit exactas.