Pricci's Free Daily Feature Race Analysis

Five days per week and every racing day during the Saratoga meet, John Pricci will provide horse racing selections of that day's feature race. When the racing schedule dictates otherwise, there will be analysis from other major thoroughbred Tracks. Check back here 5 days a week for free horse racing selections.

In addition to his race analysis, John will provide commentary in a weekly "On the Line" column and daily blogs under the "Pricci's Morning Line" banner.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Looky Here, Tight Storm’s the Value

Today’s feature at Belmont Park is a non-winners of “three other than” or optional claiming $75,000 for older fillies and mares sprinting six furlongs. A short field of five and hoping that, unlike yesterday, a late scratch would change the dynamic and render a potential wager meaningless.

This one appears to be a battle between Looky Yonder (2-1) and Tight Storm (5-2). Looky Yonder is the logical favorite coming out of a rough trip second in the Grade 2 Madison at Keeneland. In fact, she’s had a lot of stakes experience of late and undressed an allowance field when racing in a secondary allowance condition. This is the next logical step, getting class relief while picking up Garrett Gomez.

As one might expect, Tight Storm showed improvement in her first start for Gary Contessa last out. The four-year-old filly returns off a brief freshening sporting a series of steady breezes. Channing Hill rides the filly back after being aboard for her latest much improved effort. With upside potential as a four-year-old, she might offer value in a short field, barring scratches, of course.

Taking Tight Storm at early line odds of 5-2 and an exacta box with Looky Yonder.

Running Totals: (204) 66-44-23. Total Dollar Return: $409.00 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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Thursday, May 08, 2008

Turf Pace in Decline but Things Looking Up for Namaste’s Wish

Today’s feature is an interesting one, the Gaviola for three-year-old turf fillies going a mile and a sixteenth on the on the Widener turf course. Yesterday, the Irish rail was not used but today’s forecast calls for a 50 percent chance of thunderstorms. The selections are for turf only.

We’re making it a two horse event between I Lost My Choo and Namaste’s Wish (4-1). The good news is that value might be available here.

The bad news is that I Love My Choo is a deserving favorite. Three for three on grass, she tried the Grade 3 Appalachian last time out at Keeneland and just missed in a grudging loss after chasing the pace throughout while rank, a tough trip to say the least. Two for two at the distance, nicely drawn, and with Prado, she’ll be a tough out.

Namaste’s Wish, winner of the Miss Grillo at two in her only start on this course, she raced extremely wide behind the choice in her season’s debut. In addition to the wide trip, she was hindered by a very slow pace. Given the conditioning gained, she has a chance to break through her two-year-old top effort, which is faster than these have run this year, with the exception of the favorite.

Taking Namaste’s Wish to win at 3-1 or greater and an exacta box with the likely favorite.

Running Totals: (203) 66-43-23. Total Dollar Return: $409.00 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Get Me to the Finish Line on Time

Today’s Belmont feature is the Screenland Stakes for New York bred males going six and a half furlongs. There is a good amount of New York bred sprinting talent in this short field but it will take a Herculean effort to be favored Groomedforvictory (6-5).

The Barclay Tagg trainee, by definition the fastest horse in the race on performance figures by a significant margin, exploded in his Gulfstream finale with the removal of blinkers going a mile. His turn-back figures are first rate, he owns tactical ability and has been working bullets since returning to his Belmont Park base. Regular rider Javier Castellano is in the boot.

Fort Drum (7-2) is removing blinkers following a win, which should not be allowed, but perhaps it’s owning to his continued problems leaving the starting gate might have something to do with that. He won in his first start for Gary Contessa and Eibar Coa rides him back. He’s turning back from 7 furlongs to 6-½, is stakes tough and owns a win at Belmont.

Be Bullish (5-1) looks like an open class sprinter on his best day. He’s won on and from well off the early pace, has a win over the surface and a most worthy 3-for-7 slate and goes postward with regular rider C.C. Lopez, the veteran riding at a profitable 19 percent rate in 2008. He might fall between the wagering cracks here.

Taking Groomedforvictory to win, no price restrictions, keying him first and second in exactas with his main rivals here, extra tickets with Groomedforvictory first.

Running Totals: (202) 65-43-23. Total Dollar Return: $405.60 [win wagers only]

Written by John Pricci

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