Pricci's Free Daily Feature Race Analysis

Whenever his daily work schedule permits, HorseRaceInsider executive editor John Pricci will analyze that day's feature race from a major thoroughbred-racing jurisdiction.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

No Need To Be Afraid, Step Right Up

On balance, steeplechase racing is not as popular with the betting public as it should be. The major events throughout the East, without betting, routinely draw crowds of 25,000 or more.

However, U.S. horseplayers looking for form really should embrace the game. Why? We did a 5-year study a number of years ago and found that favorites won at nearly a 50% rate.

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule when it comes to handicapping and the differences between winning and losing, etc. But my steeplechasing philosophy is this: Good jumpers don’t fall.

Today’s Saratoga feature is the Grade 1 New York Turf Writers’ Cup Handicap featuring all the major players.

Tom Voss will saddle the early line favorite, Left Unsaid (5-2), who lose the G1 Smithwick Memorial by a nose. And Jonathan Sheppard, who’s won about a dozen of these things, will saddle a three-ply entry including Sermon Of Love, the 2010 winner of this race.

B we’ll stick with the very sharp Demonstrative (5-1), who won the Kiser prepping for this, a race that produced the 2011 Turf Writers’ winner. The Richard Valentine trainee sheds 10 pounds, obviously meeting a tougher group here.

Regular partner Robert Walsh has the mount on this young gelding (5YOs are considered young in this game) who loves the Spa ground, owing to a (3) 1-2-0 career slate at Saratoga.

Running Totals: (1147) 352-220-173 Total Dollar Return: $2,415.80 [win selections only] [Wednesday Results not included}

Written by John Pricci


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