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.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Here’s Looking at You, Kid

There are six state-bred stakes on today’s card but the two bigger features are the Stallion Series for two-year-olds, and we’ll opt to look at the males in the Broadway Division.

The face features a worthy favorite, Tall Poppi (3-5). He’s never taken a backward step in four lifetime starts and is, by definition, the fast horse in the race on performance figures. He was most recently second in the Bongard and Sleepy Hollow behind the streaking Trinity Magic. But at very short odds, he seems overpriced.

Not so Lookin At Her, at a value laden 8-1. After earning an excellent sprint figure two starts back, he raced rushed off his feet in last, a new lifetime pace top, and is expected to move forward coming back at the same sprint distance. His natural speed will put him in the game early and he could break this open on turn. At anything near early line odds, it’s worth finding out.

Taking Lookin At Her to win at 5-1 or greater and an exacta box with Tall Poppi.

Running Totals: (308) 94-64-39 Total Dollar Return: $628.00 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Saturday, November 08, 2008

Germans Know How To Do It Longer

The last graded stakes of the New York turf season, the G2 Red Smith at 11 furlongs, has attracted an eclectic group, including European-based competition.

The likely post time favorite will be the rapidly developing Summer Patriot whose performance figures indicates he’s never taken a backward step on grass. He had his doubters when stepped up in class and distance at Saratoga but justified Barclay Tagg’s optimism and turf training acumen with a comprehensive victory. Following that came a game third-place effort when stepped up to the G1 level in Belmont’s Turf Classic. Moving forward again, he sheds 10 important pounds in this matchup as well as dropping one graded level. He’s been working lights out and switches to the patient Javier Castellano.

Another rapid developer is the four-year-old Strike A Deal who comes off the fastest performance figure among last-out efforts, albeit against weaker at a shorter route. But when given the opportunity, he moved forward figure-wise when stretched to this distance in the G1 United Nations this past summer and just missed catching a loose leader. Trainer Alan Goldberg is profitable in his career with all turf starters. Veteran turf and pace ace C. C. Lopez takes the re-ride.

But we’ll take any value available on the German marathoner Lauro, whose poised for a forward move in his third start off nearly a two-year absence, showing marked improvement after adding Lasix. The five-year-old has proven remarkably versatile, not only in terms of running style but in his ability to handle any footing. Trainer Andreas Wohler has enjoyed success when shipping to North America and attracts regular stable rider Starke. Lauro has a worthy (4) 2-2-0 slate at today’s distance.

Betting Lauro to win at 3-1 or greater and keying him first and second in exactas with his main rivals here.

Running Totals: (307) 94-63-39 Total Dollar Return: $628.00 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Friday, November 07, 2008

Highly Competitive Mile at Aqueduct

A skull buster of a feature today, a money allowances/optional claimer at a mile--only a six-horse field but with infinite possibilities.

For instance: The sharp Mister Triester was recently claimed by Gary Contessa from Steve Asmussen, Contessa, of course, profitable for a career first time off the claim. What to do? He will improve upon Asmussen on relatively short rest?

Then there’s stakes winning Sir Whimsey, who seemingly prefers to ran farther but comes off a freshening first-time Steve Asmussen. Why shouldn’t he improve in his first start for a barn that wins at a 22 percent rate with new acquisitions.

Classy? When last seen, Sir Whimsey finished third in the Grade 1 Pimlico Special. And he’s won at this distance and over today’s surface.

And how about Timber Reserve, from the hot John Kimmel shed, who set strong fractions and held well for third in the G2 Meadowlands Cup last time out?

But, instead, we’ll go in another direction--Bribon--who freaked while winning at the distance two starts back, earning the race’s best recent performance figure, has won over the surface, has a worthy (3) 1-2-0 slate at the trip and reunites with Alan Garcia, who rode him to victory at this meet last year.

Bribon’s freaky performance came in his second start off the layup, today’s scenario, and that’s no accident. Trainer Bobby Ribaudo is a profitable 18 percent with second-off-the-layup starters, and is also profitable on the stretch-out and with beaten favorites. His recent return at six furlongs looked like a good race to build on. We shall see.

Taking Bribon to win at 5-2 or greater, keying him first and second in exactas and trifectas with Mister Triester and Sir Whimsey.

Running Totals: (306) 93-63-39 Total Dollar Return: $617.00 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


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