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.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Getting Aggressive in Schuylerville

Today’s Schuylerville for two-year-old fillies at six furlongs is the first of 33 graded stakes that will be run at the Spa City track in the next six weeks.

Hel-lo Saratoga!

The history of this fixture is that speed from the inside usually rules and that Churchill Downs shippers have a high success rate coming in.

Hel-lo Ocean Colors (5-2)!

Of those that have started, she has the best performance figure by a significant margin. By Orientate out of the Derby heroine Winning Colors, have no idea how good she is or can be. The most likely winner.

But the speed of the speed just might be Collegiate (7-2). She set extremely fast early fractions to win her debut impressively and, like “Ocean” has had sufficient recovery time, especially important for a juvenile filly.

The interesting price play in here is Renda (15-1). After breaking her maiden by a short pole while on the lead, she tried a different tack after breaking a bit tardily in the Grade 3 Debutante. She attempted a middle move into a fast half-mile fraction then raced evenly thereafter. She has more experience, a trip at today’s distance and gets a favorable rider switch to Javier Castellano.

We’re so anxious to get started we’re making two win bets in today’s feature. Taking most probable winner Ocean Colors to win at 8-5 or greater, and price shot Renda to win at 12-1 or more. Price points are very important here. Also, making exacta and trifecta boxes using all three, an extra ticket in the exacta pool.

Running Totals: (237) 74-49-27. Total Dollar Return: $452.90 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Sunday, July 20, 2008

Bullish on Market Psychology

The Belmont Park summer gate-away stakes is the Evan Shipman for state-breds 3 & up at a mile an a sixteenth. Can Market Psychology (5-2) go the distance? If he can, he’s long gone early and holding them safe late. Everyone knows he’s very fast. And he won at 7 and 7-½ furlongs, so another furlong should be do-able. Eibar Coa and an outside post. Coa needs to ride conservatively aggressive.

Sorry, lately I’ve been watching too many political talk shows.

Stud Muffin (3-1) is top-py, but he’s a new horse at four and he’s had sufficient rest. He will get a fast pace, but maybe too fast. He could get bottomed out. I should await Saratoga before backing Naughty New Yorker (2-1) again, but he’s proven classy at this level and runs good performance figures consistently. And it’s Pat Kelly’s time of year.

Taking Market Psychology at early line odds or better, keying in exactas and trifectas first and second with the other two.

In case you haven’t noticed, we've had two server episodes in the last month. Our apologies for the inconvenience. We bravely predicted that Music Note would win the CCAO, but obviously can’t pad our win percentage. The way we’ve been going, any win would have been welcome. So the running totals don’t reflect Saturday play.

Running Totals: (237) 74-49-27. Total Dollar Return: $452.90 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Friday, July 18, 2008

Don’t Waffle, Take Wafi

Finally, a Belmont feature that will be run on dirt. And what a skull buster it is! For older males at a mile and a sixteenth, it features "non-winners of 4 races other than…or optional $75,000 claiming." It’s just difficult to know where many of the contenders are in their form cycles.

Rathor, for instance, goes from the Grade 3 Long Branch at Monmouth into a $75,000. What’s up with that, although he is a 6-year-old and it’s not like Bobby Frankel has running horses in short supply. The horse loves Belmont (2-for-3) and today’s distance (3-4). His outside draw gives Eibar Coa options, but his form has been spotty.

Diamond Isle and Piety, from Rick Dutrow and Bruce Levine, respectively, haven’t run since 2007, and they’re both great off long layups. What kind of form is Wafi in? He figures to improve off his two month freshening but also has been in and out.

Shone ships in sharp for Nick Zito, but he’s been sprinting and often Zito’s horses in Kentucky don’t replicate their form when they ship here from the bluegrass. Price is usually our guide but in this case it’s absolutely requisite.

Wafi, with his tactical speed and competitive performance figures, figures to sit a good trip behind two likely pacesetters while saving ground, and Mike Luzzi is very position conscious. We’re gambling that Kiaran McLaughlin will have straightened out his recent difficulties and will have him set for best. Among all the major contenders, and there are plenty, he is the most likely to fall between the parimutuel cracks.

Taking Wafi to win at 4-1 or greater, keying him in exactas first and second with Diamond Isle and Rathor.

Running Totals: (236) 74-49-27. Total Dollar Return: $452.90 [win selections only] {Thursday results not included}

Written by John Pricci


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