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, March 05, 2008

Not a Ghost of a Chance to Beat This Favorite

An otherwise boring way to begin the NYRA week, a secondary allowances/optional $50,000 claiming sprint that has drawn but five older fillies and mares going 6 furlongs. It seems impossible to think we can beat the favorite, so we’re not going try. But considering there’s a quarter-million dollar plus carryover in the Pick 6 pool, Ghost Dancing (3-5) is as good a single as any on the card.

She’s fastest on performance figures, draws the pole with Ramon Dominguez, and trainer Tony Dutrow is a profitable 30% effective with third-time starters off a layoff. Seems just too much to overcome here.

Two of the four remaining fillies have a puncher’s change. The ubiquitous Gary Contessa is everywhere and re-claim What’s Your Point (4-1) has been going well since she was re-acquired by winning move stable. She owns a closing style in a race that figures to feature a quick pace and is perfectly drawn outside in this small gathering.

The other interesting filly is Bedside Story (5-1) a recent claim by Enrique Arroyo, batting 26% at the meet, for the crafty claiming outfit, Gumpster Stable. She likes to stalk from close range and is sharp given her recent blowout. In fact, all three fillies have worked very well for this.

The best of luck if you plan on diving into the pool.

Taking Ghost Dancing to win, no price restrictions, and an exacta key box with two remaining fillies--if you’re so inclined--plus an extra ticket with Ghost Dancing on top.

Running Totals: (185) 64-40-21. Total Dollar Return: $401.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Sunday, March 02, 2008

Will Wishng Make It So?

Today’s feature is the Broadway Handicap for older New York-bred fillies going six furlongs. It has drawn a field of six, a worthy favorite, Karakorum Starlet (9-5) and a very sharp rival, Wishing Wishes (3-1), an uncoupled member of a Tony Dutrow-trained duo.

Karakorum Starlet is a deserving highweight under 120 pounds, most of that Stewart Elliot. She is by definition the fastest filly and can be forgiven her latest when pitched vs. much tougher going seven furlongs in the Grade 2 Barbara Fritchie at Laurel. Here she turns back to her optimal distance and back to the surface over which she won the state-bred Ruby Rubles in a previous start. She figures to get a nice trip from the rail with her tactical speed.

But Wishing Wishes is a perfect 3-for-3 since coming under Dutrow’s care. Her figures have improved consistently and she was wisely given a five-week freshening since earning a career best figure on Jan. 25. What’s most impressive is the her early lick has improved significantly, which will put her in position to upset this group with a mid-race mover that’s been effective in recent starts. She gets five pounds from the favorite here.

Taking whatever value is available on Wishing Wishes, betting her to win at 5-2 or greater and keying her in exacta boxes with Karakorum Starlet and Scatkey (6-1), returning fresh for trainer Pat Kelly and owning the best late kick on her best effort.

Running Totals: (184) 64-39-21. Total Dollar Return: $401.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Saturday, March 01, 2008

Daaher’s Derailment Only Temporary?

Today’s NYRA feature actually has some history, the storied Stymie Handicap for three-year-olds and older going 9 furlongs. And we’re we surprised to see Daaher (2-5) in the entries!

Winner of the Grade 1 Cigar Mile last year, among other high profile events, Daaher was a rank disappointment in the G1 Donn, his season’s debut. This spot is a whole lot easier.

But which Daaher shows up, the one from the Cigar Mile or the one from the Donn. Do we really want to find out at 2-5?

Temporary Saint (6-1) is interesting. Claimed by the powerful Maggi Moss barn for $50,000, he was shipped to New York, given to trainer Bruce Levine, and responded with an open lengths, up-in-class, good-figure score. His stalking style should put him in hailing distance of the favorite throughout. Depending on which Daaher shows up will determine if that’s a good position or not. If it’s the Daaher from the Donn, this would be a good thing for Temporary Saint. Dropping seven pounds after toting 120 last out is another benefit.

The lone remaining plausible contender is the redoubtable 10-year-old Evening Attire, who won this race last year. Today’s added distance helps this old guy and if the pace is suicidal and Daaher’s not his old self, Pat Kelly’s veteran could get it done. Admittedly, that’s a lot of if’s.

Taking Temporary Saint to win at early line odds, and keying him first and second in exactas with his main contenders here.

Running Totals: (183) 64-38-21. Total Dollar Return: $401.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


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