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.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Cross the Delaware with Laus Dao

Today’s feature at Delaware Park is a secondary allowances-optional claiming going a mile and 70 yards for three year olds and up. We’re taking the old tack: “The place you lose it is the place you get it back.”

We picked Laus Dao (9-2) on May 11 returning from a layup and he raced as if short of condition. That won’t be the case here. With that effort under his girth and two recent works, he figures to revert to the form that enabled him to win the Count Fleet earlier this year.

The mini-turnback to a winning distance and in at a feathery 112 pounds vs. his elders, the new-pace-top runner projects for a stalking trip from his outer position in this seven horse field, pouncing on the leaders when Jeremy Rose cuts him loose.

Taking Laus Dao to win at 3-1 or greater and keying him first and second in trifectas with returning Strikewhileitshot (3-1), course lover Knight In Armour (12-1) and It’s Never To Late (2-1) from the white connections of Peter Walder and Jose Valdivia.

Running Totals: (665) 209-134-94 Total Dollar Return: $1,458.30 [win selections only]

{There is established precedent for this scenario at HRI: We made two win selections in the Belmont Stakes Saturday, and have treated it as a $2 loss on top selection Ice Box and a winning $1 bet on “saver wager” Drosselmeyer}.

Written by John Pricci


Saturday, June 05, 2010

“Wise Guy” Handicapping, Level Two

When the moment came to put a #1 next to one of a dozen Belmont Stakes horses tomorrow, I made a decision to take the horse that accomplished the most, did it in racehorse time, and rates to possibly move forward based on his performance-figure pattern. That horse is Ice Box.

Further, with all the wise guys looking to beat him because of his deep closing style, we think there is a chance to get value. If you’re getting, say, 3-1 on a horse whose chances of winning are 1 in 3, or 2-1 in parimutuel speak, that’s getting value.

There are a number of price shots who are intriguing, so using the steadiest performer as a key in the multiples pools in several positions, there's a possibility for a good payday. As such, we’re making multiple wagers, after taking Ice Box to win at 3-1 or greater.

Also, making a saver wager on the strong working price shot, Drosselmeyer, at 12-1 or greater.

Of course, would not have had to worry about any of this had Gabriel's Hill won the Brooklyn bob at the wire. It happens, but at the price, it hurt .

Going for Belmont gusto, we're keying Ice Box first and second in trifectas with Uptowncharlybrown, Fly Down, Drosselmeyer, Game On Dude, Stately Victor and First Dude.

For those with money left who insist on a superfecta play, add the steadily improving Stay Put and seasoned Make Music For Me to the mix.

Enjoy Belmont day, a remarkable card with four Grade 1 events and two Grade 2s, easily the best supporting card of the Triple Crown series.

Running Totals: (663) 208-134-94 Total Dollar Return: $1,444.30 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Friday, June 04, 2010

Sound That Charge, Gabriel!

Interesting Friday feature, the storied Brooklyn Handicap, and the first half of the Brooklyn-Belmont double, each at 12 furlongs. Only at Belmont Park folks, only at Belmont. The good news and bad news is while both races have worthy favorites, by no means are they mortgage plays.

With enough time, I could make a case for half the field, maybe more, but we’ll concentrate instead on two: Gabriel’s Hill (6-1) and Eldaafer (9-2).

Eldaafer is easy to like. He won a prep for this spot nearly three weeks ago and has been pointing. How do I know? Because he won this race last year. And he loves it here. He’s 3-for-5 at Belmont, 5-for-5 in the money; looked sharp wearing blinkers last out and Jose Valdivia, who obviously gets along with him, takes the re-ride.

Gabriel’s Hill, meanwhile, is on the come. A late developer, his performance figures are improving, competitive with any horse in the group, Seth Benzel is 4-for-17 at the meet, and is bred to run 12 miles, never mind 12 furlongs. He’s the kind that will have a good chance to slip between the parimutuel cracks.

Taking Gabriel’s Hill to win at 5-1 or greater, and keying him in exacta boxing first and second with Eldaafer and the fast working Tiger’s Rock (7-2) for the white hot Todd Pletcher.

Running Totals: (661) 208-133-94 Total Dollar Return: $1,444.30 [win selections only] {Thursday results not included}

Written by John Pricci


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