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.



Friday, May 30, 2008


Do You Believe in Magic?


Today’s feature is a state-bred stakes, the Noble Nashua for three and up New York breds going a mile a d a sixteenth on the main track. It looks like a two-horse affair between a pair of 3-1 shots, Dr. V’s Magic and Stormin Normandy.

Dr V’s Magic is making his second start as a four-year-for Dominic Galluscio. Not only was the effort a good one to build on from a visual perspective but his performance figure indicates good development from three to four while living some room for further improvement. He showed enough class to win the Empire Classic over this track last year and reunites with Kent Desormeaux, who was aboard for that victory.

Stormin Normandy is by definition the fastest horse in the race and also comes off a promising effort last out as a four-year-old. From the same connections of Triple Crown hopeful Big Brown, he ha sprint speed and perhaps just enough pedigree to make it this far. Cornelio Velasquez certainly gets along well with him, aboard for three victories, and Rick Dutrow and pushing the right buttons at this meet.

Taking Dr. V’s Magic to win at 5-2 or greater and an exacta box with Stormin Normandy.

Running Totals: (213) 69-46-24. Total Dollar Return: $427.30 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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Thursday, May 29, 2008


Go West Young Bettor


Today’s feature to start the Belmont week is a preliminary allowances for fillies and mares, three-year-olds and up, at six furlongs. Anywhere else it would be a stakes, such is the talent level in this.

Half of the six-horse field could easily win, from the inside, out: Pulpitina (3-1), City Bird (2-1) and Tale of the West (5-2).

Pulpitina earned excellent performance figures at two and did it the right way, distributing her energy efficiently. She showed a highly versatile running style, winning on the engine by open lengths after closing much ground late to finish second in her debut prior. Christophe Clement is 22 percent efficient with layups of 90 days or more.

City Bird has the fastest figures, returns for the top layoff barn of Rick Dutrow, and is a four-year-old vs. many threes. She’s experienced, has been working purposefully, the barn is striking at a 24 percent rate this meet and the filly attracts Edgar Prado. From the prolific Stronach outfit, her lone win came on this track, at this distance.

Tale of the West won her debut very impressively at Keeneland with a rare frontrunning score. Her figure was fast and competitive and she distributed her energy efficiently. She ships down from Saratoga for Todd and Johnny, where she worked well with two recent moves termed breezing. She deserves an edge on recent conditioning in a very competitive sprint.

Taking Tale of the West to win at 2-1 or more and keying her in exacta first and second with her competition here, and on top only in trifectas.

Running Totals: (212) 68-46-24. Total Dollar Return: $422.60 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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Monday, May 26, 2008


Commentator’s Record at Distance Speaks Volumes


Today’s feature is a legitimate classic event, the Grade 1 Metropolitan Handicap, a.k.a. the Met Mile for three year olds and up at eight furlongs. Three horses of interest are; the favorite, Commentator at 6-5, Divine Park (5-2) and Z Humor (8-1), half of the Ahmed Zayat entry.

Commentator rates top billing and is a deserving favorite. He’s never lost at the mile distance, earns the best performance figures with consistency and loves this surface. Not only has he won four races at this venue but he also has earned his best figures here. He comes back fresh, just the way he fares best.

Divine Park has moved up miles since he switched barns to Kiaran McLaughlin’s. His last at the distance was absolutely first rate, not only showing the ability to stalk from close range in hot fractions, winning his Belmont debut and improving his record at this distance to 2-for-2. Alan Garcia gets the re-ride and he would be the beneficiary if anyone can press the favorite early.

Z Humor is interesting. When last seen he was finishing 16th in Big Brown’s Kentucky Derby and now turns back to a distance more suited to his talents. Three-year-olds have won this race before, based on their talents and weight advantages, he worked rapidly for the race and returns to the surface over which he earned his best figure as a juvenile. He’ll be running late vs. field loaded with speed and stalker types. He’ll likely be a big price and has a nice insurance policy in stablemate Premium Wine.

Taking to Commentator to win, no price restrictions, exacta keys first and second with his main rivals here, and first in trifectas with those contenders.

Running Totals: (211) 68-45-24. Total Dollar Return: $422.60 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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