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.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Pitched Perfectly Hits the Right Note

The first New York feature of this historic American week is a preliminary allowance, optional claiming $75,000 for three-year-old colts going a mile and 70 yards. A tricky read, we’ll concentrate on Land Grant (5-2), Cliffy’s Future (3-1) and Pitched Perfectly (4-1).

Land Grant has a good pattern, coming off a Reverse Equiform pattern, jumping up big time in his first start around two turns and over the Aqueduct winter surface. The spacing is good, connections strong, but at early line odds as favorite is not an attractive play. Of course it could win easily.

Cliffy’s Future, meanwhile, is expected to show improvement in his first start for Bruce Levine, who’s adding blinkers to the equipment this afternoon. Improving incrementally and with good spacing, he is a strong challenger to the early line favorite, especially with Ramon Dominguez in the boot.

But Pitched Perfectly is the likeliest of the three to fall between the wagering cracks. His regression last time can be attributed to two factors; he was coming off a double top (pace and final figures) and was moving from maiden to stakes competition.

He has versatile running style, a rail position and switches to Rajiv Maragh. Thus far, his two-back figure makes him the fastest member of the group. Enough pluses to make the winning difference in a competitive route.

Taking Pitched Perfectly to win at 7-2 or greater, and keying him first and second in exactas and trifectas.

Running Totals: (347) 105-71-46. Total Dollar Return: $742.90 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Monday, January 19, 2009

Good Card Trumps the Speed

Today’s feature on the Martin Luther King holiday program is a contentious sprint for state-breds, the Kashatreya, and it presents an opportunity--if we’re correct--to make a score. The horses we’re looking at are Good Card (4-1), Citifest (12-1) and Scary Bob (12-1).

Good Card showed improved early speed in last and that augurs very well since rallying is his best game. A honest colt, he fires every time, needs no made to order surface and benefits most when there’s a strong pace, a likely scenario here. Drawn toward the inside, he should save ground until Mike Luzzi gives the Pat Kelly trainee his cue.

Citifest also showed improved speed, a New Pace Top on the Equiform pattern scale last out, and his prior was a top figure score. A repeat of that two back effort could easily win this and the NPT makes a bounce-rebound effort a realistic possibility. Eddie Castro takes the mount from John Hertler.

Scary Bob ships down from Finger Lakes. A nine-time winner at the distance, the sprint specialist looms the speed of the speed here and attracts Rajiv Maragh, indicating this speedster is live today. The 8-year-old has been working extremely well on the Belmont training track recently and looms dangerous if left alone on the early lead.

Taking Good Card to win at 3-1 or greater and an exacta box using all three horses mentioned here. (Scary Bob is worth a saver wager at 10-1 or greater).

Running Totals: (347) 105-71-46. Total Dollar Return: $742.90 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Successful Shipper

Today’s Affectionately Handicap for older fillies and mares going a mile and a sixteenth on the Aqueduct winter track attracted a half dozen, with three having the best chance. From the inside out, namely Are We Dreamin (3-1), Successful Sarah (7-2) and Spritely (9-5).

Coming out of a sprint, and given Randi Persaud‘s profitable stretchout record, Are We Dreamin will get strong support. Rightfully so, perhaps, but still worth trying to beat.

Spritely is a deserving favorite. Following two top figure efforts, she improved her style in last by distributing her energy later. She’s learning how to run, developing before our eyes, but she, too, will be a short price.

Successful Sarah is improving rapidly, so much so that she attracted the attention of the IEAH people, who acquired her privately, shipped her north to John Terranova, and has found a very likely spot for a northern stakes debut.

She won her last two starts on the lead but has been effective from just off the pace. Looking for position conscious Eddie Castro to tuck her in comfortably down the backside and take his best shot on the turn for home.

Taking Successful Sarah to win at 3-1 or greater and keying her in exactas and trifectas with her rivals here.

Running Totals: (347) 105-71-46. Total Dollar Return: $742.90 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


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