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.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Promising Babies Battle in G3 Nashua

Two features for juveniles today, both Grade 3s, and it will pay to pay attention as some likely will be back for Holiday Fest on Thanksgiving weekend. The boys get top billing here and what an interesting event: Hello Broadway, Friesan Fire, Royal Vindication and Forty Thieves are all seem to have a future. Which one will prove best here is not easy to fathom.

Hello Broadway is highly regarded and for good reason. His winning debut at Saratoga at 6-½ furlongs was first rate on several levels, and Barclay Tagg wasted no time trying to see what he had, entering him back in the G1 Champagne in which he suffered through a horrendous trip, racing in close quarters throughout after being virtually eliminated at the break. He has come back to train strongly and is suited much better to today’s group.

Friesan Fire has been handled by Larry Jones as if the A.P. Indy colt has a future. Jones, who’s retiring after the 2009 season, has identified this as a Derby horse, indicating as much when he brought him out for a winning debut around two turns. After that came a willing-finish effort in the G2 Futurity, a good third after gaining some valuable education at the midway point of the race. The added distance, 50-day layup and switch to Johnny Velazquez all augur well.

Royal Vindication has impressed with his class, talent and determination while racing with a bit softer but always acquits himself well and acts as if he wants to do more and run farther. The Hough barn appears to be coming alive with a winner of Friday’s nightcap and this colt should continue to progress. He seeks his third straight for regular partner Javier Castellano.

Forty Thieves is yet another running juvenile from the Steve Klesaris barn, this one a winner of both lifetime starts by daylight margins of 7-¾ and 5-½ lengths, respectively, earning fast performance figures. Sprint meant, his outside position in this one-turn mile should be within his scope. The position conscious Cornelio Velasquez rides.

Taking whatever value is offered on Friesan Fire at 4-1 or greater, and keying him first and second in exactas and trifectas with his rivals here, pressing with Hello Broadway.

Running Totals: (303) 92-62-38 Total Dollar Return: $608.80 [win selections only] {Saturday results not included}

Written by John Pricci


Saturday, November 01, 2008

Here Come the Euros Again!

Even though it will be run at the racetrack in Queens, today’s feature is the Grade 3 Long Island Handicap for fillies and mares three-years-old and upward at a mile and a half. Three interests hold the best chance. The European entry from Andre Fabre (5-2), Hostess (9-2) and Marzelline (8-1).

The great Andre Fabre ships over a pair of three-year-olds, the entry topped by Astrologie, who’s been very competitive in Group competition. A natural distance type, she’s 2-for-2 at 12 furlongs, is fairly weighted, and attracts local turf ace Alan Garcia.

Her mate Shake The Moon has performance figures that a marching, an apparent late developer who’s just now coming into her own. She also boasts a pair of wins at the distance and picks up the talented, young Jose Lezcano, who rode the winner of the Juvenile Turf, Maram.

Hostess wouldn’t be the first horse that shipped to Woodbine and didn’t care for the ground. In as top form as she was going in, what else could it be? She simply failed to lift a hoof. Maybe the G1 competition didn’t help either. She returns to the G3 level today, the class of her impressive two-back win at Saratoga.

Marzelline may be unproven at the distance but she has won at 11 furlongs and her ultra performance figures keep marching forward. She ships in sharp for Ben Cecil and Tyler Baze and could easily surprise this group if she gets away a little soft early on. It’s an interesting feature, indeed.

Bet we’ll take the Fabre entry at 2-1 or greater--3-1 if one of the fillies is scratched--and key them first and second in exactas and trifectas with her rivals here plus Criticism (4-1), who made an impressive U.S. debut recently.

Running Totals: (303) 92-62-38 Total Dollar Return: $608.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Friday, October 31, 2008

Dutrow Masterful with New Acquisitions

Today’s feature is an interesting betting race, a starter allowance at 7 furlongs for horses that have run for a tag of $50,000 or less or a preliminary allowances. Horses of interest are By Proxy (10-1), Coach Butts (4-1) and Masterwork (7-2).

By Proxy makes only his fifth life start and second in a new barn. After an opening compression line and a new pace top in his lifetime best figure--at today’s trip--he showed better energy distribution last time out now steps up in class off a loss for Giuseppe Iadisernia who is a profitable 18 percent effective in second start off the claim and 2-for-7 with second starters from his barn. Profitable second off the layup as well, Mike Luzzi re-rides for his second start at his optimal distance. His odds will be square.

Coach Butts earns the best figures with consistency and also does well at a similar specialized distance. He was narrowly beaten despite and wide trip vs. tougher in last and should benefit from the stretch-out and notch drop. Alan Garcia re-rides for Bob Barbara. He should be tactical enough to be in this from mid-race forward, nicely fitting the Aqueduct dynamic at this trip.

Masterwork showed marked improvement in his second start off the Rick Dutrow stable switch. He broke his maiden at this distance, qualifying for this spot after dropping into a claimer for the first time and Dutrow’s a profitably worthy 32 percent effective with last-out maiden breakers. The effort earned him a new pace top and career best figure. He should be set to repeat in his third start off the layup and with tactical speed and outside, should insinuate himself into this from the outset with Prado in the re-ride.

Taking Masterwork to win at 5-2 or greater and keying him first and second in exactas and trifectas with his rivals here.

Running Totals: (302) 92-62-37 Total Dollar Return: $608.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


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