Pricci's Free Daily Feature Race Analysis

Whenever his daily work schedule permits, HorseRaceInsider executive editor John Pricci will analyze that day's feature race from a major thoroughbred-racing jurisdiction.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Lots of Fireworks, and an Upset, in Belmont’s Suburban

A very interesting renewal of the Suburban Handicap. All eyes will be on the very classy returnees from long layups, I Want Revenge and Regal Ransom. I Want Revenge, returning from serious surgery and absent since the 2009 Wood Memorial is ultimately pointing for the Whitney and four of his five career defeats have come when he's fresh. Think I want him at 7-5 early line odds?

Then there's Regal Ransom (2-1), who has excellent early speed, has won at the distance and is working absolutely lights out for a barn, Saeed bin Suroor's, that's a very worthy, and profitable, 33% efficient off long layoffs. How about Convocation (4-1) who's certainly bred for nine furlongs but acts like a miler.

What has the New York bred Haynesfield done wrong lately. Seven for 10 in his career, 3-for-4 at Belmont and 2-for-2 at the distance, his prep for this was outstanding, a mile that went in 1:34 3/5, the last six furlongs in an eye opening 1:10 3/5. Breaking from the extreme outside beneath Ramon Dominguez, his excellent early speed and conditioning can keep him in the catbird seat until Ramon pushes the button.

Taking Haynesfield to win at 4-1 or greater and boxing him in the exacta with Regal Ransom.

Running Totals: (682) 218-138-96 Total Dollar Return: $1,528.40 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


Friday, July 02, 2010

Running Like Gangbusters

Yesterday we saw an example of how it’s possible to find value in a small field but while yesterday required trying to beat the early line favorites, today’s puzzle is trying to determine which of four horses ultimately will be the public’s choice. Indeed, this one’s an open scramble.

Accordingly, one could go any number of ways. Buddy’s Humor (3-1) goes well fresh, as does trainer Bruce Levine. Tactical speed and the rail are never usually bad things on Belmont’s inner turf going 1-1/16th miles.

There’s Cherokee Artist (5-2) who’s been toughened in graded stakes and reuniting with Ramon Dominguez, who rode him to two consecutive victories last year for regular client Graham Motion. And there’s Wesley (3-1), another who’s been cutting his teeth and high class graded rivals.

But it’s Gangbuster (4-1) who appears to have the most upside. In his first start for Tim Ice two races back, his first as a five year old and at Belmont Park, he showed an instant liking for the course, drawing off rapidly in deep stretch, albeit beating lesser than he will meet here.

But his effort, both visually and against the clock, was good enough to beat a group like today’s. Subsequently, he was overmatched on dirt in the Grade 2 Brooklyn, a race that should have taken little out of him, as Kent Desormeaux protected him, easing him across the finish line. Since the Brooklyn, he’s had two brisk drills, indicating a repeat of his Belmont debut is very probable. The class rise should help insure bettable odds.

Taking Gangbuster to win at 3-1 or greater and keying him first and second in exactas with Wesley and Buddy’s Humor.

Running Totals: (680) 218-138-95 Total Dollar Return: $1,528.40 [win selections only] {Thursday results not included}

Written by John Pricci


Thursday, July 01, 2010

My Lawyer Agrees, Bet #5

As we often stated, some small fields off the potential for value. Such is the case in today’s featured third race at Belmont Park, a money allowances at 6-½ furlongs for stakes class sprinters.

Dr. W (2-1), briefly freshened, looks like lone speed in here but we don’t believe that Johnny Velazquez aboard Driven By Success (8-5) will allow him to get away soft. An improved winner of his last as a first-time Todd Pletcher entrant, he figures to apply pressure from his outside.

This could set things up nicely for first-time four-year-old Legal Consent (4-1), who, given his freshness and modicum of tactical speed, should be stalking these two from close range from his outer position. In fact, he won twice last year sprinting on this track from an outside slip in a small field.

The fact that trainer Carlos Martin is a profitable 33 percent efficient with 90-day-plus layoffs and attracts the position conscious Jose Lezcano only adds to the positives for a horse that figures to improve given the maturity angle.

Taking Legal Consent to win at 3-1 or greater and keying him first and second with Driven By Success and Dr. W.

Running Totals: (680) 218-138-95 Total Dollar Return: $1,528.40 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


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