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.

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


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

If the Right Don’t Get You Then the Other One Will

Today’s Belmont Park feature is an interesting turf sprint, for three-year-olds and up racing six furlongs.

The Michael Dubb-owned entry of Tahoe Warrior and I’ve Got Speed are coupled as the 5-2 early favorite. Either will be very tough to beat.

Tahoe Warrior’s performance figures are fairly competitive, but what does that matter when you’re claimed into the barn of Rudy Rodriguez, who’s won with five of his nine recent claims. Veteran runner has a very good turn of foot and breaks from the rail.

I’ve Got Speed, meanwhile, is the fastest of these, on balance, is 5-for-7 on Belmont turf and 5-for-6 at the trip. He’s trained by Tony Dutrow, 31 percent effective with repeaters and horse’s last five victories came beneath Ramon Dominguez, re-riding here. With different jockeys named, it is likely that both will run.

Taking the entry to win with no price restrictions, although demand at least 2-1 if only one starts.

Further, key first and second in super-exotics with Southern Exchange (6-1), for Rick Dutrow, a profitable 27 percent with turn-backs, Kingsdale Ocean (20-1), another old pro turning back to his best distance, Academy Run (3-1), who’s never run badly when sprinting on grass, and the in-form Istishaary (9-2) for Team McLaughlin/Garcia.

Running Totals: (679) 218-137-95 Total Dollar Return: $1,528.40 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci


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