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, September 28, 2008


Stalingrad Wins the Battle of Kelso


Today’s featured Kelso Handicap, a Grade 2 eight furlongs for Breeders’ Cup Mile aspirants, has attracted six entrants and the value would be in defeated 5-2 early line favorite Operation Red Dawn. The two having the best chance are a pair of 3-1 early line options, Tam Lin and Stalingrad.

Tam Lin finally returns to his most effective distance and he’s been very good on this course, too, never off the board in three starts under those conditions. Further, trainer Saeed bin Suroor recently has won with half of the six starters he’s stretched out from a sprint. Tam Lin reunites with Javier Castellano, a winner in his only try aboard the Selkirk five-year-old.

Stalingrad is coming up to this fresh and fit. He just missed in the G2 Fourstardave at Saratoga despite a considerable loss of ground. Prior to that he was unsuited by the conditions and the company in the G1 Manhattan previously, that after winning both prior starts as a four-year-old. Stalingrad won his only start at today’s distance and has found his niche for the Mike Hushion/Channing Hill team.

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

Running Totals: (282) 86-58-33. Total Dollar Return: $515.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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Saturday, September 27, 2008


You Need Fabulous Speed to Win the Vosburgh


The five Grade 1 stakes on the Jockey Club Gold Cup card comes replete with many hard-to-beat short-priced favorites, headed by Curlin (3-5) in the JCGC. Consequently, we’ll take a short detour and look at the highly contentious Vosburgh at six furlongs. We view it as a battle of the two early choices, with the hope the linemaker has the wrong public choice.

Fabulous Strike would have been one of the BC Sprint favorites had he not gone wrong following his 2007 Vosburgh score. Freshened since winning his season’s debut earlier this year, Fabulous Strike (5-2) has earned the fastest performance figures with consistency, he can front run or stalk from close range, and earned his lifetime best figure on a wet track, which he figures to get today, and has won three of four lifetime starts on this strip. Ramon Dominguez will not hurt his chances.

Lucky Island (2-1) is right behind figure-wise and, after disappointing in his lone Saratoga start, returns to the surface over which he earned his best figures and is undefeated in two starts. After a poor start, he rallied strongly for a money position behind First Defence in the Forego, which has produced a winner from one subsequent starter. Today, Lucky Island returns to his best distance and retains Alan Garcia.

Taking whatever value is offered on Fabulous Strike at 3-1 or greater, an exacta box with Lucky Island, and as a trifecta key that includes price shot Kodiak Kowboy (10-1).

Running Totals: (281) 86-57-33. Total Dollar Return: $515.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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Friday, September 26, 2008


Speed in the Slop Even More Dangerous


Today’s feature is the Salute Me Sir for older state-breds going a mile and a sixteenth. With a virtual monsoon predicted for the area overnight and through Friday, and with the Jockey Club Gold Cup program scheduled for Saturday, who knows if the card will even be realized.

But, if it is, speed and the ability to handle a wet track will become overwhelming considerations. And the horse’s name is, appropriately, Stormin Normandy. He is the pace, he earns the fastest figures consistently, and his lifetime best figure came over a sloppy track. Don’t expect to get rich on the Rick Dutrow charge, ridden by Edgar Prado.

The main dangers are Stud Muffin and R Clear Victory. Stud Muffin returns to his favorite surface and distance, if performance figures are the measure, and there will be no lack of pace due to the presence of Stormin Normandy. R Clear Victory has been marching forward, earning a figure competitive with the favorite’s in his latest start. He’s been wisely freshened briefly by Steve Asmussen, who’s reaching out for Channing Hill here, who’ll be in stalking position throughout.

Taking Stormin Normandy to win at 2-1 or greater and keying him first and second in exactas and trifectas with his main rivals here.

Running Totals: (281) 86-57-33. Total Dollar Return: $515.80 [win selections only]

Written by John Pricci

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