FAVORITES AND UPSETTERS

Y’all know the players now, now a look at how it might all come out:

SARATOGA

G1 PERSONAL ENSIGN

Most Probable winner: Midnight Bisou (2-5)

Best Value: Point of Honor (5-2)

The Wager: Point of Honor to win at 2-1 or greater, exacta box with Midnight Bisou. Trifecta wheel 3,6 // 3,6 // 2,3,6

G1 WHITNEY

Most Probable Winner: Tom’s d’Etat (6-5)

Best Value: Code of Honor (5-2)

The Wager: Tom’s d’Etat to win, no price restrictions, exacta box with Code of Honor. Trifecta wheel: 3,6 // 3,6 // 1,2

G1 ALLEN JERKENS MEMORIAL

Most Probable Winner: No Parole (9-5)

Best Value: Echo Town (9-2)

The Wager: Echo Town to win at 4-1 or greater, exacta box with No Parole. Trifecta wheel: 4,6 // 4,6,7 // 4,5,6,7,11

G2 BOWLING GREEN

Most Probable Winner: Sadler’s Joy (2-1)

Best Value: Cross Border (5-2)

The Wager: Cross Border to win at 5-2 or greater, exacta box with Sadler’s Joy. Trifecta wheel 2,6 // 1,2,4,6 // 1,2,4,6

SHARED BELIEF STAKES

Most Probable Winner: Honor A.P. (8-5)

Best Value: Uncle Chuck (9-5)

The Wager: Honor A.P. to win at 1-1 or greater, exacta box with Uncle Chuck. Trifecta wheel 1,5 // 1,5 // 1,3,5

G1 BING CROSBY

Most Probable Winner: Fashionably Fast (7-2)

Best Value: Desert Law (5-1)

The Wager: Desert Law to win at 4-1 or greater, exacta box with Fashionably Fast

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18 Responses

  1. The old Irish proverb comes to mind when perusing your analysis. There are but three attributes to have in plenty my friend: Sunshine, Wisdom, and Generosity. Thanks for sharing your talents once more John Boy. Looking forward to the afternoon, “I am” said Sam. Pettyjohn’s debut as well.

    1. You’re only as good as your most recent results, so we’ll see, but thanks for the encouragement and good cheer…

  2. Correction, you’re only as good as your “last two buck up” John. Like in last two bucks on whomever Broadway likes in the feature.
    Last I recall, I think he said something about Salted Eggplant running today. Could have been Shoplifted Eggplant.

  3. Today looks like singles day. For an old married warrior like me that spells trouble. With 56 days off improbable may be probable depending on how much they bet Baffert. Of all the stakes races the Jerkins looks like the best betting race. No parole got 3 pounds from mischievous Alex, now gives 4pounds. Can you do anything with 7 pound swing. Shoplifted huge middle move same race. Hmmm. 8 rings second race this year with 98 days rest. The last race. Who knows. It’s hard to bet a horse who favorite number is 3. Maker making hay this meet. Channel Maker can’t be this bad. Dot Matrix ? Trouble in the stretch, beat to hole,reaches for Rosario. Who knows. Keep up the good work John. You have the pulse of the sport in your soul. Love your columns. Thanks again.

    1. Vincent, you have your pulse on the past performances, sounds as if you’ve been around the track once or twice. THanks for the encouragement. As Harvey says, “may the horse(s) be with you.”

  4. Vincent, Maybe a better pace for Dot Matrix to run into today? He may have more punch when closing today? Up to close in last? Also Three Technique catches a drier track. He broke his Maiden here last year and he may be better suited best at one turn. 6-1 works for me as well. A lot of pluses, but can’t shake the fact that he failed to make it through John’s vetting process. Tough game and you you can’t bet them all. But then again for a few bucks more you can sweep the card. May wait on this race and see how they all look in the parade? Sometimes you can just see the winner. Probably best to take that approach with all of today’s action. Nice card.

    1. Mc D, will use Dot Matrix in bottom of verticals, always effort to keep it as inexpensive as possible and then there’s the horseplayer’s cliche: “The cleaner the punch, the better the value.”

  5. You’re only as good as your last Two Buck Up: I have an uncut sheet of two dollar bills from the mint in DC purchased on a vacation many years passed. I’ll probably leave it in my estate with instructions for my two grandsons to bet the card at Belmont on my passing. Just picture the teller’s face on the receiving end of the transaction. Story has it the two bill was bad luck and always frowned upon by the racing gods. But my take is that with the way money is being debased of late, it has devalued “bigly” our purchasing power. Good for stocks but not so much the working class. Two bucks up is really now worth far less than one of old. Bet ’em all Vincent. The Fed will print more.

  6. In that 11th race. Something is wrong with channel maker. He can’t be that bad. Sandler’s joy runs good every time. Can’t win. Matzo was a rabbit which we kind of knew and the rest was anybody’s guess. Great day. Would like to do this again. Goodnight gentleman.

  7. Hell of an effort by Tom’s d’Etat despite stumbling badly at start and losing too much ground to Improbable.
    I expected more from Code Of Honor and Point Of Honor.

    1. ‘Tom’ was very courageous in defeat, as noted above, but how those two “Honor’s” ran so flatly is confounding. How is anyone, short of a subsequent legitimate excuse, supposed to interpret those performances next time. I suppose putting a line through it is the only way to go.

      I will say this, if Shug run Code back in the Woodward, I will seriously consider betting him.

  8. Just reviewed your selections above and Mr. Pettyjohn’s analysis of the Alan Jerkins G-l. You had the only winner and the blue blood paid good, enough I hope to cover all your bets for the day. Of note is the fact that one betting favorite won of the six stake races, though one was disqualified and two finished second, proving again, and again, that it’s a tough game, and you can handicap until the ‘cows come home’ but it is impossible to get inside the blue bloods head to know if the horse is interested in running (maybe Mr. Ed can).

    It is disturbing to me that purse size has no influence on attracting blue bloods. The Personal Ensign with a purse of $500,000 had five entrants and an odd-on favorite that didn’t win; the Whitney offered a purse of $750,000 and attracted five entrants and, of course, the odds-on favorite got third! Seems to me these two racers were a complete waste of purse money, offered little value to bettors, and simply enriched the owners of the entrants. Geez, $1,250,000 would cover days of nine race cards of lower level racing that offer better value to bettors.

    OTB Farmingdale stated an opinion that is spot on for ‘cappers at another location here at HRI. Pick it up, and use it, as I have been for several years. Also, I always believed that Mr. Jerkins used lesser known jockeys quite often simply so they would get a pay check; as to character and talent, he has been at the top of my list trainers for years.

    1. I guess Cross Border didn’t count and no. I wasn’t “lucky” to win. Lost the exacta and trifecta via DQ.

      But thanks to Keith, and Steve Asmussen, they weren’t going to catch me after the Jerkens (with an “e”).

  9. Mr. Pricci: Cross Border doesn’t count because the horse went off at less than 5-2. Regret the spelling of Mr. Jerkens; haven’t written his name in many, many years.

    BTY, you mention at the Pettyjohn post that ‘the trifecta was there for the taking’. Do you know of anyone who won the tri?

  10. 5-2 at post time, 2-1 during the running, the late odds drops that I’ve been writing about for at least two years; and how come I’m not forgiven when those horses lose; and how far is 2-1 to 2.5 to 1 anyway.

    I know two for sure, My Pettyjohn and myself; a 7-2 second choice finished second. When playing the verticals, you take a key horse like Echo Town to win, then you take a key horse like Shoplifter to finish in the money in exactas, trifectas and superfectas and that’s how you take down the bet. Any serious vertical player knows how these things work.

    I did not “like” Tap it To Win but used him out of respect for his talents, connections and obvious tote support.

    Sometimes bettors make the game harder than it is already in two ways: overthinking or losing focus. The latter is my biggest personal issue.

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