Handicappers need not send out search parties for the most likely winner of Friday’s Grade 1 Clark Stakes at Churchill Downs. It should be apparent to all that Tom’s d’Etat (8-5) is ready to break through and gain his first G1 title.
He’s plenty fast enough–but not too fast–his spacing is good, he loves the trip 4-for-7 and handles the surface very well as his (6) 2-2-1 slate suggests.
And Joel Rosario, who raised the ire of Big A bettors yesterday with his way-overconfident handling of a 1-5 shot, costing his filly victory, but he’s 3-for-3 on the Al Stall Jr. trainee. Tactical speed and an inside help immensely.
We’re using ‘Tom’ in a boxed exacta, but our win money will be on Seeking the Soul (12-1), worth a wager at half his morning line odds.
When last seen, he was terrible, but he wasn’t the only Eastern or Midwestern-based horse who worked well at Santa Anita in the run-up to Breeders’ Cup but did not lift a hoof a raceday. We’re putting a line through it.
Today he returns to Churchill and travels 9 furlongs, suitable conditions for this earner of $3.4 million, given a distance slate of (11) 3-1-4 and surface record of (12) 4-2-4. Yes, far-back launchers are always up against it but there appears to be enough pace signed on,
Taking bullet-working Seeking the Soul to win at 5-1 or greater, boxing the exacta as advertised, and we’ll sprinkle Owendale (12-1), Mr. Freeze (15-1) and Mr. Buff (5-1) into the super-exotics mix.
[Please note that alterations were made to the morning line odds after this analysis was first posted. And it seems the 12-1 became 5-1, coinciding with our projected odds. In fact, the odds on many were changed from the original quote. Was this on CDI or HRN? In either case, Gibbs Rule 39 is applicable!]
YESTERDAY: Results pending