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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing

HOLIDAY WEEKEND FINAL: SATURDAY PLAYS FOR AQUEDUCT, CHURCHILL AND DEL MAR UPDATED

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL, November 24, 2021 — I am happy and grateful for the game, warts and all.

Beyond any emotional or economic attachment, I give thanks for keeping my brain as supple as possible.

The handicapping required to figure the daily puzzles is more than welcome. It’s a great distraction to the news of the day in America’s most perilous times.

This past Sunday, 60 Minutes had a segment on Emperor Caligula’s Gardens, discovered as a result of the Rome constructing a parking lot in a section of town right next door to history, unwittingly unearthing treasures, marble steps and all.

And all I could think of was how Joni Mitchell was right: They did pave paradise and put up a parking lot. Might have forgotten about that were in not for the handicapping gymnastics.

Time has come to give thanks for action as tomorrow’s feast is being prepared. Even a few losers is preferable to Lions v Bears, yes?

With many tracks closed for the holiday, the day belongs to CDI with stakes offered in both Louisville and in NOLA, as the traditional opening-day Fair Grounds session gets underway.

CHURCHILL DOWNS

Preliminary Allowances Race 7

MOST PROBABLE WINNER: Longpants Required (2-1)

EARLY LINE VALUE BET: Distorted Verve (5-1)

EXOTICA: Betting Distorted Verve to win at 5-1 or greater. Exacta box with Longpants Required. Keying ‘Longpants’ first and second in trifectas with Distorted Verve, Big City Momma (5-1) and High Fashion (5-2).

Secondary Allowances Race 10

MOST PROBABLE WINNER: Dr Jack (3-1)

EARLY LINE VALUE BET: Kinetic Sky (7-2)

EXOTICA: Kinetic Sky to win at 5-2 or greater. Exacta key-box Kinetic Sky with Dr Jack, Laughing Boy (5-1), Flamingo Hawk (5-1), and Who Took the Money (12-1). Super key Kinetic Hawk over his four rivals listed above.

G2 FALLS CITY STAKES Race 11

MOST PROBABLE WINNER: Army Wife (5-2)

EARLY LINE VALUE BET: Crystal Ball (7-2)

EXOTICA: Crystal Ball to win at 3-1 or greater. Exacta box Army Wife and Crystal Ball. Exacta Wheel Army Wife, Crystal Ball with Army Wife, Crystal Ball and Envoutante (7-2), with same.

FAIR GROUNDS

THANKSGIVING CLASSICS STAKES Race 7

PROJECTED WINNER: Just Might (7-2)

EARLY LINE VALUE BET: Went West (8-1)

EXOTICA: Went West to win at 6-1 or greater. Exacta Box with Just Might. Exacta Key-Box Went West with Just Might, Greeley and Ben (7-2), Emerald Forest (8-1) and Strike Power (4-1).

J.R. PELUSO MEMORIAL Race 8

PROJECTED WINNER: Dominga (7-2)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Curly Ruth (9-2)

EXOTICA: Curly Ruth to win at 7-2 or greater. Exacta Box with Dominga. Exacta Key-Box Curly Ruth with Dominga and Breeze Rider (6-1)

FRIDAY: AQUEDUCT

GIO PONTI STAKES Race 8

PROJECTED WINNER: Never Surprised (4-5)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Safe Conduct (5-1)

EXOTICA: Safe Conduct to win at 5-1 or greater. Exacta Wheel: Never Surprise and Safe Conduct with Never Surprised, Safe Conduct and Munition. Trifecta: Key Never Surprise over two rivals above.

G3 COMELY STAKES Race 9

PROJECTED WINNER: Army Wife (7-5) [cross-entered]

EARLY LINE VALUE: Shalimar Gardens (6-1)

EXOTICA: Shalimar Gardens to win at 5-1 or greater. Exacta Box with Army Wife. Trifecta Key Army Wife over Crazy Beautiful (3-1), Played Hard (3-1), Shalimar Gardens, Vegas Weekend (12-1), Hybrid Eclipse (20-1)

CHURCHILL DOWNS

G1 CLARK Race 11

PROJECTED WINNER: Maxfield (6-5)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Dr. Post (5-1)

EXOTICA: Dr. Post to win at 5-1 or greater. Exacta Box with Maxfield. Trifecta Key: Maxfield over Midnight Bourbon (8-5), Dr. Post and King Fury (12-1). Exacta Wheel: Maxfield over three listed rivals

DEL MAR

G2 SEABISCUIT Race 5

PROJECTED WINNER: Secret Life (8-5)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Flop Shot (4-1)

EXOTICA: Secret Life to win, no price restrictions. Exacta Box Secret Life and Flop Shot. Exotics Player: Bob and Jackie (6-1)

G1 HOLLYWOOD DERBY Race 9

PROJECTED WINNER: Public Sector (5-2)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Subconscious (4-1)

EXOTICA: Public Sector to win at 3-2 or greater. Exacta Box with Subconscious. Exotics Player: Camp Hope (5-1)

AQUEDUCT

CENTRAL PARK STAKES Race 7

PROJECTED WINNER: Sy Dog (5-2)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Geno (4-1)

EXOTICA: Sy Dog to win at 5-2 or greater. Exacta Box: General Ken (8-5), Sy Dog, and Geno.

DISCOVERY STAKES Race 8

PROJECTED WINNER: Speaker’s Corner (4-5)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Bourbonic (5-1)

EXOTICA: Bourbonic to win at 6-1 or greater. Exacta Box: Speaker’s Corner, Bourbonic, and Miles D (8-5)

CHURCHILL DOWNS

G2 GOLDEN ROD Race 10

PROJECTED WINNER: Sandstone (8-5)

EARLY LINE VALUE: Yuuguri (3-1)

EXOTICA: Yuuguri to win at 3-1 or greater. Exacta Box: Sandstone, Yuuguri and Famed (2-1).

G2 KENTUCKY JOCKEY CLUB STAKES Race 11

PROJECTED WINNER: Howling Time (7-2)

EARLY LINE VALUE: White Abarrio (8-1)

EXOTICA: Howling Time to win at 3-1 or greater. Exacta Key-Box Howling Time with Classic Causeway (7-2), Tiz the Bomb (3-1), Smile Happy (12-1) and White Abarrio. Trifecta Key Howling Time first and second, with all other listed runners above, adding Ben Diesel (12-1) third.

All plays suggested are at available minimums, straight wagers at $2 level notwithstanding

Select stakes from Aqueduct and Churchill before noon Saturday

live column will be updated continuously

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