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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing

TAMPA BAY TODAY – DEC 2

Interesting maiden allowances on tap in Oldsmar in Friday seventh event for three-year-olds & up going 1-1/16 miles.

The favorite is Payback Period (2-1), making his first start in 416 days–but not to worry because that’s one of the many things Chad Brown does well, returning with long layups.

They gave this $325K apparently the time he demanded to sure what ailed him now returns with first- Lasix as a first-tine gelding. Turf ace Samy Camacho gets the call.

There are some interesting newcomers, second-time starts, class risers and barn changes to assess and it’s a second starter, Benkei (6-1) that intrigues the most.

He finished with interest and energy when third in his Laurel sprint debut now goes dirt to turf for Graham Motion, a barn that’s profitable in that scenario, gets first-Lasix, a 26% win rate for this outfit, and owns a two-sided turf pedigree.

The clincher is the recent bullet drill at his Fair Hill base before ships south and he should have gotten enough out of his debut [OCT 30, Race 2, LRL] to give a much improved try here. The price appears to be worth the risk here.

We’re taking Benkei to win at 5-1 or greater, and key-boxing exotics with Payback Period, the West Point/Delacour newcomer Bassanio (4-1), and price shot Greenpoint (20-1) who goes second-Lasix with the proper spacing and Daniel Centeno gives the impression he’s live in this spot.

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