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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing


Don’t know what kind of karma this is, but I filed a Saratoga Diary a few hours ago with the headline “Hot Fun in the Summertime.” Sometimes, it gets so hot that racing is canceled!

There’s always Del Mar. But there won’t be racing at Laurel or Delaware on Saturday either. No news for Monmouth Park for Haskell Day. Laurel will also be shut down on Sunday.

Meanwhile, at the Spa, today’s feature is the Grade 3 Lake George for three-year-old fillies on turf and you know what that means? Right, but Chad Brown has only three in this spot and one in particular will be a tough out.

What makes Dogtag (5-2) look so formidable is that she won her turf debut around two turns on yielding Saratoga ground last year. After that, she tried Grade 2 company at Belmont Park to no avail and that ended her season.

She returned off a 229-day break to run in a listed stakes at Pimlico on the undercard going a mile on good ground and promptly won that. She has excellent spacing (Chad 28% this time frame) in her return to Saratoga at the same trip as her Maryland score.

On Thoro-Graph figures, she never has taken a backward step in a four-race career, including her latest, of course, important because she apparently has made the transition from 2 to 3 very well.

Dogtag worked a very sharp half-mile for this and exits the key Hilltop Stakes that produced three next-out winners. Can’t beat her on paper; the rest is up to Chad and Javier.

YESTERDAY: Fierce Lady was unable to shake clear of My Italian Rabbi ($19.80), the two ding-donging down the lane with the upsetter getting the best of the bob. Both fillies put on a great show through the straight and appear to have bright futures in the state-bred ranks…Jerome Avenue, 22-1, never lifted a hoof as if completely outclass, disinterested, or both.

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8 Responses

  1. Don’t think that “wmcorrow” feller likes me very much. Join the club. Always have a dilemma when a horse has a portion of his past performance record in another country, and in those cases, I run two (2) particular models. The first model places 1-Regal Glory as the top number, and the second model places 2-The Mackem Bullet on top with 1-Regal Glory in the place position. In both models 4-Dogtag is a very close 3rd. Have to go and hide behind my TTT moniker now. Will be playing 2-The Mackem Bullet here despite his absence since 7 April 2019.

  2. For the uninitiated, it’s Top Turf Teddy, although I don’t believe that will get you any more love but, as you yourself suggest, that do-not-like list may be quite extensive. And to you< I extend an invite to my DNL club! Frankly, Ted, like so many Chad Brown imports and the like, you're taking your best guess. Thoro-Graph and other figure makers also craft European performance figures. I'm not sure that, no matter how sophisticated, the apples are a bit more like oranges. I trust my own eyes. BTW: Don't you think Equibase should make replays from major racing jurisdictions in Europe, available to the replay audience? But I digress. Dogtag was visually impressive, owns a win over the course, has never gone back and Chad, never given to hyperbole, really seemed excited about his recent half-mile breeze. Must have been a big gallop-out. May the best horse win and all have a safe trip.

  3. Golly, Mr. Pricci, where are the shouts and the hoots? Yesterday at Saratoga six races were won by favorites out of the ten races (they must have won serious money, Alice). Well, I will use $2 as the bet on all ten races, probably to much for the people who comment here at HRI.

    The total bets to win for the ten races w/be $20 (yes Alice, I think they figured that out). The six winners, favorites, returned a total of $27.70. Got a beer covered, I think (probably a warm beer).

    Now, what other racetrack in this country would return a profit of 38% when six winners are involved; wouldn’t the profit be well over 200%? Favorites either win or are up-the-track; problem is they never pay anything.

    BTW, how can any bettor bet to win on a blue blood that is 4-5 or less, yet the tote says thousands do – got me scratching me butt.
    I dunno must be the new math, or the nastalgia/ambiance drains oxygen from the brain.

  4. Your point is well made re favorites, WMC. What you’re not considering, however, is that with the popularity of horizontal wagers with the general public–they are not my favorite, either– sometimes you just have to jump into those plays because that’s where pool size, and payoffs, can be huge. In that context, the most probable winner is valuable as a “single.”

  5. Odds are the gamblers bible. Just what are the odds of winning a pick three or four with one or two favorites involved? I find it incomprehensible for any bettor to bet on any exotic bet. Just what is wrong with betting to win only on all three races instead of attempting to win the pick three/four? Of course, the heavy favorites are passed. What’s the rush to lose?

    I admit I will increase my wager in a double if an odd-on plodder is in one of the two races. I also will bet a pick three if two heavy favorites are involved and I am going with a nice price plater in one leg. Otherwise, I’m win bet only trying to cover the bar bill (which at the moment is growing).

  6. The Lake George has only three entrants left, all trained by Chad Brown. Think the race should be cancelled for the good and integrity of Thoroughbred racing, or is the dog wagging the tail, meaning if NYRA were to cancel is the fear felt within NYRA that Brown will not enter his blue bloods at NYRA? Three entrants by Brown have the whole purse wrapped up, and bettors on the rail are trying to win a handful of dollars betting on the Lake George (got a bad smell, doesn’t it Alice?).

    Let’s hear it from turf writers about the Lake George, or are you guys/gals like the elephants in congress?

  7. We’ll have something to say about it soon, likely Sunday. We do our job, can’t speak for others.

    And never confuse me with lawmakers who have sold their souls — selling out their country in the process.

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