Derby - May 1, 2010
It's good to be back in KY, but the weather is about
as welcoming as the lawyers and ex's that required me to move
my tack to Nevada last year. Looks like I might need to
find a ride back to the desert on a boat if this keeps up.
I had every intention
of betting Eskendereya with the full bank roll - would have been
easy money. His scratch, the bad post draw for Looking At
Lucky, and the monsoon over the Louisville area have turned this
Derby into nothing more than a wild ass guess. Not too many
standouts among this year's starters so you have to look for some
value. With 20 horses in this field and about 16 of them with
a legitimate chance to win I am going to be playing the odds. If
they are all failry evenly matched, and have about a 1 in 20 chance
of winning why would you bet a horse less than 20:1? Not me. I
will be playing a very reduced ticket and it looks like the best
value in the bunch is Discreetly Mine. As of right now his
odds are in the 40:1 range for some reason, and that represents
real value in this field. The other horse to use is Jackson
Bend. Betting both of them across the board and in exactas and trifectas
with a few others that will be a post time decision.
- May 16 2009
Well the Derby goes to show you why you need to buy insurance
and wear your seatbelt - or in other words, uh, stuff happens.
Preakness might just allow us to get out of the hole we dug ourselves
on Derby Day. With the entry of Rachel Alexandra, there will
be a lot of sentimental money riding on her and allow us to get a
bet down on the likely winner at inflated odds. First off, I
love that filly Rachel Alexandra and wish her a safe trip. I
think she can hit the board here, but I am not using her to win. I
don't like her post and I think an owner, trainer, and jockey
switch might have upset her routine a bit
Mine That Bird ran like
he stole something in the Derby and on that particular day he
was by far the best 3 year old colt on the track. He put an absolute
whipping on every horse in the race and most folks who were watching
it. I can't use him today because his jockey Borel has decided
to take the mount on Rachel. Don't really blame him, but
Mine That Bird without Calvin Borel is like Penn without Teller
FRIESAN FIRE is
the win bet. He was slightly
injured when he grabbed a quarter in the Derby and had an all around
lousy trip from the get go. To his credit, Saez knew the horse
was out of the race and did not use him at all after the 3/8 this
Derby took nothing out of him and he could be sitting on a monster
effort today. I will use him in an exacta with a horse who skipped
the derby, BIG DRAMA. His speed makes him legitimate
for this race and I will be boxing him with Friesan Fire in case he
gets up first.
Oaks Day, May 1st 2009
Forget betting on the Oaks - the beautiful and talented Rachel
Alexandra will win with ease and be too short to bet. Try and beat her
if you like, but you should feel like a greedy pig if you do. She's
a thing of beauty and would give the boys all that they wanted
and more if she were in the Derby.
bet you want to make on Oaks day is in the 9th race, the
Alysheba (G3). #3 Mambo In Seattle is set to
pop. He's making
his second start of a long layoff that included him getting an un
descended testicle removed. If you've ever run with a testicle lodged
up in you somewhere you'll know what a relief it is to have it out. Here's
a horse who loves the dirt, loves CD, and can handle an off track. That
race at Keeneland was a toss-out and he should be ready to fire. Bet
him to win and in exactas and trifectas with Macho Again, Bulls Bay,
Ready Set and Dr. Pleasure.
Derby time again, and all the women in pretty hats and bourbon-drinking
good 'ol boys are in town just waiting to give us their money. A
can make a score on derby day that will set him up like a king for
the year, or he can wind up broke and dog-drunk looking for his
car on Central Ave. I've been in both situations, and believe me,
one of them is a sight better
than the other.
This year's Derby
is as tough as they come from a handicapping perspective. The polytrack
nonsense has made a tough job even tougher. Its like trying to figure
out a crossword puzzle with some of the clues written in Chinese. The
Kentucky Derby is run on dirt, so I'm going to handicap it that
Eleven of the
twenty horses in this field have hit the board in a Graded Stakes
race run on the dirt. Your winner will come from that group
(West Side Bernie, Musket Man, Friesan Fire, Papa Clem, Join In The
Dance, General Quarters, I Want Revenge, Atomic Rain, Dunkirk, Summer
Bird, Desert Party).
You also need to be fast to win this race. Most Derby winners have
posted a Beyer number of 100 or higher in their last 3 starts. That
leaves us with only six horses to deal with: West Side Bernie, Friesan
Fire, Papa Clem, General Quarters, I want Revenge, and Dunkirk.
I like West
Side Bernie, and burned good money on him in the BC Juvenile. He didn't
have a great trip that day, and I expect he won't get one on Saturday
either breaking from the 1 hole. Can't win.
has the right running style, I love his trainer and owner and will
be happy for them if he wins. He has never raced 1 1/8 miles,
but is bred to get the distance. He hasn't raced in 7 weeks, but has
work at CD. Could be the one...
Papa Clem is a
street-fighter that should be a factor in this race from gate to
wire. His jockey (Bejarano) knows his way around this track like
I know the way from the couch to the fridge. He had a slow and awkward
work on the 25th, but came back and scorched the earth going 3f on
the 30th. He lost to
Friesan Fire on a sloppy track in the Louisiana Derby and beat I Want
Revenge on the polytrack at Santa Anita. I think he likes the dirt
better than the plastic and looks like a contender.
Quarters broke his maiden at Churchill downs in a MCL race where he was claimed
by his owner Tom McCarthy from Ken Ramsey. Ramsey must
be madder than hell at the way things turned out, I know I'd be. GQ
won the Sam Davis in the dirt down in Tampa, and then went on to
win the formerly
prestigious Bluegrass Stakes at Keeneland on the polycrap. Leparoux
will ride him for the first time in the Derby. His previous rider,
Coa, has opted to sit on Musket Man. Interesting decision.
Revenge is the favorite. He blew 'em away in the Gotham and overcame trouble
that most would need a lawyer to get out of in winning the
Wood. Here's a horse that has shown he is a dirt loving son of a gun.
His jockey, Talamo, might not be old enough to drive a car, but he
knows how to pilot a
horse. Has a bullet work over the surface. The only horse to get near
his 113 Beyer number is your winner, DUNKIRK.
Dunkirk ran a
108 Beyer in a losing effort against Quality Road in the Florida
Derby. The move he made in that race (See
Video) would have smoked
every horse in this field. Quality Road is out with quarter crack
but he would have been an easy favorite and the probable winner
if he was healthy. Pletcher is 0 for 20 something with Derby horses
and I believe this
is his best chance yet to get to the winners' circle. Gomez made a
bad move in taking Pioneer Of The Nile over Dunkirk, and Prado will
make him regret it for years to come. Dunkirk will win the 2009
Kentucky Derby and looks like he could be one of those real special
Bet DUNKIRK to
win and place, and then go back and bet on him again.
I will also play
a pretty healthy Dunkirk - Papa Clem exacta box.
Wouldn't be the
Derby without a monster trifecta and I will key Dunkirk in every
spot with Papa Clem, I Want Revenge, Friesan Fire, Desert
Party, and Summer Bird.
Bird is going to
be 75:1 or more, and is worth using in all of your gizmos. He closed with gusto in the Arkansas Derby to
finish 3rd in only his 3rd start. If, and I mean If, he improves
off his last start he might find his way into the picture real late. Be
a damn shame not to have a few bucks on him across the board just