04/02/2010 8:40PM

33 Minutes

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This is one of those Saturdays you're going to need a timetable: Twelve graded stakes in three hours, with six of them in the 33 minutes from 5:12 to 5:45 p.m. ET, including four Grade 1's and the final preps for the two current Kentucky Derby favorites:

Groundhog Tempting as it is to watch everything from the home OTB parlor, I'm planning to drive over to Aqueduct for the first Grade 1 races in New York since the Cigar Mile Nov. 28. Wood Day is a little like Groundhog Day for a lot of the seasonal New York horseplayers who spent the winter hibernating. They emerge from their caves and condos, pasty white and squinting into the unaccustomed sunshine. (The forecast is for clear skies and a high of 67.) For some it's the unofficial beginning of the New York season, though others go back to bed until Belmont opens (April 30 this year.)

There's a $500k-guaranteed all-graded-stakes pick-4 on the Saturday menu combining the Bay Shore, Excelsior, Wood and Carter, but with three 4-5 ML favorites and just 23 betting interests in the four races, the forecast looks a little chalky. Still, it should pay more than Friday's late pick-4 at Aqueduct, where $3.40, $3.80, $3.70 and $2.60 winners produced a $28-for-$2 payoff and completed a $190.50 pick-6. In Saturday's pick-6, the four graded stakes are bracketed by a pair of open-looking statebred grass races. [Update: Race 6 is off the grass, race 11 is still on.] 

Ian Lawrence More than 1 year ago
Average age of 70? I always look at the bright side. At 57 that means I am still a young horseplayer.
durkin_lover More than 1 year ago
Hey EJS I'm with you on the ipad possibilities but don't get your hopes up to much I'm still waiting for a DRF iphone app. With the average age of a race track customer probably around 70 there is no outcry for technolgy updates in this industry!
Walt P. More than 1 year ago
Another question: How much rain did New York actually get out of the storm. It is VERY rare for NYRA to be taking races off the turf THREE days a storm, even one as bad as the one we went through earlier this week, especially with temps in the 70s in much of the northeast (where I am, we're supposed to get to 79 on Saturday).
George Quinn More than 1 year ago
28 dollar pick 4 does not require Ticketmaker. But for the big ones, we use your system Steve. The Wood should be a great heads up on who is the best out of this race. Small field should be a very level playing field and we get to see who can really just run. Ony 28 days I am pumped. George in Tampa
Walt P. More than 1 year ago
Very stupid of Hawthorne to run the Illnois Derby at literally the same time as the Santa Anita Derby. Would have made more sense to run that race a little later in the card (even if it meant being after 6:00 PM ET) so it was away from the other two races (and that card is scheduled to go to about 6:30 local time anyway).
Don Reed More than 1 year ago
Put your Jacksons on Jackson, today! Bets of ruck!
Curt A Vassallo More than 1 year ago
Steven, I'm also tempted to stay @home & watch on TV. But, like U, I'm biting also. I'll be there LIVE...There is something to say about the Sunshine..
ejs More than 1 year ago
Now if we can get an I-PAD ap that allows one to mark the 'Form' up with his finger, or some other pencil like device, we're talking game changer.
Racefandave More than 1 year ago
The post times for the Illinois Derby and Santa Anita Derby are one minute apart? Couldn't they have planned this a little better???
Gary C More than 1 year ago
Just like racing to coordinate their schedule to frustrate bettors and not to maximize betting. The way racing schedules its events you think the bettors are the enemy of racing. Just signed up for FIOS and I am finally receiving HRTV. But the trade off is now I don't receive the local feed from the NYRA. How frustrating, but woth it to get HRTV.