04/20/2009 4:01PM

Beyers, thoughts, etc.


Chalkplayers had a tough go of it over the weekend.  SQUARE EDDIE, fresh off a fractured cannon bone, took all the money in the "Last Chance Derby," the Lexington Stakes at Keeneland on Saturday.  Sent off at a ridiculous 7-5, Square Eddie made an eyecatching wide move on the far turn, but failed to sustain his rally in the stretch.  The horse deserves a lot of credit for running so well considering the nature of his injury, but will he be ready for the 20-horse scramble that is the Kentucky Derby off only one prep?...The homecourt advantage is huge over the quirky Charles Town surface as the veteran COMMENTATOR found out on Saturday night.  Trying a three-turn route, and racing under the lights were new experiences for the fleet New York-bred, and it's hard to take 13-10 on a horse trying something for the first time.  RESEARCHER, on the other hoof, knows every nook and cranny of the Charles Town surface, and he pulled of the mild upset in the Charles Town Classic...Joe Talamo's ride on SANTA TERESITA wasn't his finest moment.  Stuck down on the rail down the backstretch, Santa Teresita lost some momentum, and that may have cost her the head decision.  Santa Teresita had not won on dirt in her career, and that made 9-10 odds unappealing...Other bad and beaten favorites over the weekend included TOQUE DE QUEDA (layoff, perfect trip in final start of 2008), GENUINE DEVOTION (dead on the board, coming off physical problems), and OCEAN COLORS (returning from injury-induced layoff, never raced on polytrack)...Last year, Mr. McGaughey's Carriage Trail improved by leaps and bounds on polytrack.  Sunday, at Keeneland, PARADING named his margin in his polytrack debut for Shug.  GRASSHOPPER and ADRIANO looked terribly off form...SEATTLE SMOOTH may not have beaten much in the Bed o'Roses at the Big A on Saturday, but she did it with panache, and can be an interesting player in the older filly and mare division on the East Coast this year.


Here are the winning Beyer Speed Figures from last week's stakes races:

*Ben Ali (Kee):  Parading (C. McGaughey III/K. Desormeaux) - 103
*Charles Town Classic (CT):  Researcher (J. Runco/K. Carmouche) - 102
*San Juan Capistrano (SA):  Midships (R. Frankel/V. Espinoza) - 101

*Santa Barbara (SA):  Magical Fantasy (P. Gallagher/A. Solis) - 97
*Doubledogdare (Kee):  Indescribable (W. Mott/K. Desormeaux) - 96
*Sugar Maple (CT):  Spritely (T. Pletcher/J. Velazquez) - 96
*Sixty Sails (Haw):  Swift Temper (D. Romans/C. Emigh0 - 96
*Whimsical (WO):  Dancing Allstar (T. Jordan/J. McAleney) - 95
*Giant's Causeway (Kee):  Diamondrella - GB (A. Penna Jr./R. Maragh) - 95
*San Simeon (SA):  Mr Gruff (R. Ellis/J. Rosario) - 95
*Bed o' Roses (Aqu):  Seattle Smooth (A. Dutrow/R. Dominguez) - 95
*Webb Snyder (CT):  Trust Or Bust (P. McClelland/G. Almodovar) - 95
*Coolmore Lexington (Kee):  Advice (T. Pletcher/G. Gomez) - 94
*Blue and Gold (CT):  Russell Road (J. Casey/E. Camacho) - 90

*Sunland Park (Sun):  Song of Navarone (H. Dominguez/A. Castanon) - 89
*Appalachian (Kee):  Afternoon Stroll (T. Hamm/H. Theriot II) - 87
*Boynton Beach (GP):  Miss Blakely (J. Orseno/J. Sanchez) - 86
*Golden Poppy (GG):  Maid For Music - Ire (J. Cassidy/F. Alvarado) - 84
*Illiterate (Aqu):  My Dinah (K. Feron/J. Espinoza) - 81
*Geisha (Pim):  Princess Nyla (C. Grove/J. Pimentel) - 80

*Star Shoot (WO):  Milwaukee Appeal (S. Fairlie/N. Somsanith) - 78
*JEH Stallion Station (LS):  Annie Savoy (K. Craddock/C. Landeros) - 77
*Inaugural (SRP):  Austin Lights (J. Arnett/C. Martinez) - 77
*Hookedonthefeelin (Pim):  Blind Date (H. Smith/J. Rose) - 76
*Salerno (CT):  Henry the Lover (J. Casey/E. Camacho) - 76

*Copper Top Futurity (Sun):  Explosive Mine (J. Welch/A. Medellin) - 67
*Fonner Park Special (colts) (Fon):  Reach One More (D. Anderson/M. Ziegler) - 60

*Fonner Park Special (fillies) (Fon):  Apple Crumble (J. Wise/D. Leeds) - 55

Here are the lifetime past performances for the highest and lowest Beyer stakes performers of the week:

Download Parading


Dan... Huge request.  I am dying to see the lifetime PP's for Scat Thief.
Jeff Tatus

Here they are:

Download Scat Thief


Basically, I wanted to poll everyone on the kinds of races you are at your WORST at in handicapping.

I have the most trouble with claiming races.  Not only does one have to handicap the horse, but trainer intent is so important as well as physical condition.  Do we trust the horse taking a significant drop in price?  Why was this runner off for such a long time?  Can we trust a cheap horse to put two good races back to back? 
I prefer maidens, allowances, and stakes races.  There are obviously question marks in those races, but I just feel more comfortable playing them.
I also try to avoid playing wet racetracks whenever I can.  There are so many variables to decipher on fast footing.  The mud just throws in another opportunity for chaos.


Dan, what happened to Affirmatif? He ran lights out in a maiden at Gulfstream for Pletcher. This much time off between starts is a bit alarming. no?

Affirmatif returned to the races on April 5 at Keeneland in an entry-level allowance on the grass.  Sent off as the 3-10 favorite, he pushed the pace from the outside under John Velazquez, took over turning for home, and was run down late by European invader Golden Mexico.  Affirmatif finished second and earned a 91 Beyer Speed Figure.


What does it mean when a horse "ties up"? Is it like a calf cramp for an athlete?

These are muscle cramps and/or spasms that can be severe and quite painful at times.


Dan, speaking of Ronnie Franklin, I googled him to check out my facts before posting this and saw he was seeking to regain his jocks license in 2007, but did not see any follow up info.  He was riding horses in the morning in Louisiana then.  Do you have any info on this??

His request to have his license was denied in Maryland, and I haven't heard anything about reinstatement in Louisiana.


Haven't heard from Matt M. regarding a HandiGambling race.  If he doesn't choose by tomorrow at 4pm, cayman, our esteemed scorekeeper, can select the race.

Talk to you soon,