08/06/2010 11:57AM

Day 13: 8/6/10


Fast, good and clear for Day 13, where extra-long grass races are in the spotlight in the form of a 12-furlong N1x allowance in the 7th, followed by the 13-furlong John's Call Stakes.

It feels like Something Eve today with Quality Road and Zenyatta running tomorrow -- not against each other alas, but on opposite coasts as 2-5 favorites in the Whitney and the Hirsch. They're hardly enticing betting events unless you're even more of a contrarian than I am and are trying to beat either one, but watching them race is a treat and they're both part of multirace wagers that should attract big pools. Saratoga's guaranteed $500k pick-4 encompasses the Hattie Mosely Stakes, the Grade 1 Test, the G1 Whitney and a full field of New York-bred maidens.

And yes, the Hattie Mosely is indeed named for the original proprietress of Hattie's Chicken Shack, where I'm headed right now for my daily bread (plus coleslaw and fried chicken.)


2:15 pm: Finger Lakes heroine Lisa's Booby Trap, ambitiously entered and then scratched from the CCA Oaks, returned in today's 3rd, the $70k Loudonville Stakes, and swamped four opponents with a six-length blowout in 1:09.64. The daughter of the obscure Florida stallion Drewman (by Unbridled) won her three starts in Canandaigua by a combined 36 3/4 lengths and passed her first class test in her stakes debut today. She returned to the winner's circle amid a roar usually heard only after weekend graded stakes.

Owned and trained by Timothy Snyder, who reportedly turned down a $400k offer for her and says he won't sell at any price, Lisa's Bobby Trap was an absurd 12-1 on the morning line but opened at 4-5 and paid $5.00 as the 3-2 favorite.


4:00 pm: It looked 3-to-5 that we were going to have the first dq of the meeting. Head-on replays of the goes, 5th clearly showed victorious and much-the-best Pelican Lake slamming into the rump of tiring She Wears the Best as Bridgmohan swung her out on the turn, and it looked like a pretty automatic takedown. But the stewards left it alone, announcing a few minutes later that in their judgment, the incident "did not alter the outcome of the race."

I'm Switzerland on this one. I can see the viewpoint of those who say a foul is a foul is a foul and when you bang your horse into another one, you're supposed to be taken down. If you don't take one that blatant down, the thinking goes, you're giving the jockeys a license for rodeo riding.

On the other hand, how is the betting public served by taking down a much-the-best winner and placing her behind a clearly already-tiring horse who was beaten a dozen lengths, and not because of the bump? Why redistribute almost a million dollars if the stewards are right and the outcome of the race really was not affected?

I can argue it either way. Feel free to do the same.


5:23 pm: So who should you bet in a race named after John's Call, who 10 years ago won two Grade 1 races as a 9-year-old gelding while trained by Tom Voss? Hoof those in today's field: w about....a 9-year-old gelding trained by Tom Voss?

Only one of those in today's field: Always First, who just won the John's Call Stakes, paying $44.60 and ensuring a carryover into Whitney Day.