08/10/2007 7:26PM



---Marc Attenberg, DRF's Vice President/Internet, today proposed a $100 bet that I could not go the rest of the year without using the word "absurd" in this blog or my columns. I accepted the wager but reduced it to $1, because my father once told me that a gentleman never bets more than $1 on a sure thing. (Fortunately, there are no sure things at the racetrack.) Fortunate, too, that "preposterous" and "ridiculous" are handy synonyms.

--Harvey Pack always likes to say that the last race of the day determines whether you'll be dining at Siro's or 7-11, and you can see how I did on today's 9th by observing what's on my plate for Friday night supper:

Before you go feeling too sorry for me, I must confess that Cheese Waffies are one of my favorite things about Saratoga. The nearly fluorescent orange delicacies are largely unavailable in the greater New York City metropolitan area, but plentiful here in the foothills of the Adirondacks,

But I digress. Danzaway ruined what was left of my day by winning the off-the-turf finale, knocking me out of conso contention as well as several preposterously large pick-4 possibilities. The winners of races 6-8 paid $20.60, $8.50 and $6.40, a $280 parlay that would have suggested pick-4 probables starting at under $1,000 with Dubliner, the 8-5 favorite. Instead, that lowest payoff was $2,728 and the others ranged from $4500 to $42,000, including the winning one to 10-1 Danzaway paying $10,543. The gate scratch of a 5-2 shot in the sixth race means that the $20.60 winner of that race might have been closer to 15-1 than 9-1 in the pick four, but even so the payoffs were enormous.

So was the return of $178,790 to the lone pick-sick winner, who spoiled everyone else's prospective double-carryover fun for tomorrow by using Danzaway. I'd also love to know whether that one winner won the 8th race with the "wrong" half of the entry when Dorm Fever finished first in the off-the-grass Heed Stakes. I suspect most people who used the $6.40 winner were actually betting on entrymate International Fever, who ran third.

--Dubliner, by the way, is turning into the Hesanoldsalt of the statebred maiden ranks. His second-place finish to Danzaway was his sixth consecutive second in seven career starts. Something went wrong in his debut, where he missed finishing second by a head and settled for third. Dubliner showed new versatility today, finishing second on dirt after a previously all-grass career.

Peter Kyte More than 1 year ago
Mr. Crist! Great blog! About the only reading I do that can both inform me and make me laugh to the point of tears at the same time! My name is Peter Kyte. I am the track announcer and part-time simulcast host at Fort Erie Racetrack in Canada.
John More than 1 year ago
The key to the late pick 4 was the change in distances of the 8th and 9th races.The bush horse was the only one who figured to benefit from the stretch to 1 1/8 and the switch to the main.Still can't believe the price of the late pick 4 especially since Mazur mentioned both bombs at the Siro's seminar
Bochall More than 1 year ago
Is it wise to go after a loose horse during the running of the race (Tommasi in R3)? Gotta believe that guy meant well but the threat of interfering with other runners is too great. NOT A SMART MOVE!!
AlHattab More than 1 year ago
Johnman- the best thing about the Magna conference call was that our pal Frank wasn't even present! Can you imagine that- drf article says an analyst asked where he was and response was that "he's away" (apologies to all involved if he is ill).
ml/nj More than 1 year ago
Geez. I was sorry Dorm Fever was coupled. Check out Jerkins OTT Stats with your Formulator IV. (37% winners, 41 Starters, $2.84 ROI; They're better now!)
George Melillo More than 1 year ago
Steve: I'm still stunned by the depth of the pay-offs over the pick 6, final pick 4 and final pick three. I hit that final pick three but still feel a bit sick due to the fact that I LOVED that Grindstone horse in the 6th and did have him to win, hit the exacta and the triple in that 6th race, by keying him on top, yet for some reason never even considered singling him in the late pick 4??????? How white hot is Tommy Bush? I have to admit I only used him in the pick 3 because of Bush.......was not my type of play, off of the form on display. Comes much to far from the clouds for my liking. Hey, some times we get it right!
AndyScoggin More than 1 year ago
The last 2 wet track days have been quite favorable to closers, particularly as the track dried. Keying Le Chateau in first and second in the tri in the 8th race, and seeing him close from last to get up for 2nd, got me a $200 payoff. I loved Danzaway to close in the same fashion which got me a $350 tri when keying Dubliner to finish second! Of course the Tom Bush angle was crucial, too. I have never hit two healthy trifectas in a row before. I guess "the horse was with me". I am really enjoying playing and watching Saratoga on-line with my NJbets account. Far less distractions at home then at the track! Good luck everyone!
johnman More than 1 year ago
Steven: When will you be writing something about Frank Stronach and Magna Entertainment? Guy might be the worst executive in North America. Way overpaid for all of these racetrack properties and has managed to run them all into the ground while lying about his intentions.
Shawn More than 1 year ago
Steve, How does Danzaway close (and Dubliner NOT win) after 6 furlongs in 1:15? Was the wet track that slow today or are those particular NY maidens just that slow? In fact it did seem a few races had VERY slow fractions today.
Tony Viscardo More than 1 year ago
Steve, How could you not have Tom Bush's horse in the last race? he's very hot with Garcia up . and he's done this in the last race of the day 2 or 3 times already . Of course my day was done by the last race. Thanks to heanoldsalt . With me being a bush fan .I blew it too . Well tomorrows another day . What's your thought on the late pick 4 with english channel is it now a pick 3? Tony