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A Grassy Double Carry at Belmont: 9/16/12
By Steven Crist
1:15 pm: Today's all-turf pick-6 at Belmont is no walk in the park, but a two-day $164k carryover makes it worth a look and, for me, a modest play.
The modesty applies not only to the investment but also to the ambitiousness. This isn't a sequence where I find myself brimming with contrarian positions and juicy longshots. With full fields and plenty of firsters and first-turfers, there's plenty of room for chaos, but those aren't the results I'll be rooting for; if you tried to cover all bases and possibilities, the cost would quickly soar beyond the affordable.
Instead, I'm looking at it as an opportunity to reap a carryover bonus if the results are fairly orderly. Let's say it attracts $800k in new money and thus a new 6-of-6 payout pool (after takeout and consos) of around $400k. If it's "easy" enough for 80 people to have it at $5k each, it would actually pay $7k because those 80 winners would split up the $164k carryover. If 40 people have it, it pays $14k instead of $10k. This may sound like small potatoes in the face of a daunting proposition, but playing on days when a pick-6 will pay an extra 40 percent is a reasonable approach to picking your spots.
With the first four races on the dirt, we won't get any clues about how the turf courses are playing until the sequence begins, but there's been no rain since yesterday, when the grass was firm to hard.
My biggest stumbling block at the moment is race 7 (leg 3), which is (mercifully) the only turf sprint. I have 6 of the 11 entrants -- the 1,2,6,9,10 and 11 -- open to win the race and no strong preferences among them. I've got some more work to do but will be back with my tickets before the scheduled start of the sequence with the 5th race at 2:52 pm.
2:33 pm: Here goes:
The all-A's-andB's ticket is $576. The five 5A/1C tickets are $144, $48, $144, $96 and $96. Total: $1104.
2:40 pm: Here are the multirace willpays into the 5th:
Nothing really out of whack relative to the win odds -- Gustavia (#4) the clear favorite, Pleasant Cat (#12) the second choice, and mild support for firsters Corporate Culture (#5) and Caroline Thomas (#11).
3:00 pm: A quick sayonara for me as Mariel and Kathy ($19.20) walked on the lead to victory while the two firsters ran well to be 2nd and 3rd but couldn't catch her. Pleasant Cat had a perfect trip but no rally and went evenly for 4th, while favored Gustavia was steadied repeatedly early and wide late but didn't run as well on the firm course as she did on a yielding one at Saratoga.
Good luck the rest of the way if you used her.
4:05 pm: You're in good shape if you're still alive as legs 2 and 3 may have broken the best way for those who narrowed. In the 6th, Clever Ending ($6.90) beat 9-5 Yes It's Pink, and in the 7th third choice Kibosh ($14.60) beat 8-5 favorite Quiet Ending and 4-1 second choice Thescreenisred. Pick-3 of first half of pick-6 paid $861.
5:15 pm: After War Hoot ($4.90) and Boots Ahead ($9.10) made it four A's after the whiff in the opener, here are the willpays, with 7 of the 12 covered in the finale:
5:40 pm: Third choice Moonstock ($11.40) just held off 54-1 Barnards Galaxy, who would have given us a $522k triple-carry to Wednesday. Pick-6 paid $37,189, pick-4 was a pretty fat $857. My two stinkin' consos were worth $249.50 apiece.
wow bet some north east tracks, would suggest for bettors not to place any wagers as it seems the winner is well placed. But don't take my word, but save some funds so I can get some later
I wanted to let you know if you didn't already: Saratoga Harness is teasing on Twitter about becoming the first track in NYS to offer a Pick-5 this Fall.
Steve, don't know if you ever really go back and look at comments, but here it goes. I have always wanted to play the pick 6 but don't have the capital. So I am playing mythically for the next year just to see how many if any at all I would hit. Not really paying attention to the carryover on the tracks I am playing, just putting together tickets. Try to learn from mistakes. I would not play any pick 6 without a carryover except for maybe breeders cup. Plus I need to start putting funds away to start with. Anyway I enjoy reading and seeing your post. I would imagine you have quite a bit of backside information that most people don't have. And has to help, but hope to hit one one day. My best lick so far is a 24K pick four about 4yrs ago on Arlington, which I hit about 2 weeks after reading your book. So thanks, paid my car off and took a trip to Disney. If I ever have the chance of meeting you, would love to buy you a beer or beverage of your choice. Anyway thanks for spreading the knowledge
The five uncovered horses in the finale were all unused by Steve on his ticket as A-B-C's. The other 7 were A's, B's or C's.
A thought: Given how the NFL has become such a monster on Sundays to where it is the 800-pound gorilla of sports, I'm beginning to wonder if it's time for NYRA to consider dropping Sunday racing after Labor Day until the week after the NFL conference championship games in January. It seems only the real die-hards and the few who don't care about the NFL at all now care about Sunday racing once the NFL season starts (one reason you will never see the Breeders Cup go Saturday-Sunday unless it is an emergency situation), and for that reason, I would seriously consider for 2013 if I'm at NYRA dropping Sunday racing entirely after the Saratoga meet ends, either going to a four-day, Wednesday-Saturday week (as Laurel actually has for the last few years in the fall with there also being racing on Columbus Day and Election Day) or if NYRA is required to run a five-day week, replacing Sundays with Monday programs (except the weeks of the move between Belmont and Aqueduct and Election Day, which in years where it does not fall on the week of the move between Belmont and Aqueduct would have racing on that Tuesday). This would actually mean if NYRA retains the current six-day week at Saratoga, except for the weeks noted there would be Monday racing beginning with the Saratoga meet until early into the following year. It may be time to seriously consider this given the sheet popularity of the NFL being what it is.
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