01/21/2009 2:01PM

HandiGambling 117


Today's HandiGambling 117 race is the sixth from Gulfstream Park, a $25,000 maiden claimer for three-year-old fillies at six furlongs.  Remember that you have a mythical $100 with which to wager on the race, and the entrant with the highest money total will receive a "Monthly Enhanced 60-Card Past Performance Plan."  Past performances for the race are available in yesterday's blog entry.

I've guesstimated the Beyer par for this race to be in the low-60 range.  Since the highest lifetime Beyer in the field is the 58 that Who Plays Brahms earned two starts back at Calder, it seems logical to look for a new face. 

Mambo Jumbo, a half-sister to multiple stakes-winner Scrubs, was pounded to favoritism for her career debut on grass nineteen days ago.  After a poor start, the $25,000 yearling ($22,000 RNA as a juvenile) was never involved in the running.  She worked a best-of-70 drill over the Calder main track 11 days ago, and her more-famous half-sister earned a pair of triple-digit Beyers sprinting on the dirt.  It wouldn't be surprising if she runs to her potential in this spot.

Gimmeamink, a $5,000 RNA as a yearling, didn't do much when finishing just ahead of Mambo Jumbo on the turf.  Unlike that one, Gimmeamink was rather tepid on the toteboard.  The barn shows solid numbers with turf-to-dirt, and second-time starters, but she'll likely have to show more to grab the brass ring here. 

R B Happy Feet certainly has the pedigree and connections to score at this level.  Her trainer, Bill White, excels with first-time starters, and the Thunder Gulch filly is out of multiple stakes-winner Big Miss (76-16-19-9, $357,834).  The worktab, however, fails to excite.  Both the December 19 and December 27 drills match up with White's Our Ace, a three-year-old filly that finished eleventh after a tough trip in her career debut at Gulfstream on Sunday.  Our Ace was dismissed at 14-1, and earned a zero Beyer for the effort.

For the HandiGambling exercise, I landed on Strollin in Paris.  While I'm usually leery of inexperienced runners breaking from the inside in one-turn races, Strollin in Paris offers some interesting angles.  Her sire, Stroll, compiled a record of 12-4-3-0 with an ROI of $5.03 with his first-crop of debut runners in 2008.  The dam, a four-time sprint winner, is a full sister to multiple stakes-placed performer Flying Monarch, and Grade 3 turf winner Dancing Rhythm, and is a half-sister to stakes-winner Skeet.  The December 14 workout at Gulfstream matches up with trainer David Kassen's older claimer David K., a multiple winner with a 72 Beyer top on dirt.  Although Kassen hasn't sent out a debut winner since 2006, he did have two firsters score that season, and Kassen had five winners overall at last year's Gulfstream meet.  Strollin in Paris doesn't have to be All Along to win this, and she'll be a good price to boot.

Platina Rose missed the break as the chalk last time out, and should offer more value in this spot.  Toss the turf race two back, and you're left with a solid fourth-place finish in a race that produced three next-out winners.

Spirit Seeker improved in his first start for this claiming price, gets away from the rail, and switches from a five-pound bug rider to Eibar Coa.

No Speed Limit looms the horse to beat based on the steep drop in class coupled with good early speed, and the removal of blinkers from hot trainer Wesley Ward.  He's stopped badly in all three race, though.

Ariel Rose has a powerful angle in maiden races...the first-time maiden claimer.

I'm going with Strollin in Paris at a price.

$50 WP - 1

Good luck!