09/03/2009 12:09PM

HandiGambling 149

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Today's HandiGambling 149 exercise is the eighth race from Monmouth, a $32,000 claimer for fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles on the grass.

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."   Anyone going over the $100 limit will be disqualified.  In the event of a tie, the earliest post gets first preference.  Past performances are available on the previous blog entry.

I know that there is a time issue for some of you, but let's remember why we began the HandiGambling races in the first place.  The goal was to share ideas on why we like these horses, and why we're betting them the way we are.  I'm not asking for a novel, but if you could spare a sentence or two outlining your handicapping angles, and thought processes about wagering, it would be appreciated.

Let's scratch #5 YIPPETY YIP, #7 SNOW ELEGANCE, and #9 LUCKY REVIVAL.

#8 TALENTED PRINCESS is a very consistent mare with three wins out of her last four races including a 12-furlong starter handicap on the main track at Philadelphia Park.  She handled weaker on the grass two back at Monmouth, and she overcame a moderate pace scenario that afternoon.  She may get more pace to attack here, and can't be ignored under Joe Bravo. 

#6 IWOMAN has played the role of bridesmaid recently with four straight runner-up finished over the Monmouth weeds.  She's a rather consistent runner, but seems to lack that big pop when it counts the most.  She's a contender with this group, but demand a solid win price before playing Iwoman in that slot.

#3 ZIGGLY was a sharp winner for $20,000 in late July, and takes a confident hike up the ladder for Richard Small.  This mare won four of five starts last year, and her good tactical speed may allow her to get the jump on horses like Talented Princess.

#2 STELLA NOVA looks like an interesting longshot.  She just missed for $25,000 last time out after making a premature midrace bid.  She won three in a row way back in 2007 for Frank Costa, and may finally be rounding back into form.  She looms an exotics threat at a price.

#7 ZUBANI pressed tepid fractions to no avail last time out at Delaware Park, and these seem a bit tougher.  She may find a good spot tracking the speed, and could inherit the lead under Eddie Castro turning for home.

#1 SOUTHERN OAKS looks like the controlling speed from the rail, but she's yet to try the grass.  The dam was a Grade 2 winner on the main track, but this pedigree just doesn't scream grass.

Here's how I'll play it:

$100 Win - #8 - Talented Princess

Best of luck to all.