11/18/2010 3:36PM

HandiGambling 211 (Churchill Off-Turf)

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Today's HandiGambling 211 exercise is the ninth race from Churchill Downs, an entry-level allowance for three-year-olds and older at 1 1/2 miles on the main track.  THIS RACE HAS BEEN RAINED MOVED FROM THE TURF COURSE. 

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. Please post your plays and analysis to the blog.  Past performances are available at the previous blog post.  In the event of a tie, the earliest post gets first preference. One entry per person please. I reserve the right to approve or deny any entries.

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 #6 LEJADAMI, #7 CARNIVAL RIDE, and #8 BUCHERON.

The main track is listed as SLOPPY.

It's hard to have a strong opinion on this one.

#2 KABOB's only career victory came on turf, but he's placed in both of his previous dirt performances, including a runner-up effort here at Churchill Downs on May 7.  In that seven-furlong heat, Kabob rallied against the grain of a speed-favoring track to finish second behind odds-on winner Belo Sorte. 
Kabob didn't run well on synthetics on July 29 and has been mired in this condition for a long time so it's hard to get excited about his chances, and the distance is a great unknown as well.  
Still, I liked his Churchill race enough to give him top billing.

#1 SHAKEYOGROOVETHING and #9 CURSESANDBLESSINGS are the only multi-winners in the field, and both have been plying their trade at Presque Isle Downs in long-distance races.  The former may be the main speed of the race, and he went gate-to-wire in a two-mile affair to begin this form cycle.  He is three for four on wet tracks and could be long-gone with an alert break.  Cursesandblessings outfinished Shakeyogroovething on September 2, but the Tapeta at Presque Isle may have slightly favored closers that day.  If you toss his poor turf effort last time out, you're left with a gelding that has been in the exacta in four straight races. 

#3 ETHICAL LAWYER is a maiden facing winners.  He was 82-1 against $50,000 maiden claimers last time out, and is hard to recommend.

#4 HARRODS CREEK ran third in the Cradle Stakes over 'good' dirt as a two-year-old, but may be slightly better on the grass at this point of his career.  His most recent effort, a second-place performance on turf, showed that he can handle this demanding distance.  

#5 SLAMMY BOY is the x-factor of this difficult race.  He has good dirt numbers, but was listed as a vet scratch on June 6, raced twice after that on grass, and then has been away from the races for over four months.  His trainer, the underrated Anthony Reinstelder, has sent out nothing but live horses at this meet.  

It's a race that I won't be playing with real cash.  

As for HandiGambling, I'll go this way:

$100 Win #2 KABOB

Best of luck to all.