03/01/2012 2:31PM

HandiGambling 272 (Gulfstream Turf)


Thursday's HandiGambling 272 exercise is the seventh race at Gulfstream Park, a $40,000 claimer for older fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles on turf.


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.  PLEASE GIVE YOUR NAME OR BLOG MONIKER AT THE END OF THE HG PLAY AND/OR ANALYSIS.
Please separate the play from the analysis and label the play "HG" with the program numbers (instead of the horse's name) for easier scoring.

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.

Best of luck to all.


As of this writing, the turf course is listed as FIRM.

The temporary rail is out 36 feet.

Let's scratch #11 SANSANNAH.


This looks like a fun race with several strong contenders. 

#5 THE WEST RIM drops in class for her second start of the form cycle and may work out a good pace-tracking trip under Rajiv Maragh (jockey was aboard The West Rim's most recent victory at Calder on December 1).  Last time out, she bobbled a bit at the start and prompted the pace from the outside before faltering in the lane.  The runner-up from that race, Safe Crossing, returned to win (80 Beyer Speed Figure in an 'n2x' optional claimer) while the winner, Louvakhova, had previously taken the Frances Genter Stakes at Calder for Marty Wolfson. 
Two starts ago, The West Rim finished ahead of Doilookfatnthese, a mare that returned to win two straight for Wayne Catalano.  The winner of that race, La Reine Lionne, was 2-5 for the score and came back to finish a nose shy in the Grade 3 Marshua's River on January 7.
The West Rim should appreciate today's class relief and may get the jump on some of the other contenders.

#1 SHE'S A KETCH hasn't been out since late July, but she returns to her preferred surface and her form is dirty due to two poor performances on dirt.  I'm going to discard those races and instead focus on her win three back at even-money at Calder. 
The lightly-raced mare has faced some tough company in her career (Romacaca, Trip for A.J., Marquet Madness) and she's won off long layoffs in the past (over a year away when coming back to win maiden at Saratoga in 2010). 
She should offer value due to the layoff and poor recent running lines on dirt and may work out a ground-saving, pace-tracking trip underneath the underrated Juan Leyva.

#3 WRITE WHEN READY is a dangerous foe.  She was very impressive visually when defeating $25,000 claimers here on December 8.  That afternoon, she was buried down inside while far back, swung out on the far turn and wore down the leader despite that one getting a good jump on her. 
Most recently, Write When Ready was troubled when facing the aforementioned Doilookfatnthese and Knockinelder (returned to win a turf sprint for $25,000 with a 76 Beyer). 
Write When Ready only needs pace to adequately setup her late kick and shouldn't be discounted.

If The West Rim doesn't want the lead, then #10 BRAMPTON may take up the running for Joe Bravo and Allen Jerkens. 
Brampton steps up in class after defeating $32,000 claimers on January 21 and she received a perfect trip that afternoon, rating in the pocket before attacking three wide on the far turn.  This is a tougher spot.

#7 MICHELLE'S TRIP finished behind Brampton last out and it's not like she had a terrible journey that day.  She saved ground behind Brampton, made a four wide bid on the far turn and finished evenly behind the winner.  She's been behind several of these opponents in the past and needs improvement in order to crack the top spot.

#4 DANCING RAGE is 0-10 over the local turf course and hasn't won a race since December 23, 2010.  She doesn't have much early speed and is at the mercy of race and pace luck. 

#8 STARSHIP JODI couldn't be sharper for trainer Steve Dwoskin as she's won her last three races (two at this meet over this turf course).  Despite her fine recent performances, she may be overlooked in the betting as she steps up in class once again (she was 20-1 on December 22 and 13-1 on January 11).  This is a much-tougher spot, however, as only one of the nine  performers from the January 11 heat returned to crack the trifecta next-out.

#9 DEPUTY DARLING had a three-race win streak snapped by Doilookfatnthese on January 12, but wouldn't be a surprise for the potent trainer-jockey combination of Michael Maker and Julien Leparoux.  Consistent on the Beyer scale of late (but still shy of today's 83 par), Deputy Darling usually gives a good account of herself, but I wonder if she'll be bet into underlay status based on her connections. 

#6 STAGED AFFAIR, a stakes-placed performer on dirt, returns to grass after being well beaten for a $62,500 price tag.  She does have winning experience on the grass, but her most recent win came in 2010 and she hasn't gained ground from the stretch call to the wire in her last three outings.

#2 MUD HONEY makes her turf debut.  She is by multiple stakes-winner Concorde's Tune (3-8 on turf, first-turf winner, 23-241, 10%, with first-turf runners) out of a route-winning dam (0-1 on turf) that is 1-1 with her foals on grass.  The dam is a half-sister to Ocean Crest, who won the Grade 2 Del Mar Derby on the lawn with a 100 Beyer.  These connections have tried to get Mud Honey on the grass in the past only to be washed off so they may believe she'll relish the switch.  Perhaps, she can be a forward factor.

1. The West Rim
2. She's a Ketch
3. Write When Ready

For HG entertainment purposes, I'll play it like this:

$50 WIN-PLACE - The West Rim (#5)

Best of luck to all.

Jeanne More than 1 year ago
Annie, I'll take Hansen if he needs a new owner!!! Jeanne
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You're in for the new draw. I, of course, have put my name in too, but I have no better chance than anyone else in getting him, as is usual it will be a completely blind draw as befits the integrity of the MKB. Good luck! Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
OK, I can't stand for the beautiful white horse to have an owner who has not responded since November and never acknowledged receipt of his MKB horse. You may have guessed which horse I am talking about. LOL Yes, it is HANSEN. He needs a new owner because unfortunately we have heard nothing from DANNY B. I hope nothing serious has happened to keep him away from the blog. But, the white stallion needs a home. Who would like to have him? I will put you in a draw for him if you respond on here prior to the Gotham this afternoon. Annie
Keith More than 1 year ago
Annie: Seems like your $2 million dolar baby is going to be a short horse on conditioning and earnings to make the Derby possible, so I'd recommend you take Hansen, win or lose from here out, Dr. Hansen will put him in the gate! Keith L.
SR Vegas More than 1 year ago
Hi Annie Since you gave me MARK and just adopted Z DAGGER, I won't be asking for HANSEN...but I know Jeanne would just LOVE to have that PGH :) SR Vegas
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ah yes, wouldn't we all. BTW, It's Z DAGER. No weapons carried. :) Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
See above. I am putting my name in the draw for Hansen. As so often seems to be the case the million plus babies don't usually live up to it. Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MKB UPDATE: We have 12 MKB horses running today. Of course 8 of them are running in the Gotham against each other, but we have 4 others that are the only MKB in the race: GP Maiden Special - GIL'S Went the Day Well 5-2 FAV SA Maiden Special - HAIRY'S Holy Candy 6-5 FAV OP Gazebo Stakes - SWEDE'S Exfactor 9-5 FAV TP John Battaglia Memorial - OWENIZED'S State of Play 2-1 Let's have 5 MKB winners today! Good luck everyone!!! Annie
jimi More than 1 year ago
finishing up before heading out-- 7th>>Baffert has this one surrounded, Annie. Exacta box? 8th>>Cat Talk 6-1 returns from layoff for new trainer Cassidy sans huevos. 9th>>Triple Crown nominated Reneesgotzip (by City Zip, at least the connections have faith) over Eden's Moon and Charm the Maker 10th>>??? 11th>>Agree on Setsuko (thanks for the Drew Brees answer tencent) with Ultimate Eagle Good luck everybody!!!
Whackymacky More than 1 year ago
Gothem No way Hansen wins today with the off track and the dreaded #12 post. Not going to happen. Too much to do....JMO Look to the inside...#1 My Adonis Inside post...Like jockey, maybe his time, price will be knocked down because of track condition and post of #12.....Take it to the bank... Play the #6 Dan and Shelia to round out the exacta...Trainer and Jockey show up for the money...Third choice.. Box them in the exacta.. Good Luck!!! Whackymacky Out!!!!
CalvinLCarter More than 1 year ago
Keith L., I have Najjaar in my RTTR stable. There’s a good possibility that I may be on the Churchill Downs backside either Oaks or Derby day with the same friend that took me to the backside for the 2006 Oaks. If history has a tendency to repeat, I may have to play at least a 10 cent superfecta box on the same horses and trainers that finished in the 2006 Derby. 2006 Barbaro – Michael Matz Bluegrass Cat – Todd Pletcher Steppenwolfer – Daniel Peitz Jazil – Kiaran McLaughlin 2012 Union Rags – Michael Matz El Padrino – Todd Pletcher Najjaar – Daniel Peitz Alpha – Kiaran McLaughlin
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Calvin, That doesn't sound like a bad superfecta at all. :) NAJJAAR came flying from last and maybe he could do that again, providing he gets in of course. Annie
CalvinLCarter More than 1 year ago
Annie, If those horses make it into the starting gate and I can find a story I posted several years ago on the Formblog about that experience on the backside at Churchill Downs, I'll re-post it for your reading pleasure.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
That would be great, Calvin. I'd love to hear it. Annie
Keith More than 1 year ago
Calvin: If you had a chance to see the re[lay of Najjaar's race (available on Bloodhorse.com) you will sgree, I'm sure, that he lived up to the same sire line as Zenyatta! Your superecta story reminds me of the time I was takng a wekend date to bet on the KY Derby (unfortunatly only in a simulcast, and not a very nice one at that), and told her that a fun bet for her would be a Baffert-Lukas Boxed Exacta, as they were the winningest Derby trainers. She played it, I didn't, and you guessed it, it was War Emblem over Proud Citizen. LOL! Keith L.
CalvinLCarter More than 1 year ago
That's a great story Keith with similar shades of my 2006 experience.
VanSavant More than 1 year ago
Friends; I did well enough yesterday on the 3rd and 5th races from Santa Anita that I have good slush to play with today. We are heading down to the in-laws (The Hotel Royale as it is known) to celebrate birthdays, family, good food, etc., so I am going to make some fun and interesting action wagers for today’s Santa Anita card. I didn’t work too hard on these so take them for what they are worth… RACE #5 – GRAEME CRACKERJACK (#7) Race #6 – LAKE MARACAIBO (#5) Race #7 – VIA VERDE (#7) Race #8 – SMUG (#7) Race #9 – KILLER GRACES (#4) Race #10 – MAKE MUSIC FOR ME (#7) Race #11 – SETSUKO (#9) I am just playing $5 Win tickets on each and rolling $1 Triples with the above selections. Total outlay $40, but it should keep me entertained between cooking, watching basketball and hanging around the family. Not sure what’s on the menu tonight as I’m not the head-chef at Grandma’s, but I may be asked to assist. I’ll keep you all posted. No swimming this weekend, so this is starting to feel like a normal life again… Be safe everyone, have a great weekend, and be sure to watch and wager with love in your heart! vs
Virgin Queen More than 1 year ago
" we are heading down to the In_Laws" most *sane people* head in the opposite direction when it comes 2 the In-Laws VQ
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Van Savant, Forgive me, but I have to say this, and I have said it before, you have always seemed like such a nice person and have never made mean or sarcastic comments to anyone on the blog EXCEPT Whackymacky. I don't know why this is, but I have seen it before and even commented that it didn't sound like you. As we well know, even one sentence in a comment that is laced with disdain and or sarcasm, is most likely to precipitate anger and retaliation from the other party and escalate into general bad feelings on this blog. I sincerely do not want this to happen again. We cannot afford to lose any more contributors or have a black cloud hanging over everything. Please just be your usual kindly self even when responding to Whackymacky. Sincerely, Annie
tencenticielo H More than 1 year ago
Something came up last night, so the HG results will be verified tonight instead. Sorry. :-( Setsuko crushes the Big Cap. (First time on the bandwagon with him. He's a new horse MENTALLY)
Keith More than 1 year ago
Alas...not physically! LOL! Like some here who succumbed to "Giant Oak Fever", on this herder's chances, you had best check your temp, 10c. Keith L.
pippen 0707 More than 1 year ago
Belmont wet and sloppy this morning>>>
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Eww, that means Hansen will get to be colored afterall. Unfortunately, it will be brown after the race. :) I don't know if any of these can beat Hansen. Everyone gets off the bandwagon when a horse loses a race. He'll be too short odds to bet of course, but if he runs like he can, the others are all running for second. Annie