08/01/2012 12:19PM

A Haskell Masterpiece for Paynter


*Paynter was magnificent in winning the Haskell Invitational at Monmouth last Sunday.  Making his first start since finishing a game second in the Belmont Stakes, a race in which he lost a shoe and emerged all banged up, Paynter tracked the pace set by Wood Memorial winner Gemologist before blowing by that foe with five-sixteenths of a mile to run.  Nonios came with a determined bid, but was no match for Paynter, who received a 108 Beyer Speed Figure and now looks like the horse to beat in the Grade 1 Travers later this month at Saratoga.

*In Del Mar's Bing Crosby Stakes, champion sprinter Amazombie turned a golden trip into a rallying victory.  As Comma to the Top and The Factor sparred up front, Amazombie rated in the perfect tracking spot under Mike Smith.  The Factor emerged with the lead in upper stretch, but was weakened from his early efforts and couldn't stave off Amazombie's charge.  The Factor ran well here and there may be another big win or two in his future.

*Last year's Haskell winner, Coil, returned from a long layoff to win an optional claimer in facile fashion for trainer Bob Baffert.  Turning back to seven furlongs, Coil tracked the leaders, angled out at the head of the stretch and ran down the pacesetters with a minimum of fuss.  Add Coil to the list of Bob Baffert-trained headliners (Game on Dude, Richard's Kid, Paynter, Bodemeister, The Factor, etc.). 

*Rail Trip finally got back to the winner's circle in the Grade 2 San Diego Handicap, but he pressed a soft pace while Baffert's Take Control lagged at the back of the field.  The star-crossed Take Control, a five-year-old son of Horse of the Year A.P. Indy out of Horse of the Year Azeri, was only making his third lifetime start in the San Diego due to various shin injures, but he rallied boldy in the stretch despite a lack of pace.  If Baffert can keep Take Control sound, the blue-blood may move on to bigger and better down the road.

*Teen Pauline, a Stonestreet Stables homebred by Tapit, made a big impression in her career debut at Saratoga on July 25.  Trained by Steve Asmussen, the juvenile filly out of Grade 3 Debutante Stakes winner Effectual earned a 92 Beyer for her five-furlong bow.  She is bred to be fast and precocious so look for Asmussen to strike while the iron is hot and the distances are short.

*Frankel turned the Group 1 Sussex Stakes into a public workout.  Racing against three overmatched opponents, the undefeated Frankel tracked his pacemaker from the pocket, breezed by that one in the straight and bounded home en route to a six-length victory.  He simply had no competition on this day, but we'll see how he fares at a longer distance in next month's Juddmonte International at York.


Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from last week's races (7/23/12 - 7/29/12):

1.  PAYNTER - 108 - Haskell Invitational (G1) - 1 1/8 Miles - Monmouth
2.  AMAZOMBIE - 103 - Bing Crosby Stakes (G1) - 6 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Del Mar
3.  CURRENCY SWAP - 103 - Amsterdam Stakes (G2) - 6 1/2 Furlongs - Saratoga
4.  WINTER MEMORIES - 100 - Diana Stakes (G1) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - Saratoga
5.  RICHARD'S KID - 99 - Cougar II Handicap (G3) - 1 1/2 Miles (Polytrack) - Del Mar
5.  ROYAL CURRIER - 99 - Teddy Drone Stakes - 6 Furlongs - Monmouth
5.  SAY NO MORE - 99 - Alw 17794N2Y - 6 1/2 Furlongs - Fort Erie
5.  STREET LIFE - 99 - Curlin Stakes - 1 1/8 Miles - Saratoga
9.  SHADOWBDANCING - 98 - Prairie Meadows Handicap - 1 1/4 Miles - Prairie Meadows
10. BERNIE THE MAESTRO - 97 - Clm c-25000 - 7 Furlongs - Saratoga
10. RAIL TRIP - 97 - San Diego Handicap (G2) - 1 1/16 Miles (Polytrack) - Del Mar
12. ALPHA - 96 - Jim Dandy Stakes (G2) - 1 1/8 Miles - Saratoga
12. BELLISSIMA LUNA - 96 - Clm 25000(25-20) - 6 Furlongs - Delaware
12. SUGGESTIVE BOY (Arg.) - Wickerr Stakes - 1 Mile (Turf) - Del Mar
15. CEASE - 95 - OC 75k/N3X -N - 1 1/8 Miles - Saratoga
16. HILLSWICK - 94 - Hcp 25000s - 6 1/2 Furlongs - Saratoga
16. PEWTER - 94 - Clm 4000N2Y - 6 Furlongs - Suffolk
16. STOLEN CHEVY - 94 - Clm 7500N1Y - 6 Furlongs - Penn National
16. TOBY'S CORNER - 94 - Mountainview Handicap - 1 1/8 Miles - Penn National
20. COIL - 93 - OC 100k/C -N - 7 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Del Mar
20. ROXY GAP - 93 - Royal North Stakes (G3-C) - 6 Furlongs (Turf) - Woodbine
22. JIMMY CREED - 92 - Alw 72750N1X - 6 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Del Mar
22. LUNAR VICTORY - 92 - Evan Shipman Stakes - 1 1/8 Miles - Saratoga
22. OUR EDGE - 92 - OC 50k/N2X - 6 Furlongs - Saratoga
22. SMART BID - 92 - East Hanover Stakes - 1 1/2 Miles (Turf) - Penn National
22. STRIKE THE MOON - 92 - OC 75k/N3X -N - 6 Furlongs - Saratoga
22. TEEN PAULINE - 92 - Md Sp Wt 80k - 5 Furlongs - Saratoga
22. TRAFFIC LIGHT - 92 - Crowd Pleaser Handicap - 1 1/16 Miles - Parx

*Paynter's lifteime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

*Bernie the Maestro was claimed for $25,000 by trainer David Jacobson from Bruce Levine.


Please check out the latest video production from Jessica Pacheco, Racing Analyst at Arlington Park.  It's Part 10 of the "Behind the Silks" video series following jockey Tim Thornton through his ups and downs at this year's Arlington meet.

"Peyote Patty"

In Episode 10, Tim takes us through the career of his favorite horse, Peyote Patty. Discover why she has been such a special horse in Tim's life as he takes us through the ups and downs of her career from her memorable five-race win streak in 2009, leading up to her recent win at Arlington Park.


The whole series, episodes 1-10, can be found here:



just spent another part of a lunch hour with T T, now I think I need to see Peyote Patty's lifetimes.... por favor.

Peyote Patty's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.


Can you post the pp's for Smarten, a horse that ran in the late 70's. I understand he stayed away from the triple crown races and cleaned up on all the other races
thomas j

Smarten's past performances are available at the bottom of the blog post. 

At three, he won the Grade 3 Illinois Derby, Grade 2 Ohio Derby, Pennsylvania Derby, Grade 2 American Derby, Grade 3 Marylander Handicap and Grade 3 Woodlawn Stakes.  He also finished second in the Grade 1 Travers. 


I have one more question about the carding of 2 yr old maiden races. How many have to enter before the secretary will split the race? Also, if the race splits, will multiple entrants from one owner or trainer always end up in different divisions? I would love it if this was the case, since I never feel comfortable trying to guess which of dual entrants are well-meant, especially contemplating horizontal wagers.

I'm not positive as to the exact number of entries needed to "split" a carded race, but in order for a race to be split, there must be a good amount of entrants and other carded races have failed to attract enough participants. In sprints at Saratoga, eight run and there may be six also-eligibles (at most).    I'd put the number at 20 or so, but that's just a guess.  Multiple entrants from the same barn won't always go in different divisions.


Congrats to SWEDE for winning last week's HandiGambling exercise.  He selects Friday's Honorable Miss Handicap at Saratoga for this week's event.

Penn National Rick's scoresheet is available at the bottom of this blog post.

Let's go with Friday's eighth race from Saratoga for this week's HandiGambling event.


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 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.

PAYNTER.pdf636.03 KB
Peyote Patty.pdf61.13 KB
Smarten.pdf42.68 KB
Copy of Formblog Contest Curlin 7-27-12.xls40 KB
HGHONMISS.pdf163.92 KB