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Matriarch, Clark, HandiGambling PP's
Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Now, let's gamble!
The Clark Handicap is a deep and contentious race featuring several horses with the potential to become important runners in the handicap division of 2011. As of 11:30 a.m, the Churchill Downs main track is listed as GOOD and there are no changes. One horse I will try to beat is REGAL RANSOM. The winner of the 2009 Super Derby (over Blame), Regal Ransom showed up with front bandages for his most recent start, and promptly bombed as the even-money favorite. There are other speeds for him to contend with in the Clark and he will likely have to work pretty hard if he is to get the lead from an outside post.
The three contenders I'll use in my multi-race wagers are SUCCESSFUL DAN, REDDING COLLIERY, and APART. Successful Dan's two recent wins were on polytrack, but he is a perfect 2-2 on dirt (both races at Churchill Downs), and his good tactical speed should have him in a prime early position. Redding Colliery has excellent early speed and is turning back after a gate-to-wire score in the Grade 2 Hawthorne Gold Cup. He's run some big races in 2010 and may offer value if he goes off at anything near his 10-1 morning line. Apart is drawing comparisions to former stablemate Blame after winning his last three starts.
Now, for the negatives. While Successful Dan won the Fayette last time out at nine furlongs, I'm not sure that 1 1/8 miles is really his best game. Redding Colliery was able to shake loose in the Hawthorne Gold Cup, and may not have the luxury of an easy lead this afternoon. Apart may have been aided by an outside, closer-friendly track at Churchill Downs last time out.
The Clark is an excellent race. I'll play small multi-race wagers with my top three selections:
1. Successful Dan 2. Redding Colliery 3. Apart
The race I really like this afternoon is the Grade 1 Matriarch at Hollywood Park. SPECIAL DUTY looms the favorite based on her three Group 1 wins in Europe, but remember that she was placed first via disqualification in two of those races. While we may give her a mulligan for losing to all-world equine athlete Goldikova last time out, she was beaten over 20 lengths two starts back in the Group 1 Falmouth at Newmarket. If she's too short a price, I'll try to beat her on the win end.
WASTED TEARS will be dangerous if allowed to shake loose on the front end, but the presence of CAMILLE C may force her to go pretty fast for the first three furlongs or so. It's possible that a duel will soften her up for a late-kicker, and I'm hoping I found the right one in GYPSY'S WARNING. The beaten favorite in the Grade 1 Yellow Ribbon last time out, Gypsy's Warning found herself on the lead that afternoon, and I don't think that's her preferred style of running. Cutting back to a mile in the Matriarch, Gypsy's Warning may work out a great ground-saving, pace-tracking trip under Joel Rosario.
Selections: 1. Gypsy's Warning 2. Special Duty 3. Wasted Tears
Congrats to gordon p for finishing first in last week's HandiGambling. He selected Saturday's Cigar Mile for this week's exercise.
PAST PERFORMANCES ARE AVAILABLE AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS BLOG POSTING.
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. 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
Back tomorrow morning with my HG picks and some other weekend plays.
Annie Are there any MKS horses left? If so, then I would like one. Also, can you request certain horses, or is the process random?
Hg Cigar mile REVISED sorry Tencent A couple of people already had my win bet..... $100 Ex 2/4 #2 My Mkb horse is an improving 3yr old... #4 Throw out the BC Classic he was coming of his best effort and bounced like a rubber ball.
HG CORRECTION Originally, I was leaning towards Haynesfield. I am a bit perplexed as to why Ramon has been removed from Haynesfield in favor of a jock who simply does not ride for Ausmussen. I need to have 100% confidence in my pick and this leaves me leary. Looking over the field, I came to realize that Musket Man seems to have the best body of work for 2010. Tough grinder who has recorded nice figure is some of NYs biggest events and 1 mile seems to hit him between the eyes. Good enough for me. Bribon looks like a solid second best. $14 Tri 8/3/1,4,5,6,7 $70 $1 Pk 4 5/1,2,3,5,7/8/2,4,5,6,10,13 $30 * reply
BTW HandiGamblers, SUPERs are not offered in the today's Cigar.....
Handigambling $50 ex box 1,2
Cigar Mile Both of the improving 3-yo's look interesting (#2 Soaring Empire and #5 Friend or Foe). Just because I like Prado, I'll go with the #2 $10 exacta 2-4. Best speed may be #4, and I'm hoping the 2 will be able to catch him. Barbara
Dan, Nice pick on Gypsy Warning. You have been doing great!  At Hawtorne today 3 maiden claiming races, 4 $5,000 claiming races, 1 $18,000 claiming race. 1 $14,000 claiming race.  Dick W. Am not sure, but I don't think there is a Superfecta for the Cigar. Thanks.
Cigar mile picks $25 tri wheel 4,8-4,7,8-4,7,8 = $100
HG some reason I thought there was a super... 80 tri 7-3-8 20 tri 7-8-3 musket man and bribon will relish the mile distance having previous success which is key, whereas the sprint speed will fade approaching the stretch good luck today
Gunbow: Thanks for the acknowledgement...I do try to take time and write what I think and why with the limited number of horses I end up playing. Special Duty had stay away from her writtin all over..(5-1 or higher?..sure take a stab...4/5...throwing money away..IMO) I was a little off in my evaluation with RC in the Clark..thought he would get the lead and coast on some slow fractions...ran a huge race nevertheless while getting bounced in the beginning on the turn and bumped in the stretch hard.... today is a new day! Saturday's looks and plays: AQU- 1st- Have to love some of these NYB Turf hitters trying to squueze the lemon dry before the end of the turf season......would anyone be surprised if #12 Sky Blue Pink continues up the ladder?...just raced 2 weeks ago..and the horses he ran against ran 2-1 Thursday.......long shot view could be from #3 Come Undone for some exoctics..... Lezcano has been solid on this runner...and training nicely for a price play... Aqu 8th- Yes me and blackstone disagree about the quality of the race...I think it is strong...Blind Luck strong?..no but solid nevertheless.....I do like #8 No Such Word here...4 solid works...gets his jockey to come as well...has run at this distance..and off the brief break will be solid. AQU 9th- Well already gave some idea's earlier...but in reality..I do love #3 Bribon..will get pace to close into..has 2 smart works...has run well here...should be close...the odd one in the bunch for me is what to do with #8 Half Metal Jacket???....does he improve again like OSB horses????..if so he is part of the equation..... I'll do Holly later good luck to all!