08/25/2016 12:58PM

Midnight Storm strong again

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*As many of you have noticed, the "BLOG" tab on the home page has been removed. You can find this blog every week (usually published on Wednesday and Thursday) at drf.com/blogs or by going to the "NEWS" tab and clicking on the "Blogs" link. 
 
Trainer Phil D'Amato continued his strong run with Southern California turf routers as MIDNIGHT STORM (profiled in the July 28 edition of FormBlog - http://www.drf.com/blogs/damato-loaded-turf) captured the Grade 2 Del Mar Mile in gate-to-wire fashion last Sunday. 
 
The 3 to 10 favorite in a five-horse field, Midnight Storm basically won the race three strides out of the gate as Gary Stevens, aboard the swift OM, decided to concede the lead to the chalk. Rafael Bejarano took advantage, grabbed the lead and the rail, backed down the fractions to 22.82 and 46.66, and that was all she wrote. Om, making his first start since March 12, tried very hard after a pocket trip and was slowly inching into Midnight Storm's stretch lead, but Midnight Storm's tactical advantage was too great. He completed the distance in 1:33.92 and received a 106 Beyer Speed Figure. 
 
 
Midnight Storm will likely sit in mothballs until the Breeders' Cup Mile at Santa Anita on November 5. Whether he got enough out of the Del Mar Mile, a fairly easy race from a pace standpoint before a pretty sizable layoff, is a question handicappers must answer when analyzing the Mile. It's also worth noting that D'Amato also has a Mile candidate in OBVIOUSLY, a veteran with a similar front-running style as Midnight Storm. If both make it to the Mile unscathed, would they cancel each other out on the lead?
 
Either way, Midnight Storm has had a strong season for D'Amato and looks like an interesting price horse for the Mile, especially if TEPIN and some strong European invaders take the bulk of the wagering. 
 
Also watch out for METABOSS, a D'Amato-trained 4-year-old that made an eye-catching late run to just miss a photo in last Saturday's Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap at 11 furlongs. A son of Street Boss, Metaboss won the Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby for trainer Jeff Bonde over Golden Gate's Tapeta surface last year, but went to the sidelines with an ankle chip and ended up on the bench for over a year. 
 
Metaboss began his comeback for Michael Dickinson in Maryland, but was the beaten favorite in three middle-distance races before being transferred to D'Amato. The colt rallied from last to win his return to Southern California, a one-mile optional claimer on July 23 before his big effort in the Del Mar Handicap.
 
 
 
Metaboss has always shown promise on turf and synthetic surfaces and appears to be coming into his own. Whether Metaboss is a true Breeders' Cup Turf candidate remains to be seen, but there are races for this talented horse. 
 
*It's wonderful to see the undefeated and immensely-talented LADY ELI back in the entries off such a long, injury-induced layoff, but she'll have to have them nailed on tight to defeat such salty fillies as MISS TEMPLE CITY and SENTIERO ITALIA in the Ballston Spa Stakes. Personally, I like the former, a filly that made her name by beating males in the Grade 1 Maker's 46 Mile during the Keeneland spring meet. After a good run at Royal Ascot, Miss Temple City returned to the States with a bang-up effort in the Grade 1 Diana on July 23. She was rated hard in the early going, was forced to angle sharply to the rail in midstretch, and galloped out with gusto.
 
*...Mr. Dan - can you please post the pp's of Paynter...
DavidM9999
 
They're available at the bottom of this blog post. 
 
*Mike Beer and I will be on for free and fun live handicapping analysis at a special start time of 2:00 ET on Saturday. You can find us at live.drf.com. This week, we'll cover the stakes races from Saratoga on Travers Saturday as well as the Iselin from Monmouth, the Seaway from Woodbine and the Pat O'Brien from Del Mar. 
 
*You can follow me on Twitter @DRF_DanIllman.
 
*Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from 8/17/16 - 8/23/16:
 
1. CALIFORNIA CHROME - 113 - Pacific Classic (G1) - 1 1/4 Miles - 20Aug16-9DMR
2. TOURIST - 107 - Fourstardave Handicap (G1) - 1 Mile (Turf) - 20Aug16-9SAR
3. MIDNIGHT STORM - 106 - Del Mar Mile Handicap (G2) - 1 Mile (Turf) - 21Aug16-4DMR
4. ASHLEYLUVSSUGAR - 102 - Del Mar Handicap (G2) - 1 3/8 Miles (Turf) - 20Aug16-8DMR
4. DISCO PARTNER - 102 - Troy Stakes - 5 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 20Aug16-5SAR
4. MESSI (GER) - 102 - Sky Classic Stakes (G2-C) - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - 21Aug16-7WO
7. CAN'THELPBELIEVING - 101 - Cliff Hanger Stakes (G3) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 21Aug16-8MTH
8. TALE OF LIFE (JPN) - 100 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 1/8 Miles - 19Aug16-5SAR
9. GLENVILLE GARDENS - 98 - Play the King Stakes (G2-C) - 7 Furlongs (Turf) - 20Aug16-8WO 
9. MACAGONE - 98 - OC 80k/N3X -N - 1 Mile (Turf) - 22Aug16-7SAR
9. NAVY HYMN - 98 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 6 Furlongs - 21Aug16-8DMR
9. WELL MEASURED - 98 - OC 62k/N2X - 6 Furlongs - 21Aug16-8DMR
13. TIME AND MOTION - 97 - Lake Placid Stakes (G2) - 21Aug16-8SAR
14. NIGHT OFFICER - 96 - OC 80k/C - 5 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 18Aug16-8SAR
14. SOUPER KNIGHT - 96 - OC 40k/N1X - 7 Furlongs - 20Aug16-4DMR
16. COPINGAWAY - 95 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 Mile (Turf) - 19Aug16-9SAR
16. FARHAAN - 95 - Wcl c-40000 - 1 Mile (Turf) - 19Aug16-4SAR
16. HOT CITY GIRL - 95 - Union Avenue Stakes - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 18Aug16-9SAR
16. PERFECTLY MAJESTIC - 95 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 20Aug16-3DMR
16. SONGBIRD - 95 - Alabama Stakes (G1) - 1 1/4 Miles - 20Aug16-10SAR
21. DO NOT ENTER - 94 - Alw 29568N1X - 6 1/2 Furlongs (Polytrack) - 20Aug16-1AP 
21. JOHN JONES - 94 - Mister Diz Stakes - 6 Furlongs (Turf) - 20Aug16-10LRL
21. SPLASH RULES - 94 - OC 12k/N1X -N - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 20Aug16-4GP 
21. WE BE STORMIN - 94 - Alw 22590C - 7 Furlongs - 19Aug16-5LAD
25. AIRE BUENO (CHI) - 93 - OC35k/SAL35k - 7 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 19Aug16-9GP 
25. CORT - 93 - Alw 85000N1X - 5 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 17Aug16-7SAR
25. HARMONIZE - 93 - Del Mar Oaks (G1) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 20Aug16-6DMR
25. WEEKEND HIDEAWAY - 93 - Alw 85000NC - 6 Furlongs - 22Aug16-6SAR
 
California Chrome's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post. 
 
Farhaan was claimed for $40,000 by trainer Carlos Martin from Kiaran McLaughlin. 
 
*Congrats to Ron Z. for winning the most recent HandiGambling challenge.
 
Rick M and SR VEGAS' HG scoreboard spreadsheet is available at the bottom of this blog post. 
 
We'll try the Travers from Saratoga for this week's exercise. 
 
PAST PERFORMANCES ARE AVAILABLE AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS BLOG POST.
 
SR Vegas and Rick M. have graciously decided to update all of the HG rules in order to make them an easier read for everyone...
 
 
HANDIGAMBLING version 2016:
 
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. We are not asking for a novel but SPARE A SENTENCE OR TWO outlining your HANDICAPPING ANGLES and/or THOUGHT PROCESSES about WAGERING.
 
1. Start your post with HG or HANDIGAMBLING to find your entry in a thread.
2. You have a mythical $100 to wager in whatever format you choose that is available for that HG race. Anyone going over the $100 limit will be DISQUALIFIED.
3. Post your WAGER and ANALYSIS to the blog prior to the start of the designated race. SIGN OFF WITH YOUR NAME/OR MONIKER AT THE END OF YOUR POST. Remember that posts may start as 'anonymous' or an 'alternate name'. You MUST SIGN YOURSELF AT THE END (even if it is the same) This enables the scorekeeper to identify who you are.
4. (1) ONE ENTRY per person for the Handigambling contest. If you have multiple email addresses, use just ONE for contest purposes. Multiple entries will be cause for disqualification.
5. Separate your analysis from the wager and use the PROGRAM # in your wager. Just like you would do in a real wager. No horse names.
6. If any of the rules listed above aren't met, the wager is subject to review which can lead to disqualification of your entry.
 
In the event of a tie, the earliest post gets first preference. Dan reserves the right to approve or deny any entries.
The winner will receive a "60-Card Quarterly Formulator Past Performance Plan"
 
As an example :
 
HG 2016
The speed in this race are #1 Alpha, #2 Beta, and #8 Ocho. I like the works for layoff horse #5 Cinco who can sit off the pace. Lots of speed in here, so this could set up for a closer like  #6 Six Flags and I like the trainer's stats in these conditions. I’ll put the closer over the speed.
 
HG wager:
$10 EX   6 /   1,2,5, 8  = $40
$5 TRI   6 /   1,2,5,8  /  1,2,5,8  =  $60
Total $100
Thanks Dan!
Harpo
 
A MORE DETAILED ANALYSIS  IS  ALWAYS  APPRECIATED !
REMEMBER, IF YOU ARE DECLARED THE WINNER OF THE HANDIGAMBLING EXERCISE; PLEASE CONTACT FORMBLOG@DRF.COM WITH YOUR DRF LOGIN AND PASSWORD IN ORDER TO ACCESS YOUR PRIZE PACKAGE.
 
ALSO, IF THE WINNER WOULD LIKE TO SELECT THE FOLLOWING WEEK'S RACE, PLEASE CONTACT FORMBLOG@DRF.COM NO LATER THAN THE FOLLOWING WEDNESDAY MORNING (A SATURDAY RACE IS MOST IDEAL)

 

AttachmentSize
PAYNTER.pdf606.77 KB
Copy of HG 8 20 16 4StarDave.xls56 KB
HGTRAVERS.pdf205.81 KB
CALIFORNIA CHROME.pdf800.09 KB