08/19/2015 6:29PM

Panama Hat one to watch

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THE PIZZA MAN, profiled in the August 20, 2014 edition of the blog (http://www.drf.com/blogs/delivers-again), sent his many Chicago-based supporters home happy after capturing last Saturday's Arlington Million, but one horse on the undercard caught the eye and seems ready for the watch list.

PANAMA HAT didn't win the Grade 3 American St. Leger, but the 4-year-old gelding ran a corker to be second in the 1 11/16-mile test. Away slowly from the inside post in the nine-horse field, Panama Hat settled in a nice stalking position under jockey Chris Hayes. Meanwhile, Illinois-bred outsider ALPHA KITALPHA set fractions of 24.15, 48.70 and 1:12.38 over the firm turf course.

Entering the third and final turn, Panama Hat attacked the leaders while four wide. He brushed to the front with a three-wide sweep entering the stretch and battled gamely when confronted from the outside by 2013 German Derby hero LUCKY SPEED.

Lucky Speed got the better of Panama Hat in the final sixteenth en route to a new course record of 2:46.50, but the latter's American St. Leger was the latest chapter of a Cinderella story that began with six consecutive losses by a combined 79 3/4 lengths.

Bred by Redland Bloodstock Limited, Panama Hat was foaled in England on March 8, 2011. His sire, Medicean, was a top-class performer in England for Sir Michael Stoute. Medicean's big wins came in the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes at a mile and the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes at 10 furlongs. At stud, Medicean is represented by Group 1 winners Dutch Art (England, France), Nannina (England), Siyouma (Canada, England), Bayrir (United Stakes), Neatico (Germany), Mr. Medici (Hong Kong), Capponi (Dubai), Almerita (Germany), Chevron (Singapore) and Al Shemali (Dubai).

Medicean's dam, Street Style (by Rock of Gibraltar), was a winner on turf in Ireland at 1 3/16 miles and is a half-sister to Turkish Group 2 winner Lost in the Moment (12 furlongs) and American Grade 1 turf winner Luas Line (1 1/8 miles).

Panama Hat was purchased by Team Valor for $71,055 at the Goffs Orby Sale. After showing some signs of life with a runner-up effort in his second start at three, Panama Hat went on a remarkable run. After cheek-pieces were re-introduced to his equipment, Panama Hat reeled off five consecutive victories over a 59-day span. He prevailed at distances ranging from 10 to 12 furlongs over turf and all-weather surfaces.

Panama Hat concluded his very successful campaign with a runner-up effort in a 12-furlong handicap at the Curragh and there were high hopes for stakes success in 2015. Unfortunately for Panama Hat, he's been a bit of an in-and-outer this year. A fifth-place finish off the layoff against Group 3 foes on May 17 was followed by a second-place performance in the listed Saval Beg Stakes 22 days later. Hiked back up into Group 3 company, Panama Hat was last of six in the Curragh Cup at 14 furlongs.

Hayes decided to shake things up by replacing the cheek-pieces with proper blinkers and the result was almost disastrous. A 5 to 1 chance in the listed Lenebane Stakes, Panama Hat, expected to be on the lead, was sluggish at the back. It appeared he was going nowhere fast, but the lightbulb turned on late and he mowed down the leaders to win in the final hundred yards.

Panama Hat wore his usual cheek pieces in the American St. Leger, earned a respectable 101 Beyer Speed Figure and finished ahead of such solid grass performers as Grade 3-placed ROMAN APPROVAL, Grade 3 winners CRUCERO and XTRA LUCK, multiple stakes-winner AZ RIDGE, Grade 2 winner Hyper and multiple Grade 3-placed HIGHBALL.

Panama Hat is a moody sort. He threw a bit of a fit in the paddock before the American St. Leger and his quirks often interfere with his zeal for training. He can run a little bit, though, and it appears that he'll be sent back to Europe for a tilt in the Irish St. Leger at The Curragh. He's an interesting contender in that spot.

Last year, The Pizza Man scored the American St. Leger. Perhaps we'll see Panama Hat in the 2016 edition of the Arlington Million.

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Here are the WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from 8/11/15 - 8/17/15

1. THE PIZZA MAN - 103 - Arlington Million (G1) - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - 15Aug15-10AP
2. GRAND ARCH - 102 - Fourstardave Handicap (G2) - 1 Mile (Turf) - 15Aug15-10SAR
2. HIGHLAND REEL (IRE) - 102 - Secretariat Stakes (G1) - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - 15Aug15-8AP
2. LUCKY SPEED (IRE) - 102 - American St. Leger (G3) - 1 11/16 Miles (Turf) - 15Aug15-7AP
2. SPIRIT RULES - 102 - OC 80k/C -N - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 16Aug15-3DMR
6. STRYKER PHD - 99 - Longacres Mile Handicap (G3) - 1 Mile - 16Aug15-8EMD
7. JAKE N ELWOOD - 98 - OC 55k/C -N - 6 Furlongs - 17Aug15-8DEL
7. SCAT DADDYBABY - 98 - Alw 25200NC - 1 Mile - 16Aug15-10EMD
9. IVAN FALLUNOVALOT - 97 - David M. Vance Sprint Stakes - 6 Furlongs - 15Aug15-6RP
9. SMACK SMACK - 97 - Governor's Cup Stakes - 1 1/8 Miles - 15Aug15-8RP
11. BRIMSTONED - 96 - Alw 40000s - 1 Mile - 14Aug15-2DMR
11. CALGARY CAT - 96 - Ontario Jockey Club Stakes - 6 Furlongs (Polytrack) - 12Aug15-6WO
13. LUCY'S BOB BOY - 95 - Frank Gall Memorial Stakes - 7 Furlongs - 15Aug15-7CT
13. SENTIERO ITALIA - 95 - Lake Placid Stakes (G2) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 14Aug15-9SAR
13. SHARLA RAE - 95 - Del Mar Oaks (G1) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 15Aug15-8DMR
13. WATSDACHANCES - 95 - Beverly D. Stakes (G1) - 1 3/16 Miles (Turf) - 15Aug15-9AP
17. CURLIN'S FOX - 94 - Sandy Blue Handicap - 1 Mile (Turf) - 14Aug15-3DMR
17. FOR CASH - 94 - Westerner Handicap - 1 1/16 Miles - 15Aug15-8NP
17. INTERPOL - 94 - Sky Classic Stakes (G2-C) - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - 16Aug15-6WO
17. SPELLING AGAIN - 94 - OC 40k/N2X -N - 1 Mile - 12Aug15-2IND
17. WANSTEAD GARDENS - 94 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 3/8 Miles (Turf) - 14Aug15-7DMR
22. FRISKY WARRIOR - 93 - Alw 26263NC - 6 Furlongs - 15Aug15-7FL
22. ONUS - 93 - Alw 42000N1X - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 14Aug15-8LRL
22. WARRIOROFTHEROSES - 93 - OC 55k/C -N - 1 Mile - 11Aug15-6DEL
25. HOT STONES - 92 - Saratoga Dew Stakes  1 1/8 Miles - 17Aug15-9SAR
25. MELATONIN - 92 - OC 40k/N1X -N - 6 Furlongs - 15Aug15-9DMR
25. TURKISH - 92 - OC 80k/N3X -N - 1 1/8 Miles (Polytrack) - 14Aug15-8WO

*THE PIZZA MAN's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

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Dan
I'm having a discussion about great horses can you post the PPs of spectacular bid
Garyw

You can find his lifetime past performances at the bottom of this blog post.

***

Dan thank you for you blog I look forward to it every week. I do have a request, with the Canadian Derby and Blue Dance running this weekend reminds me of Let's Go Blue a Canadian Champ based at Woodbine and did really well in the Western Canada series. If you could post his PP's next week that would be awesome!
lgclowes

His lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

***

You can follow me on Twitter @DRF_DanIllman.

Remember to check out DRF LIVE's VIDEO handicapping coverage at live.drf.com. Matt Bernier and I will be on at 4pm ET Wednesday through Saturday to take you through the final few races at Saratoga.

***

Congrats to Ron B. for finishing first in the most recent HandiGambling tournament.

Rick M's scoresheet is available for perusal at the bottom of this blog post.

Let's go with Saturday's Pacific Classic at Del Mar 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 streamline all of the HG rules in order to make them an easier read for everyone...

With so many new people attending Dan's Formblog we thought it would be a good time to update the Handigambling Guidelines and Rules as we go forward in 2014.

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 if you could spare a sentence or two outlining your handicapping angles and thought processes about wagering, it would be appreciated.

HANDIGAMBLING:

Please start your post with  HG or HANDIGAMBLING to better recognize and find your entry.

-  You have a mythical $100 to wager in whatever format you choose and that is available for that HG race.
Anyone going over the $100 limit will be disqualified.

- Post your WAGER and ANALYSIS to the blog WITH YOUR NAME/OR MONIKER AT THE END OF THE 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 recognize you .

- (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.

- Separate your analysis from the wager and use the horses # in your wager. Just like you would do in a real wager. No horse names.

-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 2014
The speed in this race goes to  horses # 1, 4 ,6 ..Ennie , Meenie, and Mo
Since it's a sprint I don't see any closers catching them.. like # 9 Miney.
I think trainer Groucho with the #6 Mo has the best stats in this condition, route to sprint.. just a gut feeling at large odds ML 20-1

HG wager
50$ Ex box 1-6
total $100

Thanks Dan!

Harpo
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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
THE PIZZA MAN.pdf723.83 KB
Spectacular Bid.pdf67.29 KB
LET'S GO BLUE.pdf601.37 KB
Copy of Formblog Arlington Million 8-15-15.xls208.63 KB
HGPACCLASSIC.pdf193.31 KB