07/17/2013 4:12PM

Pletcher Baby #'s

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Upon downloading the past performances for Friday's Opening Day card at Saratoga, it wasn't surprising to see that Todd Pletcher trains the favored entry in the initial juvenile race of the meeting. 

We all know that Pletcher's Spa babies are potent, but his dominance of 2-year-old dirt racing at Saratoga has relegated some of the more well-known trainers to mere spectactor status as it pertains to those events. 

Let's take a look at some statistics courtest of DRF Formulator:

Past 5 Years - Saratoga - 2-year-old - First Time Starters - Maiden Special Weight - Dirt Sprints

T. Pletcher - 31-98, 32%, $2.57 ROI

T. Albertrani - 1-27, 4%, $1.63 ROI
G. Arnold - 0-10
T. Bush - 0-12
G. Contessa - 1-30, 3%, $1.18 ROI
E. Harty - 0-12
M. Hennig - 0-18
B. Levine - 0-18
D. Lukas - 1-32, 3%, $3.12 ROI
C. McGaughey - 0-20
K. McPeek - 0-17
W. Mott - 0-44
N. Zito - 1-51, 2%, $0.23 ROI

Such notables as Tony Dutrow, Michael Maker, Graham Motion and Wesley Ward have not sent out a debut winner from limited opportunities at Saratoga during that time span. 

Handicappers brave enough to oppose Pletcher with first-time starters in these races might depend on the following trainers:

S. Asmussen - 8-42, 19%, $1.75 ROI
C. Brown - 4-18, 22%, $2.26 ROI
J. Kimmel - 4-19 - 21%, $3.15 ROI
K. McLaughlin - 9-49, 18%, $1.60 ROI
L. Rice - 3-15, 20%, $1.87 ROI
D. Romans - 3-18, 17%, $3.34 ROI
B. Tagg - 2-12, 17%, $2.50 ROI
R. Violette - 5-19, 26%, $2.67 ROI

In juvenile maiden special weight dirt sprints relegated to statebreds, Pletcher is 6-13 (46%, $3.25 ROI).

Perhaps the time to take down a Pletcher juvenile firster is in maiden special weight turf routes.  In those races, he is "only" 6-37 (16%, $1.28 ROI).

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Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures (7/1/13 - 7/7/13):

1. GAME ON DUDE - 114 - Hollywood Gold Cup (G1) - 1 1/4 Miles (Cushion Track) - Betfair Hollywood
2. DELEGATION - 110 - Dominion Day Stakes (G3-C) - 1 1/4 Miles (Polytrack) - Woodbine
3. FLAT OUT - 107 - Suburban Handicap (G2) - 1 1/8 Miles - Belmont
4. BEN'S CAT - 103 - Parx Dash Handicap (G3) - 5 Furlongs (Turf) - Parx
4. EMILE - 103 - Clm 50000(50-40)N3X - 6 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Arlington
4. KING KREESA - 103 - Poker Stakes (G3) - 1 Mile (Turf) - Belmont
7. BAHAMIAN SQUALL - 101 - Smile Sprint Handicap (G2) - 6 Furlongs - Calder
7. RAINBOW HEIR - 101 - Jersey shore Stakes (G3) - 6 Furlongs - Monmouth
9. MORENO - 100 - Dwyer Stakes (G2) - 1 1/16 Miles - Belmont
9. WARREN'S KNOCKOUT - 100 - OC 40k/N1Y -N - 6 1/2 Furlongs - Lone Star
11. CHIEF HAVOC - 99 - Swaps Stakes (G2) - 1 1/8 Miles (Cushion Track) - Betfair Hollywood
11. PICKO'S PRIDE - 99 - Hockessin Stakes - 6 Furlongs - Delaware
11. TOM'S TRIBUTE - 99 - Md Sp Wt 52k - 7 Furlongs - Parx
14. COYOTE LEGEND - 98 - Assault Stakes - 1 Mile - Lone Star
14. GO BLUE OR GO HOME - 98 - Highlander Stakes (G3-C) - 6 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Woodbine
14. IMMORTAL EYES - 98 - Mr. Prospector Stakes - 6 Furlongs - Monmouth
14. MIDNIGHT ARIA - 98 - Queen's Plate - 1 1/4 Miles (Polytrack) - Woodbine
14. RAGING DAOUST - 98 - Salvator Mile (G3) - 1 Mile - Monmouth
19. ABRA - 97 - Clm c-15000B - 6 Furlongs - Belmont
19. GOLDEN ITIZ - 97 - OC c-62k/N2X - 1 1/16 Miles (Cushion Track) Betfair Hollywood
19. MENTOR CANE - 97 - Md Sp Wt 70k - 6 1/2 Furlongs - Belmont
19. MIAMI MAKO - 97 - Alw 16000s - 5 1/2 Furlongs - Parx
19. SCHIAPARELLI - 97 - Royal Heroine Mile (G2) - 1 Mile (Turf) - Betfair Hollywood
24. GLOBAL STAGE - 96 - OC 25k/C -N - 1 Mile 70 Yards - Prairie Meadows
24. LASTING BUBBLES - 96 - Valor Farm Stakes - 6 Furlongs - Lone Star
24. LONGHUNTER (GB) - 96 - OC20k/SAL20k - 6 Furlongs (Turf) - Belmont
24. OCCASIONAL VIEW - 96 - OC 62k/N3X -N - 6 Furlongs (Tapeta) - Presque Isle
24. SAINT LEON - 96 - Arlington Sprint Stakes - 5 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - Arlington
24. STARSHIP TRUFFLES - 96 - Princess Rooney Handicap (G1) - 6 Furlongs - Calder
24. SUNBEAN - 96 - Louisiana Legends Mile Colts and Geldings Stakes - 1 Mile - Evangeline

*GAME ON DUDE's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

*ABRA was claimed for $15,000 by trainer Linda Rice from David Jacobson.

*GOLDEN ITIZ was claimed for $62,500 by trainer John Sadler from Ron Ellis.

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Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures (7/8/13 - 7/14/13):

1. BLUE TONE - 102 - Md Sp Wt 52k - 1 1/16 Miles (Cushion Track) - Betfair Hollywood
2. ADIRONDACK DANCER - 101 - OC 35k/N2X -N - 1 Mile (Turf) - Belmont
2. GRANDE SHORES - 101 - OC32k/SAL25k - 6 Furlongs - Calder
4. WORK ALL WEEK - 99 - OC 40k/N2X -N - 6 1/2 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Arlington
5. MEGALITH - 98 - OC32k/SAL25k - 6 Furlongs - Gulfstream
5. MARKETING MIX - 98 - Sunset Handicap (G3) - 1 1/2 Miles (Turf) - Betfair Hollywood
7. BOISTEROUS - 97 - Man O' War Stakes (G1) - 1 3/8 Miles (Turf) - Belmont
7. BOOK REVIEW - 97 - A Gleam Handicap (G2) - 7 Furlongs (Cushion Track) - Betfair Hollywood
7. FERSMILEY - 97 - OC 40k/N3X -N - 6 Furlongs - Parx
10. DARK COVE - 95 - Stars N Stripes Stakes (G3) - 1 1/2 Miles (Turf) - Arlington
10. WAR DANCER - 95 - Virginia Derby (G2) - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - Colonial
12. AUSUS - 94 - Modesty Handicap (G3) - 1 3/16 Miles (Turf) - Arlington
13. DREAMING OF SOPHIA - 93 - Cellars Shiraz Stakes - 1 1/16 Miles - Gulfstream
13. PONZI SCHEME - 93 - Stymie Stakes - 1 1/16 Miles - Delaware
13. RELAY BILL - 93 - OC 25k/N2X -N - 1 Mile (Turf) - Parx
13. RAHYSTRADA - 93 - Arlington Handicap (G3) - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - Arlington
17. COP A TUDE - 92 - OC 25k/N2X -N - 6 Furlongs - Penn National
17. FORDUBAI - 92 - OC 40k/N2X -N - 1 Mile (Polytrack) - Arlington
17. JUSTA RUNNER - 92 - Md Sp Wt 56k - 6 Furlongs (Cushion Track) - Betfair Hollywood
17. LUCKY RAVE (GB) - 92 - Clm 25000 - 1 Mile (Turf) - Indiana
17. LUNARWARFAORE - 92 - Md Sp Wt 44k - 4 1/2 Furlongs - Gulfstream
22. CAMEO APPEARANCE - 91 - Alw 39546N1X - 6 1/2 Furlongs (Polytrack) - Arlington
22. KHARAFA - 91 - Alw 77000N1X - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - Belmont
22. RIDE ON CURLIN - 91 - Md Sp Wt 29k - 5 1/2 Furlongs - Ellis
22. ROADHOG - 91 - Leemat Stakes - 1 Mile (Tapeta) - Presque Isle

*BLUE TONE's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

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*When you get the chance, you're definitely going to want to check out "RACEHORSE," the latest production from Jessica Pacheco, racing analyst at Arlington Park.  You can find "RACEHORSE" at the following links:

Episode 4 of RACEHORSE -

Like Owner, like horse; doctor visits for both Givenchi and owner/trainer Al Ali. Then we go from barn to farm to answer the two questions on everybody's mind: "What happened to Taxi?" and "Where is he?"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wOlnZ-c6uFI

http://www.arlingtonpark.com/newsvideosblogs/racehorse-video-series

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Dan
In Formulator, when I click on a trainer's name and get to their profile, the horses that have raced for that trainer come up in alphabetical order. Is their a way I can change that to chronological order so that I can see hot and cold streaks?
Thanks
Ron Zuercher

Ron, once you are in the trainer profile, click on the "DATE" column.  You will get a chronological view of the statistics.

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Dan with the Grand Old Lady opening in 11 days, can you provide the PP's for many fans two favorite horse for the courses, Quick Call and Fourstardave? Thanks...
Joe Labunski

The past performances for FOURSTARDAVE and QUICK CALL are available at the bottom of this blog post.

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Dan,
Now that I have calmed down a little (courtesy of cheering home my 5th and 6th winners from 7 races at Haydock), can I ask a more serious question?
Do you think that the Miler versus Classic distance horses question is a subject worthy of your excellent analytical mind (yes, I can flatter with the best of them). I am not trying to put words in your mouth, you may well agree that Milers cannot be rated as equal, but I would nonetheless enjoy reading your thoughts.
Best Regards - Bernard Downes

I think it's rather narrow-minded to simply claim a horse is great, or greater, ONLY if he or she succeeded at Classic distances.  To deny Goldikova her due because she wasn't a "Classic" horse seems a bit silly to me.  There are great sprinters, great milers, great classic performers, great turf horses, etc. 
The way to decide which "great" horse is best is on the racetrack.  Thus, it seems fruitless to debate the merits of Kelso vs. Secretariat, or other superstars from different eras. 

Not that the world's number one Kelso supporter doesn't call me every week to complain about "those damn Secretariat fans". 

And it is impossible to compare the great turf sprinter Black Caviar with Zenyatta.  An objective observer would watch both horses compete and come away with the feeling that something special occurred.  Who was better?  I have no idea.  They both were great horses.  Should Black Caviar be penalized for not shipping to the United States, stretching out to 1 1/4 miles, and racing on dirt?  Of course not.  That wasn't her game. These are arguments that are fun to have, on occasion, but can never be won.

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The weekend handicapping videos should be up on the homepage later this week.

You can follow me on Twitter @DRF_DanIllman

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Congrats to Mike from Michigan for finishing first in last week's HandiGambling exercise.

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

Mike from Michigan selected Saturday's Delaware Handicap as this week's race, but it's a short field with a couple of cross-entries so I went with Friday's James Marvin Stakes at Saratoga instead.

PAST PERFORMANCES ARE AVAILABLE AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS BLOG POST.

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.

***FROM SCOREKEEPER PENN NATIONAL RICK***

I read some entries on here and there are some people who put their heart out on their picks(such as DavidM9999) and give you great analysis on who they like and why and then there are others who elect not to give any reasoning behind their entries. The rule I will implement EFFECTIVE 3/1/13 will be... any entry without ANY analysis will be ignored. We are not asking you to put out a novel, but again a sentence or two. Also, I will put communication out when Dan puts out new blogs.
My intent is not to be jerk on this, but what's fair is fair. I'm not taking away from this week or past winners regarding all of this, but we do need to make the change.
If you have any questions/concerns...please send an email to FORMBLOG@DRF.COM and it will get forwarded to me.
Thank You!
Rick

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 LATE THAN THE FOLLOWING WEDNESDAY MORNING (A FRIDAY RACE IS MOST IDEAL).

Best of luck to all.

AttachmentSize
GAME ON DUDE.pdf69.18 KB
BLUE TONE.pdf614.18 KB
Spa-lovers.pdf92.56 KB
Copy of Formblog Ellis Park 7-5-13.xls67 KB
HGSPA.pdf163.54 KB