06/09/2010 11:50AM

The Post-Belmont Carryover


12:45 pm: Off-the-turf alert! Today's 9th race at Belmont, last leg of the pick-6 that begins with a $930k carryover from Belmont Stakes Day, has been taken off the grass. Four late scratches so far: Casa Di Vino (#2), Z Cats Meow (#7), Justinline (#8) and Ghoul (#10). It's just starting to sprinkle a bit now, but more rain is expected as the afternoon wears on.

The other scratches in the sequence: Augusta Dude (#8) and main-track-only Maxahme (#9) in race 4; Mariah Scary (#2) in the 5th; and the three main-track-onlies in the 6th (#1a-Spenserific, #2b-Dirt Track Demon and #12-Centripital).  That leaves us with fields of 7, 6, 11, 9, 5 and 8 -- a mere 166,320 possible combos if you want to buy the thing and hope if pays more than $332, 640 after taxes.

I'll take the under on that one. It's a head-splitter with enough turf sprints and dismal lineups that anything can happen, but most of the races have pretty clear distinctions between the contenders and the hopeless. I've still got some ciphering to do, especially on the resurfaced finale.

The sequence is scheduled to begin at 2:36 p.m. but I wouldn't be surprised if they accelerated the card thereafter to beat the rain.

1:27 pm: The acceleration has been accelerated: Post time for the 4th has been moved up to 2:22 p.m., so get those tickets in.

2:15 pm: Seven minutes to post. Here's the matrix:


Taking the 9th off the turf simplified things for me (I hope). My strongest lean of the day is now in that spot, where Aquit looks like a stickout to me on the dirt. My other lone-A race is the opener, where I prefer Montana Knight to co-favored Macho Joe in what's being bet as a two-horse race. Given that both favorites are questionable droppers coming off losses as favorites, I also wanted solid coverage with the best of those who have been running solidly at this level, so I also made Scorper (currently 8-1) a B.

2:21 pm: Just heard an announcement over the public-address system: "Trainer Will Phipps, trainer Will Phipps, please go to the racing office." Hmmm, Will Phipps trains Aquit, the horse I just leaned all over in the finale. Sure hope it's a coincidence and not an impending late scratch. [Update: As commenters FrankEIU and Larry just pointed out, I got confused -- Phipps trains my lone "B," Night Spirit, not Aquit, who is trained by Seth Benzel. If I get that far, I'd sure rather have both of them than late-scratching into Aquit for a second time. I still wish someone would look into that system they reportedly have in Hong Kong, where if you've already got the favorite on your multirace ticket, you scratch into the next-lowest-priced horse you don't have instead of doubling up on the post-time favorite.] 

2:28 pm: Macho Joe(8-5) beat Montana Knight(3-2) by about three lengths with Scorper third over a clearly still-hard Widener course -- six furlongs in 1:08.44 for these maiden claimers. Farewell my C's -- it's all A's and B's the rest of the way. Macho Joe is trained by Bill Mott, who started this whole mess by sending out Drosselmeyer to win the Belmont in the last leg of Saturday's pick-6.

2:45 pm: Today's pick-6 handle was about $3.3 million, 26 percent of which goes to takeout. Of the remaining 2.4 million, 75 percent gets added to the $930k carryover with 25 percent allocated for consolations whether or not the thing is hit. So we're playing for around $2.7 million in 6-of-6 payouts and $600k in consos.

2:55 pm: I'm not playing for the $2.7 million anymore and I suspect I have plenty of company. In a six-horse field, I used four of them and the other two just ran 1-2, with 21-1 Landlash nailing 18-1 Kaffiend at the wire. $2.7 million triple-carryover?

4:18 pm: Six of the eight in the finale are covered:

No offense to anyone who's alive, but...Let's go Auric Girl and Posey Park!

4:31 pm: Small point, but: NYRA and other tracks really need to fix the willpay programs for the pick-6, which assume that the morning-line favorite on the track program is going to be the post-time favorite. Today, for example, the four scratched horses in the finale have a pick-6 willpay posted of $306,964 only because that is the willpay to Pea Stone, the ML favorite before the race was taken off the grass. It's pretty clear that Aquit will be the post-time favorite, not Pea Stone. I doubt any of those posted payoffs to the four scratched horses are real instead of hypothetical (there are people alive who put in tickets before those horses were scratched out of the tote system shortly after noon?), but one of these days such a person is going to think he's won $300k when a Pea Stone wins when in fact his bet was transferred to Aquit. It would be better to post "Scratched" and no payoff than to make a customer think he will win $306,964 if Pea Stone wins when in reality he'd only get a consolation.

4:46 pm: Night Spirit over Aquit in a romp, and five winners at $552,535 apiece. Nice going, you five. As for me, I got four of those $884 consos from the cavemannish all-A's-and-B's ticket that accounted for $2880 of my $3420 investment. So that's $3420 in and $3536 out, a $116 profit that amounts to a $2.06 for $2 payoff. Woohoo.