01/04/2010 6:13PM

Quality Road, 3yos, Top 10F Beyers


Quality Road returned to the site of his greatest success with a win in the Grade 3 Hal's Hope Stakes at Gulfstream on Sunday. 

Unseen since being scratched at the gate before the Breeders' Cup Classic, Quality Road immediately assumed the lead while racing well off the rail.  Last year's Florida Derby winner faced a strong rail challenge from You and I Forever on the turn, but asserted his class in upper stretch, and wasn't really threatened to the wire.  The early fractions look slow on paper (25.15, 48.13), but handicappers should be warned that there is virtually no run-up to the timer in one-mile dirt races at Gulfstream Park.  The opening quarter in races like these often looks glacial and the second quarter time is usually much faster than the first stanza.   

Assuming he stays healthy and sound, Quality Road appears headed for the Grade 1 Donn Handicap at Gulfstream on February 6. 


A three-year-old to watch may be Tahitian Warrior, who blazed six furlongs in 1:09.96 in his career debut at Gulfstream on Sunday.  A $50,000 RNA at last year's Keeneland September Yearling sale, Tahitian Warrior was a $4,500 RNA a month later at Fasig-Tipton.  He's by Maria's Mon out of a half-sister to Fantastic Fellow, a multiple Grade 3 winner on grass.  There is a lot of turf and class in this pedigree so don't be surprised if Tahitian Warrior sees stakes action very soon. 


Bob Baffert sent out three juvenile winners during the final week of 2009.  Tiny Woods, the beaten favorite in the Grade 2 Saratoga Special, returned to winning form with a gate-to-wire score going six furlongs over the Pro-Ride surface at Santa Anita.  A $180,000 yearling purchase, Tiny Woods is by Roman Ruler out of a half-sister to multiple Grade 1 winner Toccet. 

Tiny Woods received a 90 Beyer, 10 points higher than the much-hyped Take Control, a son of A.P. Indy and Azeri that was bought back for $7.7M as a yearling.  Take Control finally found an owner for $1.9M at the Keeneland April auction.  While Take Control's Beyer is nothing to sneeze at, he did have to win his debut around two turns, and had some trouble during the race.  He seems to have more upside than Tiny Woods. 

Macias won the Eddie Logan Stakes on grass for Baffert and may be better-suited to turf.

Tiny Woods 
Tiny Woods may be a promising sprinter.
(Benoit Photo)

Take Control 
Beautifully-bred Take Control ran by 'em all in his career debut.
(Benoit Photo)

Other three-year-old winners to watch:

Brake Lights is a $220,000 weanling by Saint Liam out of four-time Grade 2 winner Miss Golden Circle. Trained by Kiaran McLaughlin,  Brake Lights finished fifth behind the promising Afleet Express in his career debut going six furlongs in the mud over the Aqueduct inner track on December 5.  On Saturday, in his first race around two turns, Brake Lights won by 9 1/2 lengths with an 87 Beyer.

What's New, a half-brother to Grade 3-placed turf sprinter Due Date out of Grade 3 sprint winner Hidden Assets, made a successful debut for the red-hot Steve Margolis barn at the Fair Grounds on Sunday.  Margolis is now 12-34 (35%) at the current meeting.  A Dixie Union colt, What's New earned a 78 Beyer.

Margolis also sent out Stay Put to his second two-turn win of the meet.  A half to Grade 3 winner Could Be, Stay Put received an 81 Beyer for his entry-level allowance win and the son of Broken Vow might be headed for the Risen Star Stakes on February 20.   

Stormy's Majesty, a New York-bred son of Stormy Atlantic, upped his record to 2-2 after an entry-level allowance win versus fellow statebreds at 1 mile and 70 yards over the Aqueduct inner track.  Stormy's Majesty is the first runner out of Raffie's Dream, a stakes-placed New York-bred at nine furlongs on the grass.  Stormy's Majesty received an 82 Beyer.

Laus Deo, a $140,000 yearling by Medaglia d'Oro, upset heavily-favored Ibboyee in Saturday's Count Fleet at Aqueduct.  Trained by Tony Dutrow, Laus Deo is out of Shebane, an Alysheba mare that placed in the Waya Stakes at 1 1/2 miles on turf. 
"I think it's pretty obvious he's still learning," said Dutrow.  "He got away on the lead without anyone contesting him and that was a big break.  He was able to set very easy fractions."
Laus Deo earned a 78 Beyer.

Fly by Phil made it three in a row by winning his turf debut in the Grade 3 Tropical Park Derby at Calder over heavily-favored Lost Aptitude.  A gelded son of Act of Duty, Fly by Phil is from the female family of Afternoon Deelites, and earned a 90 Beyer for trainer Kathleen O'Connell.

Here are the lastest Kentucky Derby Futures odds from Lucky's:

Download DerbyFutures


Here are the lifetime past performances for this week's highest Beyer earner:

Download Quality Road


Nice longshot pick in Sat. Minaret Stakes at Tampa:  Rate of Exchange, 12-1, beaten a neck.
After the race, I was able to find the chinks in my out of the money pick, but I was unable to upgrade your pick very much.  Any insights?
Ron Zuercher

This is such a wonderfully frustrating game.  In a sixteenth of a mile, I went from genius to dummy.  Rate of Exchange had three on the field and looked to be home free, but Perf ran her down in the shadow of the wire. 
I didn't think I was being very clever with Rate of Exchange.  Her last two Beyer Speed Figures were faster than the last-out Beyers earned by all of her competition, she drew a good outside post and projected for a nice stalking trip, and she's trained by high-percentage conditioner Martin Wolfson.  Two starts back, she wasn't disgraced against males, and she was nipped by a sharp next-out winner in her most recent race at Calder.  I was shocked that she was 8-1 on the morning line and delighted that she went off at 12-1.  Delighted, that is, until the last few jumps.


Today I am looking for a few fantastic fillies...Yank's Music and Christmas Past.  Your help with these past performances is such an awesome resource, I think I speak for everyone when I say thank you! 

Here they are:

Download YanksMusic

Download Christmas Past


I know it's ancient history at this point, but all the recent lists of BSFs got me wondering about how the dust finally settled around Curlin's Dubai WC win.  What did the final time end up being?  And was a BSF recalculated?  I seem to remember that it was approximated in the 121-124 range originally.

Beyer Speed Figures aren't calculated for foreign races.  Curlin received a 131+ Racing Post Rating for his win in the 2008 Dubai World Cup, but comparing RPR's to Beyers is like comparing apples to oranges.  Beyers are strictly speed figures while RPR's use time as only one of many different factors.
Curlin's winning final time of the World Cup was 2:00.15.


I was wondering if you get me the chart for a specific maiden race from 2004. The problem is that all i know about the race is that:
a) it was at Del Mar,
b) it was an open two-year old race (not a cal-bred race)
c) The horse LITTLEBITOFZIP ran 11th (i think)
d) WHO'S ALEYNA was in the race, but did not win.
I kept the chart of this race, as it turned out to be a very productive race. I believe there were a few stakes winners and at least one multiple graded stakes winner. I misplaced the chart and would love to have another copy of it. If you can dig this up, i would really appreciate it.

Here's the only time they faced off at Del Mar in 2004.  I've also included a chart from Hollywood in which they raced against each other:

Download DelMarchart

Download Hollywood


Could  you  please  post  Ruffian's  PPs. We  are  trying  to  see  who  were  the  horses that  she  left  in  her  wake.
C. Warner

Here they are:

Download Ruffian


Dan, any way we can get the top beyers ever ran at the classic distance of 1 and 1/4 miles?
Captain Bodgit

1.  Ghostzapper - 124 (Breeders' Cup Classic, 2004)
2.  Aptitude - 123 (Jockey Club Gold Cup, 2001)
2.  Best Pal - 123 (Santa Anita Handicap, 1992)
2.  Candy Ride - 123 (Pacific Classic, 2003)
5.  Gentlemen - 121 (Pacific Classic, 1997)
5.  Gentlemen (2) - 121 (Hollywood Gold Cup, 1997)
7.  Siphon - 120 (Santa Anita Handicap, 1997)
7.  Sea Cadet - 120 (Gulfstream Park Handicap, 1992)
7.  Skip Away - 120 (Breeders' Cup Classic, 1997)
7.  Lava Man - 120 (Hollywood Gold Cup, 2005)
11. Albert the Great - 119 (Suburban Handicap, 2001)
11. Free House - 119 (Santa Anita Handicap, 1999)
11. Best Pal (2) - 119 (Strub Stakes, 119)
11. Albert the Great (2) - 119 (Jockey Club Gold Cup, 2000)
11. Skimming - 119 (Pacific Classic, 2001)
11. Pleasantly Perfect - 119 (Breeders' Cup Classic, 2003)
11. Curlin - 119 (Breeders' Cup Classic, 2007)
11. General Challenge - 119 (Pacific Classic, 1999)
11. Roses in May - 119 (Breeders' Cup Classic, 2004)
20. Mt. Sassafras - 118 (Gulfstream Park Handicap, 1997)
20. Cigar - 118 (Hollywood Gold Cup, 1995)
20. Milwaukee Brew - 118 (Santa Anita Handicap, 2002)
20. Skip Away (2) - 118 (Suburban Handicap, 1997)
20. Cat Thief - 118 (Breeders' Cup Classic, 1999)
20. Silver Charm - 118 (Santa Anita Handicap, 1999)
20. Event of the Year - 118 (Santa Anita Handicap, 1999)
20. Reign Road - 118 (Strub Stakes, 1992)
20. Silvano - 118 (Arlington Million, 2001)
20. Medaglia d'Oro (Pacific Classic, 2003)
20. Skimming (2) - 118 (Pacific Classic, 2000)


Is the DRF still giving the PPs to the winner of the weekly HG?

You probably didn't get my e-mail on December 21.  I added your prize to your drf account earlier this morning.  If you're having problems logging in, please e-mail me.  Enjoy!


HG 166
#4: like pace/speed combo
#3: best longshot
#2: turnback angle
#1: King Bo Bo should still be running late...
$20 Exacta: 4-3
$10 Exacta: 3-4
$20 Exacta: 4 // 1,2
$5 Tri: 3,4 // 3,4 // 1,2
$5 Tri: 4 // 1,2 // 3
Let's light up board with winners... great year & great fun with HGers every week!
Big thanks to Dan & DRF for hosting this each week!!!
Race selection for Wednesday's HandiGambling 167:
Delta Downs
Race 4
Post Time: 7:15 PM CST
1 mile Dirt
OC 30k/N3X
4YO & Up
Interesting mix in an open optional claimer/NW3x. And, you can watch for free at
If you ever get an opportunity, you should visit the Vinton oval.  I missed Delta Jackpot for first time in four years due to snow this season!
Happy HandiGambling All!
Best Regards, dylbert

Congrats to dylbert for finishing first in last week's HandiGambling exercise.  Here are the past performances for this week's race:

Download HG167

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.  In the event of a tie, the earliest post gets first preference. 

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.

BigTimer More than 1 year ago
Nice to hear so much buzz about UTCB. Let's get lucky!
vicstu More than 1 year ago
Laura, One of the initial prompters for my comments on Pollard's Vision came from this notice at Bloodhorse.com in December 2009: "Pollard's Vision Stud Fee Doubles" Pollard's Vision , who ranks third on the first-crop sire’s list, will stand in 2010 for $10,000, up from $5,000 in 2009. He stands at the Greely brothers' Wintergreen Stallion Station near Midway, Ky. Wintergreen Stallion Station will keep Five Star Day ’s fee at $5,000 and has reduced fees for Borrego ($10,000 from $12,500) and Elite Squadron ($5,000 from $7,500)." And, of course, Pollard's Vision, like many sons of Carson City, is becoming very popular...Hear No Evil sires top 2 year old Jackson Bend and there is a Carson City son named Islam in South America who has sired the Group 1 Peruvian 2000 Gunieas winner this year... Here is a good post from Jerk Werk about Pollard Vision and Carson City in general: http://werk2.werkhorse.com/wordpress/index.php/2009/12/27/pollards-vision-is-becoming-reality/ The common demoninator here in all of these cases is Carson City. While I have no doubt that some of his sons have thrown runners that have been bred to some mares with stout sires or lines (like Jackson Bend, for instance, from SNE). However, there is something in this line that is getting runners that perform well over 1 mile, and that win more often than other runners sired by more expensive sires. That is why, IMO, in a time where most sires are watching their fees reduced for 2010, Pollard's Vision's fee doubled, they are talking of raising Hear No Evil by $1k, and many of Carson City's other sons are doing just fine right now, thank you. It's still early yet, but these sons of Carson City are throwing winners and some stone cold runners. Blind Luck has won two Gr 1s by open distances and is the only 2 year old filly in the country to do that. On another note, I am inclined to agree with you about Uptowncharlybrown being questionable over 9f on pedigree alone...but Limehouse is still yet a developing and unfinished product at sire (just below Pollard's Vision a few notches in top 1st year sires). And I too noticed Langfuhr and proud spell (as damsire)... Its early yet, but Uptowncharlybrown may be a freak...he is already freakishly big and has an enormous stride. Capt. B, I would agree with your thesis about 6f for Derby prospects at this juncture assuming they have run a few races. A late charge like Charlybrown, who HAS showed speed at times in training, is a perfect fit to to start between 6 and 7 furlongs and then stretch that speed out. It has more to do with speed and running style. Even Curlin broke his maiden at 7 furlongs and not a mile or over...If you have been running for 3 or 4 races, and you appear to be a Derby prospect, there is no reason IMO to stay at 6 or 7 furlongs...it makes no sense from a training standpoint. Just my opinion.
Annie More than 1 year ago
HG 167: I've come up with four horses that I like best, so will try my 4 horse super again. #1 - VALID STRIPES - This horse is the biggest earner per start. He is making his second start off a layoff for a trainer who has been successful at this. This is his first try out of stakes races since breaking his MD. #2 - HEADSTART - This horse likes Delta Downs, having won 3 of 4 starts here. He is coming in off an 8 month layoff, so I don't expect him to win, but could close into my super. It is Asmussen, after all. #4 - TAKIN' THE BULLET - I like this horse alot. Not only is he a PGH :), he has run decently against Star Guitar, who seems to be one of LA best. I like the fact (that Keith L mentioned) that he is running for that extra LA slots money, being one of only two LA-Breds in here. Has high percentage trainer and Simington chose him over a couple of others in here. Looks well-meant. #10 - SOUTHERN VINTAGE - Highest last race Beyer (89) and gets the top jock (24%). Has a new trainer, who has good stats 1st time with trainer. Is a sprinter stretching out to a mile, but he has won at the 7F long sprint distance. In the money in 9 of 11 starts and is 2 for 2 at Delta. Don't like the no works since last raced, but owner has a ranch so maybe he was working there. Could be in the mix. $4 Super box 1,2,4,10 = $96 $4 Win #4 Good luck everyone! Annie
tencentcielo More than 1 year ago
Off to see my MKB horse in person....in 75 degree weather....in shorts. :-P Haven't actually handicapped, so i doubt i will be betting.(Though i do like #4 ROMP in the 7th for a nice place bet in the only other race i looked at today.) tencentcielo
blackstone More than 1 year ago
Keith L Candy Store-you probably know that it has run once-back in april at Santa Anita (ran poorly)-at that time it was trained by Tim Yakteen. I couldn't get in his website, plus received a virus warning. I'll look elsewhere. (Dan may have lots of info as well)
blackstone More than 1 year ago
Keith L I'll try on Candy Store S R Vegas-what a rat you are. But I hope that wasn't just breezing-maybe it was super breezing. Back in the day, I could run a 1:16 and change. (well, if I was going downhill, and had a little help from my VW). You must have old Ricky Tick on your Watch List?
chicago gerry More than 1 year ago
HG 167 The Delta track seems to be Ok for runners stretching out. Southern Vintage stretching out from 7F, much the same as Rule, I beleive. I was looking at the works of Asmussen's, Headstart. I was thinking that the 9/24, 5/33, and 5/53 was probably better than Asmussen usually works his runners. I would not be surprised if Headstart ran well in here, and in fact am expecting it.
p ensign More than 1 year ago
"I have a problem with a trainer "trying to get his or her horses to perform better through science" if that includes inducing a horse with something to mask the pain or discomfort the animal is feeling (which I believe is the idea w/ cobra venom). I think that is one of the reasons for the breakdowns we see." Agreed, and that was a skilled cut and paste job - please believe I in no way endorse any sort of cruelty to animals (I would wager that I'm one of few true vegetarians, [20 years +], who frequents the blueblog), was merely making the point that there is certainly the possibility that a lot of cheating does occur in the game, and when someone is cheating to win, well, somehow, somewhere inside, I find it to be eons less repugnant than cheating to lose... again, jmho.
SpartanTom More than 1 year ago
SR Next time you happen to amble into a Sports Book in LV, see if you can get future odds for the following horses: UptownCharlyBrown,Schoolyard Dreams,Silver Craft. I have searched Lucky's and Wynn's to no avail. Thank you in advance. Annie and knm: As stated in the words to an old Coasters hit, "He's a clown, that Charlie Brown, he's gonna get caught just you wait and see, why is everybody always pickin on me." :) Annie As soon as I find out about Travers, I will post the most recent odds on the MKB horses.
Van Savant More than 1 year ago
HandiGambling 167 I played Delta Downs for many months back in 2007 and 2008, and used to have good results from this track, but then my simulcast facility stopped carrying the track last year. I have continued to follow and even handicap races from this track, so I don’t feel too uncomfortable here. This, however, is a pretty tough race. HEADSTART (#2) is my top choice here due to his success at this track and at this distance. He also has very strong trainer connections. He is working nicely, and should have a solid pace to close into. TAKIN’ THE BULLET (#4) owns a win at this track and at this distance, and he showed some strong speed in that race back in October. He could go all the way here. HAWK’S TUNNEL (#9), SOUTHERN VINTAGE (#10), FIRST REPENT (#5), and SENOR GOLD (#7) all warrant a look underneath my top two. My play is as follows: $4 Exacta – 2,4w/2,4,5,7,9,10 ($40) .$50 Trifecta – 2,4w/2,4,5,7,9,10w/2,4,5,7,9,10 ($20) .$30 Superfecta – 2,4w/2,4,5,7,9,10w/2,4,5,7,9,10w/2,4,5,7,9,10 ($36) $4 to Win on the 9 ($4) That’s $100. Thanks Dan.