03/02/2017 6:10PM

Risen Star thoughts

Email
Last week's Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes featured a breakthrough performance by the lightly-raced GIRVIN and an extremely-disappointing effort from favored MO TOWN. 
 
Overall, I'm not sure the Risen Star was the strongest Kentucky Derby prep we've seen this year. 
 
Girvin has done nothing wrong in three starts for trainer Joe Sharp. He looked good winning his sprint debut, then missed some time due to minor foot problems. Sharp wanted to run Girvin in the Lecomte Stakes, the first step on the Louisiana Road to the Kentucky Derby, but the colt was stuck at the Evangeline Downs Training Center due to the equine herpesvirus quarantine at Fair Grounds.
 
Once that quarantine was lifted, Sharp was forced to run Girvin on turf in order to give his charge a two-turn test. Girvin ran just fine on the lawn, finishing second to the undefeated COWBOY CULTURE (one of the expected public choices in Saturday's Palm Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park). 
 
Brian Hernandez gave Girvin a lovely ride in the Risen Star. In midpack while saving ground, Hernandez waited patiently behind eventual runner-up UNTRAPPED entering the final turn. Once Untrapped's rider, Ricardo Santana, opted to rally outside a one-paced Mo Town, Hernandez shot the gap along the fence. Turning into the stretch, Girvin was in full flight. He eased outside tiring pacesetter LOCAL HERO, swapped leads back-and-forth once in front, and kept to his task to win by two lengths. He completed the 1 1/16-miles in 1:43.08 and received a 93 Beyer Speed Figure. 
 
Girvin has now won twice around two turns, but the jury is still out as to whether his pedigree will support racing at longer distances. He's a half-brother to Grade 3 winner Cocked and Loaded, a solid Grade 3 winner at 1 1/16 miles that has settled in as a better sprinter as he's aged. Girvin's second dam (by noted sprint influence Yes It's True), was a multiple stakes-winner sprinting in California for trainer Craig Dollase. 
 
Girvin's sire, Tale of Ekati, upset 2-year-old champion War Pass in the nine-furlong Wood Memorial, but his best moments as an older horse came at a one-turn mile (Jerome and Cigar Mile). Girvin will get his distance test in his next race, the Louisiana Derby on April 1.
 
Untrapped will not go to the Louisiana Derby. Instead, trainer Steve Asmussen has hinted at the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park on March 18 as Untrapped's next stop. He was a hair late to change leads in the Risen Star, but ran well enough and has been improving with each start. 
 
Of the Risen Star horses, I might give GUEST SUITE another look. He briefly followed Girvin on the final turn before easing out for the stretch drive, but was one-paced when it counted. He has the pedigree to do better as the distances increase. 
 
*I'll be at the FormBlog Convention at Gulfstream next week and am looking forward to seeing everyone again. No blog next week, but I'll return with the recap the following Thursday. 
 
Best of luck this weekend!
 
***
 
For free video analysis of some of the weekend's major stakes races, take a look at http://video.drf.com/
 
Also, Mike Beer, Matt Bernier and I will be on for free and fun handicapping analysis at 3pm ET on Saturday for DRF Live!. This week, we'll discuss Aqueduct, Gulfstream and Santa Anita. You can find us at live.drf.com.
 
You can check me out on Twitter @DRF_Dan Illman.
 
For up-to-date video releases from DRF, follow DRFTV on Twitter @DRFvideo.
 
***
 
Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from 2/22/17 to 2/28/17:
 
1. HOGY - 103 - Colonel Power Stakes - 5 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 25Feb17-5FG 
2. UNIFIED - 101 - Gulfstream Park Sprint (G3) - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 25Feb17-12GP 
3. BELIEVE IN BERTIE - 99 - Daisy Devine Stakes - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 25Feb17-7FG 
3. CANDY RUBY - 99 - OC c-40k/N2X - 6 Furlongs - 23Feb17-8OP 
5. AMBITIOUS BREW - 98 - Sensational Star Stakes - About 6 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 25Feb17-3SA 
6. DISTINCTIV PASSION - 96 - Clm 50000(50-45) - 6 Furlongs - 26Feb17-6SA 
6. NAUSET BEACH - 96 - OC 62k/N2X - 1 1/16 Miles - 22Feb17-10GP
6. SAWYER'S HILL - 96 - Clm 75000 - 1 Mile (Turf) - 26Feb17-7SA
9. BELLAMY WAY - 95 - Alw 65660N1X - 1 Mile 70 Yards (Inner Dirt) - 26Feb17-7AQU
9. IRON FIST - 95 - Maxxam Gold Cup - 1 1/8 Miles - 25Feb17-7HOU
9. REDESDALE - 95 - OC 40k/N2X -N - 6 Furlongs - 24Feb17-7FG 
12. ENTERPRISING - 94 - Fair Grounds Handicap (G3) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 25Feb17-10FG 
12. HONORABLE DUTY - 94 - Mineshaft Handicap (G3) - 1 1/16 Miles - 25Feb17-8FG 
12. VINCENTO - 94 - OC 40k/N2X -N - 1 1/16 Miles (Inner Dirt) - 25Feb17-3AQU
15. AVANTI BELLO - 93 - Tiznow Stakes - 1 Mile - 26Feb17-8SA 
15. GIRVIN - 93 - Risen Star Stakes (G2) - 1 1/16 Miles - 25Feb17-11FG 
15. WARD 'N JERRY - 93 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 1/4 Miles (Turf) - 25Feb17-6SA 
18. CANDY PROMISES - 92 - Alw 40000s - 5 1/2 Furlongs - 25Feb17-1SA
18. HIGHLAND SKY - 92 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 25Feb17-10GP 
18. RANGI (GB) - 92 - Clm 32000(32-28) - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 26Feb17-4SA 
21. COCKED AND LOADED - 91 - OC 40k/N3X -N - 6 Furlongs - 25Feb17-8LRL
21. CONQUEST KRONOS - 91 - Clm 40000N2L - 7 Furlongs - 28Feb17-6PRX
21. FAST FRIAR - 91 - OC 25k/N1X -N - 6 Furlongs - 23Feb17-3GP 
21. PRIME ATTRACTION - 91 - OC 40k/N1X -N - 1 1/16 Miles - 25Feb17-8SA 
21. SHARP ART - 91 - Alw 16000s - 6 Furlongs - 26Feb17-7OP 
 
*Hogy's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.
 
*Candy Ruby was claimed for $40,000 by trainer Jack Van Berg from Robertino Diodoro.
 
***
 
Congrats to Kenny G for winning the most recent HandiGambling challenge.
 
Rick M and SR VEGAS' HG scoreboard spreadsheet is available at the bottom of this blog post. 
 
Kenny G selected Saturday's Fountain of Youth Stakes from Gulfstream as 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
Copy of HG 2 25 17 Risen Star.xls50 KB
HOGY.pdf763.83 KB
HGFOY.pdf214.14 KB
HG 2 25 17 Risen Star notes.doc.doc16.73 KB