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Saratoga Day 15: August 4, 2013
11:30 am: Fast, firm, sunny and mild for Day 15, which features the G1 Vanderbilt, a $127k pick-six carryover, and a bunch of short fields during the first half of the card.
The carryover sequence is a tough one and I'm considering passing. No fooling. I've got a bunch of horses open to win almost every leg and no strong preferences among them. Perhaps going through them again on Talking Horses in 20 minutes will bring everything into sharp focus. Perhaps not.
I'm a Delaunay fan, and plan to lean on him in the Vanderbilt, but I'm surprised to see how many good handicappers are trying to beat him. I thought he had a totally legit excuse for losing his last at 3-to-10 but there's a school of thought he's over the top and declining.
Races 2 through 5 have a total of just 22 horses after scratches.
Here are my pre-scractch Talking Horses picks:
1) 7-2-4-8; 2) 5-3-7-6; 3) 2-4-1-6; 4) 3-6-4-5; 5) 2-5-3-1; 6) 9-8-2-3; 7) 1-5-7-10; 8) 9-5-8-3; 9) 3-5-2-4; 10) 8-3-5-1; 11) 1-7-4-5-8
1:20 pm: It just doesn't seem to matter whether or not money shows up for Chad Brown's turf firsters. In the opener today, 11-1 Calm Pacific ran like a good thing with a sharp late move into slow fractions to win going away at $25.00. The 3-year-old bay ridgling by Stormy Atlantic is an Amerman Racing homebred.
Back to yesterday for a moment: it turns out that a medium-sized bag of Cheez Waffies does not, in fact, obviate the need for lunch, despite the bag's preposterous claim that it contains seven "servings" of the fluorescent orange treat. So amid one of the lulls in the lengthy program, I visited the Virginia's Authentic Homemade Cuisine food truck, located between the Mac 'N' Cheese truck and the chair-rental booth outide the Carousel.
The four offerings were chicken, cheesesteak or prosciutto di parma 12-inch heroes (at $10.95 each) or a full rack of barbequed ribs for $12.95. I went for the cheesesteak and it was okay: Perfectly good ingredients but, given that it was handed to me within seconds of placing the order, already wrapped, I wasn't shocked that it was lukewarm and the cheese was no longer fully melted. They do get extra points for doing something I wish every food stand here would: Everything is served in a little to-go plastic bag so you don't have to balance a plate precariously while heading back to your seat.
1:35 pm: Speaking of Chad Brown firsters on the turf at any price, 6-1 La Reine Bourbon, $100k 2-year-old Leroidesanimaux filly, ran down favored second-timers 7-5 Ketel Twist and 2-1 Acquant to win the second. Chad-Chad double came back $154.50.
2:05 pm: Road Agent ($3.10) got through at rail on turn, opened daylight, still life and death to hold off a plucky Meet the Mets to win the 3rd.
Significant pick-6 scratch just announced: Wee Freudian (#9) now out of the first leg, race 6.
2:40 pm: Majestic Hussar ($4.90), unraced since finishing fourth as pacesetter in Orb's Fountain of Youth, outdueled 8-5 COnsortium through half in 44.78, drew off nicely in 1:09.41 to win 4th. Consortium, Carter pacesetter, stopped badly in stretch to finish last, collapsed suddenly past finish line, but got up within a minute and walked off as if uninjured.
3:10 pm: Enquette, Wertheimer homebred by Indian Charlie, probably not among Pletcher's top 10 2-year-olds but good enough to beat four other firsters in five-horse Race 5 in 1:12.04 for 6f.
Okay, okay, you twisted my arm. I'll play:
Public finding first leg as tough as I did: Six of the nine horses opened at 4-1, 9-2 or 5-1.
3:40 pm: Ugh. I think Bake Shop was best, breaking behind field and rallying for second, just short of catching 5-1 loose-on-lead Bug Juice.
4:25 pm: Still on temporary life support after Funny Money ($10.00) held off Satin Sheeks to win the 7th and give Chad Brown his third of the day. NYRA graphics went down when TV truck hit by power surge during race, odds and payoffs not posted for next 15 minutes but just came back up.
5:20 pm: Delaunay and Gentlemen's Bet renewed their rivalry with a vengeance in the early going of the Vanderbilt, dueling each other into submission through a half in 44.26 and paving the way for Justin Phillip ($8.30) to sweep to a two-length victory in 1:08.59. Bahamian Squall was up for second, with Gentlemen's Bet and Delaunay necks behind in third and fourth as Caixa Electronica trailed throughout.
It was the first Grade 1 victory for Justin Phillip, a 5-year-old by Firtst Samurai who races for Zayat/Asmussen. He was second by a neck in this race last year to Poseidon's Warrior. He won the G3 Count Fleet earlier this year and the G2 Woody Stephens as a 3-year-old in 2011.
6:00 pm: After fave Tricky Hat ($6.90) reeled in 12-1 Share Out to win the 10th,6 of the 9 in the nightcap are covered in the pick-6:
6:30 pm: Face the Race ($9.00) rallied best of all to win the 11th going away and cap a $1,330 pick-4 and $87,987 Pick-6.
Ten races tomorrow starting at 1 p.m. including a pair of $100k stakes for older fillies: the Shine On (race 8) at 6 furlongs on dirt and the Waya (race 9) at 12 furlongs on the inner turf.
Hi Steve, You read it here for the 1st & last time! Successful Dan (SD) will win the Breeders Cup Classic or the BC Turf Classic, Owner/Trainer decision, on Nov 2nd, Santa Ainta. I plan to bet SD heavy and often at Future Bet Odds at LasVegas & elsewhere! The Diceman Alive & Cashing Tickets
I have a bunch of losing pick-6 tickets with Wee Freudian. Am I going to get refunds or did I just get the post-time favorite. I didn't know if the rule was different for the first leg. [Nope, you got the favorite. -SC]
Serious food recommendation: $10 Shaved Roast Beef Sandwich at the cart just behind Grandstand Seating Section P. (upstairs) About a half pound of meat on an 8 inch roll, Cheese, horseradish sauce, and juice gravy optional. It sustained me through my trip back to NJ with just my nearly traditional Stewarts coffee ice cream cone before heading south. They'll cut the sandwich in half for easy sharing. (They also have Pastrami, but I am not a Pastrami fan, so I would be unlikely to weigh in on it.)
Went to the Wise site to check the "death box" on the Cheez Waffles. The serving size: 6 pieces. They also claim 16 potato chips as one serving. Lilliputian. I live in (slim) hope that the Gorilla Cheese NYC truck will someday be found in the Spa food court. It's looking too far down the road I guess, but hopefully the Woodward can provide us with as exciting a race as yesterday's Whitney.
Indian Charlie's rag is nothing but a congramoration of cheap shots, not fit to print. I think it is high time that the racing fraternity band together to bar Mr. Ed Musselman and his prose from the grounds, and stop supporting his drivel by placing ads on it. Enough is enough. It's not funny!!! , Using a disclaimer of "Never letting the truth get in the way of a good story" doesn't absolve one from discrediting and ridiculing members of the horse racing industry. The only worthwhile statement I've ever gleaned from his tabloid are the words, "Free John Veitch."
I had 5 of 6 including the winner of leg 1, I went 1-3-5 in the stakes leaving off the 2&4 (winner) just didn't want to make ticket $600 from $360 which is higher than my usual ticket by almost $160-$200 already. DAMN still got 3 consos @ $544 each. I thoroughly enjoy playing Sar as opposed to Del Mar where there are 3-4 trainers who are allowed to "cheat" at will. When caught they are defended by another trainer/lawyer who than complains there are too many cheaters. LOL Good luck to all tomorrow
Looks like we will not have another double carry over. Root for #9 for a big monday
My fault for not betting Justin Phillipe back after pounding him on Summit of Speed day on that bullring down at Calder. I did not bet the card today but missed coming back with him. ARRRRGGGHHHH as you say Steve. Obvioulsy the public did not miss him paying only 8 bucks. George in Naples
Gentle men's Bet runs in the house silks? How does that happen. Guess connections tipped their hand there [How so? You think they didn't try in a Grade 1 and revealed that by not having their silks arrive? -SC]
Kinda caught here wondering why the Grade 1 A.G. Vanderbilt Handicap only drew 5 to the starting gate. And given that Delaunay should be 4/5 and Gentleman's Bet even with an ex in the 5 over 7 range; it's just a race to watch and wonder ... how a TV truck gets hit by a power surge... and marvel at Delaunay getting claimed for 40k... and contemplate that Jean Harlow died while filming Saratoga. Good luck!