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3:00 pm: Got off to a decent start but then hit a snag just now in the third leg of today's Aqueduct pick-6, which had a one-day $29k carry from Friday's slopfest into today's:
The usual "B" column is titled "B+" above because my main ticket was an all A's and B's one, not that it's alive any more.
The toteboard solved my problem in the first leg, a six-horse field of 2-year-old maidens that numbered three firsters and three who had run. The best by far of the latter trio was the Baffert trainee Mayor Marv, who has some ability but was disappointing in both of his previous well-bet starts. My approach was that if any of the firsters took serious money, I would lean away from the favorite,and one did exactly that -- Monk's Creek from Kiatran McLaughlin, who was bombed in the race 3-4 double to a quarter the price of the Zito and Imperio firsters. So I made Monk's Creek an A, Mayor Marv a B, and used the rest of them as C's. Monk's Creek, who closed at 19-10, led into the stretch, then 11-10 Mayor Marv ran right up to him and looked like a sure winner, but fortunately for me Mayor Marv just refused to go by.
My miscalculation in the 6th, the third leg, was that Rollers would either outrun fellow front-runner Accredit or the two would run each other into the ground and set the table for Pictural. Instead, Accredit won the duel and drew off as the 3-1 second choice but only a C with me. Pictural never got a call while Rollers faded badly from his early efforts. I guess the good news is that I'm alive at all after three losing favorites, but the winners were all second choices and I'm just 2x4x1 the rest of the way with a very shaky single in the finale. I obviously didn't have a solid opinion in the featured G3 Stuyvesant (race 8), since I used four of the six entrants remaining after scratches as A's.
3:20 pm: Four races, four second choices, as 2.30-1 Cool Tales outsplashed 10-1 Rushing Stag with 2-1 favorite Cheetah Trail a dull fifth.
While we're killing time until the Stuyvesant, here are some entertaining pp's to peruse that I pulled down while riting a Sunday column about some statebred stars who began their careers with long undefeated streaks:
3:50 pm: Dry Martini went last to the first to win the Stuyvesant as the 4-1 third choice with 2-1 favorite Solar Flare last in a field of six. Dry Martini looked like he was turning into a serious older horse two summers ago when he won the Cornhusker, but this was his first victory since then following a long absence and three trainer changes.
That leaves me singled to the favorite for a $7,668 payoff on an $880 investment. The good news: I'm getting almost 8-1 on a 5-2 shot. The bad news: I would never bet $880 to win on Proud Ruler. And it's annoying that I didn't like Accredit more because the payouts to the other logical contenders in the finale are all in the $10k-to-$20k range. Five of the eight are covered; double-carry with the 1, 3 or 11.
4:13 pm: The finale went off in thick fog, but not thick enough that I couldn't see Proud Ruler running an unthreatening third most of the way around as Masala, slammed to 5-2, was easily best in his second start, transitioning from a turf sprint to a slop mile. Nice payoff of $14,379 for five second choices and a third choice.
Commenter jlove asked about how I would hedge going into the final leg. In this case, I didn't. It's a lot easier to take some equity out of your position if you're alive to a few of them, and even more so if the only ones who can beat you are double-digit odds. No such opportunity here.
The rain is starting up again here; I wouldn't spend too much time handicapping tomorrow's two scheduled grass races until it's announced what surface they'll be on.
Bochalls, I'm hardly the most disciplined bettor, but I've found that the number of individual races I play depends greatly on how my multirace plays fare. (I tend to make multirace wagers early in any given card.) If I hit an early pick three, I'm much more likely to try a shoot-for-the-moon trifecta later in the card. The other deciding factor is how many races have dime super wagering. As soon as I see a dodgy or grossly overbet favorite in an 8-10 horse field, I find it hard to resist going for a signer with a super.
Thanks for the pp's, Tin Cup Chalice is a great story, bought back at auction for only a thousand bucks. Was wondering if you knew whethar Happy Ticket or Hallowed Dreams produced any decent offspring, seems very good hard knocking mares rarely reproduce themselves.
Easily the biggest error we make as handicappers is the anticipation of a speed duel. It rarely happens and even when it does a speed horse usually wins anyway. Always anticipate speed winning unless there is a gross bias against.
Davidowitz wrote that one of his strongest play against angles is the 3yr old topweight vs older under Alw conditions. Don't know if Rollers was the actual topweight, but he was giving weight to some older horses in that race. I decided to pass it altogether, which makes me think...on a typical 9 race card, how many races do you, Steve or anyone, actually play (aside from multirace wagers)? IMO, the ability to pass on races is the key to bankroll survival/profits.
hey steve, what i would like to ask is in races on tracks with polycrap,when they come off the turf there is the old familiar 0 with a x inside of it, but since its run on polycrap maybe it differ itself, maybe a 0 with a ^ or* , or *$@##!%#........ also steve i saw one day in the ny racing section of the form a tout of the great gasper moscheras book & havent seen it back in the again could you please rerun it or post it here on how to obtain that, thanks for your time
Only going to get 5 out of 6 if 2b comes home first but feel better seeing that this P6 without longshots would pay $7,600 for all. Maybe 5 will get back my $276 investment. I'd be happy with that. I made same miscalculation in Rollers race. I thought that one would shake off Accredit or that Dubai Distinction would roll by. I think the in-between for that one at head of stretch cost him because if you watch them hit the wire he's really finding a good stride and closing. Que sera sera.
Nice ride by Channing Hill. It seemed as if Studmuffin took a bad step on the turn as he lost his momentum. Not sure it would have mattered. As for everyone else I think they were all overhyped. If at all possible Steve (when the day is over). Can you tell us how you would (or if you would) hedge your position going into the last leg? Assuming your comfortability with the Mott horse is not close to 100% how do you determine who and what to bet in your hedge? IE do you revert to your B and C horses with win bets? Do you bet exactas with those horses over your A? And will the tote influence your hedge since you have the ability to update your odds on the last race from your betting point in the 4th? Again, don't mean to inundate you with questions but having not been alive in a major pick 6 (I hit the one with Empire Maker in the Belmont) I'm curious as to how your overall bet compares to your projected winning amount including pick 5's and how that relates to your hedge wager amount and your subsequent bets. Good luck you opened at 5/2!
Okay just caught the 2b in the 9th race...and feel a lot better about the Beyer situation and the lastest workout...still suspect on the off track but i would think Rajiv would have him forwardly placed. I'm a bit intrigued by the 8 in the finale as Hennig tends to stretch out ok and his charge has room for improvement. 3 min to post gonna go bet now...just wanted to correct myself from further embarrassment. - J
jlove, Unless I've made a hideous mistake, the Mott firster was scratched in the 9th. It's the other half of the entry, the fourth-time starter with a 10-point (dirt) fig edge on the field, that I singled.
Steve, Picking up the action live from my living room and I am stuck (and wanting to post this in advance) as to why you would single a Mott first timer in the last leg. I agree with his chance but would have figured the Albertrani charge to have about the same if not slightly better chance. The MTO's don't look imposing but this race could be on to fall apart. By no means am I criticizing your selection but yet again trying to get into your brain. Wet track breeding? I hope you win and I'm kind of keen on Ravel in the feature to revert back on the off track. GOOD LUCK!!! PS My wife is behind me as I type to you and she is mocking me because I tout your intellect against some of earth's finest leaders and entrepreneurs. Still my hero...