12/16/2015 6:04PM

Two to follow


Here are two horses to put on the old "Horse Watch" list:


Trainer Richard Baltas has transformed Unforgettable U from a modest allowance performer into a filly with graded stakes potential. A well-bred 4-year-old by Tale of the Cat out of stakes-winning miler Naseem (a Point Given half-sister to Horse of the Year Black Tie Affair and Italian Group 1 winner Great Palm), Unforgettable U put the boots to a solid field of allowance runners at Los Alamitos on December 3.

Sent away the 13 to 10 second choice in the field of six, Unforgettable U prompted the early pace set by stakes-winner WINDY FORECAST, took over at will on the turn, built up a commanding lead and glided home under virtually no urging. She completed the 6 furlongs in 1:08.67 and was 9 1/2 lengths clear over favored FINEST CITY. Windy Forecast faltered to third while stakes-winner ACHIEVER'S LEGACY, ULTIMATE HOLIDAY and SENZA FINA made no impression.

Baltas took over Unforgettable U's training over the summer after the filly compiled a 7-1-2-0 record (86 Beyer top) for Carl O'Callaghan and G. F. Almeida, and there was instant improvement. She was nosed by odds-on Ben's Duchess in a fast 'n2x' optional claimer at Del Mar on August 9, received a 100 Beyer and finished 6 1/2 lengths clear of next-out stakes-winner DR. FAGER'S GAL.

The following month, Unforgettable U dropped back to her proper 'n1x' level and annihilated a field by 7 1/2 lengths in 1:09.14 (99 Beyer). The fourth-place finisher from that race, GLORY, came back to win two in a row on turf for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.

Unforgettable U lost her next two starts, but she had legitimate excuses. In the Grade 3 L. A. Woman Stakes at Santa Anita on October 4, she was involved in a wicked four-ply pace battle through insane fractions of 21.29 and 43.45. All of the speeds paid dearly as Ben's Duchess, the only closer in the race, ran over the top of them in the stretch.

Unforgettable U was then the beaten favorite in an 'n2x' turf sprint at Del Mar, but the filly has never shown any interest on turf. In two grass starts to date, she has been defeated by a combined 24 lengths and it's doubtful she'll run on that surface in the near future.

I had some doubt after watching Unforgettable U's recent win because some horses just seem to take to Los Alamitos while others give puzzling non-efforts there. The track has a tendency to make average horses look like world-beaters and vice versa. Unforgettable U is now 3-2-1-0 at Los Alamitos, but I'm going to go against my gut and assume that Baltas has tapped into her potential. Her big races at Del Mar over the summer allay my fears that she's merely a Los Al wonder.

Expect to see Unforgettable U in the Grade 2, $200,000 Santa Monica Stakes at Santa Anita on January 23.


Very few trainers have been as hot as John Parisella. Over the past six months, the veteran horseman is 12 for 29 (41%) with a $3.60 ROI. One of those winners was Prepper, a 3-year-old gelding that breezed to an open-lengths maiden win at Aqueduct on December 10. By Majestic Warrior out of stakes-winning router Fancy Fusaichi (95 Beyer in Iowa Distaff Stakes), Prepper sold for $105,000 at the 2014 OBS April 2-year-old sale.

Prepper made his debut as a 45 to 1 chance at Belmont on May 16, showed brief speed and faltered to fifth. Following a five-month absence, Prepper returned as a 5 to 2 favorite in a maiden race at Belmont on October 16. Prepper was again forwardly-placed en route to a runner-up finish and a 19-point Beyer improvement.

He was expected to win last week as the 19 to 10 chalk and didn't disappoint. After breaking outward, Prepper was righted by Jose Ortiz, cleared to the inside and battled with two pace rivals through fractions of 22.91 and 45.81. RICHIE'S RICH (24 to 1, finished fourth) and HENRIK RULES (2 to 1, finished last) backed up after contesting the pace, but Prepper kept right on going. He opened up by five at the stretch call and finished 6 1/4-lengths clear of well-regarded first-time starter AMORAL.

Prepper should be tough right back in an entry-level allowance sprint over the inner dirt, but keep an eye out for him on turf down the road. His dam is a half-sister to stakes-placed turf router Fancy Ribbons, stakes-winning turf router Fancy Point and multiple Grade 3-placed turfer El Commodore. This is the female family of the quality Grade 1 turf winner Joyeux Danseur.


Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from 12/1/15 - 12/7/15:

1. STALLWALKIN' DUDE - 102 - Claiming Crown Rapid Transit - 7 Furlongs - Dec15-6GP
2. FOLLOW ME CREV - 98 - OC 40k/N$Y -N - 1 Mile - 6Dec15-8LRC
2. ROCKED TWICE - 98 - Cactus Wren Stakes - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 5Dec15-3TUP
2. UNFORGETTABLE U - 98 - OC 62k/N$Y -N - 6 Furlongs - 3Dec15-7LRC
5. ALEX THE TERROR - 96 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 6 Furlongs - 2Dec15-8AQU
6. ROOM FOR ME - 95 - Garland of Roses Stakes - 6 Furlongs - 5Dec15-8AQU
6. SEND IT IN - 95 - Alw 55860N1X - 1 Mile - 5Dec15-2AQU
8. ROYAL POSSE - 94 - Claiming Crown Jewel - 1 1/8 Miles - 5Dec15-11GP
9. CATHRYN SOPHIA - 93 - Gin Talking Stakes - 7 Furlongs - 5Dec15-5LRL
9. QUIET KITTEN - 93 - Claiming Crown Tiara - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 5Dec15-3GP
11. ATTAIN - 92 - OC 40k/N2X -N - 5 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 5Dec15-8FG
11. DOMAIN'S RAP - 92 - Clm 15000 - 5Dec15-5RP
11. SUCCESSFUL NATIVE - 92 - Claiming Crown Canterbury - 5 Furlongs - 5Dec15-8GP
14. BIRD OF TREY - 90 - Pennsylvania Nursery - 7 Furlongs -  5Dec15-8PRX
14. CONDO KING - 90 - Md Sp Wt 60k - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 5Dec15-5AQU
14. LADY SABELIA - 90 - Willa On the Move Stakes - 6 Furlongs - 5Dec15-9LRL
14. LITTLE DISTORTED - 90 - Alw 50000s - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 3Dec15-1AQU
18. BULLHEADED BOY - 89 - OC 80k/N1X -N - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 6Dec15-5AQU
18. IRON ROB - 89 - Md Sp Wt 46k - 5 1/2 Furlongs - 4Dec15-6LRC
18. NEXT SPEAKER - 89 - Clm c-(40-35) - 6 Furlongs (Tapeta) - 6Dec15-6GG
18. RAINBOW HEIR - 89 - OC 50k/C -N - 6 Furlongs - 4Dec15-6LRL
22. ONE TOUCH - 88 - OC 50k/C -N - 1 Mile (Polytrack) - 4Dec15-8TP
23. ATHENS - 87 - Alw 16000s - 1 Mile - 3Dec15-4LRC
23. BREAKIN THE FEVER - 87 - Alw 21761N$Y - 6 Furlongs - 1Dec15-8FL
23. SEEKING ALPHA - 87 - Md Sp Wt 60k - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 4Dec15-6AQU
23. SUSTAINABLE - 87 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 1 Mile - 4Dec15-3AQU
23. THREE FOR ME - 87 - Alw 25000s - 1 Mile (Turf) - 4Dec15-8AQU
23. WILDCAT RUNNER - 87 - Alw 25000s - 5 1/2 Furlongs - 1Dec15-8PRX

*Stallwalkin' Dude's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

*Next Speaker was claimed for $40,000 by trainer Frank Lucarelli from Bob Hess.


Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from 12/8/15 - 12/14/15:

1. VALID - 101 - Harlan's Holiday Stakes - 1 1/16 Miles - 12Dec15-10GP
2. REPORTING STAR - 100 - El Prado Stakes - 7 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 12Dec15-11GP
3. THE PICKETT FACTOR - 96 - Louisiana Champions Day Classic - 1 1/8 Miles - 12Dec15-10FG
3. TUTTIPAESI (IRE) - 96 - South Beach Stakes - 7 1/2 Furlongs (Turf) - 12Dec15-9GP
5. OUR CARAVAN - 93 - OC 62k/N2X - 1 Mile 70 Yards (Inner Dirt) - 12Dec15-7AQU
5. PREPPER - 93 - Md Sp Wt 60k - 6 Furlongs (Inner Dirt) - 10Dec15-6AQU
7. DONTBETWITHBRUNO - 92 - Clm c-35000N3L - 1 1/16 Miles (Inner Dirt) - 9Dec15-6AQU
8. FIRE MISSION - 91 - Alw 47630NC - 6 Furlongs - 11Dec15-6RP
8. SAILOR'S REVENGE - 91 - OC 32k/N2X - 1 1/16 Miles - 13Dec15-8LRL
10. HE'S SO FINE - 90 - OC 25k/N2X -N - 1 Mile 70 Yards - 12Dec15-8PRX
10. TOLEDO EDDIE - 90 - OC 20k/N$Y - 1 Mile - 13Dec15-7LRC
10. WATCH MY SMOKE - 90 - Louisiana Champions Day Starter Handicap - 1 Mile 70 Yards - 12Dec15-5FG
10. WILLET - 90 - Alw 65000NC - 6 Furlongs (Inner Dirt) - 11Dec15-8AQU
14. BLUE Y GOLD (ARG) - 89 - Clm c-15000N4L - 5 1/2 Furlongs - 12Dec15-7PRX
14. CALI STAR - 89 - Rampart Stakes (G3) - 1 Mile - 12Dec15-3GP
14. HOT ZAPPER - 89 - Louisiana Champions Day Turf - 1 1/16 Miles (Turf) - 12Dec15-6FG
14. ISLAND SAINT - 89 - OC 75k/N1X -N - 6 Furlongs - 11Dec15-3GP
14. JOCKAMO'S SONG - 89 - Louisiana Champions Day Sprint - 6 Furlongs - 12Dec15-9FG
14. LUCY N ETHEL - 89 - Alw 63740N1X - 6 Furlongs - 8Dec15-3PRX
14. MAXWELL SMARTY - 89 - OC 25k/N2X -N - 6 Furlongs - 10Dec15-4PEN
14. SEATLLE SERENADE - 89 - OC 40k/N$Y -N - 6 Furlongs - 11Dec15-7LRC
22. CRAVING CARATS - 88 - OC 20k/N2X - 1 Mile - 14Dec15-4TUP
22. DINNY DINOSAUR - 88 - OC 25k/N2X - 1 Mile 70 Yards - 9Dec15-5PEN
22. SPEED SEEKER - 88 - OC 62k/N3X -N - 1 Mile (Turf) - 12Dec15-3TAM
22. STAR STUDENT - 88 - Alw 34107NC - 6 Furlongs (Tapeta) - 12Dec15-7GG

*Valid's lifetime past performances are available at the bottom of this blog post.

*Dontbetwithbruno was claimed for $35,000 by trainer Rudy Rodriguez from Todd Pletcher.

*Blue Y Gold was claimed for $15,000 by trainer Willard Thompson from Richard Vega.


With the death of Shared Belief dominating....another old campaigner SirPrize Birthday was put down at age 35!! Dan could you post his remarkably LONG racing career?
Thanks in advance.
Harold Crenshaw

His lifetime past performances (all 206 of them!) are available at the bottom of this blog post.


Video stakes analyses for many of the weekend's major stakes will be available later this week at http://www.drf.com/videos

You can follow me on Twitter @DRF_DanIllman.

I'll be on with Mike Beer and Matt Bernier for live handicapping analysis of racing at Aqueduct, Gulfstream, Tampa Bay and Los Alamitos beginning at 3pm ET at live.drf.com.


Here's a message from Laura regarding our 2016 FormBlog Convention at Gulfstream Park:

Make plans to attend the 2016 FORMBLOGERS CONVENTION! February 19 - 21 at Gulfstream Park. Courtesy of our generous benefactor, Mike Nyman, we once again have a private suite - temperamental wagering machine included.
Room discounts at the Hampton Inn across the street from the track are available. With the discount, the rooms run about $200/night including taxes and free breakfast buffet. (The Romance Package is extra and hotel management is very strict about that).
We always have a fun time - even when the track gets washed away! Besides the pleasure of each other's company - and that of our fearless leader, Dan Who, there will be Breeders' Cup swag, and more! Previous years, courtesy of SR Vegas, we included Derby Futures Tickets given in raffles throughout the weekend (everyone winds up with one!), and other fun stuff.
I'll have more info available in the next few weeks. I offer FREE! transportation to/from the Ft. Lauderdale airport.
If you have any questions, please contact me at: lross@imtbreds.com


Congrats to Samuel Proud for winning last week's HandiGambling contest.

We'll go with Saturday's Tropical Park Oaks at Gulfstream for this week's exercise.


SR Vegas and Rick M. have graciously decided to streamline all of the HG rules in order to make them an easier read for everyone...

With so many new people attending Dan's Formblog we thought it would be a good time to update the Handigambling Guidelines and Rules as we go forward in 2014.

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 if you could spare a sentence or two outlining your handicapping angles and thought processes about wagering, it would be appreciated.


Please start your post with  HG or HANDIGAMBLING to better recognize and find your entry.

-  You have a mythical $100 to wager in whatever format you choose and that is available for that HG race.
Anyone going over the $100 limit will be disqualified.

- Post your WAGER and ANALYSIS to the blog WITH YOUR NAME/OR MONIKER AT THE END OF THE 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 recognize you .

- (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.

- Separate your analysis from the wager and use the horses # in your wager. Just like you would do in a real wager. No horse names.

-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 2014
The speed in this race goes to  horses # 1, 4 ,6 ..Ennie , Meenie, and Mo
Since it's a sprint I don't see any closers catching them.. like # 9 Miney.
I think trainer Groucho with the #6 Mo has the best stats in this condition, route to sprint.. just a gut feeling at large odds ML 20-1

HG wager
50$ Ex box 1-6
total $100

Thanks Dan!




ValidDude.pdf736.04 KB
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How about some love for DRF handicapper Chuck Kuehhas? Picked a horse at Tampa weds in the 9th who won at 51-1! Dan (brutus)
CMathieu66 More than 1 year ago
The DRF comment box goes slack again? Apparently so. I've been trying to get my post up for so long I feel like War Emblem.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Annie, Thank you for my MKB horse SAIL AHOY (Bernardini - Matlacha Pass, by Seeking the Gold). Race record 5-1-0-2 ($114,300) Trainer: Shug McGaughey Owner: Phipps Pedigree: The royally-bred Sail Ahoy has a classic distance pedigree. He’s a half brother to Alabama Stakes heroine Pine Island and to the multiple G-1 winning turf router Point Of Entry and stakes placed Chili Cat. Sail Ahoy is a product of Phipps family breeding and his distaff line is loaded with champions. His dam hit the board in all three of her starts. She's a full sister to Breeders' Cup Distaff heroine Pleasant Home. Another full sister is the multiple graded stakes winning sprinter, Country Hideaway, who bore the good filly, Boca Grande, winner of the Demoiselle and placed in the Test, Mother Goose, and Comely Stakes. Country Hideaway also produced Vacation, winner of the Hanshin Cup H.(G3,AP,8F). Yet another full sister, Home Sweet Home, produced a Japanese multiple Stakes winner. Sail Ahoy's third dam is the multiple G1 heroine Maplejinksy, dam of the Triple Tiara and 1994 Champion Older Mare Sky Beauty. Other descendants of Maplejinsky are Tale of Ekati and Violence. Sail Ahoy's fourth dam is Champion Sprinter & blue hen Gold Beauty. Besides Maplehinksy, Stick to Beauty bore English/French Champ and sire Dayjur. Fifth dam Stick to Beauty is also a blue hen. Sail Ahoy should appreciate classic distances. His sire Bernardini won the Preakness and his offspring include Travers hero Stay Thirsty, My former MKB horse To Honor and Serve, and Alpha, both of whom won the (Woodward, 9F, etc. Sail Ahoy's damsire Seeking the Gold won at the top level from 7F (Swale S.) to 10F (Super Derby). The second damsire is KY Derby/Preakness hero Pleasant Colony. Third damsire is English TC hero and legendary sire Nijinsky. Sail Ahoy should only improve as he matures and optimistically, in time for the KY Derby. He likes to hang out at the back of the pack and make one run. Those types generally finish second in the KY Derby. I hope Sail Ahoy continues to improve next year. I'd hate to have to change his name to Chips Ahoy if he crumbles in the stretch... Laura
DRF_DanIllman More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
8. JIM LEHMAN Your horse is NYQUIST. He is a bay colt by Uncle Mo out of Seeking Gabrielle by Forestry. He was born 3/10/13. Your trainer is Doug O'Neill. Well, you got the probable two-year-old champion! He sold for 400K at FTFMar 2-year-old sale. That was a good deal, as he has already earned $1,613,600 and is undefeated 5 for 5. He is 15-1 on Wynn's futures and has 30 points!! Race record: 6/5 SA Broke maiden at 5F 8/8 DMR WON GR2 Best Pal at 6-1/2F 9/7 DMR WON GR1 DMR Fut at 7F 9/26 SA WON GR1 FrontRunner at 1-1/16 miles 10/31 KEE WON GR1 BC Juv at 1-1/16 miles I know they say he can't get 1-1/4 miles, but there's no doubt he has talent and he has done everything asked of him so far. You never know. He had a 3F work at SA on 12/19, but there is talk of him spending the winter in Florida. Wherever he goes next, good luck with him!! Your Dortmund may just be a force in the older ranks this coming year too. You'll have lots to look forward to. :) Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So now it works. I haven't been able to post for the last 11 hours even though I cleared everything including cache. Nothing but red error messages. Right when I'm trying to post bios. :( Well I'm too tired now. Have to hope it works tomorrow, Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
7. JAY VAN HORN Your horse is SEAT OF HONOR. He is a gray ridgling by Tapit out of Lassie's Legacy by Deputy Minister. He was born 2/17/13. He is a Will Farish home-bred and his dam is a daughter of Weekend Surprise. It's 300K to breed to Tapit, so there must be some hope. Your trainer is Shug McGaughey. He has had 3 starts with 1 2nd, but that was his last race, so things are looking up. :) Race record: 9/19 BP 4th MDSP at 6f to Mohaymen and Seymourdini 10/8 BP 4th MDSP at 1 mile 11/22 AQU 2nd MDSP at 1 mile to Seymourdini Good luck with your horse! Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
KNM, Obviously your horse was born in 2013, not 2015. :) Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The next two points races are the Jerome at AQU on Jan. 2nd and the Sham at SA on Jan. 9th. You can expect to see several of the new MKBs in those races. Annie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
6. WHACKYMACKY Your horse is GUN RUNNER. He is a chestnut colt by Candy Ride out of Quiet Giant by Giant's Causeway. He was born 3/8/13. Your trainer is Steve Asmussen. He has had 3 starts with 2 wins, and finished 4th in the GR2 Kentucky Jockey Club to Airoforce and Mor Spirit, and has earned $66,920. He is 50-1 on Wynn's futures and has 1 point. Race record: 9/11 CD Broke maiden in first start at 1 mile 10/17 KEE Won Allowance n1X at 1-1/16 miles 11/28 CD 4th GR2 Kentucky Jockey Club at 1-1/16 miles He's definitely a router, and has experience at CD, always a plus. Good luck with your horse! Maybe you can get Chantal to ride him. :) Annie