10/08/2014 3:03PM

Watch out for Blofeld

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Thanks to everyone that entered the FormBlog Breeders' Cup Fantasy Handicapping League.

We had 489 contestants. KYL syndicate was the winner with 2310 fantasy earnings and finished second overall in the global leaderboard. It was a tremendous effort.

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Todd Pletcher's 2-year-olds made serious noise last Saturday with Grade 1 victories from DAREDEVIL in the Champagne at Belmont and CARPE DIEM in the Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland.

While both horses look primed for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita, I'm very interested in seeing what's next for BLOFELD, a Pletcher-trained baby that ran his record to 2 for 2 after a professional victory in the Grade 2 Futurity Stakes at Belmont last Sunday.

A son of four-time Grade 1 winner Quality Road (Florida Derby, Woodward Stakes, Metropolitan Handicap, Donn Handicap) out of the multiple stakes-winning sprinter Storm Minstrel (by Storm Cat), Blofeld sold for $135,000 as a weanling, was purchased for $275,000 last September as a yearling, and went for $225,000 in March after breezing a furlong in 10 seconds flat.

Blofeld's dam is a half-sister to stakes-winning sprinter Grand Minstrel, stakes-placed synthetic router Ziegfeld, and multiple stakes-placed performer Spring Hill Farm. The second dam, Colonial Minstrel (by Pleasant Colony), took the Grade 2 Shuvee Handicap at one mile with a 109 Beyer Speed Figure. Minstrella (by The Minstrel), the third dam, was an Irish champion, winning three Group 1 races on turf at two.

Prior to Blofeld's career debut at Saratoga on August 14, the colt wowed clockers. According to the Welsch/Vesce DRF workout report, Blofeld's drill on August 8 was "one of the more impressive 2-year-old gate works of the summer, a half mile in :23.95, :34.88, :46.78 while under just some light pressure pulling away from mate Vandalize, was urged on further by Johnny V. to get five eighths in :58.96. Rating: A-"

Not surprisingly, Blofeld was hammered to heavy favoritism in his five-furlong coming-out party. Outsprinted from the gate by the fleet Signature Cat, Blofeld attacked the pacesetter on the turn and wore that one down under a hand ride while attempting to lug in. Although Signature Cat returned to bomb in the Grade 1 Hopeful against the now-sidelined Competitive Edge, the third-place finisher, El Kabeir, came back to graduate by 10 3/4 lengths with a 93 Beyer.

In the weeks leading up to the Futurity, Blofeld continued to train well.  From the DRF Clocker Report: 

Sep. 28 - Went off a relaxed 25.40 to the top of the lane alongside Feathered, finished huge without being asked for much effort in 48.20, and galloped out sharply in 1:00.60 for five furlongs. Rating: B+

Sep. 22 - Got a bit goofy with Carpe Diem through the lane but was not asked for much effort in 24.20 for the final quarter-mile, and did gallop out with some energy in 1:16 flat, 1:30.60 for seven furlongs. Rating: B

Blofeld showed speed in the Futurity and pressed Grade 3 Bashford Manor winner Cinco Charlie through a moderate opening quarter of 23.10. Entering the turn, Blofeld was shuffled back to the pocket, an intimidating place for an inexperienced juvenile.

Cinco Charlie and the undefeated HEBBRONVILLE turned for home with the lead, and they seemed fresh after a half-mile in a mild 46.20. Meanwhile, Blofeld was down inside. In midstretch, the light seemed to flash on, and Blofeld rallied strongly, his last eighth in 11.76, to catch Hebbronville late. Blofeld completed the Futurity's six furlongs in 1:09.49 and received a 100 Beyer.

Blofeld's rider, John Velazquez, was impressed with the colt's determination.  "It wasn't the trip I was expecting, but he still won," Velazquez told track publicity. "We got squeezed out of a spot near the half-mile pole and he was getting a little bit intimidated, but once he got his momentum going he came back again. I'm proud of him, because they're babies, they don't get squeezed and try to come back again in the same spot."

There isn't a Breeders' Cup appearance in the near future for Blofeld. Pletcher anticipates that the colt will try the Grade 2, $250,000 Nashua Stakes at Aqueduct on November 2. If all goes well there, Blofeld will likely start in the Grade 2, $400,000 Remsen Stakes on November 29 at the Big A.

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Here are the top 25 WINNING Beyer Speed Figures from 9/30/14 - 10/6/14:

1. DAREDEVIL - 107 - Champagne Stakes (G1) - 1 Mile - 4Oct14-8BEL
2. RICH TAPESTRY (IRE) - 105 - Santa Anita Sprint Championship (G1) - 6 Furlongs - 4Oct14-8SA
3. THREE ALARM FIRE - 103 - OC 25k/N1X -N - 1 1/16 Miles - 1Oct14-8BEL
3. WISE DAN - 103 - Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) - 1 Mile (Turf) - 4Oct14-9KEE
5. DAYATTHESPA - 102 - First Lady Stakes (G1) - 1 Mile (Turf) - 4Oct14-7KEE
6. BLOFELD - 100 - Futurity Stakes (G2) - 6 Furlongs - 5Oct14-4BEL
6. BOURBON COURAGE - 100 - OC 80k/N3X -N - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 3Oct14-6KEE
6. WORK ALL WEEK - 100 - Phoenix Stakes (G3) - 6 Furlongs - 3Oct14-8KEE
9. LEIGH COURT - 99 - Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes (G2) - 6 Furlongs - 4Oct14-6KEE
10. BAHAMIAN SQUALL - 98 - OC 62k/C -N - 7 Furlongs - 2Oct14-9GP
10. BIG BANE THEORY - 98 - City of Hope Mile (G2) - 1 Mile (Turf) - 4Oct14-9SA
10. MARINO'S WILD CAT - 98 - Harris Farm Stakes - 6 Furlongs - 5Oct14-8FNO
13. EAST HALL - 97 - Indiana Derby (G2) - 1 1/16 Miles - 4Oct14-10IND
13. LUKES ALLEY - 97 - Durham Cup Stakes (G3-C) - 1 1/8 Miles (Polytrack) - 4Oct14-8WO
15. RING WEEKEND - 96 - Hill Prince Stakes (G3) - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 4Oct14-9BEL
16. HAMPSTEAD HEATH - 95 - OC c-62k/N2X - 1 1/8 Miles (Turf) - 5Oct14-3WO
16. ONE LUCKY DANE - 95 - Md Sp Wt 57k - 1 Mile - 4Oct14-6SA
16. SNOWBELL - 95 - OC 75k/N1X -N - 1 1/16 Miles - 5Oct14-5BEL
19. BAKKEN - 94 - OC 62k/N2X -N - 6 1/2 Furlongs - 2Oct14-8BEL
19. DON'T TELL SOPHIA - 94 - Spinster Stakes (G1) - 1 1/8 Miles - 5Oct14-9KEE
19. EVER RIDER (ARG) - 94 - Temperence Hill Invitational - 1 5/8 Miles - 4Oct14-4BEL
19. GOLD FOR CASH - 94 - OC 25k/N3X - 6 Furlongs - 1Oct14-7MNR
19. I'M STOKED - 94 - Leon Reed Memorial Stakes - 6 Furlongs - 4Oct14-6FL
24. I B MIKE - 93 - Clm 20000(20-18) - 5 Furlongs - 3Oct14-9FNO
24. LA BELLA VALERIA - 93 - Alw 25000s - 6 Furlongs - 1Oct14-6BEL

*The lifetime past performances for DAREDEVIL are available at the bottom of this blog post.

*HAMPSTEAD HEATH was claimed for $62,500 by trainer Pat Parente from Brian Lynch.

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You can follow me on Twitter @DRF_DanIllman.

The video previews for most of this weekend's graded stakes action will be available later in the week at the following link:

http://www.drf.com/videos#stakes-previews


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Congrats to Anderson for finishing first in last week's HandiGambling race.

Rick M's scoresheet is available at the bottom of this blog post.

On tab 2 you will see each HG Race we've held and they are color coded to denote if the race was run on Turf, Dirt or Poly.

Let's go with Saturday's Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Keeneland for this week's exercise.


PAST PERFORMANCES ARE AVAILABLE AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS BLOG POST.


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.

HANDIGAMBLING:

-  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!

Harpo
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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 FRIDAY RACE IS MOST IDEAL)

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DAREDEVIL.pdf612.5 KB
Copy of Formblog Alcibiades 10-3-14.xls76.5 KB
HGQEII.pdf160.62 KB