07/30/2010 11:23AM

BreezeFigs Quick-Pix, Saturday July 31st

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Though we were keenly disappointed that our Pix at Del Mar didn't work out at all (save for Rock So Hard who was second), we were very pleasantly surprised at the $6.60 payoff that our top Pick Never Right Joey posted after his professional debut victory at Saratoga. This is a funny game at times-but it can also be satisfying to the bottom line as well as the ego, because there were seven winners on last Saturday's BreezeFigs card, so it was a pretty good week. Our Pick this week is at the Spa again, and it's a tough one, so get thee to the bottom of the column for some insight. Good luck!

Before we get to the business of Pix, remember the 2010 sales sheets have a major addition in the SALE column: It's now labeled SALE & HIP, the "HIP" referring to the catalogue number for that horse in that sale. This reference will enable you to go to the website of the sales company involved and easily find the short video of the horse's breeze at that sale.

The web links for each sale are listed in the NOTES section of the new BreezeFigs Report and you will find all the information as to why we have done this and how you can benefit from this addition to the service by downloading the document which explains it all here. Remember, no other handicapping service can give you the advantages you need from 2–year–old sales, So sign up for DRF–Plus on the front page of www.drf.com and get the BreezeFigs cards.

Our rules still hold about BreezeFigs "qualified" runners: You can get a good idea of what "qualified" BreezeFigs horses are by clicking on BreezeFigs under Reports in the Handicapping menu in the DRF.com navigation bar. Remember, keep stride length (SL) in mind when handicapping from the BreezeFigs sheet and take advantage of all the tips that we provide on those sheets as well.

If you click here you will get a document which details our latest study. The conclusion for those who like to know the bottom line fast is this: When it comes to 2–year–old racing only, horses that earned Group 1 or Group 2 BreezeFigs and had longer–than–average stride lengths at the five major 2–year–old sales of 2006–07–08–09 won more races, won earlier, and earned more black–type, than horses with shorter–than–average stride lengths, regardless of BreezeFigs Group. There's a lot more to it than that, and a review of this document, which is the first in a series, will strengthen your hand at the windows, or, if you are a buyer, at the sales or claim box. So, download it and absorb.

Also, refer to a study we did which shows that using BreezeFigs for 3–year–old maiden races in just as viable as using them for 2–year–old maiden races. Go to the DRF PLUS box on the www.drf.com home page, click on BreezeFigs™ Information, and then download "2006 Sales Study," or just click right here.

If you'd like to learn a little more about how we come up with BreezeFigs, take a look at our new website by clicking here.

Here's our picks for opening Saturday at Saratoga and Del Mar. Good luck!

Saratoga, 6th Race, Maiden Special Weight, 6 Furlongs (Dirt)

This one is totally inscrutable, with three BreezeFigs horses in a field of pricey babies. Volcker has started twice and acquitted himself well both times, befitting his Group 2 profile at KEEAPR where his even–Par performance was a bit undercut by his foot–below–average 23.96 foot stride length. Still, he's in good hands and may go off one of the choices. But we'll look to two firsters to give him a battle. The rail horse, Diamond Willie, looked very decent in his Group 3 performance at OBSFEB where he was just one–under–Par on his BreezeFig and only a third of a foot below average in his stride length. He might have some trouble from the rail, but could be along for a piece. The one to watch is Liondrive, whose three–furlong profile at OBSAPR was five–over–Par and featured a very nice 24.66 foot stride length, well over a foot longer than average. Now, we are very skeptical of horses that breeze three furlongs at the 2–year–old sales because the record shows most of them are pretty slow. This one, however, posted a decent 34.2 time, and his overall profile was pretty good. He might be a good key in a race filled with questions, but, after all, that's what Saratoga is all about. Good luck!