10/08/2008 12:00AM

Keeneland Babies for 10/9

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Welcome to Keeneland Babies! I'll break down the statistics for every juvenile maiden contest at the meet, and hopefully add to the profits from "Spa Babies."

Wednesday's results:
Race 1: Scrimshank finished sixth
Race 3: Seal Team finished first
Race 5: True Bliss finished second

Due to computer problems, detailed analysis for Thursday's card is unavailable.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Race 1
7 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Maiden Claiming ($40,000)
2-year-old fillies
Purse $21,000

Analysis:
The red flags are out for CAFFEINE FREE as the daughter of Grade 1 winner Caffe Latte (Ramona Handicap on grass) makes her career debut for a $40,000 tag. Also, trainer Pat Byrne is only 1 for his last 30 with first-time starters, according to Formulator 4.1 statistics. Still, the Stonerside Stable homebred doesn't meet the toughest maiden claiming field in the world, and should offer some value. She gets a tepid nod in a tough race.
P.J.'S CANARY looks to be the horse to beat for Team Borel. The Birdstone filly may have moved a bit early when confronting the pacesetter entering the far turn of her recent maiden special weight on grass at Louisiana Downs. She faltered in the lane, and didn't gallop out very well after the wire. Her good tactical speed should have her in the race from the start, but she's burned her share of money thus far, and has yet to gain ground from the stretch call to the wire.
SAINT BRIGID received a good education in her debut over the Kentucky Downs sod. She was down inside for the long run down the home straight yet finished evenly under Orlando Mojica. She should benefit from the experience and, coupled with the class drop, can make her presence felt. Saint Brigid's dam is a half-sister to Grade 1 winner Favorite Funtime, and trainer John Good does well with dropdowns. She can contend.
SPOILHER, a half-sister to Grade 1-placed filly Flaming Slew (third in the Coaching Club American Oaks), has some angles in her corner. She makes the second start following a layoff line, and drops into maiden claimers for the first time. Trainer William Connelly is working on a 1 for 40 streak with juvenile performers, however. SHEZA JUSTICE, a $32,000 RNA at last September's Keeneland Yearling Sale, finished behind Saint Brigid at Kentucky Downs, but a poor start may have compromised her chances. She's a half-sister to the multiple stakes-winner Avie's Lady (7-23, $122,408). DISONSOLATE, a $4,000 RNA last year, rallied into the teeth of a speed-favoring Arlington course two back, but she was drifting out noticeably in the stretch. She may work out a nice outside stalking trip for a barn that shows good statistics (24%, $2.97 ROI) over the past year with juveniles. WANTED LADY's dam, Runaway Fair Lady, was a stakes-winner (4-27, $118,565), but her sire, Ten Most Wanted, has struggled mightily with his first crop runners (one winner out of 79 starts). ME YOU AND HER, a Smarty Jones homebred trained by Todd Pletcher, got antsy behind the gate prior to her debut run at Monmouth. She has a lot of turf on the bottom of her pedigree, and may take to the softer polytrack. BAND'S ANTHEM must improve off her career-best Beyer Speed Figure of nine. JORDAN'S SONG did not have an easy trip in her career debut at Saratoga. Her dam is kin to the multiple Grade 2 winner Essence of Dubai, and this barn won with a Saratoga invader on Wednesday's card. She's interesting, but the inside post can be intimidating on a young horse. WHY NOW, a $27,000 RNA last year, wasn't flattered by her workmate's ninth-place finish here yesterday. SEISMIC SHIFT, a $9,500 RNA last year, draws the far outside for her debut. Her broodmare sire, Distinctive Pro, is 1-40 this year as the damsire of debut runners.

Selections:
1. Caffeine Free
2. P. J.'s Canary
3. Saint Brigid

The Play:
Caffeine Free to Win and Place at 8-1 or more

***

Race 4
1 1/16 Miles (Polytrack)
Allowance (AN1X)
2-year-olds
Purse $52,000

Analysis:
CLIFFY'S FUTURE rallied to dead-heat with 9-10 favored Viscount in his maiden win at Monmouth, and the kin to stakes-winner Immediate Reaction (6-15, $128K) should be charging hard late in this entry-level allowance heat. The switch to polytrack is always a question mark, but Cliffy's Future shows an upward Beyer pattern, and may be rounding into his best form.
SNEAKIN THRU may be the horse to beat. He was wide every step of the way during his recent maiden score at Turfway Park yet still was drawing away from the field at the finish. He was a bit late to change leads that day, but the recent bullet work allays some fears of a bounce, and he has proven himself over a synthetic surface. Expect a strong late surge.
HOLD ME BACK exits the faster division of maiden special weights at Arlington on September 14, but he may have been aided by a closer-friendly surface that day. The $400,000 yearling wouldn't be a surprise for Mr. Mott, but there may not be enough pace to properly setup his late kick.
DEVIL APPROVED IT won his maiden over the Tapeta surface at Presque Isle Downs, and has really improved since trainer Merrill Scherer added blinkers to the arsenal. He faces a promising bunch here, however, and needs a Beyer boost to contend for win honors. THIS IS MY GAME won the slower division of Arlington maiden special weights on September 14, but has good tactical speed, and may get the jump on the more fancied contenders. A slow early pace would work to his favor. Of the six runners in this race, five exit maiden special weight wins. The exception is COSACO PANDY, a $1,200 short yearling that emerges from a weak $30,000 maiden claimer at Turfway. He can be a pace factor stretching out from two sprint races, but seems in over his head at this level.

Selections:
1. Cliffy's Future
2. Sneaking Thru
3. Hold Me Back

The Play:
Cliffy's Future - Sneaking Thru Exacta;
Cliffy's Future - Hold Me Back Exacta

***

Race 6
6 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Maiden Special Weight
2-year-olds
Purse $50,000

Analysis:
QUIET THANKS, a Texas-bred $24,000 RNA as a yearling, may want a bit more ground as he's by Quiet American out of a Wild Again (2-70 as the broodmare sire of debut winners) mare, but he shows a strong five furlong workout at Churchill Downs leading up to this race, and this barn is underrated with first-time starters (18%, $3.70 ROI over the past year with debuting juveniles). Once again, Keeneland offers up a difficult maiden race, and I'm taking a shot with a price horse (15-1 morning line).
ANTELOPE RIDGE blew a clear lead in his debut at Ellis Park, but the $2,000 yearling showed he can get out of the gate in good order, and his speed should have him in contention as the field straightens away in the stretch. The lack of a published workout over the past 17 days is a bit worrisome, however.
Despite only two lifetime starts, GRIZZLY PEAK is an enigma. He ran quite well in his debut at Saratoga as he dueled for the lead throughout, and put away a pair of pace challengers before succumbing to the sharp runaway winner. Last time out at Belmont, however, he never looked comfortable racing in and among horses, and didn't change leads in the stretch. He hails from the quality female family of Houston, and can be a strong pace presence at the very least.
CONTENTION exits a pair of key races, and he improved in his first start over the polytrack. He has speed, but may have to stalk and finish with Grizzly Peak and Antelope Ridge likely to gun for the lead. A $350,000 yearling purchase trained by Paul McGee, Contention can move forward. MAP OF THE WORLD cost $500,000 at Keeneland last year, and shows some interesting workouts leading up to his debut. Broodmare sire Kris S. is only 2-70 as the damsire of debut runners in 2008, however. ROCKLAND is another firster out of a Kris S. mare. A $90,000 RNA, Rockland is a half-brother to stakes-winner Coal Play, the colt that gave Big Brown all he could handle in the Haskell Invitational. MALOOF MAGIC cost $300,000 at auction last year, but has finished at the tail end of the field in both lifetime outings. KANZEL, a $120,000 yearling RNA, is out of Grade 3 turf winner Don't Be Silly. Kanzel didn't do much in his debut at Delaware Park, however, and may want more distance. FRIENDS N SECRET shows some quick works over the Keeneland main track, and the unraced dam is a half-sister to graded stakes winner Better Now. MASRAWY sold for $185,000 in April after breezing a furlong in 10.20. He will have to be quick to overcome the inside post. FOOTCANDLES has been mostly prepping over the synthetic surface at Goldmark for John Kimmel. The dam was a multiple graded stakes winner of $679,053. SADLER POWER is a son of Austin Powers, a turf winner in the United States. He shows a string of strong gate workouts at The Thoroughbred Center, but may be in deep.

Selections:
1. Quiet Thanks
2. Antelope Ridge
3. Grizzly Peak

The Play:
Quiet Thanks to Win and Place at 8-1 odds or greater

***

Race 8
1 1/16 Miles (Turf)
J P Morgan Chase Jessamine Stakes
2-year-old fillies
Purse $150,000

Analysis:
ABBOTT HALL has looked very, very good since switching to turf two starts back. True, she sat a nice inside, pace-tracking, ground-saving trip in her most recent stakes win at Louisiana Downs, but she eased out into the two path to go after the leader entering the turn, and blew on by. She should find a nice spot in midpack before commencing her rally on the final turn.
LAKE COOK dominated her maiden special weight opponents in her turf debut, but she must stretch out around two turns for the first time in her career in the Jessamine. The multiple stakes-placed dam won routing so Lake Cook can have a say at a price.
COMPLICITY makes her turf debut after rallying from the back of the pack to finish second in the Kentucky Cup Juvenile Fillies over Polytrack. She's a half to two turf winners by a sire that connects with 16% of his first-turf runners. She was very late to change leads in the Kentucky Cup, but may switch in a more timelier fashion on this surface.
Beautifully-bred HABAYA flew home at a big price in her career debut at Belmont, but may be overbet off that 77 Beyer Speed Figure as she tackles winners for the first time. She could be any kind for Kiaran McLaughlin, a trainer that is having a phenomenal year with juvenile runners GLAMOROUS GAL has high early speed, and may assume the role of pacesetter in this spot. There is stamina on the bottom of her pedigree, but she doesn't show a published work since her last race on August 23, and may be pressed a bit early. A half-interest in LARAGH was purchased by the IEAH Stables (powerful owner of noted private purchases as Big Brown, Kip Deville, Benny the Bull, etc.) after tiring over soft going in the Grade 3 Natalma on Woodbine sod. She's likely to be up and on the pace, but she changed back to her wrong lead during that long stretch run, and faltered very badly that day. Perhaps she'll do better on firmer going. HINT OF LEMON makes the two sprints to a route move after pressing moderate fractions at Woodbine. She's bred to go long, and goes out for a wily, underrated trainer. PHOLA rallied for a piece in the one-turn Arlington-Washington Lassie, but she may have been assisted by quick fractions up front. This is her first turf start, and her sire excelled on the lawn. NEVER LIE did nothing after a poor break in the Arlington-Washington Lassie, but gets back to the surface of her maiden win two back. WAR TIGRESS overcame trouble to win her debut at Kentucky Downs, but the Beyer came back light, and she has to stretch out two and a half furlongs in only her second start. ACTING LADY is unlikely to start as she finished tenth in a maiden special weight over polytrack on yesterday's card. IT'S TIFFIN TIME is a maiden that would be stuck way outside if she breaks in from the also-eligible list. MAYBE BABY is bred powerfully for turf, and she showed some heart in winning a slow off-the-turf race at Arlington. She must improve to take this, however. MORE OF THE BEST placed in the Bassinet last time out, but is still a maiden, and may be forced wide if she gets into the body of the race.

Selections:
1. Abbott Hall
2. Lake Cook
3. Complicity

The Play:
Abbott Hall - Lake Cook Exacta;
Abbott Hall - Complicity Exacta

***

Race 9
7 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Maiden Claiming ($40,000)
2-year-old fillies
Purse $21,000

Analysis:
LIGHT SWEET CRUDE needn't be the next Ruffian to win this weak maiden claimer. She shows a string of steady five-furlong workouts in preparation for her debut, and her sire, first-crop stallion Teton Forest, already has a debut winner this year.
MOLEEN adds Lasix for her second start, and that's a potent angle in maiden races. Trainer Steve Asmussen is one of the best in the game with young horses, and Moleen should move forward.
D J'S DREAMER also adds Lasix, and she takes a drop in class after exiting a key race at Churchill Downs in the spring. She's been away a bit, but fits nicely with this crew.
MADLY made up late ground for a $15,000 tag at Turfway. Her Beyers are light. BEAUTIFUL BREW draws way outside for her debut. Her workmate finished fifth in a similar spot here yesterday. SHOULDABEENABENZ takes the biggest drop in the game - from maiden special weight to maiden claimer, and she didn't have an easy start in that tougher race at Arlington. Good to see Edgar Prado take the call. CLOUD OF SMOKE and MIZ WHAM both exit the same maiden claimer at Turfway, a race won by a ten-length winner. Both passed tired horses in the lane. PORT OF GOLD adds Lasix after a dull performance as the betting favorite at Turfway. MISS POWELL COUNTY has an attitude problem. She has trouble with her lead switches, and often flashes her tail when put to pressure. MARA made her debut in a key race at Ellis, then faced a runaway winner in her first start over Polytrack. Her figures are very light, though. DANCE WITH DADDY is in tough from the rail.

Selections:
1. Light Sweet Crude
2. Moleen
3. D J's Dreamer

The Play:
Light Sweet Crude to Win and Place at 9-2 or greater

Meet record based on starts, wins, top pick (after scratches) in the money, and profit/loss of that day's play ($2 wager):
12-4-6 (+ $26.20)