Category Archives: Saratoga

FINAL SAUHBR SELECTIONS!

FOREGO:

1)LUCKY ISLAND
2)FOREFATHERS
3)TASTEYVILLE

alt:First Defence

WOODWARD:

1)CURLIN
2)OUT OF CONTROL
3)DIVINE PARK

alt: Loose Leaf

ONTARIO COLLEEN S:

1)LICKETY LEMON
2)FAREENA
3)FORESTRY’S MAGIC

alt:Sugar Bay

DEL MAR DERBY:

1)KILDERRY
2)GIO PONTI
3)SKY CAPE

alt:TizWest

LINCOLN HANDICAP:

1)PEPPER’S PRIDE
2)SILVER EXPRESSION
3)MISS POSSIBILITY

alt:Letthemusicbegin

PENNSYLVANIA DERBY

1)SMOOTH AIR
2)ATONED
3)READY SET

alt:Numaany

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Filed under Del Mar, Graded Stakes, Handicapping, Saratoga, SAUHBR

SAUHBR Week 6: FINAL FURLONG!

Curlin, The Golden Warrior

Curlin, The Golden Warrior

Tomorrow will be the beginning of the end for SAUHBR Round 1.  BT’s Pick Power selections represent the best of the final Summer Stakes from around the country.  It being a holiday weekend, BT has chosen a Monday race to keep the party going just a little bit longer.  After this weekend, most of my faves will be starting in their last BC Preps.  The next edition of SAUHBR should be the Breeders’ Cup itself – 2 days of top-caliber racing on a surface many have not ventured a hoof upon!  Drama, drama, drama!  The opportunities for upsets abound, and then there are the Euros!  But that’s for another blog.  I will post my OFFICIAL SELECTIONS later!

This final slate of SAUHBR stakes are:

Saturday at Saratoga:

FOREGO S. Gr1 — A lot of the excitement got sucked out of this race when Benny The Bull retired, but now Lucky Island and Tasteyville are the headliners.  I like Forefathers and First Defense to show up in there, too.
WOODWARD S. Gr1 — Curlin’s dirt return, his first race at Saratoga…Divine Park is making a race of it, and AP Arrow is in there again…if he runs his race, the Champ is gonna do it easily.  They’re even giving Curlin the Key to the city!

Woodbine: ONTARIO COLLEEN S. — Have no idea who’s running, but the name Lickety Lemon is priceless!

Sunday’s grab bag of tracks:

Ruidoso Downs: LINCOLN HANDICAP — Pepper’s Pride shoots for the moon & her 17th straight victory.

Del Mar: DEL MAR DERBY — Gio Ponti makes a cross-country trip to continue his winning ways on turf.  Tizwest and Nownownow challenge.

SPECIAL HOLIDAY STAKES!!

Philly Park: PENNSYLVANIA DERBY — Perhaps the best of the weekend, with Smooth Air, Ready Set, Two Step Salsa, and Atoned and a bunch of others!  14 entries, that’s truly a “derby”!
 

Also on Manday, a long-lost favorite of mine returns to the track after almost a year off — Mr. Franks!  This colt filled out a nice exacta for me at Oaklawn back in, um…2005?

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Filed under Del Mar, Graded Stakes, Handicapping, Saratoga, SAUHBR

Travers Good Times

This year’s Travers turned out to be one for the ages, with Col. John and Mambo In Seattle practically dead-heating it (if not for today’s advanced digital photo tech, I am sure it would have been deemed DH officially).  It also tells me that despite Big Brown’s perceived weaknesses, he really is an outstanding individual.  The rest of his crop guts out whisker victories against each other, yet even in his last less-than-stella outing he still managed to beat them by 1.5. lengths.  I liked Asmussen’s suggestion of a public workout between Curlin & BB — neither side has anything to lose, and it would somewhat appease the infielders who are clamoring for them to face each other.  But I digress.

Travers.  The stakes record for the race was set in 1979 by General Assembly, a look-alike son of Secretariat.  The time of 2:00 flat for the 1.25 miles is also the track record for the distance at Saratoga, and General Assembly destroyed the field by 15 lengths at the wire.  Here’s the race:

GA was a top 3yo of ’79, but he had the misfortune of racing in the shadow of Spectacular Bid,who, coincidentally, missed the Travers bc he was still recovering from the Belmont “safety pin” issue.

Affirmed & Alydar made their last start together in their legendary rivalry the 1978 Travers. It was a rough-run race for Alydar, who had to check at the top of the stretch when Affirmed came over hard into him on the rail.  Affirmed won, but was placed second for the interference.  Would Alydar have won if he hadn’t been cut off?  You be the judge:

The 1930 Travers featured Triple Crown winner Gallant Fox.  However, like so many times in racing, the heavy favorite didn’t get the job done.  The winner was 100-1 shot JIM DANDY.  More on the 1930 Travers can be found at this excellent blog: Colin’s Ghost

Jaipur and Ridan dueled the entire length of the race in 1962.  It was almost a shame to have one winner, but Jaipur prevailed at the wire.  The photos from the stretch are some of the more memorable ones at The Blood-Horse archives.  Here’s the vid:

Cicada, C.T. Chenery’s champion filly, was in the field that year as well.

Finally, here’s my favorite Travers that I actually lived through (on TV):

THUNDER GULCH!!  ❤ that horse!!

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Filed under Graded Stakes, Saratoga, Thunder Gulch Love

TRAVERS WEEKEND SAUHBR PICK POWER

The Travers.  The 4th Classic.  The Midsummer Derby (actually the end of summer, but anyway).  Whatever you call it, it’s this week’s feature race for SAUHBR!

Before I get to the Travers Memories, here are my picks!

TRAVERS Gr1:

1)HARLEM ROCKER
2)PYRO
3)AMPED

alt:Court Vision

 

KING’S BISHOP Gr1:
1) J BE K
2) KODIAK KOWBOY
3)I’M SO LUCKY

alt:Lantana Mob

BERNARD BARUCH Gr1:
1)THORN SONG
2)SHAKIS
3)DISTORTED REALITY

alt:Proudinsky

SUNDAY on the WEST COAST!!

PACIFIC CLASSIC Gr1:
1)GO BETWEEN
2)MAST TRACK
3)WELL ARMED

alt: Student COuncil

DEL MAR MILE Gr2
1)DAYTONA
2)MONZANTE
3)STORM MILITARY

atl:Whatsthescript

PAT O’BRIEN Gr2: MIDNITE LUTE RETURNS! 

1)REBELLION
2)BARBEQUE EDDIE
3)MIDNIGHT LUTE

alt: In Summation

 

It’s late and I’m tire.  Travers memories online tomorrow…

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Filed under Del Mar, Handicapping, Saratoga, SAUHBR

Commentator smashes Whitney field + Battle ROyale week 1 RESULTS

Commentator wins the Whitney 2008/phot from bloodhorse.com

Commentator wins the Whitney 2008/phot from bloodhorse.com

The old man did it again, 3 years after his first Whitney victory, he galloped home once more 4.5 lengths in front.  The Zito-trained gelding showed that he loves longer distances, as long as he’s left alone on the lead.  He also gave me some much-needed points on the ROad to the BC contest.

Best run of the day was turned in by Ginger Punch, who found a world of trouble in the Go For Wand.  Boxed in early, she ran trapped on the rail ost of the way & in the stretch she had to bully her way between horses to snatch the lead.  She won going away.  The Distaff division is so tough right now, with GP, Hystericalady, and Zenyatta, not to mention Proud Spell, Pure CLan and Zaftig on the 3 year old side.  Indian Blessing is a top sprinter, period. 

It’s already a close race in SAUHBR.  BT leads me by 2 points after the weekend.  We both hit exactas for bonus points (whoot!).  Here’s the breakdown:

Saturday:

GO FOR WAND:

1)GINGER PUNCH (4pts) 2)Copper State 3)Indescribable (Inside Passage & Spring Waltz scr, so by the scoring rules, they were replaced by Ginger Punch, the race favorite.  Because GP won, I got an extra point)

WHITNEY:

1)COMMENTATOR (2) 2)Student Council 3)Grasshopper

SAN CLEMENTE:

1)Storm Mesa 2)Tasha’s Miracle 3)MISTY OCEAN (1)

SUNDAY:

JIM DANDY:

1)Macho Again 2)PYRO(2) 3)Tiz Now Tiz Then

BING CROSBY:

1)STREET BOSS (2) 2)IN SUMMATION (2) 3)Jungle Prince BOXED EXACTA BONUS 4 points!

SEAGRAM CUP:

1)Artie Hot 2)True Metropolitan (1) 3)Palladio

That’s 19 Points for me.  BT got lucky in the Seagram Cup & hit an exacta for 6 points, which put him at 22 total.  The contest just got started, but already it’s a close race.

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Filed under Brag sheet, Del Mar, Graded Stakes, Handicapping, results, Saratoga, SAUHBR