Oct. 26th, 2007

davehogg: (Default)
I haven't made a horse-racing pick since the Kentucky Derby - my handicapping program overloaded MS Access, and I've never gotten around to rebuilding it.

I was going to make a comeback with the newly expanded 11-race Breeder's Cup - three races today and eight tomorrow - but this is going to be even worse than the BC usually is for handicapping. They are at Monmouth Raceway in New Jersey, and they've gotten three days of rain. The track looks like a swamp, which changes all the handicapping.

The three races today are the three new ones - the Filly & Mare Sprint, the Dirt Mile and the Juvenile Turf.

Filly & Mare Sprint: La Traviata is a 3-year-old that didn't race until June of this year. That's a late start, but she's 3-for-3 in her career, and has won all three races by huge amounts. She's never raced on a muddy track, though, and his trainer just got suspended for using performance-enhancing substances.

(On a horse - not on himself)

Dream Rush has won four straight, including Grade I stakes in her last two races, but like La Traviata, she's never raced on a muddy track.

Oprah Winney is the only horse in the field to ever win on a track this bad, and she has a win at Monmouth.

Given all that, I'm picking ... Miss Macy Sue. She appears to be the fastest of the early-speed horses, and that can be a huge advantage on a muddy track. The horse in front isn't getting mud kicked in her eyes.

OK, the F&M Sprint is going to start in a couple minutes, so I'll post this and do the next two in another post.
davehogg: (Default)
All that about which horses can handle the mud ... and I didn't even mention the horse that was 3-for-4 lifetime on wet tracks. Maryfield won with a huge rally, so now she's 4-for-5. That said, I'm actually happy with my pick - Miss Macy Sue made a big run around the turn, got blocked and had to slow up, and still finished a fast-closing third.

The owner of Maryfield was the caterer on the set of Seabiscuit. One of the jockeys that starred in the movie talked him into buying a horse for $10,000. He later bought Maryfield for $50,000. Today's win puts her career earnings at just under $900,000.

By the way, Jeannine Edwards' eyes don't even look real in HD.

Next up is the Juvenile Turf. There's no way to handicap this. These are 2-year-olds, some of which have never raced on grass before, much less a swamp like this one. Prussian and The Leopard are the best American horses when it comes to breeding, but European horses run more on soft grass, so I'm going to focus on the three Euros - Strike The Deal, Achill Island and Domestic Fund.

Strike The Deal is the fastest of the three, but he finished ninth in his only race beyond three-quarters of a mile, and today is a mile.

They are loading. Prussian.
davehogg: (Default)
I said I was going to focus on the European horses ... and then picked an American horse.

The wrong one.

Prussian led into the stretch, but ran out of gas and finished about 10th. Nownownow was last at the top of the stretch and blew by everyone to win, just ahead of Achill Island. The three European horses finished 2nd, 4th and 5th.

I've now picked three races in 2007 on my blogs and haven't even mentioned the winning horse in a post yet. :P

So now we have the Dirt Mile. Quick horse-racing question: how far is the Dirt Mile race?

Answer, of course: One mile and 70 yards.

This is a dumb race. A really good horse would be in the Sprint (three-quarters of a mile) or the Classic (mile-and-a-quarter), not this one.

I shall now mention all nine horses, just in case.

Discreet Cat was fantastic last fall, but has been terrible in two starts this year.

Lewis Michael's name is not backward. He's been the most consistent horse lately, finishing first or second in five of six races in 2007.

Wanderin Boy is coming off a terrible race, but was very good in the summer and has two wins and a second in three mud races.

High Finance has four legs.

Gottcha Gold has won his last two races, both at Monmouth.

Park Avenue Ball hasn't won a race of a mile or longer since August 2006.

Corinthian is coming off two straight bad races, but the handicappers seem to love him.

Xchanger finished eighth in the Preakness by 25 lengths. Did I mention that the best horses aren't running in this race.

OK, I mentioned everyone. Now to get serious.

Wanderin Boy has early speed and loves the mud. He seems like a pretty easy pick.

davehogg: (Default)
So I do all this handicapping, and Angie sits down two minutes before the race and says "I'm picking Corinthian, because if he doesn't win, they'll make him into a sofa."

Corinthian proceeds to win by approximately 100 lengths.

My horse? Fourth.


davehogg: (Default)

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