Del Mar Online Racing Community
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Midday saved face for me today, but at an unacceptable low price. Exacta was good with Pure Clan, only ticket I cashed, but enough to eek out a tiny profit on Friday.
I wrote a novel about Viscount Nelson on another thread viewtopic.php?f=4&t=1758&p=9469&hilit=Viscount#p9469. Pounced arrives for Gosden with every chance. Has ran all 3 of his races at 7 furlongs including a 2nd to Siyouni in the G1 Criterium on Arc weekend. Ground will suit but he's getting a lot of attention and might get bet down to favouritism. King Ledley has been keeping very good company while taking minor placings and banking good money. Picks up good local jock in Bejerano and could be a live longshot for exotics. Buzzword was done no favours by the draw. His best win was over aforementioned Siyouni three back, but he's regressed in his last two finishing 3rd and then 5th in 7f Dewhurst (G1). Might still get bet due to Godolphin, but I'd pass. So in summation, King Ledley would be wise to include in exotics if you're looking for a price. Pass on Buzzword and watch odds on Pounced and Viscount. Pounced over 4-1 makes him playable. I would need 8-1 on Viscount to be interested.
This race is ridiculously wide open. I have to think the favourite could be 5-1 or so. Lord Shanakill has been in most of the big races available to him. He just missed in the Dewhurst as a 2 year old last year. He was well beaten in the Guineas, but ran a respectable 3rd in the St James's Palace at the Royal Meeting to Mastercraftsman and Delegator. Snuck into France and copped a Group 1 against less than stellar competition at Chantilly. With that confidence he went back to England and ran into the big guns finishing 5th in the Sussex to Rip, Paco Boy and Ghanaati. Races first time for Papa Mandella, but keeps Jim Crowley in the irons. Mixed signals, but I would have to pass on the 3 year old.
Strike the Deal had an injury scare this week reported by Aaron and other media. Noseda said he's fine now. He didn't show much over the summer, but in September he won a handicap at the minimum (5f) and followed up with a 5f G3 win at Newbury beating subsequent Abbaye (G1) winner Total Gallery. Recent form is good, jockey in Fallon is good, Noseda has won a BC race, but the injury scare, lack of familiarity with quirky course and best distance seeming to be 5 furlongs makes him a pass as well. Lot of typing to toss two horses, sorry.
Fleeting Spirit is one of the top sprinters in Europe having won the July Cup (G1) and finishing 2nd in her other 3 starts all being G1s. She has significant issues with the gate and Noseda was irate at the gate handlers in France after the Abbaye. She schooled at Santa Anita this morning propping out of the gate and making a severe left turn into the gap for the clubhouse turn. Fortunately she's in stall 9 and will have 8 horses to keep her straight. She will still need to break and I could see her laying 4th or 5th behind the 3 speedsters on the inside. If she's within striking distance coming into the stretch, she'll more than welcome a fight and if the speed fades on the synthetic she could be right there trying to hold off the wise guy horse Gayego. Top class filly this, has question marks on surface and gate, but if you get 10-1 or so I'd have to play her and would also include her in exotics.
Beethoven and Alfred Nobel have been busy little colts this year. Both have won G1s, Alfred has raced 7 times and Beethoven 10 times. Pretty busy campaigns for juveniles and now they face a new surface. They have their G1s on turf, why not improve the CV and go for one on synthetic. Alfred was the hot summer prospect for Coolmore. Broke maiden, win G2 Railway on Irish Derby day, win G1 Phoenix and then bomb at evens when stepped back up to 7f in G1 National. Went for a lucrative sales race at Newmarket finishing 5th, but a deceptive fifth in that he was drawn poorly and actually beat 12 others on his side of the track while losing to 4 others on the other. Nicely hidden race form in that one. Based on his itinerary they think a lot of him. Breeding suggest a mile is within scope. Post position could be tough if he pulls the typical slow Euro break. Will have to fight a crowd for position. If he stays near 20-1, have to include him. Before the Dewhurst, Beethoven would have been a fairly easy toss, but then he stepped up and won the end of the year champion 2 year old race in England fighting hard in the last furlong to win under Ryan Moore (best jockey in England by the way). Took him 6 tries to break maiden and he's had 10 starts this year. Despite the connections, I have to toss him thinking the Dewhurst had to take something out of him and he didn't have a lot left for the year.
Vale of York is the Godolphin hope. He's been the mile trip in the G2 Royal Lodge and finished a good 3rd. Went to Italy and finished 2nd by a neck in a Group 1 against lesser company. Hasn't faced stellar competition other than a 5th to Elusive Pimpernel in the Acomb G3. Ajtebi allowed to keep the mount with Dettori being available. Find this odd and I'll give him a pass as well. Radiohead has aimed high this year taking on older in the Nunthorpe after winning a G2 at the Royal Meeting. Based on his races I don't think he wants any part of a mile and his post won't help. Toss as well, moreso than the other 2 tosses in this race.
This is getting too long to hold anyone's attention so it's time to be brief. Delegator is a 7 furlong horse in my opinion (Crisford's opinion too). He should get a mile on the firm, flat Santa Anita surface but won't be much of a price so I'm tossing him. Zacinto is a very progressive horse and other than his last his form doesn't jump out on paper. This is good for us punters as I think he's going the right way and turned the tables on Delegator in the QE II at Ascot even giving Rip a brief scare before the Classic favourite's stamina held sway in the stiff mile. As I've mentioned Moore is a top jockey, Stoute can get them ready, price is right and I'll be playing him with my top American Justenuffhumor. Gladiatorus is scary on the front end based on his Dubai win. He tailed off considerably in the summer, but went for easy pickings in Italy and won a G1 as his prep. He'll love the course including the turns and could win at a big price or finish eased. Frankie takes Delegator, but Ajtebi won both G1s on him. He's sort of like Presious Passion, will give you a thrill, but can he hold on. I'm guessing no.
Everyone knows about Goldikova. She ran a clunker in her first back then won 3 Group 1s in a row including a 6 length tour de force in the Marois. Jockey tactics played a large role in her 3rd place finish in the Foret trying to go all the way on the lead from an outside post. Price will be horrible, post presents issues for Peslier so I'm trying to beat her. I'll applaud if she wins, but my wallet is hoping the post or the jockey keeps her off the board.
Fortunately only 1 Euro in here. Mastercraftsman will be favoured, he should win, but won't be any price. He beat Marathon winner Man of Iron into 4th in his prep on the all-weather. He's already won 4 Group 1s on the grass so this is a stallion CV move. I'd be playing Mr Sidney to beat him. If Master wins as expected I'll be happy for another Euro winner.
Euros have this one over a barrel on paper. Presious Passion might forget to stop but Conduit, Dar Re Mi and Spanish Moon are all legitimate G1 horses. Spanish Moon is my choice as he should be fresh for this having won an Arc prep but skipping the Arc itself. Dar Re Mi and Conduit slugged it out behind the invincible Sea The Stars finishing 4th and 5th. They are all top class, but I think Spanish Moon will be the best price and will be Kieren Fallon's best chance for a winner.
If you made it this far, I appreciate your interest. Rip Van Winkle will be second choice behind American darling Zenyatta. Coolmore has thought so highly of this horse for the past year and a half that they would be ecstatic if he was the one that broke their Classic duck. He's an extremely talented colt with dodgy feet. He had questions before every race this year, but managed to win 2 Group 1s at a mile in the Sussex and QE II. 1 1/4 is probably his perfect distance giving Sea The Stars his biggest scare of the year in the Eclipse at Sandown. It's not fair to say toss him, but at the low price with the feet, new surface and Coolmore's lack of success in this race I wouldn't bet him. I would be very happy if he won though, and I would imagine the Coolmore boys might even show some emotion.
Twice Over is the sentimental choice for the Euros and many over there think his 20-1 ML is insulting and will be playing him. He's kept good company throughout his career while just failing to land that big race win. He finished 2nd in the Champion last year and a very close third in the Lockinge (G1) early this year. He then took on the big dogs at Ascot finishing 4th in the Prince of Wales's and then beaten soundly in the Eclipse. The old master Henry Cecil gave him 2 months off and gave him 2 easy runs in condition stakes both being wins. He then returned to the top flight and earned his G1 win in this year's Champion beating the progressive Mawatheeq and super 3 year old filly Sariska, who is better than F&M Turf winner Midday. He's won at the distance, he's a notch below the very best in Europe, but he's coming into this the right way though Cecil reported him as enjoying the long journey to American the least of his three runners. He'll be in my exotics and would be a very popular winner in England. Gio Ponti is my play of the meeting, but I would enjoy these two Euros in the frame with him.
Have a great day and go Euros. Need 3 wins to match last year and I think they'll do it.
"I'm Winston Wolf. I solve problems."
Thanks, Bob for your superb prognostication for tomorrow. I am quite concerned about Rip Van Winkle. I was watching TVG's handicapping show tonight, which included the British chap Tony (I believe that's his name), a heavy set man, and the talk about Rip wasn't upbeat. Will he be OK?
I was just "over" at the 'Racing Post' site, watching the Breeders' Cup Classic 'Forum' video, and the Brits on there like Geo Ponti.
I think he'll be fine. I don't know if he'll win, but he's a very valuable commodity and if something's amiss I think Murtagh will take care of him. The rumours have followed him all year and he's ran well in most of his starts. I don't worry for his safety, I just worry that his odds are too low for the question marks about him. I'd love to see him run a big race and get nosed out by Gio Ponti, but I would also be very happy if he won for the Coolmore boys.
"I'm Winston Wolf. I solve problems."
Not too long at all, thank you. I like Zacinto's form but saw him on the works and he was so sweaty. The ones I noticed bothered by the heat ran crappy today so I'm tossing him (I think). I like Justenuffhumor because I tossed his last race due to the track being underwater for the race. Throwing out Gio Ponti for the distance and track condition also.
I am playing (including) Strike the Deal, Alfred Nobel, Fleeting Spirit, Gladiatorus, Goldikova, Mastercrafstman, Dar Re Mi (my best bet), & Twice Over. I like Moore as a jockey also.
It was mentioned last night that Gladiatorus could have a real impact. I was reminded that earlier in the year he was ranked first in the world. Twice Over is another intriguing one because I believe he beat Raven's Pass; I think it was as a two-year-old, but he got his measure.
A great performance by the Euros again. I almost threw something at the tv when Tessitore said America wins the battle with the Euros 8-6. They won 8-6 with 4 times the number of starters, Joe. Euro had higher in the money % and higher win %. Won't happen next year, because I don't see many coming to race on the dirt at Churchill. They'll still be here for the grass races though. All in all a good meeting for those across the pond that I like to follow all year.
"I'm Winston Wolf. I solve problems."
I meant I was throwing out Gio Ponti's last race because of the distance and track condition. I did use him but lost in the last 50 yards
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