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Saturday, October 25, 2008

Last Big Day of the Year

Ventura got things off to a resounding start on newfangled Filly Friday and Championship Weekend was underway. My pal JB called the Ventura victory in an email on Thursday and kudos to him. The Puma hit the triple and all I had was the measly exacta, but on the board positively off the first race. The rest of the day was fairly chalky on top but some longer odds horses placed (Sealy Hill at 49-1 in the Turf, Dream Empress at 13-1 in the Juvie and Heart Shaped at 11-1 in the Juvie Turf) screwed up all my exotics. A long 20 cent Superfecta win in the Classic cut some losses. But today is another day and the racing was very exciting.

My TBA selections ($2WPS contest) earned me $13.20 (pretty weak) with a placing (Indian Blessing) and two shows (Sky Diva and Music Note). Today's another day, just trying to avoid last place.

In the Thoroughbred Racing in NY Facebook group Caboose contest I had one dead laster (Bear Now). It's even harder to predict who will come in last than picking winners after trying that. So at dinner last night, the Space Gal (who petitioned to be called Space Vixen - which in the current in foal status got the big veto - for now) said she could probably do as well as me just speed-capping the races on Saturday morning. Well then. Challenge accepted. We are having our own inner circle contest and I'm willing to be humiliated and give her my blog for a day should she win the $2WP on seven races today. I'll stick with my TBA picks (other than the Mile where I'm jumping on Goldikova) and I'll post hers below mine.

Zenyatta sure did make her case for HOY with an awesome 10 length comeback win over the fillies in the 3H Classic. Watching on the Deuce in HD was pretty cool, except for some of the wild camera angles leaving me with no idea where they were on the track at times.

Pro-Ride Mile. Well Armed loves the Pro-Ride and Bobby Frankel has to be respected here. Lewis Michael could be the cream of the crop in here and is looking to redeem himself after last year's sloppy 5th place finish. My Pal Charlie is a favorite of mine and a sentimental pick only (not that anyone takes me seriously) and I'm hoping he handles the synth as this appears to be the right distance for him.

Selections: 1 - Well Armed, 2- Lewis Michael 3 - My Pal Charlie
Space Gal: Lewis Michael

Mile. Goldikova (IRE) has some Group 1 victories under her belt and takes on the boys, looks like a solid choice. Dick Dutrow has Kip Deville ready to roll coming off a poor effort in the Woodbine Mile. Whatsthescript (IRE) will bookend the Irish trifecta with Gomez in the irons. Have a Guinness and relax.

Selections: 1 - Goldikova, 2- Kip Deville, 3 - Whatsthescript
Space Gal: Kip Deville

So as I am writing this I'm seeing her selections for the first time (she had my Form for about an hour) and I'm thinking maybe this isn't such a good idea.....

Juvenile. I featured Munnings in a post last week and I'm sticking with him here. He has chased Vineyard Haven (not running) in his last two and he should be ready to fire (the 1 hole wasn't all bad yesterday - ask Zenyatta). West Side Bernie is my longshot play of the day, has some super works at OSA and a win over the poly at Turfway Park, maybe the bombs coming in second will continue. Midshipmen has matching Beyers coming into the race and has won or placed in his three races on the synth.

Selections: 1 - Munnings, 2 - West Side Bernie, 3 - Midshipmen
Space Gal: Terrain

Juvenile Turf. Bittel Road (4-1 ML) is undefeated and look for Pletcher/Velasquez to get on the board with a BC victory here. Skipadate has some nice speed figures and I like the grey to hit the board here at a nice price. Julien Leparoux is one of the best turf jocks in the land and Marylou's Ninth Client should complete the tri. Lastly, the Euros will make an impact on the turf today and Westphalia has to be respected and he should be considered underneath.

Selections: 1 - Bittel Road, 2 - Skipadate, 3 - Ninth Client
Space Gal: Ninth Client

Sprint. The Smart Strike gelding Fabulous Strike (7-2 ML) with Ramon up has some impressive speed figures is 7 for 11 at the distance and has some nice works under his belt. Street Boss (TBA's TVG Sprint division leader) should be the favorite at post time on his home track and is his second race off a layoff is poised for a super race. Fatal Bullet (the SG's 2nd choice as volunteered by her) romped on the poly over Turfway competition in her last outing, and will be stalking the pacesetters.

Selections: 1 - Fabulous Strike, 2 - Street Boss, 3 - Fatal Bullet
Space Gal: Street Boss

Turf. All Euro trifecta. Grand Couturier (GB) has been a monster of late and should be there at the wire. Toss up between Red Rocks (IRE) and Soldier of Fortune (IRE) underneath. Dead heat?

Selections: 1 - Grand Couturier (GB), 2 - Red Rocks (IRE), 3 - Soldier of Fortune (IRE)
Space Gal: Red Rocks

Open Classic. Looking for the improbable here. Is anyone sick of the phrase "Curlin versus the world?" It's up there with "5 dollah, 5 dollah, 5 dollah fooooot longgggg" in the annoying phrase category. Sorry, now you're probably saying this in your head now and you won't be able to get it out. My bad.

Selections: 1 - Go Between, 2 - Curlin, 3 - Colonel John
Space Gal: Curlin (she says she'd also drop a nickel on Tiago, not that she knows what that means)

Here's hoping Hank Goldberg doesn't have similar selections. Good luck and may they all come home safe today with the spotlight on.



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