Free Picks & Analysis — Who Do Ya Like?
Sunday, October 1, 2017
Today’s the first day of October, and that means a great day of racing action at Belmont Park. As usual, Steven Schwartz (@albundypolkhigh) will be providing FREE picks & analysis of all the racing action every Sunday. Be sure to give Steven a follow on twitter, for updated thoughts throughout the program.
Good luck to everyone following along!
Make sure to follow me on twitter @albundypolkhigh. I often make changes to picks based on surface and the betting board.
I have had a great week thanks to a bunch of jail moves and few key plays. I hope that luck continues because if I am being honest, this card is one big question mark to me. Let’s stay hot. Let’s take some chances. Let’s cash some tickets. Let’s get ‘em.
Pick 5 ticket – 1,3,4,5,6 / 1,2,3,4,5,7,8 / 2,4,6 / 10 / 1,9,10 = $157.50
**** Can play a $105 ticket if you remove the 4 from race 3.
Race 1- 1-4-3
#1- Southern Union – In a race where everyone has question marks I will side with the horse that should find himself on the lead as the only speed on paper. The low percentage trainer and jockey combo are not flattering. Maybe the drop in class will help this one walk around the lead in what appears to be a wide open race.
#4- Gotham News- He is probably the horse to beat but his form has been atrocious of late and hard to endorse at what will be very low odds. He is just as likely to win the race as he is to be completely off the board.
#3- Mr. Grey – His lone try on the dirt was a 2nd place finish but lost by almost 10 lengths. Another in a race with huge question marks.
Race 2- 2-7-4
#2- Sand Dancer – This is more of a play against Johnny Action. Generally speaking, when Pletcher takes a horse to the turf after getting beat on dirt, this is their last ditched effort to find a winner before cutting the horse loose. Sand Dancer is a half to Shock Leader (10 wins and 200k in earnings). 8-1 is worth a shot against this mediocre field.
#7- Johnny Action – The aforementioned ML favorite is sure to take plenty of action despite not running a step in his first two attempts. Similar to the favorite in the first, he can win but hard to endorse at a short price.
#4- American Lincoln – In a race that looks short on talent, sometimes the connections are all you need. Rice and Lezcano are a great duo……especially routing on turf. Rice hits on 22% winners with horses debuting at the MCL level
Race 3- 2-4-6
#2- Madefromlucky – He is looking to make it back to back stakes wins at the marathon distance. Beware of the track comes up anything less than fast.
#4- Archanova- Sometimes in a race like this you need to look at the new face. He has plenty of room to improve as a 4yo and is a legit contender to upset the likely heavy favorite. It is interesting to see the jock make the trip just for this race.
#6- Scuba – Should be able to control things up front which is usually how most marathon races are won at the Belmont track.
Race 4- 10-5-4
#10- Overnegotiate – Of all the races in the pick 5, this is the one I like the most. The Mike Repole owned 3YO filly is a neck away from being a perfect 3 for 3 on the turf including a perfect 2 for 2 at Belmont. The outside post should have him perfect positioned about 3rd or 4th on the outside and in the winning stalking position.
#5- Miko – How often do you see a horse win back to back races with Rice and Jose Ortiz at odds of at least 8-1. That is what this horse did this summer. She will have to improve to beat my first and third choices but she has a right to take a step forward today if someone can challenge #7- Initiate.
#4- Kahrumana – The likely favorite come post time got a horrendous trip last time out at this level. She has plenty of early zip so it will be interesting to see if she and #7 hook up early. If they do, I feel really good about my top pick. If not, I think the one who is most aggressive will have a huge edge.
Race 5- 9-1a-10
#9- Rapscallion – Whenever I think of this horse I think of the old Dennis Green clips “they are who we thought they were”. Well this horse is a 25k claimer on turf as evident by his 4 straight ITM races at this level including 2 wins. For a horse with a bunch of layoff lines, it is nice to see him put to races back to back which is a positive sign.
1a- Captian Gaughen- This old vet is taking a huge drop in class for Jason Servis. He is much the horse to beat based on connections, class and speed. But it is hard to pick a horse on top who hasn’t won in just over 2 years. Today will probably be his day, but will offer no value.
#10- Alaskan Prince – He has put two nice races back to back and now comes in fresh for Weaver and Franco. I would not be alarmed by the “drop” in class. This is where this horse belongs after breaking his NW3.
Pick 4 Play – 1,2,5,7,8,9 / 1,5,10 / 7 / 1,5,7 = $27
Race 6- 1-8-7
#1- Big Birthday – There is probably no way we get 6-1 on this horse as the ML suggests. This 2yo daughter of Mineshaft goes first time out for Chad Brown from the rail which can be difficult for a horse.
#8- Fortune Street- The “Mile Master” usually finds a way to hit the board at big prices with these types. His first two attempts on the dirt were better then they look on paper. Both times she tried to close into a very slow pace and each time endured tough trips. Her routing attempt on the grass, where she showed plenty of early speed is a great sign and I wonder if they will use those tactics today. That aggressiveness can allow this one to at least hit the board at a huge price.
#7- Mockery – This half of Bay of Plenty is bred to be a good thing. The first attempt was sprinting and the last attempt was in the slop. Maybe today is the day routing on a fast track?
Race 7- 10-1-5
#10- Sandy Belle – The added distance is a concern but Jose Lezcano should find himself alone on the lead with this 3 YO filly. Her August 11th race was extremely impressive considering the fast fractions and holding 2nd place despite a course that was not kind to speed. Possible single at a price?
#1- Sweet August Lady & #5 Munchkin Money – Both horses exit the same race and even though Munchkin Money had the better result, I wonder if Sweet August Lady had the best race considering the way the track was playing. Sweet August Lady has a win over the track and a slight improvement off of that Belmont race make her the better play at twice the price.
Race 8- 7-6-5
#7- Significant Form- One of my favorite handicapping angles is when a maiden runs in a stakes race. Although my top pick kinda hits that angle since she won her first race but was DQ’ed. Still that race was extremely impressive and I think it makes her the one to beat over the stakes winning Pletcher filly. You get the feeling that Brown was pointed to this race all along as a BC prep.
#6- Orbolution – She won impressively in a Stakes race at Saratoga, albeit at 3/5. She will have to improve to make it 3 for 3 on the green.
#5- Indy Union – Did you remember that angle I spoke about with my top pick?
Race 9- 1-7-5
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