Free Picks & Analysis — Who Do Ya Like?
Sunday, August 16, 2015
On Sunday, we’re headed back out to Saratoga, where we’ve got FREE PICKS & ANALYSIS from our friend and returning guest handicapper Brett Strong (@Storiesdub).
We thank Brett for his thorough writeup today and we’re excited to have him with us every Sunday of the Saratoga meet! Good luck if you’re playing along today. Take it away, Brett…
Welcome back to another SUNDAY’S AT THE SPA! I’m your host Brett Strong and we’ve got another fun card in store for us today. Good luck and I hope we start the week off with a bang!
R8- ALL (10 Runners)
Race 3- 5 (Uncle Sigh)
Race 7- 7 (Dreaming of Gold)
Race 5- 3 (Ferocious Tiger)
Race 8- 6 (Spuntastic)
Race 9- 4 (John Q. Public)
Race 1- 5-2-1
Wow. Where to start. This is an interesting race to kick off the day. I settled with Andalusite here for a few reasons. Besides the last race, it looks like this one can be coming late. Stretches out to 1 1/2 which could end up being the extra distance needed to finish the job. Irad getting up should definitely help. Alajmal is the most seasoned at going long on the grass. Comes back after a year off but has been facing better in the last few starts. Johnny V takes the mount and should be in the mix. Malibu Preacher ran well at this distance last out, just missing by a little less than 2 lengths. But 2-1 on the M/L with a bug rider up doesn’t drive me to the window on this one. Can definitely win but I’ll look elsewhere.
Bet- $10 Exacta 5/1,2
Race 2- 3-2-4
I don’t doubt for a second that Stay Tuned can beat this group. However, at 6/5 M/L there is no way I’m falling into that. I’ll stick with Roman Revival. Wired the field last out in its only start. Gets an upgrade in jockey and meets a group that doesn’t turn heads necessarily. Does step up in class but I look for this one to improve. Cloverdale Nine is an interesting runner here. Back in January, this one wired a 100k claiming field at this distance down in Florida. Hasn’t run very well since but gets back to a sprint and I can forgive its last sprint as he broke through the gate and never got in the mix.
Bet- Pick 4 only
Race 3- 5-4-6
The question here is will Uncle Sigh be ready to go coming off over a year layoff. My assumption here is that he will be. Drops into an average allowance field and is by far the class of this race. Drama King has the only competitive speed figures but has faced weaker when getting to the winners circle. Hunts Road gets some respect as this one has the highest percentages as far as connections go with TAP and Johnny V. hooking up.
Bet- Pass (Singling Uncle Sigh in P4)
Race 4- 8-1-5
It’s interesting that JJ gets off of Unbridled Daddy and gets on the first time starter for Chad Brown Ekhtibaar. With that being said, Ekhtibaar will go as top pick in what will probably be a back to back chalky finish. Unbridled Daddy gets Irad and only missed the winners circle by 3 lengths in its debut. Shows a a solid work in preparation for this and the stretch out should help as he gained ground late last out. Cav will get my last suggestion even though Mott has somewhat cooled off. Junior Alvarado has ridden well for Mott recently and has positive numbers on the turf. Looks to have just had some maintenance works the last couple but did have a nice work a few back. In the mix. Azar would be the one I would say watch the board for. Didn’t show much on debut but had a nice recent work. Weather looks good for today so I’d say don’t worry about the MTO runners.
Bet- $20 Win on 8
Race 5- 3-5-4-7
I’m going for a price here. Ferocious Tiger enters here for Ward and gets the hot Irad Ortiz up for the second time. Boasts the highest last out speed rating and you have to think at some point Ward will add a few winners this meet and this looks like a good spot at what will be a nice price for us. It’s tough to separate the next few so I will use them all in multi race wagers as well as add the 8 Crescent Street for Schosberg. Doesn’t look fast enough on paper but Schosberg has had decent success this meet winning at a 20% clip and has done well with Alvarado on board.
Bet- $20 Win on 3
Race 6- 2-9-8-3
I like Tap To It getting Joel on and drawing down inside. Will go as my top pick. Beyond this one, you have the usual suspects. TAP and Johnny V and JJ with Chad Brown. Queen Caroline will round it out as she shows a nice work and her Sire is 20% with first out runners. I’m not a 2 year old expert as it’s obviously hard to gauge form. I’m sure Bruno has the info on how well these moved in their recent works. I’m glad this race isn’t part of the late P4!
Bet- $5 WPS on 2
Race 7- 7-4
This one looks like a match race between Maker and Brown. I’m going to take Maker to get the better end of this. JJ stays on and this gets its second go at it over this turf course. Stretches back out to the distance it won at down at Churchill and should get it done.
Bet- $20 Exacta 7/4
Race 8- 6-7-4-9
I’m going with Spuntastic here for the upset. Kiaran has had a lot of success this meet and this race is ripe for the picking. The added distance will help. This race has the set up to have a big price winner. Ack Naughty is not a 7/5 M/L favorite and can be beaten here. This will be my ALL race in the Late Pick 4.
Bet- Pass (ALL in Pick 4)
Race 9- 4-5-1
John Q. Public is a huge price here. Has had troubled trips in its last two and if can stay out of trouble is the only one to have faced graded stakes company and could be the surprise upset winner here. D. Wayne has good numbers with First Time Lasix runners and you have to notice the small changes trainers make. If that’s what wakes this one up, look out. You have to respect Saratoga Mischief coming off a solid Maiden score first out a few weeks ago. Keith Desormeaux seems to spot his runners pretty well when he’s shipped them here so Exaggerator will round out my top 3.
Bet- $10 WP on 4
Race 10- 9-5-8-13
There are a lot of unknowns in the finale. This race for 2 YO fillies is tough to navigate. With all of the AE it’s tough to know who stays and who scratches. Assuming all of the runners stay in and nobody draws in, I’m going with Claire’s Joy as my top choice. This firster out of Kittens Joy gets sent out by Motion in a good spot and drew well as far as percentages go for races like this. Gets Joel which gives me a little pause but if I’m betting him it’s going to be on the lawn. Grey Stark and Liberty Kitten are obvious contenders based solely on breeding and connections. If Rebelle draws in, must be used as it gets a second trip over the turf at the SPA and will be going out getting Lasix for the first time.
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