Colonial Downs Analysis – August 2nd, 2023 – By Michael Domabyl

Week four gets underway at Colonial Downs one day earlier than usual as Wednesday’s card begins a four-day race week. The reason for this is excessive heat forced the cancellation of both the cards last Friday and Saturday. Today’s card is the return of the Friday program, while it’s TBD when the card from Saturday will be replaced.

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  • Race 1: 1-10-4-11
  • Race 2: 2-1-6-4
  • Race 3: 2-4-1-7
  • Race 4: 11-8-10-5
  • Race 5: 11-6-9-8
  • Race 6: 8-5-9-3
  • Race 7: 9-10-6-1
  • Race 8: 10-4-9-2
  • Race 9: 1-5-10-12

Colonial Downs Race 4: Gather the Facts (#11)

In a race where there’s likely to be no overwhelming favorite, I’m willing to lock in on who I think is the most likely winner in this maiden claiming affair. Gather the Facts (#11) has a dirtied up set of PP’s as she hasn’t raced over the surface she’s bred for in nearly a year. It’s been an eventful twelve months since that last turf start for her, including two barn changes, and a ship up here from Texas. This filly’s best asset is her early speed in a race where it looks like she can control on the front end. Getting this daughter of More Than Ready back on the grass and on the front end is likely all that’s needed to take down this group. Part of the reason for honing in on her is that there weren’t many other places to go in this spot. Quarantini (#10) is lightly-raced for a barn that has historically done well at Colonial, but I just wish she did a little more running in her debut. This race probably represents a drop in class for Exaggerated Humor (#5), but she didn’t exactly show up with any sort of effort in her last start either. One horse I could use at what’s likely to be a massive price is Alter the Stars (#8). She didn’t do much running in her debut, but that was a dirt sprint on a slightly tougher circuit. She now goes dirt-to-turf, sprint-to-route for a competant barn in Michael Tomlinson. She’s got enough breeding to handle these changes as Alternation has had moderate success as a turf sire and she’s a half to Mystery Messenger who banked over $200k racing mostly on turf.

Colonial Downs Race 6: Discreet Devil (#8)

With twelve maiden claiming turf sprinters set to go in the 6th race on Wednesday, the initial thought is normally that this race is wide open. However, half the field turned out to be easy eliminations and one horse stuck out to me as the most likely winner of the rest. I picked Discreet Devil (#8) in his most recent start and left feeling like I bet the best horse on the day. In his first turf start of the year, this ridgling set a fast pace for the level that caused his main pace rival to finish dead last. Conversely, Discreet Devil opened up a clear lead in the stretch before getting run down in the very late stages. He’s well drawn outside the other speeds and might get a stalk and pounce trip today. He’s my main play, but there are a couple other worth highlighting. Heart of Joy (#5) could take a step forward in his second start after getting an education in his debut. He broke slow, but then was able to put himself in the race and looked in with a chance at the eighth pole before tiring. He’s also likely to get overlooked at the windows for low profile connections. If my top pick stubs his toe, it would likely be due to another fast pace and in that case I view Giantsbane (#9) as the most likely winner, but he will have handle this stout turnback in distance. Finally, Blame B B (#3) also has the look of one with an outside chance. I’m willing to forgive his last race which came over yielding turf and he’s got sprint races from last year that would make him a winner here.

Colonial Downs Race 7: Run White Rabbit (#9)

The 7th race on the card looks ripe for an upset as it features a short-priced favorite I’m more than happy to oppose. Tapit Brio (#4) was extremely underwhelming as the even-money favorite in his first local start this meet and now takes another slight drop down the class ladder. A bigger problem for the favorite is that I’m not sure he has the tactical speed necessary to compete in a 5.5f turf sprint. Thank Ya Pete (#2) and Bourbon Brown (#7) are the next two shortest prices on the morning line and I have similar questions about them handling the turnback in distance. One runner that’s obviously suited to this trip is Get Them Digits (#6) who was able to break his maiden over this course and distance earlier in the meet. It’s tough to come back and win first time against winners and he might not get the same favorable setup today, but he looked too good winning last time for me to leave him off my tickets. I’m looking for a runner that I think can be at the front of the vanguard in a race with so many cutbacks. My top pick is Run White Rabbit (#9) as this gelding possesses the necessary pace figures to get to the lead in this spot. While he’s never hit the board over this surface, both of his turf sprint tries were against significantly tougher competition on the NYRA circuit. The shorter the better it appears for this guy as his only two in the money finishes came at this 5.5f distance, albeit on dirt. I’m not sure if he’s going to be the 30-1 on the morning line, but I’m also using Full of Life (#10) as part of my play. It’s interesting that this high-percentage barn shows up with two seemingly overmatched runners in this affair. This is the one that retains the services of the barn’s preferred rider and has at least shown to handle turf.



Meet Statistics

Top Pick: 63-15-14-8 (24%, $1.20); Featured Horses: 27-3-6-3 (11%, $0.59)

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