Keeneland Select Players’ Podcast #5: Weekend Review and Friday Preview (Faron McCubbins)

The Keeneland Select Players’ Podcast is back with a book at last weekend’s stakes races and the Grade One Gamble. First off, Jonathon Kinchen, Sean Boarman and PTF give their takes on what they saw at Keeneland and look forward to the late pick four on Friday’s card. Then Faron McCubbins sits down for an interview about the great run he’s made in contests. He now owns outright wins in contests at Keeneland, Del Mar, and Belmont — a most impressive resume. You’ll want to hear what he has to say. Go to to sign up for an account today.


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Hey everybody. Peter Thomas foreign, a towel here, and we’ve got a great show for you today, but before we get into it, just want to give you a word from the sponsor of this new podcast, Caitlin select some great promos. You want to be aware of heading into this meet. There’s a signup bonus. If you bet $300 in the first 30 days, you will receive $100 back into your account and new for spring.

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Hello and welcome to the Keelan select players podcast. This is your host, Peter Thomas foreign, a towel back with you for show number five. We’re going to be looking at Friday, April 9th.  Keeneland late, pick four. We’ve got a visit coming up in a little bit from the winner of this year’s grade one, gamble, Farron.

McCubbin that’s going to be a lot of fun. I’ve got two co-hosts today. The first one, you know him, you love him. He competed alongside Farron in the grade one gamble. Wasn’t quite able to go the distance this time though. He has done well in that contest before I’m talking about the man he’s from planet, Texas, but currently in his adopted home of Lexington, Kentucky, he’s the people’s champion.

Jonathan kitchen. JK. What’s up. I appreciate you calling it, uh, competing it wasn’t, wasn’t really competing. He ended with a 31,000. I ended with a dollar actually. I had a dollar left and I bet a straight try at the end. Didn’t hit that. So I was zero. So, uh, I don’t know how competitive I really was all the best players.

And this is a conversation we’ve seen on Twitter. Some astute stuff about contests from your. A new pal inside the pylons JK, where he talks about the, you know, the advantage player in these contests. A lot of times you’re going to be either in one of the money spots or you’re going to be down there at zero.

So, so don’t wear that zero, like a Scarlet letter where it like a badge of honor. Scarlet letter, you do. We talked about books. Pre-show I think that came from a book that I just read this, uh, the, the, uh, the Cliff’s notes on. So you’ll have to fill me in, but you’re not a big Hawthorne fan. You, I was anticipating a second author.

I love that. Not the racetrack. I’m talking about like Hawthorne and Melville, Moby Dick, uh, Scarlet letter, all that stuff. And nevermind, nevermind. We are going to bring in our next, uh, co-host really a guest, whatever you want to call them. Professional player out of Lexington, Kentucky who played also in the grade one Campbell and as a pro player might have a little bit of a different perspective about that question we were just talking about and I’ll get to that in a minute, but first I want to introduce Sean Borman, Sean, what’s up.

Good morning, gentlemen. How are you? Good doing very well as a, somebody who is a real professional horseplayer, as opposed to just somebody who considers himself like an advantage player across different disciplines. Is your attitude a bit different when it comes to the grade one gamble, are you there to win or finish with zero?

Do you have a little bit different of an approach? You know, when I first started playing in the contest, I. Sort of just considered it another day of wagering. And if, and if I could build my bankroll up to get in contention, I would do that and try to win it. But I would also, you know, treat it as mild money after it had been one and save it to go on a bet with the next day.

Um, but I think that’s the wrong approach. I think, you know, I think you either have to shoot it all and try to win, or just end up with zero. Like you were talking about to really have a chance in that thing. I think that’s right. You’re taking a knife to a gunfight if you don’t fire it all at the end.

But I also have sympathy for the point of view that I’ve heard espoused by Duke Matisse and other professional. Horseplayer somebody betting every day who will just get to the point where. Even though the edge is there to fire it all at the end, he doesn’t necessarily want to do it. If it’s not a race that he feels comfortable putting that much of his bank roll on when he could also just put that bankroll in his pocket.

So I was half expecting you to take that same perspective, but there also is the idea that the advantage is such that maybe you just say the heck with it. There are going to be enough contest opportunities in life that I’ll come out ahead by being that aggressive. When it gets down to the very end, some of this just comes down to gambling personality.

I suppose I got the impression, Sean, that you had been hanging out with Duke a bit this weekend. Uh, how fun was that for you to meet somebody that there’s not a lot of people, especially in your age range and you know, Duke and I are probably. Uh, about 10 years older than you, but that’s still kind of close compared to most people who are in the horse racing business, I think, was that an interesting experience for you talking to somebody who is kind of a peer in terms of playing professional?

Absolutely. I had a great time getting to know Duke a little better and, you know, we had a great dinner at Tony’s and discussing races and discuss ways to improve contests and all the, you know, all the usual. Race racing got shatter. So, no, it was, it was fantastic. Definitely a little different than he is on Twitter.

That one J K some of your thoughts on the weekend, I was a ton of fun, always fun. We also got to hang out with, uh, with a young horse player kid by the name of Hudson Davis. He’s a student at Utah, uh, and he, he reached out on Twitter and, and, uh, we invited him to sit with us in the green room. And so. He got to a, you got a little bit of a, he got a little bit of a Ryan Flanders, a little Duke Matisse, a little Sean Borman, little Mike Maloney, little Prince of keen, one little bit of everything.

So he, he, uh, he was thrown into the fire. So, uh, hopefully he had a gun time and, and, uh, and we’ll, we look forward to seeing him at his next, his next live money contest will be a second. Very cool. Great to see the new blood coming into the game. Now we didn’t prep for this, but I realized that we’d be remiss in not at least looking back at some of the performances over the weekend at Keeneland.

And I think we should go back to Saturday, Sunday, such as it was the card with the rain and the level of racing, not quite the same, but was there any performance on Saturday JK? That, uh, you put down in your notebook as a horse to follow or something that you found particularly notable. You didn’t put this horse in my notebook for horses to follow because, uh, this horse has kind of burned in my brain as to follow and, uh, and that’s rushing fall.

I thought she was spectacular. Um, really special horse. And I think, man, I don’t know if it was maybe Sean that said this or someone said it, but it feels like rushing falls, like, or maybe it was Gabby that said it, someone we’ve talked to recently said it feels like rushing fall has been running for like six years.

And I think you actually was Gabby and you do get that impression. But when you look at her resume, it’s, it’s really, it’s really, um, Kind of short versus what you would think it would be, but she’s going to be a ton of fun this year to watch run and, and, uh, she’s got, uh, shades of a feeling kind of like a lady Eli type where we can see some special runs from her this year.

And it’s going to be really hard for people to beat her. She’s terrific. She’s long been a favorite of mine and certainly had a great race flow advantage in the race on Saturday. But she did what all you can do is take advantage of these situations. She’s got that push button. Look, I do see when I look at the PPS that six for a long fraction did come back, coded blue.

Sean is this one. That you’re looking forward to potentially betting on or using as a key going forward or, or one you might try to beat off the quote unquote perfect trip in the Jenny Wiley. No, I don’t think I would be trying to beat her up. She did get a very good set up, but she’s just the type of horse that is very tactical can make her own trip and still finish.

And those are really the types of horses I like to bet on. So I don’t. No, you know where she’s going to end up next, then? No for sure that I will bet on her, but I certainly won’t be trying to bet against him. In the end, she made the four to five look like a gift, not an easy thing to do, but it was, it was pretty simple.

Chad Brown running one, two, four, there couldn’t quite match the one, two, three from a year ago, but one, two, four. Too shabby. Let’s talk for a minute about the Lexington, the three-year-old race. She actually came back pretty fast. Brad Cox and Owen Dale, Brad Cox, with a couple of very promising three-year-olds out over the weekend between Oh, and Dale and warriors charge over at Oaklawn park.

This one does not have the points to make it to the Derby was not taken in the triple crown draft that we did on the other show, the, in the money players podcast, but does certainly seem like a runner with some real promise for the future. What did you make of this performance? Jonathan? I, you know, I was caught off guard a little bit.

Uh, obviously I think like some people were, um, by the horse, you know, look, I mean, brand Cox obviously deserves. Uh, a ton of attention, uh, when he has these horses, these young horses. And I think that his barn is obviously going to continue to grow with the success he’s had with Monomoy girl and, and other three-year-olds.

But, but I didn’t really, I didn’t really see this one coming. I know that Sean made a pretty big play in the, in the contest on Saturday. Um, and didn’t use Owendale. So knowing Sean and, and the way that he reflects after a play, I would imagine he’s got a lot more to say about why he missed the horse and what he thinks about the horse moving forward.

Yeah, no, I did. I used four horses in that race and was never going to use a one day Dale. Um, I didn’t see this coming at all. He did run very fast on my numbers and, you know, sometimes horses just improve, especially, you know, under a guy like Brad Cox. Um, I don’t know. What to expect going forward, but it was certainly an impressive performance I thought, and then totally caught me off guard.

I, they blew me out of the contest. So yeah. What was it about his paper heading in Sean that you didn’t like just slow final numbers, any component pieces to his performances that didn’t look so good. I’m curious. I just didn’t think he was fast enough. Honestly. I, you know, I had the main contenders in that race around and.

You know, high eighties, low nineties buyer figures. And, and on my stuff, he wasn’t barely just barely cracked in 80. I just didn’t think he was good enough and it wasn’t going to get a great setup, but he. No, he really just exploded and blew those horses away. So I was dead wrong about him. Sueno is a horse who I imagine is going to end up on some of my tickets somewhere, not necessarily on top, but a horse who seems like one to this point in his career.

Certainly. Probably in the future, too, that you can put in your bottom spot of verticals, whether you’re talking about bottom-up trifectas or third and fourth in supers, is that, is that the type of play you might endorse with Sueno going forward, Sean? Yeah, if I was to use them, that’s, that’s sort of the way I would use them as is underneath.

I don’t, don’t really, he’s just very grindy and, and. Doesn’t strike me as the kind of horse that’s going to win a ton of races against great horses, but he could certainly run third and fourth of botch. How did you, you have the track playing at keen Linda on Saturday? It seemed like there were a couple of wide moves in that race where it didn’t my first gut is I’m not sure how much that hurt them, but did you think ground loss mattered?

I really didn’t. I thought that was a very fair racetrack in terms of paths and pace. I thought you could win on the lead. I thought you could win closing from, from. Four wide. It was just a very fair trap. JK, did you have another note about the horses coming out of the Lexington or heck, we can talk about some of the other races Morticia getting back to the winter circle.

I’ve always been a big fan of hers. Nice to see her in the winter circle and the Giant’s Causeway that at least want to say that name on the show, but anybody from anywhere else on the card you’d want to mention. Um, you know, I kind of feel the same way about swaying your eye. Like we talked about before the show, he was not, he was knocking on the door and, uh, he’s continued to kind of knock on the door and he’s just, he’s a sneaky one.

He’s definitely one that you could use underneath at a price. I think that because he hasn’t gotten his picture taken in a while, he’ll be a little bit ignored and kind of forgotten. So I liked where you were going with that, uh, with that idea and, and, uh, um, I guess that we, we, we got our answer to. Was Chad going to run one, two, three in the Jenny Wiley?

I think it was one to four. Um, I’m sure he was disappointed with that. All do sarcasm. All right. Let’s look forward to Friday, April 19th, this late, pick four at Keelan. And we’re going to start off with this maiden race. Three-year-old maiden Ray, six and a half on the dirt goes as race seven JK. We’ll start with so, uh, we will say this.

I know Sean and I talked about it a little bit before the show. Um, weather is a possibility. Uh, on Friday and obviously recording this out a little bit early, uh, we’ll try and give some thoughts about what we might do in the event that there’s, uh, a change in surface for some of these turf races. But, um, I thought the three horse.

Uh, guarana for Chad Brown. Uh, obviously I’ve heard some things about this horse working well, uh, was, was working with some horses down in Palm Meadows. So you can see those videos on SBTV and, uh, and, and, and has been out working some other horses. So whenever you, whenever you see Chad show up with one, uh, that’s a maiden that has been working well, uh, for, uh, for, uh, a prominent barn.

Uh, or operation like three chimneys whose whose farm is literally right down the street from Kaitlin. You got to figure he’s going to have this one ready to rock and roll first out. I liked the fact that it’s six and a half I’ve talked about on our other show that six and a half feels like the distance to me that, that you can get horses.

That, uh, it’s kind of the most closing friendly sprint distance. To me, it’s kinda riding between six and seven and I, for whatever reason, I’ve, I’ve, I’ve felt like that always, uh, always happens in those races. So Chad horses are known for finishing. So I think that this horse that was extremely live at what seems to be a short price, the horses that have already run.

Don’t really grab any of my attention. Uh, the outside horse private message has a nice race on debut was 34 to one. That day. There could be a little bit of an improvement there, but, uh, we’ll definitely need to run. If the Chad Brown horse is the runner that he appears to be. A lot of people listening are going to say, Hey, wait a minute.

When they hear JK talk about six and a half being more closer, friendly, possibly than seven. I’m going to take a guess at why you think that. And then you can tell me if I’m right. Seven is far enough that may be folks are conscious of that distance a little bit more and try to back down the pace a little bit more, therefore seating and advantage to the front runners, six and a half.

You’ve got some people a little bit more with a go go mentality, going as fast as they would at six, setting it up a little bit more for those stretch runners meltdown type situations. Did I get it right? It is that, you know, it came from experiment. I did it. Yeah. I need it at one point where I was just trying to, um, identify what type of horse was winning, what type of race and the, the races that had the most closers winning at Santa Anita was six and a half.

And it, it made me kind of start to think about why that was the case. I would, I think most people would think it would be seven, right? It’s it’s, it’s. Yeah, I think most people would think seven, seven actually happened to be the most speed favoring trip at Santa Anita. I mean, outside of five and a half.

Right. So, um, I think the reason is, like you said, Pete is I think that, that, that people are paying attention to the seven. I think we had Craig Vernick on here one time. And he had mentioned that he felt like mile and a 16th or more truly run races because it’s, it’s short enough that speed horses still think they can wire a field.

When they go to a mile and an eighth, they started getting concerned about their ability to wire the field, and they start writing a little bit more. It’s like the same as said for the sprinters, when we were talking between the, uh, the, the scale of six to seven, um, I think that’s the same thing that happens.

And I just think that these horses get, they get these six for long setups and six and a half. And I think that’s why they can close a little bit better. I always look for a horse that finishes better going six and a half. I love doing this show where we at for once we don’t have like this huge, hard out time constraint.

So I feel like I can ask some of these more theoretical questions. So I’m going to actually do that to Sean right now. Another one we haven’t prepped for, and this one has to do with maiden races in general, Sean, in a maiden race, are you more likely to listen to information you hear from insiders? Or try to use information that you can Intuit from reading the tote board, more interested in sort of the tips or more interested in sort of following the money or we’ll throw in a third category.

None of the above, I guess we can do an, all of the above, none of the above. What’s most important to you when you’re looking for that secondary type of information in a maiden race. For me, what’s most important. What I’ve experienced over the years, especially at Kingwood and what my, you know, I guess it’s my gut or my intuition tells me, you know, I’ve seen enough to know what outfits are live with first-time starters and which one should take money, which one shouldn’t.

So when I see something that, that doesn’t make sense to me, like an outfit that never gets bad, it getting heavily bad. That that means something. Usually, and I, and I might include that horse where I typically wouldn’t. Um, but I, you know, as far as tips go to me, they’re almost worthless. Um, you know, if the parking lot attendant told my friend, Joe, who told me, you know, who else had the parking lot and pitching Colin, who it just doesn’t meet anything.

Um, So I just, you know, I always try to pay attention after the races are over as to what connections have performed well and which ones over-performed and just sort of file that away in my memory. And then when those instances come along in the future, you’re, you’re more prepared for them, but I, you know, I’m not a huge.

Tote reader. Um, certainly I just sort of hate

there’s a logic to it. About the, I, the idea of it getting priced at occasionally a source will come up. That can be profitable, but in general, I don’t know a horseplayer who would tell you they were up lifetime on tips. I would completely agree with that. Sean, what do you think of this seventh race on Friday?

I thought exactly what JK thought, um, the horses that have run don’t really interest me at all. And, uh, you know, it looked to me like the, the Chad Brown first, it was the most likely winner, but it’s also, it’s also not a race I’m super interested in to bet. So from a pick four standpoint, I would probably, you know, Chad takes money.

Will I would just single him and go to the next leg and then. You know, what I always like to do is in this situation is if he gets beat, I’m probably not going to have the horse anyway. So then you can just play the late pick three. That makes perfect sense. So, and let’s put your feet to the fire about who you would start off that late.

Pick three with, because race eight is next up on our docket. We are looking at a turf allowance spot here for fillies and mares four year and up and has an open look at least according to the morning lines, looking up and down this field, where do you think you might zero in Sean? Yeah, this is a, this is an interesting race.

And as Jonathan mentioned, we’re expecting weather overnight Thursday into Friday. So there’s a pretty good chance. This is going to end up being a dirt race. Um, but if it stays on the turf, it looks to me like the pace could be fairly quick in there. So I’m going to try to find some horses that, that can stall or that are just finishers and, you know, believe it or not.

There’s a. Fairly interesting. Chad Brown,

it’s a European shipper. Who’s running, you know, hundred time form ratings over there. Group three races. She’s probably the most likely winner, but I’m a little interested in Rudy.  sassy, little Laila. First time with Rudy. Who’s having a great meet. She’s. Got some early pace to her, but I think she’s good enough to sit slightly off these other speed horses and take over on the turn and put herself at risk in a really good position to win the race.

She might get run down by Chad, but, but those are the two I’m mainly interested in. And then Jeff Mullins has, uh, has a Philly named almond Dean who also is interesting coming from California. I’m not sure, you know how an off turf situation. You’re a wet turf situation. I’m sorry. It would work with her, but we’ve been fooled by that before w we’ve been fooled by that before with Mullins, it does seem like ones that he’ll send to Keeneland  he sends them there for a reason.

I know he’s he has one locally. Zaza is the French Philly that you mentioned first and then sassy little Laila and a little bit of love for. The Mullins runner, who is almond Dean. If this one goes to the dirt, do you have another thought or would you have to start? Uh, I haven’t really looked at it. You know, the only one that has dirt form would be strawberry to Tila and she’s got some pace to her.

So she, she could be interesting on the dirt. But you know that I really have no idea. Keep on the radar and take a look back. If you find anything you love, you can always, uh, amplify it with a note out on Twitter. Well, how can people follow you on there, Sean? I am at Borman underscore. Sean just took the, mainly gave me, I guess, J K what are your thoughts, turf and or dirt in this eighth race?

Akilah Dodd-Frank well, I mean, it’s definitely tricky, uh, with, with, with Chad and with Mullins. I, I think with Chad first zones, uh, or zones or the one we talked about. You know, if they come off, I don’t think she’s gonna run, obviously it’s Chad and he doesn’t typically keep them in, especially for affiliate who, if you looked at it or PPS, uh, like, I mean, almost every one of her last works was on the turf.

So she’s a turf horse. She wants to work on the turf. Her last work was on the dirt at Keelan, but I would imagine that’s because of Caitlin, you can only be a, I think it would be a stakes horse to work on, on the, uh, on the turf. So zones is the one that keep an eye on. Um, obviously if she’s in here, she’ll be tough.

Um, Almond Dean either way I’m going to be against, um, yes, you’re right. Jeff Mullins did prove us wrong. It’s in the post, a French bread horse that he brought to Keene Lynn and, and, and, and, uh, and ran with some cut in the ground and, and one and one easy there. And I remember this was probably a conversation that we had that day about, uh, why would you bring a California horse to run on the East coast?

Uh, on soft ground, but let’s not forget. There’s a rule that we have to follow. When Bob Baffert sends a dirt horse to the East coast, he’s going to win. When an East coast guy sends a turf course to the West, they’re going to win. And, uh, when West coast guys sinter forces to the East, uh, they’re gonna always going to be over bet and they’re gonna struggle to get it done.

So I’m going to fade the horse either way. There’ll be cut in the ground. Uh, based on the weather. The tricky part for me here is that like sassy little Laila. Is one that I’d like to get excited about. And also Lamare is a one that I like to get excited about is for types that if they come off, but neither one of them have any dirt form.

They’ve never even run on dirt, either one of those horses. So it’s hard to judge and I agree with Sean strawberry tequila is drawn way outside. And the 16 on the AAE, which shouldn’t be a problem if they come off, you’d think there’ll be a lot of scratches. And so being four out on the AEA, shouldn’t be an issue.

The horse is not on the MTO, but it’s on the also eligible. That’s a little bit tricky. I don’t know the, uh, the behind the scenes rules when it comes to that. But strawberry tequila has run on an off on, off dirt, wet dirt twice, and has won both times. And then it’s a family thing as well. Five four 11, the dam who’s had a offspring run on, on wet dirt.

Five of those 11 horses have won. I think you just want to find something forward in these races when they, when they come off with these turf forces that we’ve talked about before these horses, don’t like kickback. They’re not, they’re not experienced getting kickback, usually running on the turf. And so falling behind in these races can sometimes be a shock to them.

Just looking at breeding real quick and some back form that you have to go quite a bit back. J Jose cat, the S the nine by tap it out of, uh, cattiness Mayer, maybe. Yeah. I think the horse makes a little bit of sense. Actually, the horse caught my attention. The, uh, back in 2017 was running on the dirt was sprinting on the dirt.

So there’s a little bit of forwardness about him there. Um, or, or her, excuse me. She didn’t, she didn’t show, she hasn’t shown too much. Speed. Um, and her last two, she is full word, but it’s not exactly the fastest of paces in the, uh, in the last two races at Tampa and at Monmouth. But she’s definitely one that could be in the mix.

She’s a tap it. So, uh, you know, they can, they can run on a, on anything. Let’s move on to the feature of the grade three double dog dare and JK. We’ll keep it with you. Nothing like an ice cold single, but, uh, I don’t need anyone else, but blue prize, um, She’s run well in Kentucky, she runs well at Keene Lynn.

She has the best late pace. Uh, according to, to a couple of different things. Uh, Equibase had her late, late, uh, best late pace time form U S likes or late pace. Um, I love that going to mile 16 to Keelan. She’s the classiest of the group. She’s, uh, she’s everything that you want in a single she’s she’s run four times.

Fuse me three times on off. Surface wet dirt. She’s been in the money all three times. So that’s not going to be an issue for her. All I need is blue prize here just as a point of fact, not to be too much of a jerk, but just to, just as a point of fact, LaForce actually on time form us has a better late pace rating than, uh, that blue prize does.

But I mean, for all the other reasons you say, and the fact that blue prize projects to be well ahead of a foresight, I still think. It would change your opinion one bit, but just wanted to correct that. Sean, how do you see this one? Do you agree with JKS confidence in blue? Well, I’m checking. I’m double checking right now, but I’m pretty sure blue prizes going to scratch out of here.

Oh, you saw something on Twitter just this morning that she was going to scratch. Scratch and go somewhere on Derby day, but interesting, interesting. A hundred percent. Sure. Well, what does that do to you? We’ll get, we’ll come back to you JK for a final answer, but with that information, assuming it’s correct.

And we’ll verify by the time we post this, Sean, what do you think is going to happen here? Well, I was, you know, I don’t see a lot of pace in this race for this quality of horse. There’s just not much early speed. So I was trying to find something I thought could be up closer on the lead. And I’m going to go with moonlit garden.

She, you know, she impressed me in a bio cohort at Oaklawn. Last time we were in a fast number and has an improving figure pattern. She’s two for two in the exact same team. And I think she can just get a good forward pressing trip and still be able to finish. So that, that she would be my top choice, J K in light of that information, which has been confirmed that blue prize is going to scratch.

What do you think of this one? First of all, God bless Twitter. Uh, very often. No, that’s the, that’s something you don’t say very often at all. As a matter of fact, I’ve actually said the opposite of godless, Twitter at least three times today. Um, so here’s the thing. I kind of agree with Sean and, and I don’t want to be redundant.

I think Merlin garden makes a lot of sense. Forwardly placed. Has a little bit of finish, not a ton of pace in the race electric force is going to be over bet. Electric forest. If you don’t know, as an interesting horse, I believe is a half to Maclean’s music, who was the, uh, very impressive debut winner who ran a sick buyer on debut at, at Santa Anita and had, and got a stallion deal out of it.

And hasn’t been a bad stallion at that. So electric forces is interesting. Always takes a lot of money. Uh, I thought golden award made a little bit of sense too. Same content of idea. As Sean, uh, with, you know, kind of being Ford can still finish a little bit, uh, has been progressing as one, three races in a row.

So I thought she was interesting, but probably a little bit over bet. I think, uh, moonlit garden obviously offers a lot more value. Let’s go to the nightcap. This was scheduled for the turf. So I guess from here it’s 50 50, if it’s going to stay on or not. So no reason to go too deep in the weeds, given that we don’t know who’s running, but we do have an MTO here.

So Sean, I’ll come back to you for your thoughts on this one and feel free to give a turf thought. And the dirt thought, you know, I really liked this race. Especially if they stay on the turf. Scattered strikes for Graham motion really, really impressed me in his first started Gulf stream. Last time he was in just against an absolute beast for Pletcher and his social paranoia and set, he didn’t actually say he was the best of the speed in a very fast pace and help beat the other speed horses by many links.

And. Some closers passed them. Social paranoia just blew the race up and drew off about five or six links, but he’s had really fast-paced figures and I think could be a very nice horse was just in a bad situation. Last time. Now, you know, I wouldn’t really hesitate bedding on the dirt either as fast as his pace figures are, he just seems like he could be very nice.

That’s great. MTO. Yeah. Great info there. It’s scattered strikes. I’d love. Pause on him for a minute while you look, while we get to the MTO in a second. What I love about that is looking at the time form us pay slide. I believe it falls just short of those first two fractions being coded red. Yeah. And by the time you get to the fourth fraction, it’s actually colored blue for what happened to the race at that stage of the race.

But, you know, it’s a little bit misleading when you look at how fast it was early. So the way that you look at your pace number, Sean, I think is telling a better story than just what the time form us line looks like. That could be really interesting information. That’s not factored into the way a lot of people bet the race.

What do you make of this MTO? Methodical? Yeah, he looks, he looks competitive. I mean, he’s, he’s never, he’s only run once 0.7 in a competitive final time. And a nice, late pace figure was, was extremely wide on a day where I thought you needed to be more tucked in. I don’t think the rail was golden by any stretch, but I think I’ve got his trip.

It’s five wide down the backside, four wide on the turn. I think that probably cost them a length or so, and that just looked like a good. Sort of prep race for, for the start of his career. So I, I would be, I would be pretty interested in that horse if they come off the toe. So you’d leave, you’d use both of those in the dirt scenario.

What will it be for you JK to close out this PO pick for at Keeland on Friday, you know, to, to, to talk about methodical a little bit, uh, one of the things I I’ve kind of come up with and I said, I haven’t, I haven’t, uh, locked and loaded it yet anyways, but. I look, the public is the best handicapper in the world, right?

I mean, they, they just are, they, they, they hit at a very high percentage, 33% of the time or whatever it is these days. Right. So the issue that I have with methodical is that on debut, he was 36 to one. Uh, I’m not, I’m not crazy about taking a horse. Who’s drawn far outside. Who was six beaten, 15 who is 36 to one last time and is going to be what, I don’t know, like a quarter, an eighth of that price.

I mean, he’s going to be short because he’s the MTO, um, look the horse that I want to use on the turf, I’m going to use on the dirt as well. If the horse shows up, if you run, then it means that they, uh, they believe that he can handle the surface. But that’s the last zip and that’s a horse who’s going to be stretching out for, for Michael Stedham.

And if you look at stadium stats, when it comes from turf sprint to turf route, uh, when he goes from turf sprint to turf route he’s, he’s a one 33 times out of 150 star to 22%. And I think that’s kind of a tricky move. So to be able to still hit at a 22% rate with a horse that you terse sprinted, and then your turf routing.

Two very different ball games. I think that says a lot about his ability to get a horse, to stretch out the horse has a pace advantage to me, stretching from five and a half. If they do come off, you’ll be forward and in either situation. And I’m also a fan of scattered strikes that Sean mentioned at the top.

I think Sean and I actually talked about this horse. Leading into that race when he was a first time starter on a mandatory pick six payout day, he had been working on SBTV with a horse by the name of English, B English, B as a horse that ran into steak at Tampa and was beaten a link to a really promising, uh, Chad Brown horse by the name of digital age.

So scattered strikes when rain, when she ran in this spot. Excuse me. He ran the spot. I was a little bit excited about an opportunity to play him, but Sean was right. Social paranoia was just a freak and there was nothing that a scattered stripes could really do about that on debut. Those are the only two I need if it stays on.

And in all reality, those are the only two I need. If it comes off as well, I’m going to just focus around those two they’re forwardly placed types that obviously have, uh, some, uh, competent trainers with some ability. And, and I think that those two, uh, should be able to lock up this late race. Um, and, and, and, and hopefully.

In a way that there’ll be forward and it doesn’t matter which way it is. If it’s terrible. Yeah. Scattered strikes from everything I’m hearing from you guys is the type of horse I would want to really try to build around and maybe even have singled late in some iterations to get some extra value. In pick bats before this horse takes money potentially, and is sort of exposed to the world as well.

That should probably be shorter than seven to two. Is that your level of enthusiasm as well? Sean. And what do you think of that strategy in general of trying to find horses like this to build your day around? Uh, I completely agree with that strategy. I think that’s exactly what I would do in the late pick five and pick four worse, you know, depending on the surface, obviously, um, But there’s just, you know, if I feel like if I’m right about this horse, but he should win this race.

So. I don’t see a need to use anybody else unless they changed the surface and you’ve got to go a different direction, but that’s, you know, that’s exactly what I’m thinking here. Still one though, just to clarify, to use on dirt. And one of the things just to harken back to JK comments. We’re giving out big ghost squares here.

I think that’s another example on your methodical price guests, J K of JK tries math fails a quarter of the odds. This horse is going to be way less than a quarter of the odds. Should he compete? And half this field scratch this horse. Methodical is going to be what, two to one in here. Well, what I said, quarter and eighth, right?

What’s an eight to 36. Like I’m over here doing math at the moment. I’m going to let you do it. I’m failing 36 times a, what does that point? Oh eight? No, no, no, no. 12, 12.5. Is that what it is? Yeah. I’m not sure. I’m not. You’re going to have to show us your work JK and I think you might have to stay after for detention and stuff.

It’s 12 and a half. Yeah. It’s a 36, which was last price times. Point one, two, five, correct. To do an eighth. Yes. That would be right. So you think four and a half to one as well? Yeah. The horse is going to be shorter than that. If the horse goes well, I hate you. And on that, Nope, we’re going to bring in our guests.

This is a prerecorded interview I had yet I did yesterday with the winner of the grade one gamble. And now I’d like to welcome to the keen Lynn select players podcast, bit of a sensation in the contest world. He burst on the scene in 2017, winning the Belmont contest, coming back and winning a big Del Mar contest.

And now as of last weekend, he has a Keelan grade, one gamble win on his resume. Farren. McGovern’s welcome to the show. Thanks, Pete, that’d be here. Let’s start off talking by the event about, let me say that one again. I’ll fix it. And editing. Let’s start off talking about last weekend and your big performance.

What was your strategy heading into this year’s grade one gamble. Uh, well, I’ll be honest with you. I didn’t have a, I didn’t have a strategy. I printed me out a program Saturday. Uh, I was going to handicap Saturday night. Uh, but then I knew they were calling for rough weather. So. I just glanced over the program and threw it down and went to bed.

I forgot. Wait, see what the scratches were when I got to the track that day and kind of go from there. So very sensible plan. When it comes to wet weather, you don’t want to invest yourself in all that work and have it be for not, I thought it was a great decision by Jim Goodman to add some simulcast races to the program, to increase the betting menu.

What did you think when you saw that was in effect? Uh, I don’t know. I kind of had doubts about it. Um, I know last in the fall when they, uh, he had the contest and they got rained off the turf, you know, he left it alone and, you know, we just had to make the best of it. Um, but I mean, I guess it was okay.

You know, it didn’t hurt, help me or hurt me. I don’t do very good with aqueduct or, um, Very good with Gulf stream easily. So, well, that makes sense that you tend to avoid those races then, and it also makes sense that different players are going to have different attitudes about these things. At what point did you come up with the idea of making such an aggressive play late in the card, or is that how you always approach live bankroll tournaments?

That’s normally how I play. Um, I’m not somebody that comes to the contest and set some weights. I usually am. I can afford it. I’ll buy two entries and I usually play every race. In every contest, if it’s a two day contest or if it’s a one day, I try to, um, hit something early so that I have some bank wrote a bet with, but, um, I’m usually pretty aggressive.

Um, but you know, I was down the, I was down to $400 going into the eighth race Sunday, which I had a $500 double in today’s also. And that happened to come through for me, which gave me. Pushed me up over $6,000, which then in turn had to bet half of that in the last race. And I already had a pretty good stand on, on the last leg.

So I just, you know, that’s what, uh, What did you like about those horses that you ended up playing in the last, it was a big exact if I remember, right? Yeah. It was a eight, 10 exact in it. Wasn’t so much that I liked the horses. Uh, the 10 horse was actually my top pick out that a bit, a big wind bet on him.

Um, he ended up running second, but you know, it was more of a connections thing for me. It was, um, Andrew McKeever and James Graham. And then it was, uh, if I, if I’m thinking right, Raritan Jones and maybe Larry Jones was the trainer. Um, and that was kind of, you know, I do a lot of hunch bet and hooking up the jockey trainer combos and owners and different things.

And it was just kind of a. Well, those are certainly connections known for having success at Keeneland. So it’s a hunch, but maybe it’s a hunch that’s really rooted in things you’ve seen happen on the racetrack. It is exactly, you know, not many people know and, you know, been the governor of Kentucky and, um, Or, you know, the connection between, between James Graham and Andrew McKeever.

So, um, yeah, no one things kinda kind of helped a little bit, generally speaking with your handicapping methodology, you obviously are very in tune with trainers and jockeys and who points, where, and who wants to win where, but how would you describe the rest of your process? Are you that you look at speed figures, trips?

Where do you go? When it comes to looking at the form itself? I’m a big trip note guy. Um, I, I really liked the trip notes. Um, I don’t the only, the only papers that I use, I use the Equibase, uh, basic, uh, past performances. And then I use daily ration forms, uh, quick sheets for the last three buyer numbers.

And, um, you know, I just kinda. They, they shut off of that. You know, I don’t know, like a few different things. Horses may be stretching out for the first time, um, dropping in class, you know, things that other people like, I just maybe don’t go back getting them a different way. Your experience as a horseman must help as well.

You’ve owned some really good horses. You’ve seen all the highs and lows of race, horse ownership. How much does that experience impact? The way you look at that paper? Well, you look at it a lot closer, you know, when you’ve got some skin in the game, um, you know, it just, um, yeah, you, you, you do follow it differently like that, but, um, I mean, I, I can’t say it makes me approach it any different than, than I have since I started on in horses with, you know, 5,000 claimers up to, you know, looking into a state course for once.

But, uh, Yeah, it’s just, uh, More luck than anything as I see that sounds, that sounds perhaps overly modest. I don’t know, but that’s good to know that these were the ways you were looking at things before and during your horse ownership, you mentioned your graded stakes success. Bullard’s alley. The horse certainly deserves a shout out of the fine work that.

Tim Glenshaw has done with that runner and many others in his stable, sort of a, a little bit of an under the radar guy. Who’s really done some terrific work. How many horses have you had with Tim? All, I guess over the years, I would say 10 to 15, uh, you know, mostly cheap claimer, claimer horses, but, uh, Tim’s always done a great job, but the horse has done a fantastic job with board’s alley.

Um, We always knew he was in good care. And he just, uh, when you left the bar and checking on him, you knew you didn’t have to ever have to worry about that. And he always had him ready, ready for race day, too. Let me ask about your contest strategy specifically, because in addition to these high-profile successes, you’ve had, I’ve also seen you near the leaderboard towards the end of contests, where then you’re not there at the end.

It makes me think your strategy might be described as win or go home true or false. Well, yeah, that’s, I would say, um, I don’t get to go to the track near as much as you know, a lot of these handicappers do so. Uh, when I do come, um, I, yeah, I’m usually in an all in kind of guy. Um, I, you know, I come to, if I’ve got some marbles at the end, I’m trying to win it for sure.

Is that any different in a contest like Keeneland where yes, it’s a little top heavy, but really you get such a significant prize with that NHC seat and that BCBC seat for the top five. Does the. That structure, as opposed to some other contests where, you know, maybe even fourth, isn’t getting anything that significant.

Do you look at the prize pool and decide how aggressive to be at the end or is that pretty much just your bedding personality, where you’re meant to be aggressive? And that’s what you’re going to do to be true to yourself? I do look at the price structuring, but it’s just me. It’s my nature. Um, you know, to be, you know, in the horse racing.

Failed. Yeah, I’ve just been an aggressive better. Uh, I don’t make a lot of backup that’s I make a stand on something, uh, you know, and, and that’s usually where I put all my marbles and, you know, sometimes it works out and sometimes it don’t. How involved in contest play were you before your, you burst on the scene that Belmont in 2017?

Uh, I want to say I played the Breeder’s cup betting challenge, the big, uh, big contest once or twice before then, uh, had a little bit of success didn’t, you know, zeroed out, but I have had some good first day success, but, uh, fit and finish it off the second day. But then really 2017 was when I started following him, playing the contest.

Um, And I guess, you know, you know, Gary Palmisano at Churchill downs would have some small ones, maybe two or three that we played in. Um, but then I guess, you know, the Belmont contest was my, you know, when I kind of started, uh, following the tour a little bit on the live money contest and, and. Gary’s got the Kentucky Derby betting challenge coming up.

Certainly a big money opportunity on one of racing’s biggest days, the biggest day in many senses, of course. Will you be coming back and playing in that one? Oh yeah, absolutely. Um, yeah, I only live about 30 minutes from Churchill downs. Uh, So, yeah, I’ll definitely be playing in the Kentucky Derby bedding challenge that I played with Gary the last two or.

Maybe the last three years. Um, and hopefully this, uh, grade long gamble was my prep. Get me to the finish line here at the Kentucky Derby challenge. Well, that’s what I told him. Looking to go runner runner in those two Cod tests. How did you hear about contests in the first place and how did you get into racing as a whole.

Uh, well, uh, I never, I knew there was th there’s many labs, many contests as there were. I always thought there was just a breeders cup, betting challenge, lab money contest, and I’d always wanted to play in it. And finally, I got my nerve up when you’re to, uh, you know, buy my way in and play. And that’s usually what I do.

Uh, until I, you know, this last couple of years I’ve won my entry fees. Uh, but yeah, I didn’t know. There was a such thing. I just thought that was the only contest. And I finally started following on daily racing forum and Equibase and college reports, uh, you know, I would start reading about tournaments and different things and that’s when, and then when Bullard’s alley came along, when we started track, he started taking us all over the country, you know, we would.

Be there on big days. And I would hear about the contest. And that was, that was how I ended up playing in the Belmont, uh, challenge that year Bullard was running a sank on Friday. Yeah. The goat cup. And I said, well, if I’m going to be here anyway, I mess with enter the contest and I’m going to be betting.

So I took a stab at it. And then, like I said, I just got lucky and, um, Ended up over that plan going back further. Yeah. Well, as far as getting back into racing, uh, I got one of my best friends. His name is Wayne Spalding. He was my partner in board’s alley. He’s actually Bob fuller and, uh, Wayne got me into, um, following ration.

Uh, he’s been in a way longer than me, but maybe I’m going to say 15 years ago, I started going to the track with him and hanging out and, uh, I don’t know, three or four years later, he finally talked me into going in partners with him on a horse. And like I said, we’d been partners on probably 20 or 25. Uh, since then, you know, she, we can’t afford a back of horses.

Lou buy the cheap ones and hope we get lucky. And, um, like I said, well, uh, fuller jelly ended up, uh, making up for all of them. The bad ones we had growing up. So close to Churchill downs. Were you a racing fan as a kid? Uh, no. Uh, the first horse race I ever remember was when, and I don’t know what year it was.

I’m sure you do. But when unbridled, when the. Kentucky Derby. I feel like that was 1990, but I could be wrong about that. Yeah, it had to be right then because my mom made a $10 across the board for me. And I got back like $160 enough money to buy me a pair of air Jordans. That was mad. That was the first horse race I ever bet.

And I probably never bet another one for, you know, 15 years later, that’s hilarious. He, most people have that story and it’s like, and then they had me hooked and I started cutting school to go to the track and all this stuff, you were just like, Hey, I found a wallet on the street corner one day. I’m not going to go back the next day and look to find the wallet sitting there again.

I mean, what was your logic to not become upset? Yeah. I just never did that. Well, I was just a kid at the time, but, uh, you know, I just. I, and, and I, for the longest time, I only thought there was one, every one horse race, you know, and that was the Kentucky Derby cause I lived in Kentucky. So we watched the Derby every year, but I had no idea.

There was a circuit where a horse has traveled all over the country and you know, did what they did. And you know, that was, I’ve just learned that in the last, you know, 10 to 15 years, once I got into it, You know, partnering with Wayne on horses. So that’s very cool. How old are you and what do you do for a living?

And then I’ll let you get out of here and get back to work. I know you’ve got a busy week. Sure. Uh, I’m 45 years old and I work in the, uh, concrete construction. Uh, Industry, uh, we do foundation work. So, um, when the weather finally straightens up or the warmer, warmer grass season, we’re usually, we’re usually busy.

It’s hard for me to get to the track, but I try to sneak away on. Fridays or Saturdays or Sundays, or if it’s raining and I get to sneak away, run down the simulcasting or something. Hey baby. That’s your, it was your edge at Keene Linda on Sunday. You’re w you can, all, you can go to the track more on these wet days.

Do you have a particular affinity for the slop as a result of that? There you go. Yeah, no, I wouldn’t say that. Oh, you know, I actually really liked perforation, so I liked the bigger, the fields, the better, you know, the better the pay out. So. Um, but now, I mean, I just, those are the days I do get to go, want to try him again.

We’re not able to work or something, so. All right, fair. And I’m gonna let you get back to it. I have a feeling we’re going to be talking to you soon, sooner than later, the success you’ve had your, your strategy that comes to you. So naturally seems to be the optimal one for these live bankroll events and with the twists that you’re aggressive early too.

So you can put yourself in position that maybe have more chips at the end when a lot of people are going all in. I think it’s no accident. You had the success you have, and I thank you for your time today. Okay, thank you. Cheers, my friend. And that’s going to do it for this episode of the Keelan select podcast.

I want to thank Jonathan. Kinchin Sean Borman and Faron McKibben’s for their contributions to today’s show. Most of all, I want to thank all of you. The listeners you make this show so much fun to do, and we really do appreciate all of your support. This show has been a production of in the money media.

Our business manager is drew Courtney I’m, Peter Thomas foreign, a towel. May you win all your photos dollar

Hey everybody, Peter Thomas for Nitel back with you one last time, just to remind you. If you use the promo code ITM 19, you can get some great promotions from Keelan select, including an opportunity to bet 300 and get 100. And then again, to bet, 500 and get 50 back, two separate times over the course of the meet.

Make sure to check it Use that promo code ITM 19.

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