Race 3: Ontario Fashion Stakes (G3) 6f (AW)
Great 6f race on tap with a few interesting angles and an easy “beatable favorite” for us.
- Most Logical: #5 Sister Peacock (9/2) It’s very subtle, but it’s the key to this race. At the timestamp of 4:57:28 in the last race replay for this horse, the jockey realizes he made a grave mistake and let the horse get into a speed duel. A few frames prior, the arms are loose and a bit relaxed on the reigns. As soon as the 33-1 rail horse pulls alongside Sister Peacock, the jockey’s arms go rigid holding snug on the reigns, the horse fights the restraints and the battle was lost. While all this happens in the first ten seconds of the race, the eventual 1st and 2nd horse are 3 and 7 lengths back, respectively, conserving energy and relaxed. Going back two races, this horse was loose on the turf and couldn’t sustain the bid… but those horses that caught Sister Peacock late in the stretch are multiple graded stakes placed horses. The horse ran a huge race and should be given a few extra ability points for running against the pace flow (favored closers). Value line stands at 2-1 for this one.
- Best Value: Victory Kingdom (10-1) Never had a chance in the last event, breaking 2 lengths tardy to the rest of the sprinting bunch. The eventual first and second placed horses had an easy trip, breaking on top and holding rail to run 1,2. Whereas, this one had to make the early move to gain position going wide in the 4 path (avoiding mud) and then urged on again at the top of the stretch. Two move patterns like this in a sprint race is always an upgrade next time out – classic, “against the flow” type of race. Today, I’m hoping for a better break to grab the rail with the front pack, keep pace neutral, and go on to win. The recent Sept 14th workout for the sharp connections of Team Valor has me thinking this one is all systems go. Don’t forget, that Saratoga effort was off a 8 month layoff and on a washed off the grass event.
- Beatable Favorite: #3 Painting (6/5) Was the only one making up ground late, but the race flow flattered Painting’s form greatly. The rail skimming run this one got until they tipped for home also raises a question – what if this one faces adversity and gets parked wide. Needs the 7f to close and the 6f feels too sharp.
Race 7: Mdn $123k 6f (T)
Another beatable favorite that reminds of us Break Even.
- Most Logical: #9 Fabiolla (3-1) Last out had a tough go of things getting left at the gate and being blocked at the top of the stretch, and tried to close into slow fractions. Today should get an honestly run race and be wide enough to avoid trouble. The back class from the west coast runnings under the hands of Jack Carava have us excited, too. Three races back is the key: closing into slow fractions at the short distance and was beat by a repeat winner, Moonhall Milly.
- Beatable Favorite: #1 Feeling Funny (5/2) Reminds me a bit of Break Even’s runs, especially in the 2019 Prioress: jockey sits chilly and lets the horse’s natural speed try to win the race. However, in both cases, Break Even’s and Feeling Funny, these flashy horses didn’t get the job done and lost. Whenever I see that type of jockey behavior with classy horses that can’t sustain a late bid, I don’t get excited to back at a short price.
Race 8: $100k Stakes 8.5f (AW)
Note the #9 Painting is cross entered in race 3. We handicapped the race assuming that the horse scratches here and runs in the third.
- Best Value (Best Bet): #5 Strike at Dawn (10-1 but expect to shorten to 6-1) Interesting invader that was hanging with some tough company out west on the turf (Dogtag, Don’t Blame Judy, Tonahutu). Summer Shady and Souper Escape should ensure a quick pace and allow this one to sit the pocket in the pocket. Kevin Attard is 19% moving turf to synth horses. The sharp work tab indicates this one will love the Tapeta.
- Consideration: #3 Art of Almost (8-1) On the Tapeta hasn’t proven herself yet, but continues to run against stiff competition on the turf. If can figure out a way to translate those turf efforts to the synth, should have a good chance. The post draw down on the inside should ensure Emma-Jayne saves all the ground before turning for home.
- Exotic Use: #6 Saratoga Vision (20-1) Has yet to find the winner’s circle but we can write plenty of excuses in those races. The pace will need to heat up and allow this one to clunk up and hit the board. Don’t ignore if playing vertical wagers.
Race 9: Alw 6f (T)
Lots of speed signed on that should setup for our most logical horse.
- Best Value: #7 Believe in Beauty – Cool horse making the second start in North America, shipping in from Ireland for CJ thoroughbreds. Almost got the job done on debut, leading the entire way in the route event (note today is the cut back to 6f) and was swallowed up by the two stalking types in the race. It’s important to note that the eventual 1st, 2nd and 3rd horses were clear by some 6-8 lengths from the rest of that big field, even as our horse here was tiring. That tells me these three horses, including #7 Believe in Beauty, are the real deal. The sharp bullet on the workout tab, the second start after a long layoff, and the cut back in distance should prove useful for this horse. Considering the race shape, we don’t think this is the speed of the speed, so will hope for a near the front pack, stalking type of trip.
- Most Logical: #6 Roman d’Oro (7/2) – I feel like I have been trying to get this one home all season long. Last out was checked a bit in the first few hundred yards, stalked speeds, then was bothered the entire way down the lane. Two back stalked the speeds, had zero holes even past the wire, no-chance effort. Cycles up for the third start off the layoff and a jockey change might help the troubled trip issues.
Race 10: OC $40k 7.5f (inner turf)
As we discussed with PTF on the podcast, sometimes you have to get creative in these type of condition races.
- Best Value (Best Bet): #4 Under the Eye (15-1) This is our favorite type of horse to back – three year old with upside, has laid down a good foundation of figures in a previous campaign (high 80 TimeForm figures), but after the layoff hasn’t put the pieces today. Last out tried to take on stakes company that proved too deep of waters. Two back was meant to run on the turf but was washed off, so we can excuse that one. Three back was the only one making up ground on the loose leader to run respectably first off the layoff of 7 months. Today should get a perfect spot on the rail in the second flight of horses and grind down the lane to a victory. Value line stands at 8-1 for this one.
- Most Logical: #5 Vespolina (3-1) Another horse that seems to run into troubled trips. Last out was a bit too long in distance, two back closed into slow fractions, and three back got bottled up down the lane. The price will be too short on the day to back as our value line stands at 5-1.