Pimlico Opening Weekend and The Wood Memorial .

Featured, Sports and Bets — April 5, 2014 at 12:24 pm by

Hi, Ho, Pimlico!  Don’t you live the smell of horse crap and money? Live racing began again at Pimlico on Thursday which means spring is in the air and Preakness weekend is right around the corner.  Pimlico Race Track may not be in the best of shape, and it may a little long in the tooth, but it holds a special place in ol’ Seabass’ heart.  Pimlico is where I got introduced to betting the horses and I’m proud to say that I’ve spent many a sunny afternoon watching these awesome animals compete right here in Baltimore while wagering cold hard cash on their efforts.  The fact that I could swill booze and eat good grub while doing so was just a bonus.  (Believe it when I tell you that the crab cakes at Pimlico are some of the best around.  Definite top 5-10 crab cake in my book.)  Sure, we could get into how the State of Maryland has mis-managed horse racing and how Pimlico badly needs a face lift, but it’s Opening Weekend so we’ll save that stuff for later.  Right now, meaning today, would be a great day to head on out to Old Hilltop and watch the horses go.  It’s going to be sunny and 60 degrees;  perfect weather for wagering.

Meanwhile the Kentucky Derby preps are still in full swing with the Wood Memorial being run at Aqueduct in New York and the Santa Anita Derby being run out in beautiful California.  We’ll look at the Wood and I like the favorite California Chrome in the Santa Anita Derby, so there’s not much to analyze.

But first the home town track.  Here are our picks for a few races at Pimlico.  We’ve include the three big stakes races being run today.  Good Luck!

Pimlico

Race 2 6250 Claim–  #3 Grace is A Beauty is the pick.  With all the casino money coming in it fascinates me that the MJC would still want to run low-level claimers like this on a daily basis.  I’ve always said that they should shorten the season and increase the racing quality, but what the hell do I know.  If they want us to bet on low-level racing, then that is what we will bet on, and  this spot we’ll bet the easy favorite. in a scratch laden field.  She’s in great form, and she gets the hottest jockey on the circuit.  Chalky.  2nd- #5 Amelia Rose.  3rd- #2 Ganza

Race 7- The Mister Diz–  This turf sprint for Maryland Breds features the favorite and local legend turfer, Ben’s Cat.  This monster has won this race four times, and there’s no need to think he won’t win number five here today.  This gelding has won over $1.8 million dollars and should have been entered in the  Breeder’s Cup Turf Sprint more than once.  (Why he never was is beyond me.  My guess is the barn wouldn’t put up the fees.)  Anyway, today he’ll crush this field of local pretenders.  Owns the distance, loves Pimlico, and is far and above the class of this field.  Don’t see an upset brewing.  2nd-  #8 Capital Fellow.  3rd- #2 Mass Destruction.  Plus at 8 years old, I hope Ben’s Cat gets to retire to the green meadow soon after winning his connections so much cash.

Race 8-  The Twixt–  This mile and 1/16th route stakes for Maryland Bred Fillies draws a short field and looks chalky.  So be it. The #4 Steady N Love is on a roll.  Back to back wins including an eye-popping 20 length win in February.  Slow starting miss will be rolling late.  Even money. 2nd- #1 Charlie Renee.  3rd- #3 Turf Craze

Race 9- The Dahlia Stakes-  Betting too many favorites sucks, so in this competitive turf miler I’ll be looking for some value.  I may have found it in the #7 Villette.  This lightly raced 5-year-old mare has never tried the lawn before but no 6-1 shot is ever perfect.  Trainer John Servis has had some success with the first time turfers and the distance certainly won’t be an issue.  Improving career Beyers, solid and steady works, and pilot Carmouche certainly knows the Pimlico lawn.  Servis and his intriguing mare were also entered later in the week at another track, but they elected to stay here in this spot.  Positive sign.  Hopefully she can stay near the front and hold off the grass veterans.  Risky.  2nd- #1 Joy. 3rd- #2 Zucchini Flower

The Wood Memorial- Aqueduct-
The horse we wanted to bet, Kid Cruz is a late scratch due to a shoulder strain.  We’ll see him down the road in maybe the Preakness.  The Wood features several solid entries including the much talked about Social Inclusion who popped a 111 Beyer while destroying a field in an allowance race at Gulfstream Park.  It was very Big Brown-esque.  But now the waters get deeper and Social Inclusion won’t be alone on the lead like he was back at GP.  I’m looking for Samraat to take another step forward and pull of the mild upset.  The race may set up perfect for Samraat’s style and this horse will look an opponent in the eye and win.  Look for him to run down Social Inclusion late.  The winner of this may be my Derby horse.  Exacta mania.  Have fun and enjoy the racing!

 

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