Saturday At Gulfstream

Featured, Sports and Bets — February 8, 2013 at 5:35 pm by

I was going to handicap some of the card at Laurel Park this weekend, but since the weather up here blows, I’ll turn my attention to the races being run in Southern Florida.  Saturday’s feature at Gulfstream is the Donn Handicap, a Grade 1 Stakes race for older horses.  A handicap is a race where different horses are assigned different amounts of weight to carry based on their ability and past success.  Which means the favorites carry the most weight.  The thinking is that giving the lesser horses a weight advantage will help even the field, making for a more exciting race.  I personally don’t feel that a five to ten pound handicap on a 1000 pound animal is a big deal, but some of the old railbirds swear that weight is a factor.  It won’t affect my handicapping.

Besides the Donn, the Gulfstream card features two Grade 3’s and another Grade 1, The Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap.  This is another handicap for older horses, only this race is run on the turf.  Running in this race is the 2011 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom, who has made a very successful switch to the turf.  It will be a prime racing day in South Florida, and since we are a bunch of sick degenerates, we won’t miss the prime time gambling that goes along with it.

We are going to handicap five races on the card starting with the 7th race.  Enjoy and good luck babes.

Race 7 ……..This Optional Claimer on turf for 3 year olds features a great looking colt trained by Todd Pletcher.  Jack Milton is his name and he’s the morning line favorite.  But we will try to beat him with the # 2 Pyrite Mountain.  This colt ships down from Woodbine after winning a 125k stakes race on the synthetic surface.  For whatever reason, a lot of horses who have synthetic success have turf success. #5 Jack Milton, and the other favorite #4 Play it Loud, both have yet to race against other winners.  So we feel Pyrite Mountain has a real chance here. He is first time Lasix as well, and his post position will allow him to stay close to the front while saving ground.  The 6-1 price just adds to the appeal.  $25 to win and run him in exactas with the 4,5 and 8.

Race 8……..I love Animal Kingdom.  He is versatile and runs with authority down the stretch.  His second place finish in the Breeders Cup Mile was a winning run, he was just second to one of the best horses in the world in Wise Dan.  Point of Entry is his main rival in this contest.  Another turf monster, Point of Entry also finished second in a Breeder’s Cup race last year.  Both horses are training well and we look forward to watching their stretch dual.  I’ll give Animal Kingdom the edge.  Since there won’t be any odds on either we’ll hammer the exacta using both, and use both horses in our multi-race wagers.

Race 9………Todd Pletcher has another morning line favorite in this Grade 3 sprint race, the #2 Travelin’ Man.  But he hasn’t race since July, and we really like the #6 Bahamian Squall who has just run well in back to back restricted stakes races.   The 6 is training well and looks all systems go in this spot.  $25 to win on #6 Bahamian Squall.  Exacta with the cheap speedball #8 Big Grandpa.

Race 10……..The Grade 3 Suwanne River Stakes is a 1 1/8 turf race for older female horses.  This year it’s wide open so we are looking for some talented value.  We feel we’ve found it with the #8 Abaco.  It took a while for her to break her maiden, but since she’s won 4 in a row.  Now the waters get deeper as she steps up in class to the graded stakes level.  But no one is training better and we love the way she thundered home down  the stretch in her last victory here at Gulfstream. We will bet her to win and put her in an exacta with the front runner #6 Romacaca, who is who she will be chasing down in the last furlong.

Race 11……..The Donn.  There are a lot of nice horses in this one, including Take Charge Indy and Flat Out.  Csaba is a nice horse as well and has won 4 big races in a row.  Csaba just doesn’t feel like a grade one winner to me, and Flat Out broke my heart in the Breeder’s Cup.  Take Charge Indy is nice but there is some early speed in this race and that may tax the talented colt.  So we’ll go with Bourbon Courage.  He finished right behind Take Charge Indy in the Clark after being carried out and bumped.  This colt is training well and we are looking for winter improvement.  His running style fits the pace of this race and at 8-1 we are happy to play.

Good Luck to all this weekend! Feel free to post your opinions about these races.  We need more discussion about horseracing in Maryland.

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