The Smell Of Horsecrap and Money: Some Longshot Plays at Saratoga For Your Saturday

Featured, Sports and Bets — August 16, 2014 at 9:38 am by

by Seabass

The summer meet at Saratoga is in full swing and I’ve been fully invested since the gates opened for the first race on opening weekend.  Unfortunately for me, I’ve been getting my teeth kicked in by the beautiful track in upstate New York.  Horses losing by a nose, bad bets, and overall poor handicapping have put a big strain on the bankroll I had built up over the Triple Crown season.  But I fear nothing as I walk through the valley of bad beats and escaping funds, for I am a horse player, and bad streaks are going to happen.  You just have to reset, rethink, scale back, and attack.

And we won’t be chasing favorites in an attempt to get our confidence back, either.  If a favorite offers betting value relative to what I think his true odds should be, then sure, I’ll wager, but spotting and hitting longshots is what will bring us back from the losing abyss.  (By longshots, I mean horses that are offered at 5-1 or better.)

Longshot plays are what make horseracing a superior way to wager.  In football, if you go on a long losing streak, it takes forever to get out of the hole.  Beating a losing streak and the juice is nearly impossible.  Parlay betting is the only real value in betting football, and those wagers are difficult to hit, especially during a losing streak.  But in horseracing, hitting a race with a 6-1 or 8-1 winner can bring you right back.  (Of course you have to actually hit the race and it feels impossible to beat track take-out, but that’s a deep discussion best suited for later.)  It’s one of the many reasons that I love this game.

But as we say, enough mindless banter, let’s go get ’em….

These are four plays for today’s (Saturday August 16th) races at Saratoga.  We’ll play $50 a race. All of these horses are 5-1 or better on the morning line.  As The Chode says, take these picks for what you will…..


Race 2- 25K CLM This wide-open turf sprint offers plenty of value and that’s exactly what we’re looking for.  The #9 Jess Not Jesse is our play. Veteran gelding has been in the money in 15 of 20 lifetime starts and he’s come off a long layoff to score a win at Saratoga two years in a row.  Plus, this guy loves Saratoga, he’s won five out of six starts here.  Well placed, well meant, and looking primed.  12-1 morning line gets the juices flowing.  $20 win bet. $10 place bet.  $5 exacta wheel 9 with 4 and 7.  $5 exacta wheel 4 and 7 with 9.


Race 8- 81K ALW  This allowance for non-winners of two is a mash-up of contenders. We hope our pick, #7 Cool Samurai, escapes the wagering public and stays at around his current 8-1 odds.  He should get some pace up front (he’ll need it) and if he does, this guy could be rolling late in the stretch.  His Grade Two try was a mess, but he gets a freshening, comes back east, and gets a new start.  He was second by just two lengths in his first ever race to big time player Wicked Strong.  Will trainer Shirreffs have him ready?  Sure hope so, babes.  $20 win bet.  $4 1-5-7 exacta box  $1 Trifecta box 1-5-7


Race 9- 40K ALW O/C-  This is another wide open affair with plenty of horses who could fire.  Why not take a flyer on the #9 Why Not Whiskey?  Monster middle move in last, but he was mired in heavy traffic and had to check at the 1/16 pole.  Eye popping work on the ‘Toga lawn shows he’s in form. He won an allowance at Saratoga  on the turf at 8-1 last year.  Looks ready to fire. Don’t love the post position on the inner turf track, but form shall overcome. Love. This. Horse. $30 Win Bet.  $2 exacta wheel 9 with all.


Race 10- The Alabama- This race is a big deal in the 3-year-old filly division.  I keep trying to beat the favorite, #8 Stopchargingmaria, to no avail.  She won the Black Eyed Susan here in Baltimore, and then she crushed the field in the CCA Oaks.  She’s won over $1 million, but she still feels beatable.  Maybe I’m just a stubborn jackass.  We’ll sure find out, because I’m gonna take another shot against her.  The #9 Size won the Iowa Oaks at 13-1 and fired a 91 Beyer.  She’s been in solid and steady training since that effort and has shipped to Saratoga to take on the major circuit. Ol’ Bill Mott knows his ponies and is having a nice meet at the Spa.  Will Size jump to the lead in what looks like a paceless affair?  That’s what I’m thinking.  Can she handle the distance?  Ugh, hopefully.  At 5-1 she’s worth a stab.  $25 win bet $12 exacta box 9/8.

Good luck and enjoy the races!


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