Friday, June 09, 2006

Picks....and selections, and recommendations...

O.k. back to business….

-Picks for the Belmont: I am going to stay away from the lower prices. Sunriver def. has a legit shot, although you couldn’t pay me enough to place a bet on Bluegrass Cat. That being said, I like two horses on top.

The sometimes key to handicapping – and this holds more water in the lower level races – find an angle. Find that one little difference that you either think gives you an edge, or at the very least separates one horse from the rest. Making that proper selection, that's what it's all about.

Both HIGH FINANCE and OH SO AWESOME offer unique potential angles that lead me more towards them...

**Editorial side note: I really don’t think they have a legit shot at finishing 1-2, but one of the two to win is not out of the question. The betting dilemma comes in the decision…which one to single on top? This is the game. Can you make the better decision more times than not?

In HIGH FINANCE, my friend “Red” was kind enough to point out to me the 1-mile workout the Richard Violette trained colt put in the Sunday before Memorial Day. It is not often you see mile-long workouts and HIGH FINANCE is the only horse in the field with a marathon prep.

OH SO AWESOME’s last race is one of my favorite betting angles. Closing in the slop/mud. We all know how speed favoring a wet track can be, so whenever I see a horse put in a nice closing effort in less than ideal conditions, I take note. Beyond that, this horse was slated for a grass effort in his last and closed to third in the “off the turf” 72K Match Hatch Stakes. He has gone 1 ¼ miles once before and you have to love anything Jimmy Jerkens throws out in a Triple Crown race (25% winners so far at the meet, also).

I won’t completely get rid of Sunriver or Bob and John. For the final leg of the Triple Crown I will be using two, three-horse ex/tri box combinations:
2-5-6 & 4-5-6.

I do not like to bet speed very often, so for the win I’ll use the longer shot OH SO AWESOME.

-Alan at LATG put the attendance over/under at 54k. I am thinking anything over 50k and the NYRA (and the horseracing world) will be ecstatic. My prediction (ok, maybe it's hope) is that it will be between 50 and 55. I can’t see 60, but I also don’t think (hope) 40. Folks in the NY area love going out to Belmont for the big day and I have faith that they will flock to the Queens via car, bus and LIRR.

-My pick for the World Cup:
ENGLAND @ 6-1 (Brazil is the 9-4 favorite)

-It will be interesting to see how many races are shown tomorrow. Over on, there was a call to arms for horse racing fans to send ABC an email demanding that they show all four races leading up to the Belmont (2+ hour coverage). Seems to make sense, right? Do something for the horseracing fan? Stoke a little interest? Well, keep that common sense thing in to a minimum when you are talking NTRA and their handling of television marketing. Yes, it is ultimately ABC's chouce what tey do, but I blame the TRA for not having a heavier hand. This is just another example of awful brand management. Don't count on see too much of the first three legs of the guaranteed $1 million dollar pick-4 live. Too many Barbaro stories to do.

Two non-horse notes:
1) Lewis Black premieres his new stand up on HBO Saturday night at 10pm EST. If you have never heard or seen Lewis, you should REALLY check him out.
2) Season premiere of Entourage is Sunday night at 10pm EST. Another show not to miss. Only in its third season, so you still have time to catch up. If you don’t have HBO, get the DVD’s. It is well worth it.

Good luck to everyone this weekend.


MichaelT said...

To clarify:

Tillamook is on Saturday, August 12th.

Ruben Bailey said...

Thank you Michael. I just went through and re-edited the post. I wound up taking that part out, saving it for a later post.

Thanks for the clarifiation, the party and the fair are on August 12th. July 12th I will be at Edgefield (McMenamins) seeing Widespread Panic play.