SaratogaBets Handicapping - Kevin Cox's Gulfstream Selections & Analysis - 5/24


Three chalky winners yesterday, as favorites continue to come in at a high clip.  

I'd like to leave this bit of info here for y'all. When we're using the DRF Formulator platform while writing our columns, if we say "Sprints", for the most part we mean any one turn race, and when we say "Routes", we mean any TWO turn race. ( For example, we consider a 1 1/8th mile race at Belmont an elongated sprint, and a 6 1/2 furlong race at a Charles Town a route. ) We feel this way, because in our eyes, it's the number of turns that necessitate more energy than being relaxed on a straightaway. Sometimes the sample size for our study can be too large to manually break down, so there may be a few from one category in another, but usually the end result is pretty much the same. Additionally, when it comes to layoffs, we consider more than 50 days in a dirt to dirt scenario a layoff, more than 58 days in D to T or T to D a layoff, and more than 67 days in a turf to turf deal a L/O.

Today's Beatable Favorite(s): None


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Gulfstream - 5/24


Race  1

1.Metcalf ( AE )

2.Count Down

3.Snow Job

#14 METCALF (AE) needs a bit of good fortune in order to make it over to the races this afternoon, but should that come to bear, will be bringing in a turf debut where he was a gamely runner up at boxcar odds ( directly in front of a next out winner ). Colt was looking real good late in the game in the followup engagement, but had a mishap mid stretch & failed to finish. Quite often, these type get overlooked at the windows, but the decent pedigree tells us that the initial sod spin was not an aberration. #1 COUNT DOWN was extremely wide in the freshman debut before being sent to the sidelines for one reason or another, and gets the wonder drug for today's initial stretchout. #10 SNOW JOB begins his working life today, and does such with a decent gate breeze in tow.  OFF TURF: 3-9-10-15(MTO)-1  NOTE: AS OF 11:51, WE HAVE AMENDED OUR SELECTIONS TO 14-15-4.


Race  2

1.Chic and Sexy

2.Mystic Comin Home

3.Stormy Boss

#8 CHIC AND SEXY showed zilch in the most recent, but the penultimate try yielded an honest runner up finish, and rates a slight nod in a forgettable affair. #10 MYSTIC COMIN HOME is another for whom you'd have to go back two starts to find something positive, as aside for the last disappointment, this one had been a part of the triple in her quartet of outings just prior. #2 STORMY BOSS has hit the board in four of six at Hallandale Beach, and enters this off of a nice placing.   NOTE: AS OF 11:55, DUE TO THIS RACE BEING RUN ON A WET TRACK, WE HAVE AMENDED OUR SELECTIONS TO 9-11-4.


Race  3


2.Class and Cash


We're seeing this race as easy as 1-2-3 ! ( Not really, but ain't it clever ! )  #1 COLONIST outran his odds a bit when finishing 6th in his first start off a two Thanksgiving absence, and it's worth noting that two of three returnees from that affair got the job done next time out; 5:2-1-1 mark when breaking from the innermost two slots ( 13:1-2-2 otherwise ) duly noted. #2 CLASS AND CASH has that quintessentially perfect "declining" turf record that we love to see ( 32:13-8-3 ) as it shows this fella has a schnoz for the finish line. Juarez 5:2-1-1 when aboard this gutsy grey gelding, and you could do a lot worse than including C & C. #3 TIZZARUNNER blew up the tote board at 32-1 last time out and is 4:1-0-1 in 3rd off the layoff attempts.  OFF TURF: 7-1-5-6-3


Race  4 


2.Rachel's Wish

3.Blitchton Lady

#7 PUSHINGUPDAISIES begins her working life here, and although the morning moves have done little to get the pulse racing, the 344 Tomlinson figure is honest enough, and of course, we love the draw. This one was foaled out of a dam who was 1 for 6 in dirt dashes ( 16K ) and is a half to a 1 for 4 dirt sprinter ( 10K ). Meek nod in a race with no first draft eliminations. #1 RACHEL'S WISH has been a part of the superfecta in each and every start to date, and that's reason enough to include in this spot. #5 BLITCHTON LADY hasn't seen the scene in the full length of a calendar, but has a maturity edge over most signed on, and may spice things up beneath.  NOTE: AS OF 11:59, DUE TO THE TRACK BEING WET, THE #6 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  5




#1 DICTATOR ( cross entered yesterday, so check the changes ) hasn't been in action since early February, but 4YO is 4:1-1-0 off the shelf, one of two when beginning from the innermost three slots ( with the said score overlapping with the first category ), and this one finds himself at his lowest level to date. Slight edge. #3 LUCKYTOBEINAMERICA ( dig it ) comes in today off a sharp second place finish in this race 22 days back, and makes all kinds of sense; purchased privately since last seen. #4 ENZOEXPRESS takes the obligatory hike in class off of the April 11th score, and has fired a bullet since then.  NOTE: AS OF 12:03, OUR SELECTIONS WILL BE 7-1-5.


Race  6 

1.Let Them Eat Cake

2.Fuddled ( Ire )


#5 LET THEM EAT CAKE burned some money in the most recent, as this gal lost by MORE than a head that day, in finishing third. We're normally not a fan of fromt end routers cutting back to one turn, as they often get overbet, but this one did show 22 & 4 speed two back, and gets one of the best front end riders in GP. #2 FUDDLED (IRE) was a lively and decently clear runner up right outta the box, and is a four year old facing a group of three year olds; watch out, suckahs ! #1 HALLAJOORI hasn't faced the starter in a third of a calendar, but was last seen in a key race, from which five returnees amassed a cumulative 5:3-0-2 ledger in their followup engagements, improving by an average of 5.2 points in the Beyer department as well.  OFF TURF: 1-3(MTO)-4-2-7  NOTE: AS OF 1:42 P.M. FRIDAY, THE #1 WILL BE OUR 1ST SELECTION.  NOTE: AS OF 12:07, OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 1-8-7.


Race  7

1.Mr Chaplin



#3 MR CHAPLIN has beaten just one home over the last duet, but we always go back three races to find something positive to hang your hat on, ( as it's a good way to ferret out longshots ) and this one closed out the exacta at big odds vs. a couple of today's competitors three back. #10 PANGO is another with poor recent form who fared well prior to the recent duet ( a tally ), and totes the lightest impost of his career. Gelding digs breaking from the outside, as the 6:3-1-0-1 mark tells us, and five who came back to race again from the most recent rung up a 2-1-1 record ( from four different events ). #2 KAHRAMANI completes our troika of selections who we're "hoping for better" from.   NOTE: AS OF 12:11, DUE TO THE TRACK BEING WET, #'S 8 & 7 WILL BE OUR SECOND AND THIRD CHOICES RESPECTIVELY.


Race  8 

1.La Viexa

2.I'll Do It My Way

3.La Rusia

#4 LA VIEXA burst through the maiden ranks in a big way when procuring the sheepskin versus cheapies AT 44-1, and although the numero came back a bit light, we've always been fond of improving youngsters getting overlooked parimutually. We'll take a shot at a repeat. #2 I'LL DO IT MY WAY has been a completely different animal over her last troika, hitting the board in all three starts, at odds ranging between 17-1 & 43-1. Tough to dismiss. #9 LA RUSIA had partaken in the triple in five straight before being overmatched in the Honey Ryder, and deserves your respect at this more palatable level.  OFF TURF: 5-6(MTO)-7-8-9  NOTE: AS OF 12:39, OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 5-9-10.


Race  9 


2.Colonel Liam

3.War Giant

#1 INDIMAAJ has been beset by a couple of monster layoffs during his abbreviated career, but this five year old "horse" ( hang on to them marbles, buddy! ) posted an adjusted 86.8 in his only start off a break, and has been working sensationally for today's return to action. #5 COLONEL LIAM was handed the victory via DQ first time out 43 days in the rear, and was well clear of the show horse that day. $1.2M purchase is obviously well meant, and Zayas takes over for the suspended Saez. #2 WAR GIANT is two for three when available for purchase and has won half of his octet at this locale; know him early. 


Race  10

1.King Daddy 

2.King Ottokar

3.Belgrano ( AE ) 

#6 KING DADDY had done fine work on the lawn back in his native Peru, and was prepped for his North American turf bow with a couple of springs on the Turfway poly fading in the initial Gulfstream attempt. In all fairness, the 11 hole going a mile here ain't exactly where you would prefer to be, so we'll give him one more shot sliding in a bit, while shedding 32 ounces with the bug assigned. We're "down with the king" exacta, as #5 KING OTTOAKR will be our secondary selection, based on his one fer two mark off the bench, which occurred on this course , to boot. We'll close things out with a general -- not a king -- as #14 BELGRANO (AE)  -- -- enters today off of a lifetime best performance.  OFF TURF: 15(AE)-6-4-1-16(AE)  NOTE: AS OF 12:43, OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS ARE 8-10-11.


Race  11


2.Vita Dolce


#9 SLIPPY has been laid up for a while, but Roussel charge was a lively runner up in her lone start off the shelf, and that came without blinkers, which are now a part of the everyday package. Uncharacteristic bullet workout a dozen days ago sure does pop off the page, doesn't it? #12 VITA DOLCE was up the track last out, but that was over ground labeled as "good" and this one has proven to be appreciably better on firm going. #1 WELLWEST is an extremely fragile sort who has been given respites after every start but one, but has never seen these depths, and we'll chunk beneath at a double digit offering.  OFF TURF: 7-8-9-12-13(AE)  NOTE: AS OF 12:47, OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 2-9-12.

Gulfstream      ( Spring ):      44-327     ( $540.30 )   Beatable  Favorites   1-15  ( 6.7% )    Favorites Win %   119-327   ( 36.4% )(As of Sunday morning)

Gulfstream      ( Winter ):        8-76       ( $141.00 )   Beatable Favorites    0-3    ( 0% )       Favorites Win %     23-76     ( 39.1% ) 

Aqueduct Winter  ( Final ):     65-427    ( $615.10 )  Beatable  Favorites  8-18  ( 44.4% )    Favorites Win %:   174-427 ( 40.8% ) 

Graded Stakes ( Current ):       2-12        ( $25.60 )  Beatable Favorites    N/A   (  N/A )      Favorites Win %:     4-12     ( 33.3% )

All Triple Crown, Breeders' Cup, Selected Grade 1's and Travers full days  ( These are also counted in the "Dirt Tracks" category ):

( 2013-2020 Final ) 64-411  ( $581.30 ) Beatable Favorites: 18-56 ( 32.1% ) Favorite's Win %: 139-411 (33.8%)  +/-: -29.2% against a 16.8% takeout  

Poly Tracks2013-16  (All Final): 85-568          ( $819.20 )  Beatable Favorites : 15-68      ( 22.1% )Favorite's Win %: 163-587      ( 27.7% ) +/-: -27.6%  against a 15.6% takeout

Dirt Tracks  2013-20 (All Final):2511-12450 ($21,132.80)  Beatable Favorites : 343-1222( 28.1% )Favorite's Win %: 4753-12533 ( 37.9% ) +/-: -15.3%  against a 16.8% takeout

Cumulative Stats      (All Final): 2596-12998 ($21,953.00)  Beatable Favorites : 358-1290( 27.8% )Favorite's Win %: 4915-13120 ( 37.5% ) +/-: -15.4%  against a 16.6% takeout