SaratogaBets Handicapping - Kevin Cox's Belmont Selections & Analysis - 6/3 - Opening Day


Happy Opening Day !! 

NOTE TO @SaratogaBets , @BataviaBets , @YonkersRaceway & @capitalotb READERS: We've now updated our Belmont full card selections to reflect the scratches, but please keep in mind, that we may be updating them if/when bad weather comes through, so refresh your pages.

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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Belmont - 6/3 - Opening Day


Race  1

1.Carnegie Song


3.Watch the Dip

#1 CARNEGIE SONG has steadily regressed since the career starter back in the fall, but gelding totes the lightest weight in his career, and Ryerson sees fit to bring this one back against open foes. 9% trainer clicks to about a 12% rate with those fitting the relevant parameters, and as many will be coming off long layoffs here for the next few weeks, don't be scared to swing for some prices. #11 WISECRACK had outrun his 53-1 odds when finishing an okay 5th back in March, and has shown some zip in the mornings, which we always like to see from those who are last to load. #3 WATCH THE DIP is showing a couple of nice works for today's comebacker and takes the biggest drop in the game. Leaving beneath, as Maragh was only clicking in the single digits down in Hallandale Beach. 


Race  2


2.Polar Bear Pete


#8 BRAY was a solid runner up directly in front of a next out victor when facing winners for the first time at the end of November, and what impressed us about the effort was that the Beyer from the maiden breaker was essentially replicated ( something that's never easy to do ). We have a nice DRF Formulator stat in play here, as C-Squared ( 19% on the norm ) is a nice 13:4-0-3 with locally based allowance turf stayers in the 68-299 day zip code @ 17-1 or less ( $35, $8 & $7 x 2 ). Pre-layoff Joel returns ( which we always like to see ), and there's a sub category of 2 fer 4 with him aboard. #11 POLAR BEAR PETE is a bit of an in and outer, but could sharpen up with the blinker addition. #9 FOTIS rounds out the tri.  OFF TURF: 2-1-7-5-3  NOTE AS OF 9:12 P.M. MONDAY, WE ARE FLIP FLOPPING OUR TOP TWO CHOICES.


Race  3




#3 FAUCI has been performing spectacularly in the mornings for today's career starter, and from what I'm hearing, is very well meant. Any time you see a bullet gate breeze on display, it always merits automatic inclusion, and this one has TWO of them. Over the last 60 months, Ward is a fat 10:5-3-1 with 2YO male FTS'ers at the mdspwt. level on this circuit and the ROI for that survey is just south of four clams. #4 INDOCTRINATE went for 4 1/2 times the stud fee at auction back in October, and is another who's been turning heads in the A.M. for today's bow. #2 PRISONER ( by 'Violence'...ya get it? ) went for $175,000 at Ocala back in March, and brings in tow some nice breezes as well as a healthy Tomlinson for this distance. 


Race  4 

1.Neighborhood Bully ( AE )

2.Proud Enough

3.Gaultier ( Fr ) 

#15 NEIGHBORHOOD BULLY (AE) owns a 9:2-2-1 ledger when starting from the outermost two slots ( on the sand ) compared to an 18:1-0-2 mark otherwise, Gelding has done okay here and will need to hustle a bit early on from the ( possible ) 14 hole. #4 PROUD ENOUGH hung up a 69 the last time he came back off a layoff, finishing 3rd at 37-1, and that's not an awful number, considering some of the competition he'll be facing. This one can send or rate a bit, and we'd like to see Richards find a spot in the pocket early on. #5 GAULTIER hasn't faced the starter since national hangover day, but lightly raced seven year old has a nice overall "declining" mark ( 22:6-4-2 ) and owns a 2:1-0-1 mark at the trip. Note the blinker addition, and they were on for ONE other occasion, and that was the lively showing in the 2015 debut.   NOTE: AS OF 12:41, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #11 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION. 


Race  5

1.Boston Girl

2.Helene Jacqueline

3.Apollo's Abraxas

#3 BOSTON GIRL ( trained and ridden by a Boston girl in Jacqueline Falk, who in a bit of an anomaly, lines up next to her namesake ), had been working fairly steadily right here for today's initial foray, and although the turf breeding leaves a bit to be desired, this miss tipped her hand in the half mile tightener out of the gate on the deeper training track here, flying around in a 2nd best of 61 jammie in 47 flat. You should know that the third best workout from that morning was more than a half'a second slower, and it was none other than stakes winner Mr. Buff, who's won three straight, 4 of 5, 6 of 9 & 10 of 15 -- and that work was with a running start. Recognize that this one's dam won three of six turf sprints, banking 34 large. The more we type...  #2 HELENE JACQUELINE was a lively runner up when last in action back in February, and deserves your respect. #7 APOLLO'S ABRAXAS has enough zip to make herself known early on.  OFF TURF: 11-12-10-3-2


Race  6 



3.Say Hey ( Fr )

#10 JULUCA has done little wrong in his brief career -- dead heating for the win with a next out winner at Wilmington, before back to back placings at Grantville ( the latter behind another next out winner ). Sheppard is as old school as they get, so he probably intended to give this one the winner off, which was extended for obvious reasons. The man's a Hall of Famer, so don't sell this one short on the comeback attempt. #5 XANTHIQUE has partaken in the superfecta in all her starts but one, and got her Polaroid taken in her only try on the Widener. #4 SAY HEY (FR) has done some decent work back in the land of grapes of love ans gets the winder drug for today's American debut.  OFF TURF: 1-2-11-12-13(AE)  NOTE: AS OF 12:42, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #8 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  7

1.Macho Boy

2.Look Out Jayce 

3.Box of Rain

#2 MACHO BOY has lost ground in every start to date, but is facing no world beaters in here and may get brave if he has learned to relax just a bit during the recent sabbatical. Timid selection. #14 LOOK OUT JAYCE hasn't done much to get the pulse racing by the dawn's early light, but we always like this kind of a draw and the 350 Tomlinson # is honest enough. #12 BOX OF RAIN was abysmal in his last two outings, and has paid the price with a loss of his procreating abilities. Takes the biggest drop in the biz today as good fella Romero gets the nod.   NOTE: AS OF 12:47, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #7 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  8 

1.Hit It Once More

2.Forty Under

3.Hay Dakota

#8 HIT IT ONCE MORE hasn't been seen in a calendar and three days, but seven year old "horse" ( you hang on to those dangling participles, buddy ! ) is one for two off a L/O, and Carmouche won two stakes aboard this chap a looooong time ago. As much as possible, take a gander during the warmups. #3 FORTY UNDER has been a part of the superfecta in both starts off a break & is reunited with his favorite jockola today. #1 HAY DAKOTA ( last seen while under the tutelage of since arrested Jason Servis ) is 3:1-1-1 off a layoff, and what the hell's wrong with that?  OFF TURF: 2-13(MTO)-4-3-6  NOTE: AS OF 4:39, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #2 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  9 

1.Fifty Five

2.Rushing Fall

3.Got Stormy

Featured race of the day is the Grade 3 Beaugay, and for some brief history on this winner of 9 of 18 ( trained by the famed Tom Smith ), go right here .  Well, you know things are slowly getting back to normal when Chad Brown has 1/3rd of the entrants in a big race, and they both have identical DRF Formulator stats in play. Over the last 1,826 days, the just mentioned trainer has a 10:6-2-0 boxscore with Belmont based graded turf stayers off hibernations of 160-320 days ( 6-1 or undah ), with a return on investment of $2.76, and we'll gibe the nod to #2 FIFTY FIVE over #1 RUSHING FALL, as we were not impressed with the last two starts of the latter. #3 GOT STORMY is two of three off a break on firm going, and Casse is 2-7 w/runners of this ilk off L/O's of 67-109 days ( 12-1 or < ).  OFF TURF: 5-1-4-6-3  NOTE: AS OF 12:49, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #5 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  10

1.Judiths Cougar



#8 JUDITHS COUGAR was up the track when stepping out of the maiden ranks for the first time back in mid March, but that happens a lot in this game, and perhaps the respite and class relief will do him some good. We'll take a shot with Reylu returning. #12 SMIDGE is a decent 7:1-3-0 in Elmont and just 14:0-1-0 otherwise. We've always had a soft spot for this runner, but where is Mr. Chang? #9 PRETERNATURAL won his only call to the post off an absence ( on a glib surface ) and returns sans tes-tee-klees. 


Gulfstream           ( Final ):     58-468    ( $865.50 )  Beatable  Favorites  2-22  ( 9.1% )      Favorites Win %    161-468 ( 34.4% )

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):2569-12918 ($21,998.80) Beatable Favorites : 345-1244( 27.7% )Favorite's Win %: 4914-13001 ( 37.8% ) +/-: -14.8%  against a 16.8% takeout

Cumulative Stats    (All Final): 2664-13466 ($22,818.50)  Beatable Favorites : 360-1312( 27.4% )Favorite's Win %: 5076-13588 ( 37.4% ) +/-: -15.3%  against a 16.6% takeout