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


Well, we are definitely in a bit of a funk over the first three days, but that's to be expected. As just about 100% of these horses are off layoffs, part of our gameplan was to try and ferret out some longshot winners, as we feel there will be plenty of them for a while. So far, the chalk is coming in at a 23.3% rate, but just 1 for the last 20 ( 5% ). We had nothing on the top end yesterday, but had two placings ( 45-1 & 5-1 ) as well as a showing ( 5-1 ). More important for several readers was the fact that our "unders" did well, and I saw a few posted winning tickets on Twitter of 7K, 14K, and another large one as well. All three readers have donated to Old Friends at Cabin Creek, due to our 74-1 3rd choice winning in the 4th !!

Just a reminder that for our selections of the Santa Anita Derby & Oaks, as well as the Hollywood Gold Cup, merely go back one page.

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 - 6/6


Race  1


2.O Shea Can U See 

3.Desert Lights

#8 OUTPLAY ( who once finished 3rd to West Coast ) drops for the 2nd straight time today, and six year old "horse" ( hang on to 'dem Brussels sprouts, buddy ! ) is but a nose & a head shy of a 3 for 3 mark off the bench, and outran his odds when a troubled 3rd in his lone pairing with Junior. Demand value for the ice cold trainer who's on an oh-fer-22 run. #6 O SHEA CAN U SEE ( cross entered yesterday, so check the changes ) is 4:1-1-0-1 off an absence, and has dine fine work on Big Sandy ( 9:2-3-0 ); may be coming late. #9 DESERT LIGHTS has hit the board in two of three off a break in the action and got his photo taken the only time he was last to load. 3:1-2-0 mark at the dx. duly noted. 


Race  2

1.Just for One Day 

2.Charge Ahead

3.Mental Model

#5 JUST FOR ONE DAY may have bounced when giving up the ghost rather readily in the comebacker, but has posted a decent work since and finds himself available for purchase for the first time. C-Squared ( 19% on the norm ) is a lively 7 for 21 when going green to brown with his dashers off breaks of 13 to 57 days, w/mutuels of $32, $8, $7 & $6 x 4. Rosario was aboard for the lone tally. #3 CHARGE AHEAD posted a career best numero when losing by less than a length in his lone try off a hiatus, and the blinker failure is corrected today, as new shotcaller leaves them in the tack room. #1 MENTAL MODEL owns a win & a placing from as many starts when up for sale, and pre-layoff pilot returns.  OFF TURF: 11-12-4-1-2


Race  3

1.Dreams of Tomorrow

2.Break Beat


#5 DREAMS OF TOMORROW overcame a difficult slot to finish better than his parimutal offering first time out, and the Tomlinson tells us that there's ample room for improvement. All six returnees from that day were a part of the superfecta next time out, improving by an average of 11 Beyer points in the process. Shug -- 17% on the norm -- is a fat 7 fer 12 with his second timers in dirt sprints who crashed the fiesta 30-50 days back & are less than 5-1 ( positive ROI ). Employing the "Diamond in the Rough" theory for #3 BREAK BEAT ( a $35,000 bred animal who went for substantially more than that at auction ), as there's a nicely hidden 3rd best of 115 breeze amidst a bevy of ordinary moves. #1 TAKECHARGECHARLIE is another who has posted a bevy of ordinary morning moves since the bullet breeze way back when, and Reylu has started out the meet nicely. 


Race  4 

1.Broadway Joe

2.Oliver Witha Twist

3.Drop of Bourbon

#6 BROADWAY JOE showed zilch in the bow, but is switched over to the gramma today, and the sire clicks at a decent 11% rate with turf progeny; price play. #10 OLIVER WITHA TWIST overcame a tough onset to complete the exacta at 27-1 in a lifetime best performance when last seen, and sheds five pounds off that effort. #1 DROP OF BOURBON can be forgiven the poor overture, but takes the biggest drop in the biz and has recently lost his procreating abilities. Kingmambo in the family tree and a hot pilot add to the allure.  OFF TURF: 5-2-11-7-14(AE)


Race  5


2.American Rule

3.War Tocsin

#2 ARK IN THE DARK is a poyfect 3 for 3 when coming in off an absence, and what the hell's wrong with that at 20-1? recent work at Philadelphia Park was a crisp one. #8 AMERICAN RULE has done his best work over this oval, and would not be surprised to see this one forwardly placed with the bug assigned. #4 WAR TOCSIN was a well beaten but well clear runner up in his only outing after a L/O, and accomplished such at 15-1. Love the workout pattern for today's return to action. 


Race  6 

1.Flop Shot ( Ire ) 



#4 FLOP SHOT (IRE) hasn't been seen since Hector was a pup, but "rare" black colt got the job done in her only start off an elongated absence, and like many of these Euro shippers, loses some tonnage while picking up the wonder drug for today's American bow. Colt lost by just a half'a length in a $445,600 Grade 2 over in France, and according to DRF Formulator, Brown has a snappy 5:4-0-1 mark with locally based graded turf stock returning off breaks of more than 132 days at 6-1 or less ( positive return on investment ). #6 SYNCHRONY is 4:2-1-1 when racing on firm ground after being away, and chestnut chap has handled this distance quite well. Should be rolling late in the game. #3 SOMELIKEITHOTBROWN is one for two in comebackers, and Maker ( 18% day to day ) is 6 for 22 with graded turf stayers in the 63-104 day zip code at 31-1 or lower ( $23, $26, $4 x 3 & $9 ).  OFF TURF: 5-6-2-4-7


Race  7




#6 JOEVIA is a neck shy of a two for two mark after being laid up ( with the blemish a gamely placing behind Haikal at 18-1 ) and almost shocked the world in his lone try right here in the 2019 Belmont Stakes. Last two efforts have been grisly, but perhaps he has sorted things out since then. We'll bite at the morning line offering. #8 FOREWARNED has partaken in the superfecta in his troika of outings after being MIA, and Franco is 10:2-1-2-2 when riding for St. Lewis on this circuit at 50-1 or less. The winners in that survey were $18 & $93, and the other placings were all at solid odds. #5 PRENDIMI had hit the board in five of six and may spice things up if fully cranked up. 


Race  8 

1.Victim of Love


3.Jc's Shooting Star

#2 VICTIM OF LOVE was heading in the right direction before the wheels came off in Maryland back in March, and although this one goes over the blades for the first time, we're assuaged by the fact that the paternal granddam finished 3rd in her lone turf dash, and that the maternal grandmother also closed out the tri in two of three turf sprints. #8 GETMOTHERAROSE has fared decently in both tries after being away, and Bush charge has a knack for finding the line. #10 JC'S SHOOTING STAR has hit the board in more than half of her calls to the post, and owns a square 5:1-1-1-1 boxscore ledger on the Widener.  OFF TURF: 3-4-6-5-12  NOTE: AS OF 12:11, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #12 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.  


Race  9 


2.Majestic Dunhill

3.Still Having Fun

#6 MIDNIGHTCHARLY was a gamely runner up behind one of today's favorites the last time they tangled, and did such when having the slowest break to his career from an inside post. Gelding fanned six wide in an eight horse field that day, while the favorite ended up the beneficiary of a dream trip. There's now a seven pound shift in the weights between the two, and as the odds are drastically different, we'll swing away. #9 MAJESTIC DUNHILL overcame a tardy onset to rally for 3rd after being in absentia for quite some time down in Hallandale Beach, and gelding got his Polaroid taken in his lone "second off the layoff" spin. #3 STILL HAVING FUN is one for two at BEL.  NOTE: AS OF 12:23. DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #8 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION. NOTE: AS OF 2:55, DUE TO ANOTHER LATE SCRATCH, OUR COMPLETE AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 3-8-4.


Race  10




#11 QUINTARELLI gave his backers quite a thrill when grabbing the leadt turning for home at 64-1 @ the end of February, and Ferraro has done a good job with this one, guiding her to successive career best performances before things got shut down. Gelding drops four pounds off that deal, and Heman has popped a few times for this clan in the past. #5 CENTRIST has fired off two sensational breezes for this, and a decent apprentice returns. #7 MICROSCOPE won his only start at this distance.


Race  11

1.Mr. Jaggers

2.Voodoo Zip

3.Turn of Events

#3 MR. JAGGERS was a blase' 5th in the Gulfstream Park comebacker, but you positively have to love the way this one has handled himself in the mornings since then, and Mott is a saucy 3-10 when going brown to green & short to long with his 2nd off the shelf stock at 23-1 or undah ( $14, $10 & $48 ). #7 VOODOO ZIP has yet to finish OTB, and Gargan owns a nice 3 for 10 ledger with turf routers who were in the money 57-67 days back at 8-1 or <. This one should be right there once again. #4 TURN OF EVENTS has ( from a speed figure perspective ) done very little wrong on the sod so far, and we see no reason to exclude.  OFF TURF: 7-2-3-13(AE)-14(MTO) 

Belmont          ( Current ):       1-30      ( $3.80 )     Beatable Favorites    0-1    ( 0.0% )     Favorites Win %        7-30   ( 23.3% )( As of Saturday afternoon ) 

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