SaratogaBets Handicapping - Kevin Cox's Saratoga Selections & Analysis - 8/30


Washout of a day yesterday. 

Today's Beatable Favorite(s): Race 10- #4 Shirelle

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.


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Saratoga - 8/30


Race  1

1.Thin White Duke ( AE )

2.Bellamy Dolce

3.Dancing Buck

#13 THIN WHITE DUKE (AE) needs a lot of luck to draw into the body of the race, but should that come to fruition, will be toting along a couple of solid placings under these exact conditions, and an overall body of work which lays over the rest of this field. #5 BELLAMY DOLCE showed a touch of early hoof when starting things out on the main track a month back, and may dosplay some improvement at a fair price with blinkers added. #4 DANCING BUCK has a couple of decent moves on the docket for today's overture, and mommy banked more than 200 large going over the blades; would be no surprise.  OFF TURF: 13(AE)-14(AE)-16(MTO)-5-4  NOTE: AS OF 11:33, DUE TO THIS RACE BEING RUN ON A FAST TRACK, OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 7-8-6.


Race  2

1.Blood Moon

2.Super Wicked Charm 

3.Macho Boy

#2 BLOOD MOON all the way. #1 SUPER WICKED CHARM finds himself at his lowest level to date and gets an appreciable upgrade in the jockey department. May sit a nice pocket trip to land a share. #5 MACHO BOY got smacked around at the onset when going two turns for the first time 25 days in the rear, but may move forward a bit with a cleaner onset. 


Race  3

1.No Mo' Spending 


3.Blame It On Mary 

#4 NO MO' SPENDING should crush these. #1 MASU has a couple of okay morning moves on display for today's initial afternoon trek to the frontside, and while this is the first foal out of a dam who started but once, the top part of the pedigree page is honest enough, and maternal damsire was a goodie in Tale of the Cat. May spice things up at a price. #7 BLAME IT ON MARY ( scratched on Friday for this, so take a peek at teh changes ) draws well and has some decent pedigree for this trip.  NOTE: AS OF 11:37, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #3 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  4 

1.Holiday Bonus


3.Siding Spring

#8 HOLIDAY BONUS has shown improvement since returning to action back in June, and while this one may be overlooked a bit for the recent placing vs. conditional claimers, keep in mid that the figure earned that afternoon is comparable to much of the recent activity of others signed on. Recognize that this elder statesman outran his odds when hitting the board in both starts on the inner. #4 KUMAR has never been entered this cheaply on the gramma, and has eye cups added for today's T to D go round. Will need to reverse the recent form to get some White Castle money. #3 SIDING SPRING has completed the superfecta in three of four "3rd off the bench" attempts and has also closed out the triple in both starts on this course. Sensible "unders" addition.  OFF TURF: 3-7-1(MTO)-2-8  NOTE: AS OF 11:42, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 8-4-3. 


Race  5

1.Fort Drum ( AE )

2.Cashmere Queen

3.Evvie Jets

#11 FORT DRUM (AE) will say a little prayer on Saturday night that one of his inside foes will get the sniffles so that he can make it to the party, and should that come to fruition, then he'll be bringing along a pair of nice Tomlinsons for the trip & surface ( 361 & 356 ). This is the first offspring out of a dam who was 1 for 5 on the lawn, and sire was a monstah over the stuff. #3 CASHMERE QUEEN has been conducting her morning affairs in a professional manner for today's bow and may be a bit of an overlay given the dearth of proven talent she'll be facing. #10 EVVIE JETS has some green coursing through her veins, but we'll relegate to the minor spoils due to the jock pretty much being a non entity for quite some time.  OFF TURF: 4-5-15(MTO)-2-1A(MTO)  NOTE: AS OF 11:43, DUE TO THIS RACE BEING RUN ON A FAST TRACK OUR AMENDED SELECTIONS WILL BE 11(AE)-3-8.


Race  6 


2.Oh Shea Can U See

3.Summer Bourbon

#5 ZONIC rallied stoutly to secure third place money in his first start off the claim/layoff by Noda, and this one owns a 4:1-1-2 ledger in all his second off the shelf tries. Slim margin for this runner who has done well in Togatown. #3 OH SHEA CAN U SEE is a hard knocking gelding who has done his finest work at this distance of ground ( 4 for 10, compared to a woeful 1-22 mark at other trips ). Tough to exclude on the dropdown. #2 SUMMER BOURBON rounds out the top three. 


Race  7

1.Barrel of Destiny 



#2 BARREL OF DESTINY spit the bit with no palpable excuse right here at the end of July, but Mare has found the line first in all three of her outings when available for purchase, and we'll give her an opportunity to rebound at 5-1. ( Check for a jockey change, as Irad Ortiz took off of Friday's mounts with an injured wrist. ) #4 PECATONICA overcame a boatload of trouble to finish third in this spot on Juky 30th, and gets off the rail a bit, which may aid with a tidier trip. #7 DANCINGWTHDAFFODLS improved by about 10% in her lone one turn to two turn turf jammie, and you're getting a recent winner at 8-1.  OFF TURF: 5-6(MTO)-8-9-10


Race  8 

1.Flying Finish

2.Leap to Glory


#6 FLYING FINISH got waffled in an open allowance event down at Delaware 34 days back, but is now back in with state breds, and that's of high relevance, as the lone win came when facing those from the Empire State. #1 LEAP TO GLORY is one for two in 3rd off the shelf spins on a glib surface, but is also a woeful 0-6 when first to load; mixed signals. #10 RIKEN has scored in three of four and loves going 3/4's ( 4 fer 7 ). May last for a share. 


Race  9 

1.Lucky Stride

2.Lucky Move


Today's featured race is named after the Hall of Famer Shuvee, and for some history on said gal, feel free to go to this link. #1 LUCKY STRIDE has amassed a nice record in Puerto Rico ( 11:8-3-0 ), and although she may not have been facing much, the recent breezes up here give hints of some talent, and this one is a half to a three time winner. Interesting. #7 LUCKY MOVE owns a win locally and completed the tri in her sole "third off the bench" engagement; picks up Manny. #2 BELLERA has been 1-2-3 in every durt race where the jock stayed in the saddle, and that includes some nice efforts at The Spa & with Johnny in the stirrups. 


Race  10

1. See Below

2. See Below

3. See Below

We may have a pretty strong opinion on this race, but as a couple who may upset the apple cart are on the outside looking in, we we will reserve our writeup until the scratches come out. However, just in case we get struck by lightning, our selections will be #1 VENERABLE -- #12 AMERICAN DIAMOND (AE) -- #5 SOL DEL SUR


BEATABLE FAVORITE: #4 SHIRELLE has awful turf pedigree and we're not quite sure why she's 2-1.  

Saratoga         ( Current ):     62-331     ( $491.60 ) Beatable   Favorites   5-20 ( 25.0% )   Favorites Win %     121-331 ( 36.6% )( As of Sunday morning )

Belmont               ( Final ):     30-249     ( $278.60 ) Beatable  Favorites  7-19  ( 36.8% )    Favorites Win %      92-249 ( 36.9% )

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 ):       5-24        ( $45.00 )  Beatable Favorites    N/A   (  N/A )      Favorites Win %:     10-24   ( 42.5% )

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):2599-13167 ($22,277.40) Beatable Favorites : 352-1263( 27.9% )Favorite's Win %: 5006-13250 ( 37.8% ) +/-: -15.4%  against a 16.8% takeout

Cumulative Stats    (All Final): 2684-13735 ($23,096.60)  Beatable Favorites : 367-1331( 27.6% )Favorite's Win %: 5188-13837 ( 37.5% ) +/-: -15.9%  against a 16.7% takeout