SaratogaBets Handicapping - Kevin Cox's Belmont Park Selections & Analysis - 5/1


Just a reminder that for complete selections & analysis of the four Grade One events  ( including the Kentucky Derby ) from Churchill Downs, merely go back one page.  

Today's Beatable Favorite(s): Race 9 - #2 Three Technique

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. Furthermore, if we amend our selections for a wet track, and the track becomes fast, our original selections are in play.


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Belmont Park - 5/1


Race  1

1.Mr. Fidget

2.Gratto Swing

3.Have a Heart

#1 MR. FIDGET hasn't done much to get the pulse racing of late, but the penultimate try can be upgraded a bit, as this one has historically been a bit better over a fast track than a wet one, and note that the lone win came at today's distance of ground. Grey chap has also placed in one of tries when loading first, and we'll give this one a tepid nod in a race with no first draft eliminations. #6 GRATTO SWING is showing a couple of unpleasant running lines in his last duet, but blew up the toteboard at today's distance just prior to that, and we'll give him a puncher's chance. #7 HAVE A HEART is another who you have to go back a few races to find something positive, and is a threat if able to get to that 2/19 showing. 


Race  2

1.Dubai Bobby

2.Merchants of Cool

3.Il Promo Sole ( GB )

#10 DUBAI BOBBY hasn't been in action since early January, but four year old is one for two off a break in the action, and found the line first in his sole start off a respite right here, and is eligible to surprise. #8 MERCHANTS OF COOL didn't show a whole heck of a lot in Philadelphia Park a month back, but completed the triple in his only 3rd off the layoff engagement, and picks up a decent longshot rider in Diaz. #9 IL PROMO SOLE (GB) hasn't been in action since Amateur's Night, but owns a win & a fourth place finish from as many sprint starts off the pine, and has blinkers added for today's first time with a "For Sale" sticker attached to his rump.   OFF TURF: 9-5-6-4-2



Race  3


2.Wicked Trick

3.Top Seed

#2 BACKSIDEOFTHEMOON ( cross entered yesterday, so check the changes ) cuts back from two turns to one this afternoon, and solid nine year old has partaken in the superfecta in all six starts when doing such over a glib surface. Klesaris thought enough of this one to re-claim him for 62.5 after losing him for that same amount ( after laying out a whopping 100 large for him way back when. Aforementioned shotcaller used to have this one come from off the pace, so we wouldn't be surprised to see a change of tactics today. #1 WICKED TRICK is in decent form these days & is one of two when breaking from the inside on the brown stuff. may sit a perfect trip. #3 TOP SEED played the fade when returning off a long absence, but did some nice work last year, and you're getting decent value on a decent Shug/Phipps runner. 


Race  4 


2.What's in It for Me

3.Second Fortune

#5 SIMBASALLTROUBLE didn't show a whole heck of a lot in the turf bow, but Kelly charge isn't particularly well bred for the stuff, and is now back at a more palatable level. Slight edge. #7 WHAT'S IN IT FOR ME has been a different animal since being transferred over to Schettino, and loses the eye cups  while getting a fast track once again -- over which he posted his best speed figure. #4 SECOND FORTUNE put forth an honest showing in a near identical spot two starts back and can land a share. 



Race  5


2.City Man

3.Tribhuvan ( Fr )

#5 WISSAHICKON has been best by three consecutive L/O lines of 4 months, 11 months, and 9 months, so right off the bat, fitness is a question. That being said, he's 5:2-1-0-1 off of respites, and totes his lightest impost to date while returning sans tes-tee-klees. Not hopeless versus these. #4 CITY MAN is another who hasn't been seen in quite some time, but won by a honker in his only turf start off a layoff, and closed out the exacta in his only start at this trip. #3 TRIBHUVAN (GB) hasn't seen the scene since Independence Day, but has lost his "spark" since then, as he returns sans tes-tee-klees, and discount the barn at your own peril.  OFF TURF:1-2-3-4-5


Race  6 

1.Flat Bill

2.Indian Gulch

3.Blugrascat's Smile

#3 FLAT BILL has been in the money in four of his last five calls to the post and is given a wise drop in class by Taylor. Meeeeek choice. #11 INDIAN GULCH has been MIA since the fall, bit owns a 1 for 3 mark off a break in the action, has won two of her last three when in for a tag, and you have to dig that nice "declining" mark ( 14:6-2-0 ) at today's distance of ground. #8 BLUEGRASCAT'S SMILE is stepped up in class in this spot, despite having been released from jail a bit over a week ago, and four returnees from the most recent have gone 4:2-1-0 in their subsequent ( three different ) engagements, with a negligible Beyer change.  NOTE: AS OF 11:04, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #5 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.



Race  7

1.Our Troubador

2.Horn of Plenty

3.Bad Guy

#7 OUR TROUBADOUR fell short by a hair in his only "second off the layoff" jammie, and is a poyfect two fer two on the Widener turf course. Could be coming late with any pace to cut into. #3 HORN OF PLENTY has a decent overall resume'; sensible in today's 1st turf try. #5 BAD GUY outran his odds in a big way when closing out the exacta in 28-1 last out, and owns a fair 6:1-2-1-1 in two turn to one turn heats, but as this one is a nibbler by rote ( 47:3-10-12 ), we'll relegate to the unders.  OFF TURF: 4-1(MTO)-5-3-9 


Race  8 

1.Venus Oyzo


3.Candy Jar

#1 VENUS OYZO hasn't displayed much in his last pair, but with maidens we permit ourselves to go back anywhere in their P.P.'s to find something positive ( as they're maidens for a reason, you know ), and this one hung up an adjusted 82.9 in one of her two turf sprints to date. Blinks are once again a part of the makeup, and recognize that the aforementioned speed figure came in a 3rd off the shelf deal. #10 STRAFE has shown some speed in both starts thus far, and given the exceptional pedigree ( 363 turf Tommy ), should show some improvement in this spot. #9 CANDY JAR has the best overall body of work in this allotment, and should be no worse than 3rd for all you show punters out there.  OFF TURF: 7-2-1-9-4



Race  9 


2.Ryan's Cat

3.Pete's Play Call 

#6 AMUNDSON has lots of zip, is a tight 4:2-1-0 in first off the bench scenarios, digs it here, and has never lost at today's dx. ( 2 for 2 ). Things to like at a solid mutuel offering. We feel #7 RYAN'S CAT is a big time overlay at 9-2, as the two starts after the Rudy claim have been positively sensational. Should you collect on a show wager in the 8th, feel free to parlay that on a place wager right here. #10 PETE'S PLAY CALL rounds out our top three. 


Race  10


2.Orglandes ( Fr )

3.Mutamakina ( GB )

#5 ANTOINETTE went coast to coast like butter and toast in her sole turf engagement off a hibernation, and gets an excellent "send" rider with Zayas making a rare appearance here today. Bay filly is 2:1-1-0 on the Inner, and we feel they'll have to grab this one by the tail to get the glory. #3 ORGLANDES (FR) has hit the board in both starts off a layoff line, and went from zero to hero in her only visit to Belmont. #2 MUTAMAKINA (GB) completes the Hot Dogs/Escargot/Crumpets triple based on the two good efforts since arriving in the States last year.  OFF TURF: 1-2-3-5-6



Race  11


2.Saigon ( AE )

3.Theatrical Dancer

#1 TONILEE was in the rear with the gear when making her first start since Turkey Time, but lightly raced five year old has been rotten on the dirt, so perhaps that was just used as a prep for today. Mare has never finished better than 5th, but the adj. BSF's for the verde are 54.3, 54.5 & and 44.5. Those figaros work well with these, and we'd like to see this one a bit more engaged from today's inside slot. #14 SAIGON (AE) needs a couple to declare in order to make it to the races today, but this one is quite well bred for the gramma, and deserves another shot after the flat turf debut. #7 THEATRICAL DANCER is showing a duet of moderate turf outings from 2020, and they came at a higher level without Lasix, which is now a part of the M.O..  OFF TURF: 2-3-5-8-9   NOTE: AS OF 11:05, #13(AE) WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.

Belmont            ( Current ):  11-53        ( $95.70 )   Beatable Favorites      3-5  ( 60% )   Favorites   Win %:     25-53     ( 47.2% )( As of Saurday morning ) 

Graded Stakes ( Current ): 3-18         ( $31.20 )   Beatable Favorites     0-1   ( 0% )    Favorites  Win %:     7-18      ( 38.9% ) 

Aqueduct Spring  ( Final ):  16-95     ( $118.70 )    Beatable  Favorites     0-6   ( 0% )     Favorites   Win  %:   51-95     ( 53.7% )

Aqueduct Winter ( Final ):  86-464  ( $989.40 )    Beatable  Favorites    5-15( 33.3% ) Favorites  Win %:   162-464 ( 34.9% ) 

Aqueduct Fall      ( Final ):  28-175   ( $454.00 )    Beatable   Favorites     1-9  ( 11.1% ) Favorites Win %      56-175   ( 32.0% )

Graded Stakes    ( Final ):  10-54     ( $122.40 )    Beatable Favorites       0-1   (  0% )    Favorites Win %:     17-53     ( 32.1% )

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 ) 74-465  ( $703.70 ) Beatable Favorites: 18-57 ( 31.6% ) Favorite's Win %: 140-414 (33.8%)  +/-: -24.3% against a 16.8% takeout  

Polytracks   2013-16 (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  2013-21 (All Final):2852-14618 ($24,903.60) Beatable Favorites : 364-1333( 27.3% )Favorite's Win %: 5525-14700 ( 37.6% ) +/-: -14.8%  against a 16.8% takeout

Cumulative Stats    (All Final): 2937-15186 ($25,721.50)  Beatable Favorites : 379-1401( 27.1% )Favorite's Win %: 5688-15287 ( 37.2% ) +/-: -15.3%  against a 16.6% takeout