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[OC] An insight in the world of football kits - 454 teams that play in the most unusual colors
I would like to start with a humble warning, that this will be a longer than "usual" post. Hopefully, it will compensate with the amount of information you might deem as interesting. :) After finishing my first journey into the world of colors in football, by counting which teams play in red & black color combination, I decided to pursue my next curiosity: How many football teams in the world play in unusual colors? By this, I was thinking of teams which have a “main” color that is rarely used (grey, brown, purple, pink, etc.) or use an uncommon color combination. Because of this coronavirus madness that is going on, I was able to spend more hours for this project than I planned, so in the end I was able to go into almost every single league in the world. I checked teams from over 400 divisions, of different tiers, from all continents. Although it’s not an official list, I tried to include as many clubs as possible on it. Now, you're probably asking yourself "How do you measure how rare or how common is in football a color / combination of colors?" An exact answer is impossible to give, so I started the study using my own experience as a football supporter, finally finding an useful purpose for the thousands of hours spent on watching football games. Therefore, I used a subjective point of view and excluded the color combinations that I, personally, considered to be the most common in football teams, namely:
One-color kits: white, black, red, blue, yellow, green
Most 2-color combinations that contain white or black: white-blue, white-red, black-yellow, black-green, etc.
Other combinations: red-blue, red-yellow, blue-yellow, yellow-green.
An exception was the color orange, where I excluded only the orange+black combination, which is much more widespread than all other combinations that include orange.
The selection criteria for the teams were as follows:
The team should have their main kit in colors which are different than the ones enumerated above;
The team must have played or been associated with the colors for several seasons;
The team should be currently active (dissolved clubs were not included).
But enough introduction, let’s jump straight into the list of the most uncommon kit colors in the world of football:
CATEGORY I - Teams with 1 main color
1.Purple(includes purple+white or purple+black) - [73 clubs] Notable teams: Fiorentina, Anderlecht, Toulouse, Austria Vienna, Real Valladolid. Other teams (by conference): UEFA (photo gallery here) - CE Carroi (Andorra), SV Austria Salzburg, Austria Klagenfurt (Austria), K Beerschot VA (Belgium), Etar Veliko Tarnovo (Bulgaria), NK Dubrava (Croatia), Daventry Town FC (England), Istres (France), VfL Osnabrück, Erzgebirge Aue (Germany), Ujpest, Békéscsaba 1912, Kecskemet TE (Hungary), ACD Legnano, AS Ostia Mare, Gioiese, Casoria Calcio 1979 (Italy), St. Andrews FC (Malta), FC Argeș, ASU Politehnica Timișoara, ACS Poli Timișoara (Romania), FK Graficar (Serbia), KFC Komarno (Slovakia), NK Maribor (Slovenia), Real Jaen, Alameda de Osuna EF, CD Becerril, Atletico Guadalajara, CD Guadalajara, CD Liendo, CD Santurtzi, CD Palencia, La Baneza (Spain) (Spain), Afjet Afyonspor, Hacettepe, Orduspor (Turkey). Rest of the World (photo gallery here):
COMNEBOL - Club Villa Dalmine, Sacachispas FC, Club Atlético Quiroga (Argentina), Deportes Concepcion, San Antonio Unido (Chile) Defensor Sporting, CA Fenix (Uruguay), Metropolitanos FC (Venezuela).
CONCACAF - Orlando City, Louisville City FC, Oakland County FC (USA), Pacific FC (Canada), CD Chalatenango (El Salvador).
CAF - Mountain of Fire and Miracles FC (Nigeria), Mbeya City FC (Tanzania), AS Denguele Foot (Ivory Coast), Fovu Baham FC (Cameroon), AS Sonabel (Burkina Faso).
AFC - FC Anyang (South Korea), Kyoto Sanga, Sanfrecce Hiroshima, Fujieda MYFC (Japan), Heilongjiang Lava Spring (China), Hanoi FC (Vietnam), Nagaworld FC (Cambodia), Persita Tangerang, Persik Kediri, PSGC Ciamin (Indonesia), Al-Ain (UAE), De Abasin Sape (Afghanistan), Perth Glory (Australia).
OFC - AS Manu-Ura (Tahiti).
2.Burgundy (includes burgundy+white, or similar shades: maroon, claret, dark red, wine red) - [74 clubs] Notable teams: AC Torino, Metz, Sparta Prague, CFR Cluj. Other teams (by conference): UEFA (photo gallery here) - FK Sarajevo (Bosnia), Chelmsford City, FC Northampton Town (England), JJK Jyväskylä (Finland), Dynamo Berlin (Germany), AEL Larissa (Greece), UM Selfoss (Iceland), Galway United (Ireland), Reggina, Cittadella, Salernitana, Trapani, Livorno, US Pontedera, Arezzo, Reggio Audace FC, Fano, US Capistrello, AC Morrone, AC Locri, ASD Bovalinese, Borgosesia Calcio, Milano City FC, Union Clodiense Chioggia, USD Breno, Olympia Agnonese, ASD Travestere Calcio, AC Nardo, ASD Citta di Acireale (Italy), FC Džiugas Telšiai (Lithuania), Nardo FK (Norway), CD Fatima, Clube Oriental de Lisboa (Portugal), Rapid Bucharest, Viitorul Ianca (Romania), AC Libertas (San Marino), Heart of Midlothian FC, Stenhousemuir FC (Scotland), NK Triglav Kranj (Slovenia), Independiente de Vallecas, CD Cenicero (Spain), Hatayspor, İnegölspor, Bandirmaspor, Elazigspor (Turkey), Cardiff Metropolitan University FC (Wales). Rest of the World (photo gallery here):
COMNEBOL - Lanús (Argentina), Jacuipense, Ferroviaria, S.E.R. Caxias do Sul (Brasil), Deportivo Liberacion (Paraguay), Club Atletico Torino (Peru), Carabobo FC (Venezuela)
CONCACAF - Sacramento Republic FC (USA), Valour FC (Canada), Deportivo Saprissa (Costa Rica)
CAF - Manzini Wanderers FC (Eswatini), Generation Foot (Senegal), Moroka Swallows FC (South Africa)
AFC - Vissel Kobe, FC Ryukyu (Japan), Al Wahda (UAE), Al Markhiya (Qatar), Shahr Khodro FC (Iran), Al Nasr SC (Kuwait), PSM Makassar (Indonesia), Nejmeh SC (Lebanon)
OFC - Matavera FC (Cook Islands), FC Guadalcanal (Solomon Islands).
UEFA - HNK Sibenik (Croatia), Blackpool (England) SV TEC (Netherlands), Hapoel Rishon LeZion (Israel), Pistoiese (Italy), FK Banga Gargzdai (Lithuania), Bruk-Bet Termalica Nieciecza, Zagłębie Lubin (Poland), CD Burgos Promesas (Spain), AFC Eskiltuna (Sweden), Alanyaspor, Adanaspor (Turkey), FC Mariupol (Ukraine).
COMNEBOL - Nova Iguaçu FC (Brazil), Cobresal, Cobreloa (Chile) Envigado FC (Colombia), Universidad César Vallejo (Peru).
CONCACAF - Houston Dynamo, Rio Grande Valley Football Club Toros (USA), Deportivo Achuapa (Guatemala), Cibao FC (Dominican Republic), Guayama FC (Puerto Rico)
CAF - RS Berkane (Morocco), FC Nouadhibou (Mauritania), Polokwane City FC (South Africa), Akwa United (Nigeria), Dire Dawa Kenema (Ethiopia), Salitas FC (Burkina Faso), Côte d'Or FC (Seychelles), Fosa Juniors FC (Madagascar)
AFC - Jeju United FC (South Korea). Shimizu S-Pulse, Omiya Ardija (Japan), Ratchaburi, Sukhothai FC, Nakhon Ratchasima, Sisaket FC, Kasetsart FC, Udon Thani FC (Thailand), FELDA United (Malaysia), SHB Đà Nẵng (Vietnam), Albirex FC Singapore, Hougang United FC (Singapore), Borneo FC (Indonesia), Sporting Clube de Goa, FC Goa, NEROCA FC (India), Saipa FC (Iran), Sanat Mes Kerman (Iran), Brothers Union FC (Bangladesh), Ajman Club (UAE), UMM Salal (Qatar), Al-Hala SC (Bahrain).
UEFA - CS Sedan Ardennes, US Lusitanos Saint Maur (France), Alba Adriatica, Union Feltre (Italy), Speranța Drochia (Moldova), SP Cailungo (San Marino), Amio SD, Laracha CF, Apurtuarte Club, CF Jacetano (Spain), Amed SK, Karşıyaka S.K., Diyarbakirspor (Turkey)
COMNEBOL - Club Agropecuario, Sportivo Atlético Club Las Parejas (Argentina), Portuguesa RJ, Pato Branco EC (Brazil), Boston River (Uruguay)
CONCACAF - AD Carmelita, AD Guanacasteca (Costa RIca), SV Robinhood (Suriname)
CAF - Stade Tunisien (Tunisia), MC Alger, JSM Bejaia (Algeria), Africa Sports d'Abidjan (Ivory Coast), Teichman City FC (Ghana), Canon Yaounde (Cameroon), Defense Force SC (Ethiopia), AS Pikine (Senegal), Masters Security FC (Malawi).
AFC - Lokomotiv Tashkent (Uzbekistan), Adamstown Rosebud FC (Australia).
UEFA - OFC Sliven 2000 (Bulgaria), Braintree Town FC, Mansfield Town FC (England), Lions Gibraltar FC, ASD Czarlins Muzane (Italy), Aalesunds FK (Norway), AE Roses (Spain)
COMNEBOL - Duque de Caxias (Brazil), Academia Puerto Cabello (Venezuela)
CONCACAF - FC Cincinnati (USA), Lobos UPNFM (Honduras)
CAF - Real Kings FC (South Africa), Sunshine Stars (Nigeria)
AFC - Albirex Niigata (Japan), Queensland Lions FC, Riverside Olympic (Australia), Wellington United (New Zealand), Thai Port FC (Thailand), Al Fayha (Saudi Arabia), Al Karamah SC (Syria), Homenetmen Beirut (Lebanon)
UEFA - Enosis Neon Paralimni FC (Cyprus), Scunthorpe United, Weymouth FC (England), Argja Bóltfelag (Feroe), Glacis United (Gibraltar), Cobh Ramblers FC, Drogheda United (Ireland), USD Vipo Trento, FC Rieti (Italy), Gzira United (Malta), Veles Moscow (Russia), Keith FC (Scotland), Pontevedra CF (Spain), AC Bellinzona (Switzerland), Colwyn Bay FC (Wales)
2.Blue + Yellow + White [1 club] -CA Bella Vista (Uruguay) 3.Blue + Yellow + Black [1 club] -Real Sport Clube (Portugal) 4.Blue + Green + White [1 club] -St. Louis FC (USA) 5.Blue + Orange + White [2 clubs]
2.Red + Yellow + Blue + White [1 club] -ASDC Verbania (Italy) 3.Red + Yellow + Blue + Black [1 club] -Coras de Nayarit (Mexico) Here they are. 454 teams from across the entire the world, from Feroe Island to Papua New Guinea or the 4th Italian league. This should be about it. However, if there are by any chance teams that I might have missed, please feel free to leave a comment and I will add them on the list. Thank you for reading and hope you enjoyed it!
With the Kentucky Derby now just three weeks away, our highlighted race of the week will be the last prep race for the Derby in the Grade: 1, $1 million Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Arkansas. We will also be looking at the Oaklawn Handicap, a Grade: 2, $750,000 nine furlong contest also for four year olds and up. Elsewhere, we will take a look at three Graded Stakes races at Keeneland Race Course. The Ben Ali Stakes for four year olds and up, the Jenny Wiley Stakes, an 8 ½ furlong test for four year olds and up fillies and mares on the turf and the Lexington Stakes for three year olds who are desperately trying for some last minute Kentucky Derby points in hopes that a win or a good showing will catapult them into this year’s “Run for the Roses”. Lastly, on Sunday we will be examining the Grade: 1, $750,000 Apple Blossom back at Oaklawn Park, another 8 ½ furlong race for four year olds and up fillies and mares. Saturday, April 13, 2019 Keeneland Race Course Race: 7 (4:24 PM EST Post) Ben Ali Stakes If you look up “racehorse rounding back into top form” in the dictionary you might see a picture of Flameaway. The one time Kentucky Derby threat ran a very good third in the Grade: 3 Mineshaft off a nearly six month break two starts back. I really like the way this $400,000 son of Scat Daddy won his last, as he took pace pressure every step of the way while wiring the field. That last race, back to back excellent works since and this being his third start off the layoff, all point to another good effort upcoming. Lastly, I don’t see him having any problems in what is projected to be an off track on Saturday.…………………….Based off his last two races, a win and a fast closing third, both at Laurel Park, Bonus Points also seems to be in peak form right now. The Todd Pletcher trainee draws a good post for his running style and should be coming late in this spot……………………… I know Solomini is quite popular but I’m not a big fan of his. In fact, I believe he is one of the most overrated horses in quite some time…maybe since Keen Ice. Yes, he’s a Grade: 1 winner and yes, he’s hit the board in 9 of 11 career starts but two facts stand out about him to me. 1) He’s won one race since that Grade: 1 win (a span of 16 months) and that was against $40,000 optional claimers and 2) the fact still remains he is 2 for 11 lifetime. This son of Curlin will likely be over bet in this spot. ………….Honorable Mentions: Third Day is a $575,000 son of the corvette looking Bernardini who did well to finish third in the aforementioned Mineshaft Handicap in his last. This handsome colt was trapped behind a slow pace yet finished just a neck behind Flameaway in that race and his one and only race in the slop was an impressive win. Bottom line here is, he could better this rating especially if the track does come up wet…………………The cleverly named Nun the Less looks better suited for the synthetics but note he is 2 for 2 on off tracks. Merits a longshot look if the rains come…………….First Mondays, a $450,000 son of Curlin who missed the break in his last, and Just Whistle, who was a good third in the Peter Pan Stakes last year, both could run well here and neither would be a huge surprise. Race: 9 (5:34 PM EST Post) Stonestreet Lexington Anothertwistafate rattled off three super impressive, large margined wins over the synthetics this year but looked just as good, if not better, in his neck loss last time out in the Sunland Park Derby on the dirt. This $360,000 son of Scat Daddy sat just off screaming early fractions (:45.3, 1:09.3, 1:34.3) before “running on” to just miss the win. Note the :24 second flat internal fraction as it’s the sign of a quality runner. If this handsome, smooth strided colt, who ripped a sensational half mile work for this (:46.4) last week runs well enough here to make it into the Derby (he’s on the threshold on points), no one better go to sleep on him as he appears to have big time talent and would pose an enormous threat………………….Based off his close up, on the board finishes in the Sham, Southwest and Louisiana Derby, Sueno clearly looks next best………………….I really liked Zenden’s Tampa Bay Derby effort at 20-1 in his last. This son of Fed Biz normally assumes a stalking position early on in his races but in the Tampa Bay Derby, this horse blew the gate and ripped off super fast fractions (:22.3, 45.4 and 1:09.3). He understandably tired late but I thought he did extremely well to finish fourth and was only be beaten by four lengths to the likes of Tacitus and Win Win Win. Looks best of the rest here………………..Honorable Mentions: Call me stubborn, but I’m STILL not giving up on the late running Roiland, who has a habit of running well at double digit odds………………Anyone have any idea what to do with Harvey Wallbanger, who wins the Holy Bull at 30-1 then comes back and completely tanks in the Florida Derby? Because I sure don’t. He’s a tough horse to play with such inconsistencies…………If you are hunting a longshot in this race, take a good look at Shang, who is a neck shy of being unbeaten in five starts vs. lesser. Although he obviously will be taking a huge step up in class, it should be noted he ran the last 2 ½ furlongs of his last race in an excellent :30.1, his speed figures are climbing, he handles the wet track very well and the #1 post at this meet is winning at 18% thus far. Race: 10 (6:12 PM EST Post) Jenny Wiley Stakes Rushing Fall is a very special filly. This gorgeous, $320,000 daughter of More Than Ready is 6 for 7 in her career, has already captured two Grade: 1 wins and, had it not been for a questionable ride when losing her one race by a neck, she could be unbeaten. There is nothing not to like about her as she can handle the distance, is adaptable to any pace scenario, handles any “give” in the turf and is 3 for 3 at Keeneland. If you are looking to beat her, which might prove futile, you can use the angle that this will be her first start in exactly 6 months but that’s not enough for me……………………I like Rymska. She is a big, all black (very rare) five year old mare who is 7 for 13 in her career. This multiple Graded Stakes winner could not have looked any better in taking down the Hillsborough at Gulfstream in her last and you get the third start off the layoff angle. Easily looks next best here…………………Bellavais has been gradually improving since October. $485,000 mare by Tapit finished very well in her last and won her previous time out, both at Gulfstream Park. It appears she too can handle a soft turf course and has been on the board in 10 of 15 career races…………….Honorable Mentions: Onthemoonagain is a French invader who has fared very well in all four U.S. starts. Chad Brown trainee could better this rating with the right pace scenario……………Got Stormy came back running off a long layoff when whipping high level optionals. Steps up but that race could set her up for a good effort here……………….The longshot horse in this race is Princess Warrior, who looks overmatched on paper but note her two races on off turf courses were both very good. Oaklawn Park Race: 9 (6:22 PM EST Post) Oaklawn Handicap After back to back big efforts at “big balloons,” Rated R Superstar has methodically worked his way back into what appears to be top form. Although his rider is ice cold right now, he does like this track and seems to be ok if it rains as expected. …my best guess in an extremely wide open horse race…………………….Giant Expectations disappointed as the 8/5 favorite in the Essex in his last. This 6 year old by Giant Frost chased Battle of Midway and McKinzie two back and wasn’t embarrassed by any stretch, so you know he has ability. It’s the consistency I question as he hasn’t won a horse race of any kind in 16 months. That said he looks next best…………….Quip was up against it when he had to chase the absolutely streaking right now Prince Lucky in his first race back off a long layoff. This good looking son of Distorted Humor did well to finish third in that race and should be tighter for this…………………Honorable Mentions: Tenfold’s claim to fame is running Justify to three quarters of a length in the 2018 Preakness Stakes. This son of Curlin was a very close up fourth in his first race since, handles the slop just fine and should improve off his 2019 debut. Figures close………………Lone Sailor figures to do his normal “drop way back early but come with big run late only to fall short late” routine. Logically, the faster the pace, the better his chances are and the pace figures to be honest in this race……………..Keep an eye on Chris and Dave here too if it rains. Although he seems overmatched, he is 4 for 6 on wet tracks…………..I got to spend several minutes up close and personal with Lookin’ at Lee last year at Saratoga before the Travers. He is a very nice looking, well made horse, but he just hasn’t run to those looks as his 3 for 21 career record would indicate. Race: 11 (7:43 PM EST Post) Arkansas Derby There are a lot of “moving parts” with the big, almost perfectly strided, Improbable, so this race should tell the tale of where we stand with him. His last race, The Rebel, didn’t answer any questions for me. In fact, it seems to have posed more. Let’s start with why he was run down in deep stretch by Long Range Toddy. Was it because he was “parking lot” wide, off a boneheaded ride by DVD, throughout the entire race and, with that being his first race in 10 weeks, maybe he understandably tired late? I don’t know, like I’ve said before, Baffert is the master at sending them out ready, regardless of the situation. Was it the City Zip breeding that is causing the dreaded distance limitation? I don’t know that yet either being he romped, not once but twice, at 8 ½ furlongs before. Whatever the answers are, I know this much….Baffert is not sitting on his hands with this gorgeous colt. I don’t blame him one bit for making a rider change (from DVD to Jose Ortiz) and he is adding blinkers in this spot as well. I absolutely LOVED his last work where, with blinkers on, he sat just off his work mate, passed him on the turn for home and was "reaching out" soooooooooo beautifully down the lane I mumbled “wow” while stopping the clock in either 1:13.3 or 1:14 flat depending on what racing publication you read. This might prove futile, but I am sticking with him until he proves otherwise. That said, this race is a “do or die” for him. He will need to step up right now, in this spot to remain a serious Derby threat………………………….Horse Racing is a lot like other sports in the sense that the best baseball/basketball/football team doesn’t always win, but more of who gets hot heading into the playoffs. In this case, it’s who is getting good at just the right time and, aside from Tacitus and perhaps Vekoma, is there another horse in the country who is getting good right now more that Omaha Beach? After losing a couple of heart breaking, maiden races earlier in his career, this very handsome, very well bred colt (by War Front out of a mare super sire from years ago Seeking the Gold) ran a hole in the wind in the slop to finally break his maiden two starts back. He won by 9 that day and stopped the clock in a blistering 1:21 flat for seven panels. His next and last start was in a division of the Rebel, where he assumed command early, fended off a few others early in the race and then dug in and fended off none other than Two Year Old Colt Champion Game Winner in a thrilling stretch run. The Rebel proved two things. 1) He can handle the route distance and 2) he has the guts of a tight rope walker. Back to back bullet works since the Rebel signal he is holding form and possibly getting better. Big Money Mike gets the leg up……………….The aforementioned Long Range Toddy is a stretch runner who is 7-4-1-1 in his career has never finished more than two lengths behind the winner in his three career defeats. That, readers, is consistency. He draws the extreme outside post which could actually help him in this spot and I love his work pattern since his Rebel upset (8-1) win……………….Honorable Mentions: Although Galilean was passed in the stretch of the Rebel by Long Range Toddy, I still like this very handsome, $600,000 son of Uncle Mo. After annihilating Cal-Breds in his two prior races, this colt, who has a very efficient and smooth stride, did very well to finish third, beaten by less than three lengths in his first try vs. open company and outside the state of California as well. Bottom line here is, he is no easy throw out……………………...Country House is another late runner who, on the surface, looks to be struggling a bit outside the friendly confines of Gulfstream Park but a closer look shows he had legitimate excuses both times. He broke slowly (again) and chased a streaking War of Will two back and, after you guessed it, breaking slowly again, he was ridiculously wide in the Louisiana Derby. That said, this son of Lookin’ at Lucky could be a menace with a clean break and what is projected to be a hot early pace………………….Gray Attempt has won 4 of 6 in his career and is 2 for 3 on this oval plus he recorded a monster work in the mud last week (5F- :58.3). The problem I’m seeing with him is a mile or a mile a sixteenth looks to be “all of it.” In other words, on paper he looks better suited to sprinting. Sunday, April 14, 2019 Oaklawn Park Race: 8 (4:42 PM EST Post) Apple Blossom This year’s renewal of the Apple Blossom features a rematch from the Azeri Stakes with two of the best older females in the land in Elate and Midnight Bisou and this race figures to be a doozy. Midnight Bisou, who I liked since early last year, got the better of it last time and I’m sticking to my guns that she has a world of talent, will continue to get better and have a tremendous year when it’s all said and done. Four year old by Midnight Lute is off to a good start (2 for 2) in winning the Houston Ladies Classic in January and the aforementioned Azeri in March. She “takes her racetrack with her” as she is 7 for 13 in her career while winning on four different ovals in all parts of the country. Lastly, I believe she still holds a fitness edge over main rival Elate as this will be her third start (off the layoff) while Elate will be making her second start in eight months…………………….Elate is clearly the main threat in this spot. Head hunters in New Guinea could see this two time Grade: 1 winner needed her last as it was her first start in eight months. Filly by Medaglia d’ Oro did very well to finish second in the Azeri when beaten by just one length as the even money favorite. When I was at Belmont Park (before heading over to Aqueduct for the Wood Memorial) last week, I heard several folks on the backstretch talk about how she may not be coming back the same as last year after, by trainer Bill Mott’s admittance, “a few minor injuries”. I’ll give her a mulligan for the Azeri but like Improbable this weekend, she needs to improve off the Azeri to prove that theory wrong………………….Wonder Gadot is another who probably needed her first race of 2019 when finishing second vs. optional $50,000 claimers on March 8 as it was her first start in over four months. Another daughter of “King of the (sales) Ring” Medaglia d’ Oro, this filly actually won two thirds of the Canadian Triple Crown (beating the boys) last year and still has that very long and flowing stride, which is especially good when on her right handed lead………………..Honorable Mention: Escape Clause is an absolute win machine while registering a mind boggling 20 wins in 30 career starts. Granted, she was beating up on far lesser competition at smaller tracks for most of it but still that’s quite a feat. That said, she did win a Grade: 2 at Santa Anita in January and could not have looked any better while blowing out her rivals at Sunland Park in her last. Mare by Going Commando (how did the Jockey Club miss that name by the way?), who stands for less than $1,000, won by 7+, getting a mile in a track record 1:34 flat. By: Gerard Apadula Director of Equine Operations and Development Knights of the Round Stable Thoroughbred Racing Team [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) 2019- Record: 22-72 = 31% (My Plays: -$2,314.14) 2018- Record: 107-261= 41% 2017- Record: 92-235 = 39% 2016- Record: 91-229 = 40% 2015- Record: 67-180 = 37% 2014- Record: 29-73 = 40% 2013- Record: 20-59= 34% 2012 -Record: 24-73= 33% 2011 –Record: N/A 2010- Record: 24-74= 33% Little Bets N’ Pieces ****Superstar Winx makes her final career start in the Group: 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Royal Randwick. If her win streak continues, this will be her 33rd straight win and 25th Group: 1. The scheduled post time is 11:05 p.m. ET on Friday, April 12th. **** Lady Pauline, a half-sister to Lady Aurelia, was an eye catching, first time out winner last week at Keeneland. Going off at an enormous 1-5 betting favorite, the Stonestreet homebred blew the gate and showed a very impressive speed to win by 9 3/4 lengths, stopping the clock in :51:3 for 4 ½ furlongs. We’ll need to keep an eye on her moving forward. ****In all my years of being involved in this sport, I’m not sure I’ve seen a stronger book of mares to be bred to one first year stallion ever. Justify, who stands at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud in Paris, KY., for $150,000, has the following list of mares booked: (although this is not all of them) A Raving Beauty Multiple G1 winner A Z Warrior G1 winner Afleet Maggi Dam of G1 winner Dream Tree African Jade Dam of G1 winner Lord Nelson Appealing Zophie G1 winner, dam of Belmont Stakes winner Tapwrit Bar of Gold Won Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint Bella Jolie Dam of champion sprinter Runhappy Birdatthewire G1 winner Blossomed Dam of G1 winner Sippican Harbor Brave Anna G1 winner Bubbler Dam of champion Arrogate Caledonia Road Champion 2-year-old filly Champagne Room Champion 2-year-old filly Charming Dam of champion 2-year-old filly Take Charge Brandi, Classic Strike Dam of G1 winner Union Strike Dazzling Song Dam of G1 winner Magnum Moon Diamondsandrubies G1 winner Diva Delite Dam of G1 winner Midnight Bisou Dream Dancing G1 winner D’Wildcat Speed Dam of filly Lady Aurelia Emma’s Encore G1 winner Found won Breeders’ Cup Turf Got Lucky G1 winner Grace Hall G1 winner Grazie Mille Dam of G1 winner Mo Town Groupie Doll Two-time champion female sprinter and winner of the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint Havre de Grace 2011 Horse of the Year, sold for $10 million Ithinkisawapudycat Dam of G1 winner Sweet Loretta, Khancord Kid Dam of Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint winner Bar of Gold Kosmo’s Buddy Dam of G1 winner Knicks Go Mining My Own Dam of Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird and G1 winner Dullahan Misty For Me G1 winner, dam of Cartier champion 2-year-old colt U S Navy Flag Moonshine Memories G1 winner Morena dam of Belmont Stakes winner Creator Noted and Quoted G1 winner Pretty ‘n’ Smart Dam of G1 winner Cupid Rare Event Dam of G1 winner Improbable Sambuca Classica Dam of champion 2-year-old male Classic Empire Silk and Scarlet Dam of G1 winner Master of Hounds Silky Serenade Dam of G1 winner Restless Rider, So Sharp of G1 winner Sharp Azteca Storm Dixie Dam of Kentucky Oaks winner Princess of Sylmar Tapestry G1 winner Together Forever: G1 winner Turbulent Descent G1 winner Untouched Talent dam of G1 winner Bodemeister Vale Dori G1 winner Yellow Heat Dam of G1 winner R Heat Lightning Zipessa G1 winner
We will be solely focused on Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla. as the two richest races in the country are set to be run. The co-featured races include the $9 million Pegasus World Cup for four year olds and up, and the inaugural running of the $7 million Pegasus World Cup Turf, also for four year olds and up. The entire Gulfstream card on Saturday is a blockbuster as they will run nine Stakes races all told and we will be examining six of them. They include: The Gulfstream Park Sprint Stakes, which came up very competitive, the Hurricane Bertie, which will feature the 2019 debut of 2018 Female Champion Sprinter winner Shamrock Rose, the La Prevoyante Stakes, a marathon event for fillies and mares, and the Fred W Hooper, another well matched field going a mile on the dirt. Before moving forward, as most of you know, I will do a now and again “Back-Track” segment and talk about what happened last weekend. There was so much talent on display last weekend I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about the five horses who were very impressive in their respective races. In no particular order, Dessman, an enormous, roughly 1,250 pound, $750,000 son of Union Rags absolutely waltzed home a 7 ½ length winner in his debut. Albeit a bit green, I loved how he was moving down the lane, his stride is impeccible and he will only get better with experience. As Justify taught us last year, it’s not too late for this gorgeous bay colt to make the Derby. Win Win Win was visually impressive coming from last, circling the field on the outside and blew the doors off his competitors in the Pasco Stakes. The son of Hat Trick won by 7 1/4 lengths. He didn’t just break the track record for seven furlongs while winning for the third time in four starts, he shattered it, getting the distance is 1:20.4 over a notoriously tiring Tampa Bay Downs surface. Americandy was also impressive in breaking his maiden first time out at the Fair Grounds on Saturday. The colt by Candy Ride missed the break and was dead last at first call. He too unleashed a powerful run around “the hook” while going a ridiculous six wide, yet powered away from his rivals in winning by two “going away” lengths. Also at the Fair Grounds, War of Will stalked the early pace, took over at the six furlong marker and cruised to an easy four length win in the Le Comte Stakes. He exudes class and I look forward to what this hybrid grass/dirt runner will do down the road. The highly touted, $500,000 Flor de La Mar was no secret as she went off at 1/5 in her racing debut and lived up to the hype while decimating her rivals in her racing debut. The titanic filly, who outworked Dessman in the mornings, has a big, beautiful, long, loping stride that covers a ton of ground effortlessly, seems to have a really big future. Lastly, crack sprinter X Y Jet got caught in protracted and wicked speed duel (:21 flat and :43.2) and understandably tired badly at the eighth pole. He’ll live to fight another day. Saturday, January 26, 2019 Gulfstream Park Race: 3 (12:30 PM EST Post) Gulfstream Park Turf Sprint Stakes This is a really good race, one where the break will be the key. That said, and even though he was run down in deep stretch by Stormy Liberal in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint in November, I still think World ofTrouble has a world of talent. Albeit he’s never run on a turf course labeled firm, he’s run huge in all three turf starts. The cut back in distance off his sloppy tracked, colossal margin win in his last should hit him right between the eyes here. A 23% Irad Ortiz Jr. takes the leg up from a scalding hot (12-32= 38%) Jason Servis and with no speed to his inside, he should be able to work out a good trip in this spot……………………..This race sets up very well for 2018 Champion Male Turf Horse Stormy Liberal. The now seven year old, stretch runner figures to “sit the trip” behind the plethora of speed in this spot and make his run down the lane. You can go ahead and throw out that last race on the downhill course at Santa Anita as he was too close to an insanely fast early pace (:42 half mile). The 4 for 4 record at this distance is impressive as is the bullet work (5F- :59.4) last week…a must use in any exotics betting scenarios……………………Pay Any Price is faster than a proverbial speeding bullet as he consistently rattles off sub :22 second first quarters and sub :45 second half miles. The nine year old veteran is an astounding 15 for 25 in his career including being a mind boggling 12 for 17 on this oval. A white hot Paco Lopez (5 for his last 16 through Wednesday of this week) is the perfect (speed) rider for this horse as well. He probably needed his troubled trip last as it was his first start in three months. Lastly, I did find it interesting that he has no published works since Dec. 19………………Honorable Mentions: Am I the only one who is intrigued that Recruiting Ready is making his turf debut against two of the nation’s best turf sprinters? It took me a minute but I think I see it. Note the one and only turf work he shows at Palm Meadows last week as it was tremendous; going 4F in :47.4 with dogs up. Perhaps trainer Stanley Hough, who is no babe in the woods, saw something there………………..My long-shot toss in is Oak Bluffs, who has shown next to nothing in four of his last five outings. But note he is a 16 time winner and this is clearly his favorite surface as his 10-3-5-0 record on this turf course would indicate. (My Play: $1 trifecta box using all five. Cost: $60.00) Race: 7 (2:30 PM EST Post) Hurricane Bertie Stakes Shamrock Rose was super impressive when coming “over the top” to pull off a colossal upset (26-1) in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint in November. That win was her fourth straight to end 2018 and propelled her to an Eclipse Award for Champion Female Sprinter. This good looking daughter of the strapping First Dude, who is 2 for 2 at this distance, handled what appears to be her biggest threat in this race (Blamed) with ease back in October and she has been working very well for her 2019 debut.. She is no slam dunk in this spot as this track goes against the grain of her deep closer running style, but she might pick up where she left off last year …………….....………The aforementioned Blamed sports a very impressive 8-6-2-0 career mark. Filly by Blame wired the field in the Nov 23rd Comely Stakes in her swan song race of 2018. Although this will be her first start since, she has run well off of long breaks several times before…..looks next best………………………….The regally bred Dream Pauline is three for four in her career with all three wins coming on three different surfaces, so you have to like her adaptability. This filly by Tapit out of Grade: 1 Test Stakes winner Dream Rush will be stretching out to seven panels for the first time and stepping up in class as well, but she is another who is training well and you get the third start off the layoff angle…………………Honorable Mentions: If you draw a line through Stormy Embrace’s Breeders’ Cup debacle, you’ll see this five year old mare had a very strong 2018 (7-4-1-2). She has hit the board in 7 of 9 tries at this distance and 7 of 9 on the oval. That, readers, is consistency…..could conceivably better this rating……………………I had a difficult time separating Ms Meshak and Pacific Gale for the fifth slot in my “go to” five horse, trifecta box. I’m going to go with Ms Meshak based on the fact that she is batting .500 on this track and appears to be coming into this in good form while winning back to back races vs. lesser. (My Play: .50 trifecta box using the top five. Cost: $30.00) Race: 8 (3:00 PM EST Post) La Prevoyante Stakes Si Que Es Buena is an Argentinian import who rallied strongly from twelfth position early to finish fourth, beaten by just one length, in her U.S. debut in New York. She came back and overcame a mistimed move by her rider to gamely win a minor Stakes race on this turf course last time out. Although she didn’t break any track records and her speed figures were average at best, she still looks best in this wide open affair………………….Tricky Escape had a three race win streak snapped when probably overmatched in the Grade: 1 Flower Bowl back in October. She bounced back nicely off of that effort when finishing a close second in the Grade: 3 Long Island Stakes while finishing ahead of my top pick at the same time. The Grade: 3 level looks like her comfort zone, so she should be competitive here……………………………. Santa Monica disappointed while showing zilch in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf last time out. But this good looking, now six year old mare, had run bang up in all five previous U.S. starts and it would be no surprise if she bounces back and runs big here………………..Honorable Mentions: English Affair finished off 2018 strongly with a close up, third place finish at Keeneland, then overcame a slow pace to take the Cardinal Handicap at Churchill Downs. Threat if she picks up where she left off………………………..Although Holy Helena has never tried this distance before, she was a fast closing second behind my top pick at 1 3/16ths miles late time out. Filly by the wickedly fast Ghostzapper is 3 for 7 on the turf and has serious “back class” while winning the Queens Plate (Canadian Kentucky Derby) in 2017. (My play: .50 trifecta box, all 5. Cost $30.00) Race: 9 (3:30 PM EST Post) Fred W. Hooper Stakes Coal Front not only bounced back to his winning ways while blasting his rivals in the Grade: 3 “Mr. P” Stakes last time out, but did so by showing a new dimension. This speedy, $575,000 son of Stay Thirsty assumed a stalking position that day, took the lead on “the hook” and scampered away late to win by almost four lengths. I’m not worried he’ll be going a mile in this spot as a) he showed no signs of not being able to handle an extra furlong in the Mr. P and b) this is still a one turn race for this ridgling who is 5 for 7 in his career. It’ll be interesting to see the plan of attack here as we know he has excellent early speed and draws the rail, yet was successful using rating tactics last time out…………………Unbridled Juan won three of his last four in Maryland to close out 2018. Although this will be his first start in some 2 ½ months he does run well fresh and he likes this track as his 4-2-1-1 record over it would indicate………………………After winning 3 of 11 starts and $68,000 in 2017, Aztec Sense came back and had a “perfect” 2018 while winning all eight starts and over $400,000. His speed figures are on par or better than most of these and he mirrors Unbridled Juan in the sense he likes this track (3 for 4 over it) and he runs well fresh……..scary………………Honorable Mentions: Copper Town’s last race was too bad to be true. This good looking son of wide spectrum sire Speightstown blew through maidens and two allowance levels but completely mailed it in last time out in the Cigar Mile. He’s had 56 days off to “regroup” and it won’t surprise me at all if he outruns this rating…………………………My long-shot throw in is Fellowship, who has shown very little in his last several races while going just 1 for 10 in 2018. But he is back on his home track, where he has made over $500,000, and he is going to pop a big race one of these days. (My Play: .50 trifecta using all 5. Cost: $30.00) Race: 11 (4:30 PM EST Post) Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational Stakes Yoshida looks the one to beat here as this now five year old is a Grade: 1 winner on the dirt (Woodward Stakes) and on the turf (Churchill Turf Classic)….that’s impressive. Also impressive was his Breeders’ Cup Classic effort. This Bill Mott trainee bobbled at the break and soon found himself near the back of the pack and some 14-15 lengths out of it. He then launched a brazen, six wide run on “the hook” and, although understandably hanging like a cheap suit in deep stretch, he was only beaten by less than two lengths behind Horse of the Year candidate Accelerate. He has worked well since over the notoriously deep track at Payson Park and this distance should be no problem at all. Slight edge in wide open horse race that features three females and several Grade: 1 winners…………………….In taking Yoshida, Catapult scares me. This $350,000 son of Kitten’s Joy had a very good, albeit brief, 2018 highlighted by just missing in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Mile last time out. He won back to back Grade: 2’s prior to that in California and finished both races in very quick final times. I’m not worried this will be his first start since the BC since a) I love his work pattern as he shows three stamina building, six furlong works topped off by solid five furlong works and b) he is still another who seems to run well fresh…..dangerous foe………………….Although Bricks and Mortar will be taking a major league class hike here and stretching out in distance, he is about 1 ½ lengths away from unbeaten in seven starts. This stretch runner by the late super sire Giant’s Causeway finished just inches behind Yoshida the two times they’ve squared off and he shows a monster work (5F- :59.2) at Palm Meadows last week……………………………….Honorable Mentions: If you draw a line through Next Share’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Mile debacle, you’ll see he’s won three straight including pulling off a major upset in the Grade: 1 Shadwell Turf Mile three starts back. In his current form, he could better this rating………………….A similar thing can be said for Channel Maker, who also showed little in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Mile but ran bang up in his three previous races, including winning a Grade: 1. ……………………..Delta Prince, who is a half brother to multiple Eclipse Champion, the late Royal Delta, returns to his preferred surface (turf) and has hit the board in 10 of 11 career tries, Aerolithe, a gray mare from Japan who sports a 13-4-5-0 record and gets the “dark horse” label in here and Magic Wand, a four year old filly who set the pace in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf and held well in deep stretch, all merit consideration…but you can’t play them all. (My Play: .50 trifecta box using the first five. Cost: $30.00) Race: 12 (5:00PM EST Post) Pegasus World Cup Invitational Stakes 2018 Champion Older Male and Horse of the Year runner up Accelerate really needs no introduction as his 2018 season was remarkable. The now six year old son of two time champion Lookin’ at Lucky won six of seven starts including an eye popping five Grade: 1’s highlighted by the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Trainer John Sadler looks to have this chestnut “revved up” for swan song race as he shows three straight bullet works capped off by a visually impressive 5F in :58.4 this past week. …………………………Aside from possibly Enable and Newspaperofrecord, City of Light’s tour de force win the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile might have been THE most impressive win I saw throughout the entire Breeders’ Cup weekend. This gorgeous son of Quality Road broke running that day and never looked back. He too has run a hole in the wind in the morning since and he also should be “fully cranked up” here for his farewell race. That said, and even though he is 1 for 1 with a win over Accelerate at it, I don’t think nine furlongs is his best distance. From what I’ve seen his “wheel house” is between seven and eight and a half furlongs and that, readers, could play a part in the outcome. Past that, Castellano appears to be sitting on a keg of dynamite here……………………..I hate to put the drop dead gorgeous Audible this far down, I really do. I expect this $500,000 son of Into Mischief to be major force in the older make division in 2019 as, even though he severely disappointed at 1/5 in his last (prep) race for this, he has an enormous amount of talent. I generally don’t buy trainers excuses for losses but I am completely selling out on what trainer Todd Pletcher said about how “he didn’t handle the sealed/wet track.” Head hunters in New Guinea and lost tribes in the Amazon could see this colt struggling with the surface in that race especially leaving the three eighths pole and around “the hook”. Bottom line here is he is an exotics inclusion for me for sure…………………….Honorable Mentions: Gunnevera was jostled at the start of the Breeders’ Cup Classic but was coming hard, late and was just one length behind Accelerate in a super good effort. This big chestnut by Dialed In was charging hard, late behind Yoshida in the Woodward prior to that, so he is certainly in good form and clearly has ability. I like his work pattern coming into this also as he shows a steady line of stamina building works, signaling to me he might run big once again in this spot…………………..Patternrecognition comes into this razor sharp off three consecutive “coast to coast” scores in his last three, highlighted by taking down the Grade: 1 Cigar Mile in his last. They better not let him cruise on an easy lead or he may prove difficult to catch late…………………Just a few other notes about this race: I wonder which Bravazo will show up on Saturday? The one that got beat narrowly by Justify in the Preakness, you know, the same one who got beat by a neck in the Clark Handicap last time out or the one who lays an egg like in the Pennsylvania Derby back in September? Either way, as tough as he is, as he was the only horse other than Justify to run in all three Triple Crown races, that 2 for 11 record in 2018 just doesn’t do it for me………………………..Tom’s d’Etat has won 6 of 9 starts, including his last four in a row by a combined 22 lengths, vs. far, far lesser and his speed figures aren’t all that bad…………………..Mexican Triple Crown winner Kukulan, who is 14 for 14 in his career and no one has ever been close to beating him, should be fun to watch. His prep race was visually impressive to watch but his final time (1:54.4 for this nine furlong distance) and his speed figure that day (70), will get him blown away in this race. (My Play: .50 trifecta box using the first five. Cost: $30.00) By: Gerard Apadula Director of Equine Operations and Development Knights of the Round Stable Thoroughbred Racing Team [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) 2019- Record: 4-11 = 36% (My Plays: -$258.05) 2018- Record: 107-261= 41% 2017- Record: 92-235 = 39% 2016- Record: 91-229 = 40% 2015- Record: 67-180 = 37% 2014- Record: 29-73 = 40% 2013- Record: 20-59= 34% 2012 -Record: 24-73= 33% 2011 –Record: N/A 2010- Record: 24-74= 33% Little Bets N’ Pieces **** Four-time Eclipse Award champion Beholder delivered a bay filly by Curlin Jan. 19th at Spendthrift Farm in Lexington. "Beholder had a very nice Curlin filly this afternoon, and we're happy to report both mother and foal are doing really well," said Ned Toffey, general manager at Spendthrift. "We couldn't be prouder of Beholder. She is such a professional and continues to perform beautifully in her second career as a broodmare. We've been very fortunate. The delivery was as normal and straightforward as you could ask for. The filly was born at 4:25 p.m. and "jumped right up" according to Toffey. She is the second foal for Beholder, who had an Uncle Mo colt (named Q B One) last year. Mating plans for Beholder in 2019 have yet to be announced. **** 2018 Two Year old Male Champion Game Winner had his second work of 2019 last Sunday at Santa Anita Park, breezing a half-mile in :48.3 for trainer Bob Baffert. The 3 year old son of Candy Ride is being pointed to the San Felipe Stakes on March 9th as his first start of the season. “He'll get ready pretty quick,” Baffert said. Other notables on the work tab last Sunday: Coliseum, trained by Baffert and most recently finished sixth in the Sham after a bad start, breezed five furlongs from the gate in 1:00.4. Improbable, also trained by Baffert, worked a half in :48 flat. Instagrand, winner of the Best Pal Stakes in August, breezed a half-mile in 47.3. Sham Stakes winner Gunmetal Gray breezed five furlongs in 1:02.4. **** …………Annnnnnnnnd finally in the occasional “This has nothing to do with Horse Racing” section. UPS driver Ryan Arens was on his route shortly before Christmas when he pulled up to a house in Bozeman, Montana, and heard a dog in distress by a pond beyond the house where he was delivering. "This dog was screaming and crying and going crazy," Arens said. With the sun was nearly set, Arens couldn’t see anything. He delivered a package and then drove to the other side of the pond. "I could see the dog trapped about 10-15 feet off of shore, with ice all around it," he said. An older man was in a rowboat on the pond, trying with little success to chip away the ice to reach the dog. "I stripped to my boxers and got the guy out of the boat. Then, I slid the boat out onto the ice, using it to distribute my weight," Arens said. "I shimmed out to where the ice was thin." The ice gave way and Arens fell out of the boat and into the 16-feet-deep water. Since he was already wet and, with the "dog starting to go under," Arens started swimming quickly towards the dog. He grabbed her collar and swam for the ice, sliding the dog across the ice to shore. He pulled himself out of the water and a bystander handed him a blanket. "We took the dog inside the older guy's house and got in the shower together to warm up," he said. About then, the sheriff's department and animal control arrived. Help was on the way, but "I knew someone had to get to her. She wasn't going to make it." Despite his adventure and cuts on his leg, Arens finished his route, delivering 20 more packages. "It was the highlight of my 14-year UPS career." Arebs said afterwards. Arens found out where the dog's owner lived and happened to have a package to deliver to him. As he walked up, he saw the dog, whose name he learned is Sadie, in the guy's pickup. "She was freaking out, and when he let her out she ran to me," he said. "She must have remembered me. It sure made me feel good."
It’s a bittersweet week as this will be my second to last article for this website, yet the 2019 Kentucky Derby is upon us. As with Friday’s Kentucky Oaks card, I also did several of the under-card races for Saturday as Marley’s Freedom, Instragrand, Bricks and Mortar as well as several other top horses, are all scheduled to run. We have so much to go over, I’m going to cut this introduction short. Good luck in whoever you play, and most of all, enjoy the race! Saturday, May 4, 2019 Churchill Downs Race: 6 (1:13 PM EST Post) Humana Distaff Marley’s Freedom has been favored in eight straight, including being odds on in seven of them and has rewarded her backers six times. Eclipse Award nominee for Champion Female Sprinter last year looks to be picking up where she left off with a win and an excusable second in two races this year. Back to back, sub 1:00, bullet five furlong works and a cut back in distance should help here………………….In Taking Marley’s Freedom, Spiced Perfection scares the daylights out of me. Filly by Smiling Tiger has won 3 of her last 4 including a pair of Grade: 1s…………………Amy’s Challenge has serious early speed and should come out running once again in this spot. That said, she has never tried what am I anticipating to be an off track and she still hasn’t won a horse race over six furlongs in her career. Race: 8 (2:45 PM EST Post) Churchill Downs Sprint No one has been close to the speedy Mitole in his last five races dating back to over a year ago. Colt by Eskendraya is 2 for 3 in the slop and, barring getting hooked in a speed duel with the equally as quick Promises Fulfilled, he’ll be the one to catch down the lane……………………With a plethora of speed signed up here, this race sets up very well for the stretch running Whitmore, who has hit the board in 22 of 26 starts……………. Promises Fulfilled has a ton of early speed and is a Grade: 1 winner. I always take a “wait and see” approach on horses making their first start since returning from Dubai like this horse is and especially the ones who are doing it with quick (a little over a month) turnarounds………………….. Honorable Mentions: You may want to toss Uno Mas Mondelo’s last race as it was his first start in two months and he had a nightmare trip. Gelding by Macho Uno is capable of much better……………When Uncontested is right, he can run a hole in the wind……………..Do Share loves the slop and ran an enormous race last time out. However, he looks setup to "bounce" over the planet Saturn in this spot. Race: 10 (4:28 PM EST Post) Pat Day Mile This race goes through the vaunted Instagrand, as it’s his race to lose. The physically impressive, $1,200,000 colt by Into Mischief has the second best (Improbable) motion/stride of any three year old in the land. He will be cutting back to an optimal distance and dropping in class as he faced Kentucky Derby hopefuls Game Winner and Roadster last time out. He clearly meets no such rivals here but, like McKinzie on Friday, no excuses here……………………..Mr. Money has chased Game Winner, War of Will and the “now” horse By My Standards in his last three so he gets a little class relief here. Back to back strong works and the third start of the layoff angle signal a good effort upcoming……………………Hog Creek Hustle also chased far better recently so he too will be dropping in class, cutting back to a better distance for him and draw a good post for his running style………………Honorable Mentions: Last Judgment is two for three in his career, steps up but his speed figures say he’s not completely out of this one………If Global Campaign gets in off AEs, I will have him in some exotics combos. Race: 11 (5:25PM EST Post) Old Forester Turf Classic Trainer Chad Brown rolls into this race with a formidable 1-2 punch in Bricks and Mortar and Raging Bull, who are a combined 12 for 17 lifetime. Since they are uncoupled, I’ll go with Bricks and Mortar, who was brilliant in winning the inaugural Pegasus World Cup Turf in January but may have “bounced” slightly in his last as he was life and death in deep stretch to fend off a 62-1 but still won. Nothing but “trips” speed figures in three races since coming back from a 14 month hiatus and ran the highest one (107) on a turf labeled “yielding”, logically signaling he can handle any give in the ground……………………Raging Bull probably needed his “flat” effort in his last as it was his first start in 3 ½ months. Of course, I’m not sure how “flat” it was being he was beaten by less than two lengths, in the Grade: 1 race and registered a 97 speed figure. Anyway, he too can handle give in the ground and this stretch runner should be tighter for this………………..I originally had Sychrony in the second slot but dropped him a peg when I saw that it will probably rain on Saturday. This five year old, by super sire Tapit who has hit the board in 17 of 20 career tries and registered back to back “trips” in his last two races, appears to need a firm turf course to do his best running…………………….Honorable Mentions: Breaking the Rules will positively be in several of my exotics combos as he might be ready to "ambush" this field. Since being introduced to grass racing, he’s compiled a record of 4-2-1-1 with strong and very consistent speed figures (93, 94, 95 and 96). Moreover, note the closing fractions in those four races as they consist of (in sequence) :23.4 last quarter, :11.3 last furlong, :28.4 last 2 ½ furlongs and a mind-boggling :22.2 final quarter in his last race. The icing on the cake is, he is still another who can handle some give in the ground. They want to give me 15-1 on him on the morning line? Shoot, I’ll take it…………………Qurbaan has yet to run a bad race in five tries since coming over from France last year…………...Just a few side notes in this race: Ticonderoga is in careerazor sharp right now, but he’ll be talking an enormous step up in class………………Prime Attraction hasn’t won a horse race in over two year but scored “trips” in his last three turf attempts………….Markitoff is another who has only won one race in the last two year and just 2 in 23 career tries. That said, this son of Giant’s Causeway appears to have quietly rounded back into top form highlighted by giving Bricks and Mortar all he could handle last time out. Race: 12 (6:50 PM EST Post) Kentucky Derby Analysis By Post Position Order (selections below) PP#1 War of Will thoroughly dominated the Fair Grounds Road to the Kentucky Derby this year before hitting a speed bump in the Louisiana Derby. Good looking colt by War Front “slipped” a few yards out of the gate, fell back towards the rear of the pack and never threatened. He was dead lame the next day but, with a little time, seems to be ok now. He’s looked sensational in the mornings over the past three weeks while firing three straight bullet works. This is a very nice colt but did he peak too soon? I guess it doesn’t matter because whoever draws #1 post in the Derby is an automatic throw out for me. PP#2 Tax has run very well in all five career starts, topped off by gamely battling the improving Tacitus the entire length of the stretch in the Wood Memorial in his last. I know because I was there. Anyway, this too is a nice colt but drawing the two hole isn’t much different that drawing the “wood” and with his running style, he looks up against it. PP#3 By My Standards is the “now” horse on a lot of people’s Derby list and he very well might be. Yes, this drop dead gorgeous looking colt by Goldencents is improving as his last three speed figures indicate (73, 86 and 97), and yes, he ran the best race of his life in winning the aforementioned Louisiana Derby at 22-1 last time out. However, I thought that race was an oddly run one especially with what happened to 4/5 betting favorite War of Will. I’m going to toss him and hope it doesn’t come back to bite me. PP#4 Gray Magician isn’t 50-1 on the morning line for no reason. Colt by Graydar is 1 for 8 in his career, couldn’t beat $80,000 optional NW1X at the end of January, hasn’t run a speed figure higher than 80 and was on the other side of the world last month. I wouldn’t take 150-1 on him…..next. PP#5 Improbable for those of you who have been reading me regularly you know this strapping chestnut with a near perfect stride/motion has been my Derby horse since the beginning of December. But, at the last minute, do I jump off of him? After rattling off three impressive wins, including one key one in November, getting the “oh so important” race over the track, albeit with legitimate excuses he’s been beaten twice in a row. The first time was his first race in four months and a “hot dog stand” wide trip (yes, he was so wide, I thought he was going to stop and get a hot dog at the concession stands) in a race that most likely cost regular rider Drayden Van Dyke the mount. Then, he clearly didn’t like the blinkers that were added as he kind of lost “it” in the gate, he had to deal with a sloppy track and also had to deal with budding star Omaha Beach as well. At the end of the day, (second beaten by just one length) I thought it was an excellent race. The average speed figure it takes to win the Derby over the past 15 years is a 108. You get the third start off the layoff from this colt after a 95 and a 99, so a 108 is in range and you can tell by watching him train, he looooooves this surface. PP#6 Vekoma The third thing I noticed about this colt is how on earth is he 20-1 on the morning line? (I was thinking 10-1) The second thing I noticed was he is three for four in his career including conclusively winning the Bluegrass Stakes last time out. Of course the first thing I noticed about him is that awkward “swimming” stride/motion he has. Colt by Candy Ride burns a lot of energy running like that which could take its toll at 10 furlongs and it also makes him susceptible to injury. Past that, I won’t be shocked if he runs big once again in this race. PP#7 Maximum Security there have been three “trips” speed figures recorded along the entire Road to the Kentucky Derby, one by Omaha Beach, who is now out of this race, and the other two by…yep…this colt. By New Year’s Day, he ran a 102 while beating mid level optionals by a colossal margin, then came back and wired the Florida Derby field and registered a 101. So, if you are a speed figure player, and I am to some degree, this is probably your horse. He’s just not mine, as I found too many red flags in this colt. First off, trainer Jason Servis said his first race was in a $16,000 maiden claimer because this colt “has some issues” yet wouldn’t elaborate (red flag). About that Florida Derby win, he got off with an uncontested lead …that will not happen on Saturday as he will be challenged early for sure (red flag). He has run all of his races on the speed favoring, conveyor belt called Gulfstream Park, a vastly different surface than that of the quirky Churchill Downs surface (big red flag) and finally, his three works since the Florida Derby have been…well….pitiful. He didn’t look well physically and the clock showed it as he went a half in :54.4, three eighths in :42 and last week went a half in :53.4. Bottom line here is, I pass, and if he beats me I’ll tip my cap to him. PP#8 Tacitus as I mentioned, I was in the paddock before the Wood Memorial and got a real good, close up look at this ridiculously well bred, gorgeous gray colt and he looked like a million bucks, then went out and ran like it. If you haven’t seen the replay, I invite you to watch the head on shot of the Wood. Watch how this colt gets absolutely “mugged” several strides out of the gate, but shakes it off and wins impressively anyway. If you look up “improving horse” in the dictionary you will definitely see a picture of this son of Tapit out of five time Grade: 1 winner Close Hatches. Moreover, his speed figures are climbing steadily and I really, really like his final work for this (5F- 1:00 flat at Churchill Downs). PP#9 Plus Que Parfait I’ll admit this colt looked good while winning the UAE Derby last time out. However, he had to travel across the world back to a place where he’s been manhandled consistently, never ran higher than an 83 speed figure and has just one (maiden) win……pass. PP#10 Cutting Humor won the Sunland Park Derby in “racehorse” time and scored a “racehorse” speed figure (95). But head hunters in New Guinea could see the Sunland Park surface was “supped up” that day which in turn produce some “false” speed figure ratings and false performances. I expect him to bounce big time here……pass. PP#11 Haikal I’m not going to lie, I love how this horse runs. I love the “Silky Sullivan” like style. You know, like lay 10, 12, 15 lengths out of it early but come with a huge late run, it’s exciting to watch. He used that style along with a super fast early pace and came “over the top” to win the Gotham. Then he made up some 10-11 lengths in the last five or so furlongs to grab the “show dough” in the Wood Memorial. At 30-1 on the morning line, this horse is your long shot special as the extra distance should play right into his hands. Although at this writing, due to a foot abscess, he is "50-50" he will even start. PP#12 Omaha Beach the 5/2 morning line favorite sadly scratched with a trapped epiglottis, compounded by a quarter crack that isn’t fully healed. PP#13 Code of Honor has a ton of talent but just hasn’t been able to put in together consistently. Could Saturday be the day he finally does? Possibly… PP#14 Win Win Win is another with a boatload of ability. It’s been interesting watching the metamorphosis of this colt. Early in his career he was a speed/stalker type who set a track record in the Pasco Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs but as his career unfolded, he now lays well out of it early and comes like a freight train down the lane. Not sure the new tactics are good for him even though he’s finished right behind Tacitus (Tampa Bay Derby) and Vekoma (Bluegrass Stakes) in his last two. PP#15 Master Fencer is absolutely, positively the proverbial “dark horse” in this race. I mean, with no published workouts recently, and having to come from Japan, with just two of six wins, who knows anything about him? He looked ok training it the morning (you can miss him with those "ear muffs" he wears) but still….if he wins this race, he’ll make Mine That Bird look like a 3/5 shot. PP#16 Game Winner like stablemate Improbable, the Two Year Old Colt Champion has tasted defeat for the first two times in his last two, once with an excuse (first race in 4 ½ months) and the other without. Colt by Candy Ride does not possess that explosive, breakaway speed that I like to see but he comes with a relentless late run and he never gives up, which is a very admirable trait. Other than Improbable, no-one has visually looked better training on this surface than him. He’s given me several signs over his career that the 10 furlong distance will be no problem at all for him. Can we say that about another horse in this field with conviction? I’m not sure. All I know is, he is a must use in any exotics betting scenario. PP#17 Roadster In the fall of last year, when trainer Bob Baffert was asked “who do you think your next Justify is”? Baffert just smiled and said one word: “Roadster”. It’s amazing how much damage a good racehorse can do when he is able to breathe isn’t it? After having “tieback” surgery done, and missing a good amount of time, this horse has come back running and decimated an $80,000 optional field before coming “over the top” to win the Santa Anita Derby, beating Game Winner and the highly touted Instagrand. You get rising speed figures, third start off the layoff angle and, from what I’ve seen thus far, it doesn’t appear 10 furlongs will be a problem. PP#18 Long Range Toddy is difficult to get a read on. On one hand, he has improved steadily throughout his career, topped off by running down the mega talented Improbable in deep stretch to win a division of the Rebel Stakes but came back and showed little in the Arkansas Derby. That performance could….keyword could….have been blamed on the sloppy track. That said, aren’t we expecting a sloppy track on Saturday? PP#19 Spinoff is another in a long line of lightly raced, extremely well bred horses from the Todd Pletcher barn. By the gorgeous Hard Spun out of Grade: 1 winner Zaftig, this colt has improved leap and bounds through his career (speed figures: 60, 75, 84 and 95), highlighted by almost taking down the Louisiana Derby in his last. He’s been training very well at Palm Beach Downs of late but his inexperience (four lifetime starts) and drawing far into the auxiliary gate might be too much for him to overcome. I'm going against one of more favorite slogans (Ignore Pletcher, leave the track on a stretcher) with him......pass. PP#20 Country House possesses a very strong late run and if he gets a fast pace and finds a seam to run through late, we could be hearing from him down the lane. That said, he has a really bad habit of breaking slowly, which is an absolute detriment in the Kentucky Derby. AE- Bodexpress will draw in with the scratch of Omaha Beach. At first glance, he looked totally overmatched as he is still a maiden but his last two races, where he scored 91 and 95 speed figures, show a definite uptick in form. Will it be enough to pull this off? I highly doubt it. Summary: I know that the odds are astronomical that trainer Bob Baffert will run 1, 2, 3 in the Kentucky Derby but he does have what appears to be the three best horses in the race. The other three I have listed all clearly stand punchers chances. Selections: 1) Roadster 2) Game Winner 3) Improbable Honorable Mentions: Tacitus Vekoma Code of Honor By: Gerard Apadula Director of Equine Operations and Development Knights of the Round Stable Thoroughbred Racing Team [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) 2019- Record: 24-78 = 31% 2018- Record: 107-261= 41% 2017- Record: 92-235 = 39% 2016- Record: 91-229 = 40% 2015- Record: 67-180 = 37% 2014- Record: 29-73 = 40% 2013- Record: 20-59= 34% 2012 -Record: 24-73= 33% 2011 –Record: N/A 2010- Record: 24-74= 33%
I have identified some horses that I am willing to take a chance on Saturday at Saratoga, provided that the track is not off. This seems to be my biggest problem thus for this year as the weather forecast and even equibase has been either wrong or ahead of the actual weather that as occurred almost weekly. At some tracks, a little moisture will not affect the outcome that much, but at Saratoga, it will make a world of difference and if you do not adjust, you will struggle. And while I have hit some nice paying races on off tracks, I tend to get more consistency on fast and firm surfaces. So let's begin. 1st Race: Maiden Claiming $40,000--- 1 1/16 Mile Inner Turf--- 3 YO & Up--- Purse $45,000. If this race stays on grass, my choice to WP will be 11)Letterman(5-1). He has made one lifetime start, broke last, was ranked indicating he was intimidated by seeing other horses around him, but still made a move into contention behind a fast pace before tiring in the stretch. Overall, not a bad race and a good learning experience. His trainer took his time to find another spot for a horse the owner paid $250,000 for and decided to enter him in a claiming race for $40,000. However, both his 2nd start and the softer spot should help him get a better break and make him more competitive. Trainers sometimes will bluff on a horse's potential, in order to get a win for a nice purse. He has bloodlines that is fancy by a lot of breeders and he is bred to excel on grass. 4)Telecommunication(10-1) will be my choice to complete the exacta. He, too, has made one lifetime start last year against Maraud and brow slowly, then went wide into the stretch and failed to make up any ground. After a break of almost a year, back to back solid works and a drop into the claiming ranks, he should be ready to display the front running speed he is bred for. a $42,000 yearling purchase, his sire, Data Link, is a son of major grass influence War Front. Data Link biggest win came in the G1 Maker's 46 Mile S in 2011, but he also ran 2nd in that same race in 2012 to Wise Dan, Champion Older Grass Horse that year. His broodmare sire, Mizzen Mast, started his career in France, ran 2nd in the G1 Grand Prix De Paris and after 2 failed attempts in major grass races in the U.S. he finished his career by winning the G1 Malibu S and G2 Strub S on Santa Anita dirt track. Should show front running speed against these. 2)Azzedine(5-2) has made 5 starts and finished 2nd in three of them. After running an even race for $75000 maiden claimers, his trainer, Chad Brown, has decided to give him a drop of several class levels to try to get him in the winners column. His slightly off the pace style fits well against these. A $336,000 disperal 2 YO purchase, he has yet to meet expectations. While several of these have not performed anywhere near the expectations of their purchase price, 10)Arch Of The Diver, has to be the one owners have given up on. Off almost two years, apparently to try as a stallion, he has been gelded and returned to training. Simply trying to recoup as much money of his $300,000 purchase price as they can get back. Will not play this one at all, on grass or dirt. 2nd Race: Maiden Special Weight--- 2 YOs--- 1 1/16 Mile Turf--- Purse $85,000. I will bet the 6)Southern Bridge(4-1) to WP. A $70,000 yearling purchase, he has made one start on grass where he broke near the back and basically ran an even race, though he passed a few horses on a turf course rated firm, but was obviously yielding or good at best. You can tell by how slow the pace was and the front runner went wire to wire. 11)My America(10-1) will be my choice to complete my exacta box. A buyback by owners because the reserve was not met at $335,000, they decided to race the horse instead. His sire is Medaglia D'Oro but his dam Reaching is a daughter of Dansili, a sire who has made his presence felt in the BC turf races through his daughters. Maryjinsky, her dam, is a 1/2 sister to Better Than Honour, the dam of Belmont S winners Rags To Riches & Jazil. My America has one start, an off the turf sprint where he ran an even race. I will discard that race because it was much too short for his bloodlines and also this one will perform better on grass. This race is stacked with well bred horses but which ones will show front running speed is anyone guess. That said, I will use 3)Vineyard Sound(15-1) and box him in my trifecta. His sire, Stormy Atlantic is a son of Storm Cat and his best foals shows front running speed on grass in top class. Vineyard Sound's broodmare sire, Sultry Song, was a multiple G1 stakes winner on dirt but was also G1 stakes placed in the Secretariat S on grass when third, beaten 2 heads for the win. Another to consider is 5)Ian Glass(10-1), another first time starter who is throwing decent works for his debut. His sire, Hard Spun, came close to stealing the Ky Derby before running 2nd against Street Sense and his sire, Danzig, is known for siring speedy grass runners, too. His broodmare sire is Galileo, top distance grass horse in the world today. His trainer and owner just upset the G1 Secretariat last weekend with 38-1 shot Carrick. However, instead of crossing with Danzig in his fourth generation on his dam side, he crosses with Northern Dancer, through 3/4 brothers Sadler's Wells & Nureyev. If I decide to bet a super, this one will be in my box. 3rd Race: Claiming $50,000--- 3 YOs & Up--- 7 Furlongs--- Purse $70,000. I will make a small wager on the 3)Fundy's Tide(15-1) to WP. He is a need the lead type to perform his best and he should get the lead against these. And it is very difficult to catch a front running type that can sprint clear early then slow the pace down and have something left for the stretch. His last race was simply to far for his bloodlines and he will welcome the cut back to a more reasonable distance. 2)Sir Ballantine(10-1) will be my choice for an exacta box. He has never ran under a mile but his pedigree suggests that will be his best distance. His dam, Wind Flow won 5 of 7 lifetime starts, including three stakes in So. California, flashing 109 and change times but did not win past 6 1/2 furlongs and was not even tried past 7 furlongs. This owner paid $210,000 for this horse as a 2 YO and watched while McPeek was over zealous with this horse. He finally turned the horse over to another trainer four starts back and the horse responded with back to back wins at one mile. But his last two was too long and his trainer looks like he finally realized that. Even his works is screaming sprinter and has for a while. Good chance play against these, especially across the board. I will use the 6)Daddy D T(9-2) in my tri box. He should be the beneficiary of a lot of cheap speed who should tire and come running late but should sit close enough early to make it count. 4th Race: Maiden Special Weight--- 2 YOs--- 6 Furlongs--- Purse $85,000. My bet to WP will go on 8)Cromwell Avenue(12-1). A $210,000 2 YO purchase, his sire, Flashback is a son of Tapit who beat Golden Cents in the G2 San Felipe and then ran second to that rival in the G1 Santa Anita Derby. His broodmare sire, Wolf Power, was a South African champion grandson of Round Table but has many foals to race in the U.S. and most are blazing speed that is difficult to run down. He has one start but he did not break very well, so I will give him another chance, especially since his 2 works since are good. 4)Endorsed(6-1) will be my choice for my exacta box. His sire is Medaglia D'Oro and his dam is Dance Card, a G1 stakes winning daughter of Tapit, whose last start was a fast closing third to Groupie Doll(2 time winner of BC Filly Sprint) and Judy The Beauty(who returned in 2014 to win the BC Filly Sprint). There is another colt in this race that is bred exactly on the same sire & broodmare sire line(trained by Pletcher) and his dam has a similar record to the dam of this horse. While this colt was retained for racing by his breeders, the Pletcher colt was purchased for $320,000 by his owners. My pick to complete my tri box will be 1)Pointer View(12-1). His sire is Paynter, a son of Awesome Again out of a full sister to Tiznow. His broodmare sire, Indian Ocean, won three of five lifetime starts with 2 thirds and Surf Cat beat him both times and they both are grandsons of Storm Cat. When he broke his maiden at 6 1/2 furlongs, he ran a 115 flat while in hand the last part. He was purchased as a 2 YO for $200,000 after bringing $80,000 as a yearling. 7)Ahead Of Plan(5-2) will be my 4th choice if I decide to box a super. He was purchased for $475,000 at a 2 YO in training sale earlier this year. He has the works and bloodlines to win this, though. 5th Race: Claiming $40,000--- 3 YO Fillies--- 6 Furlongs--- Purse $64,000. My pick to win will be 5)Shape Shifter(7-2). She pressed a fast pace in her last in the slop,and got caught late at 3-5. Penn National favors late runners when the pace is contested, even on off tracks, unlike Saratoga. Pino, her trainer, wins at 21% of his lifetime starts and Irad Ortiz Jr. has the mount. I look for her to draw off as she chooses against these but do not expect good odds, as there will be little. My pick to complete my exacta box will be 8)Simona(15-1). She will sit a few lengths off the early pace but should be able to get by most of the tiring speed to finish 2nd. She was claimed out of her last two starts and now James Ryerson takes over as trainer. While Ryerson best training days are in the past, he will always be known for preparing Unbridled's Song to win the BC Juvenile in his third lifetime start and would win the Fla Derby and Wood Memorial under his tutelage at 3. So he can get a horse ready and her work since her last is a step in the right direction. 4)Richie'slilwildcat(3-1) will be my choice for 3rd. She has a lot of front running speed which is always dangerous at Saratoga but she tires late with or without pressure. And she will feel the pressure today as these are better speed that what she is accustomed to running against but should hold third in this weak field. 6th Race: Maiden Special Weight--- 2 YOs--- 6 Furlongs--- Purse $85,000. My pick to WP is 4)Kentucky Wildcat(12-1). He is a homebred which simply means the breeder did not sell him, but kept him for racing and breeding purposes later. His sire is Tapit and his dam, Better Lucky, ran 2nd in the 2014 BC Filly Sprint in her last start to Judy The Beauty. However, she is a multiple G1 winning daughter of Ghostzapper. While her works could be better if the trainer wants to tip others, her pedigree and the fact she has work steadily is good enough for me to take a chance on. 3)Most Mischief(10-1) will be my choice to complete my exacta box. His sire, Into Mischief, is a 1/2 brother to Beholder and a top sire in the game today. His broodmare sire, Elusive Quality, sired several speedy types including Smarty Jones(winner of the Ky Derby & Preakness S) and Raven's Pass(winner of the BC Classic). Most Mischief has a 1/2 sister that was trained by this trainer and after taking a few starts to mature, became a SW of close to $300,000. He has started twice and finished third both times, both in good times. He also sports one of the best money making angles in the game and that is finishing 3rd in his last while beaten more than 2 lengths by both the winner & runner-up. Dangerous at solid odds. O am going to go out on a limb and pick 10)Quick Entry (12-1) to include in my tri box. His sire, Point Of Entry, was a multiple G1 grass winning son of Dynaformer, who is best remembered as sire of ill fated Ky Derby winner Barbaro and Ky Derby 3rd Perfect Drift. Point Of Entry's dam is a daughter of Seeking The Gold. Quick Entry's broodmare sire is Cape Town, another son of Seeking The Gold. Hennessy is sire of his 2nd dam and he is best known as grandsire of Scat Daddy. His last work signals he is ready to win early and while his trainer wins with 6 % of his first time starters, he is dangerous to leave out of any exotic bets. I will box a small super by including the 2)Code Of Honor(6-1). While Shug is usually not interested in asking his horses to win in their first start, I have to included him because Will Farish is his owner and breeder. He put this horse in a sale but his reserve was not met, so he decided to race him. He tried to sale another horse years ago with the same reserve and there were no takers. The horse name? Sunday Silence who went on to win the Ky Derby, Preakness, and BC Classic as a 3 YO and was leading sire every year in Japan during his stallion career. Code Of Honor's sire is Noble Mission, a multiple G1 winning full brother to Frankel. His dam, Reunited, won the G3 Thoroughbred Club Of America S at 7 furlongs for her only graded stakes win. I will wait until placing any across the board money on this horse, but only because Shug is more interested in racing experience than asking a horse for too much too soon. 7th Race: Allowance--- 3 YOs & Up Fillies Restricted To NY Bred ----N/W 1 Other Than Maiden, Claiming Or Starter Or Which Have Never Won 2 Races--- One Mile Turf-- Purse $77,000. 1)Under Suspicion(12-1) is who I will bet to WP. She is making her first start on grass. Her sire, Friend Or Foe, is a son of A.P. Indy's son Friends Lake and his dam is a daughter of Unbridled. Friend Or Foe won 2 NY Bred Stakes and the Easy Goer S but also gave a good account of himself in several G1 stakes races, including the Travers, Whitney S and the Cigar Mile H. Under Suspicion's dam, Misty Rosette, is a 3/4 sister to Littleprincessemma, the dam of TC winner American Pharoah. Misty Rosette won 4 of 8 lifetime starts including 3 stakes races and ran 3rd in the G1 Test S and the G2 Forward Gal S. While none of this points to whether she will like the grass, there are major grass influence dotted throughout her pedigree that suggest she will. My choice in a weak field. 4)Way Smart(7-2) will be my pick to complete my exacta box. She should be ready to win and move on to the next set of conditions as this is her fourth start this year. With a solid work since her last, and bloodlines to match, she will be a huge disappointment if she does not win in this spot. A key in the horizontals, IMO. 3)Hollywood Cat(3-1) is my choice to complete the tri box. She is the only one with enough proven bloodlines to knock out my 2nd choice. Her sire Courageous Cat was a G1 winner on grass and her broodmare sire, Cryptoclearance, is the grandsire of Candy Ride. 8th Race: Lake Placid S(Grade 2)--- 3 YOs Fillies--- 1 1/8 Miles Turf--- Purse $300,000. i will bet the 3)Capla Temptress(6-1) to WP. The expected favorite beat her in last year's BC Juvenile Fillies Turf at 1 mile on grass but she steadied early and that gave the winner all the cushion she needed. Capla Temptress has made two starts since and both came this year. In her first start, she just missed winning the G1 Poule D'Essai Des Pouliches(Fr 1,000 Guineas) that is their first race in their TC series for fillies. Then shipped back to Belmont, she finished 7th beaten almost 4 lengths in the G1 Belmont Oaks but was not likely to beat the winner on that day. Her sire, Lope De Vega and grandsire Shamardal(from first crop of Giant's Causeway) each won the first two legs of the French TC but neither attempted to complete the sweep in the St Leger at 1 3/4 miles. Now transferred to Mott's barn and with 2 good works since, she will be tough to deny. 2)Daddy Is A Legend(4-1) will be my choice to complete my exacta box. While she has been beaten by the expected favorite in all three meetings between these, she now is going a distance she should enjoy more than the choice will. Her sire is Scat Daddy, a top grass sire. Her broodmare sire, Benchmark, is a 1/2 brother to multiple G1 distance grass winner, Tranquility Lake. Their dam is a daughter of Danzig, another top influence on grass. Nice work since her last indicates she is ready to turn the tables on the favorite. 7)Andina Del Sur(15-1) will be my choice to complete my tri box. The 1)Thewayiam has beaten her twice but is was Andina Sel Sur first and second start against winners and Thewayiam also had an edge in condition. Now the edge in condition belongs to this one. I expect an improved race against these as she is entering her fourth race since she was in peak form. While I do not believe she can beat my top two choices, she has the bloodlines to be a factor. Her sire is Giant's Causeway and her broodmare sire is Singspiel, a son of BC Turf winner In The Wings(son of Sadler's Wells)and 1/2 brother to Rahy(sire of Giant's Causeway's dam). Singspiel also ran 2nd in the BC Turf in his only U.S. start after winning the G1 Canadian International in his only start in that country. I actually like Chad Brown's other entry over the favorite at this distance but I also think it is a little further than either will do their best in. 9th Race: Alabama S(Grade 1)--- 3 YO Fillies--- 1 1/4 Miles--- Purse $600,000. I am betting 1)Piedi Bianchi(15-1) to WP. Though I normally bet against Pletcher with 3 YOs and up after June of their 3 Yo season unless they drop significantly in class, I will bet this one because he had the horse for one start, so he hasn't had the time to screw up the horse yet. With her bloodlines and close finishes in thee G1s, she is worth taking a shot with. She has one start this year, a sprint, where she finished third almost 2 months ago. Her sire, Overanalyze, scored his e biggest graded stakes win at 1 1/8 mile and the only time he tried 1 1/4 miles was the Ky Derby, where he was sandwiched turning into the stretch while making a solid move. Her broodmare sire, Tactical Cat, scored his biggest win in the 1 1/16 mile G1 Hollywood Futurity at 2. 8)Talk Veuve To Me(5-2) will be my choice to complete my exacta box. She has the bloodlines to run as far as asked, especially on her dam's side. They will have to run her down and she is still improving. No Monomoy Girl in here that can go with her early. My choice to complete my tri box will be 7)Coach Rocks(15-1). I believe they are sending her for the lead but would do better if they would let her rate and make one serious run in the stretch. Oxbow perform his best while on the lead but Coach Rocks female family was strictly distance oriented where most of them sat near the back of longer races and made a strong run in the stretch. If they chose to push her in this race, I think she has no shot to even hit the board, but if they let her relax, she could crash the exacta. She has proven she will rate on several occasions and those happen to be her best races. I will add the 3)Midnight Bisou(7-5) and box a small super. She is the class of this field but now she is running a distance where bloodlines kicks in and her pedigree shows a lot of mid distance influences but very little classic distance influences. For this reason, I think she is beatable, especially at low odds which she will be. 10th Race: Claiming $25,000--- 3 YOs & Up--- 1 Mile Turf---- Purse $50,000' I am betting the 6)Bitumen(12-1) to WP. This will be his first start on grass. However, his sire, Mineshaft, is a multiple G1 winner on dirt and he was Horse Of The Year as a 4 YO. His dam, Kobla Cat, is a 1/2 sister to Quality Road. Her sire, Tale Of The Cat, is sire of Gio Ponti, a multiple G1 winner on grass from 1 mile to 1 1/4 mile. Jose Ortiz has been named to ride him and while I am not familar with this horse's trainer, the horse has to many positive to ignore. Also, the trainer is removing the blinkers, apparently to get him to rate and to not be over anxious to go too early. 2)Italian Charm(7-2) will be my choice to complete my exacta box. He has ran third 4 times in six starts this year and now drops several levels in class, from an O/C $40000 to 25,000 claiming. He tends to rate a few lengths off the pace and the added weight should assure he will this time too. 7)Indebted(20-1) will be my choice to complete the tri. Throw out his last because he has ran on dirt twice in off the turf races and did nothing in both. Then if you look where his record states he has ran 3 times at this distance and won once, he really only ran once at the mile distance. The other 2 times were at 7 1/2 furlongs on grass, including breaking his maiden in his first lifetime start. The other was his 2nd start this year and he was in lrss than peak shape. His only race at a mile was at the Meadowlands where he drew the far outside which is exactly like drawing the rail in turf sprints at Saratoga. Not likely to happen. Now his bloodlines suggests one mile on grass will be his best distance. His sire, Malibu Moon's 1/2 brother, Temple City, was a graded stakes winner at 1 mile on grass and his best daughter, Miss Temple City , was a G1 winner at one mile. His broodmare sire, Silver Hawk, won 2 graded stakes at 7 furlongs in Europe. He is making his fifth start this year including both dirt races on a surface he despises and he will be huge odds., but an excellent spot play in this race. Maragh has taken the mount and was making a name for himself in 2014 when he got trampled while riding Wicked Strong and the horse clipped heels when Tonalist veered into his path in a move most believed was an intentional by that horse's jockey and severely injured Maragh. While his determination has led him this far back, he still is not where he was at that point. These are my picks for Saratoga August 18. While I have not had the best of years handicapping, it is only a matter of time before I explode and get hot. May not be today but it will not be much longer. I feel I am handicapping as good as I ever have, but the luck has gone against me more times than not this year.
Effort And Knowledge Is The Best Way To Profitability At The Track!!
I believe that effort and knowledge of horse racing can lead to profits that will boggle most handicapper's mind. But concentrating on the right types of bets and when to take a shot is probably the most important factor. A lot of handicappers believe in taking a shot at big money and hope to get lucky because that is what it takes to hit a P3, P4, P5 or P6. Others who prefer to bet speed figures and favorites will have to settle for a few hundred a couple times a month, if they are good at handicapping. But serious handicappers who want to slow down later in life and maybe even semi-retire from the work force will be best serve learning the game of breeding and learn when to take a shot and what type of bet to use. The payoffs are there and has always been in my 40 years of handicapping. I pretty much tried every angle you could possibly imagine but most lead down a road of futility. Yes, I tried the trainer's angle, the jockey's angle, the owner's angle, speed figures angle, up and down in class angles, last race win angle and numerous others. They all have their up and downs, like all angles, but that is because human thinking comes into play. One of the first angle I learned not to follow was the "expert" angle because their knowledge is no better than mine and they will tend to land on favorites to try to make a good impression, not to pick winners for others. Those of you who follow my posts knows I will usually try to identify horses that are getting good odds and could have a good shot to win. I do this to identify which horse that I am willing to take a shot on to WP mostly. But on exactas, trifectas, and supers, it is important to at least think about adding more favorite types to the equation. These are the types of bets you can make a serious profit with and you do not have to wager a fortune to do so. But you will need to get an edge that most others do not believe in or even ever thought about trying. The edge I use is breeding. I have mentioned the order of preference that I look over a racing form with. I start by scanning through every horses breeding, even the ones that look like they have poor form. This normally takes about five minutes and I do this to identify which horse(s) I want to concentrate on first when I start my serious handicapping. I then read the condition of the race, focusing mainly on the distance they are racing today. After reading the race conditions, I start eliminating horses that I feel their breeding suggest they would prefer another distance, either shorter or longer. Sometimes I am wrong and after the race, I will go back and look at the sire and broodmare sire to determine if I miss anything, for future reference. Once I have done this, it usually narrows my choices to 6-7 horses that I want to consider(12 horse fields). I group the remaining horses in three groups: front running, slightly off the pace and late runners. I then try to determine which horse is in the best shape for this race and that does not necessary mean one that won or even ran in the money in his last. Every horse has form cycles where they peak and then not do as well, though they may still have won their last. Less than 5% of winners runs the exact same race twice in a row and that is obvious if you look at their race to race speed figures, which now supposely includes track variant. I look for horses that may have went wide in their last and lost all chance or one that looks like he got trapped on the rail and could not clear until it was too late. Horses that has ran at least 5 times since his last three month break or rest period has a distinct advantage over a horse that is making his first start since a similar or longer break, especially if his trainer does not prepare him properly(either guess wrong to what the horse needs or simply does not know). A trainer is very important in the prepareness and conditioning of every horse and the trainers that realize this are the ones that win frequently. Last. I go over the breeding of the last few horses I like and try to match their breeding to the distance and surface of the race. Most times, it will be one that fits better than the others. But when I find one that fits perfectly, I am usually cashing a WP ticket on that horse and will be set up for an exacta, trifecta or super where the big bucks are, if other horses I like the best also decides to try their best. It is hard but well worth the reward a majority of the time. I am going to give you a couple of examples of how breeding works. I bet CD last Saturday and since they were having an all stakes P4 on their last four races, I put my emphasis on those four races, which turned out to be a mistake on my part. In the 4th race, I like a horse called Grade to win and I thought only one horse(Bravado) could beat him, so I boxed them in an exacta. It paid $141 on a $2 exacta. Bravado was a son of Awesome Again and his dam was a daughter of Cee's Tizzy, the sire of Tiznow. Grade was a son of Overanalyze and his broodmare sire was Grand Slam, a son of Mr Prospector son Gone West. Since Swiping Dan had ran 2nd in his first start and getting switched to a better jockey, I thought he was the one(and the crowd made him 2nd favorite) to include on my tri box, which I did. I was looking at Quality Rolls as another possible longshot to include in my super box but at the last minute decided not to bet the super(decided I was betting late P4 & P5 instead). My bets was looking very good until inside the 1/16 pole when Quality Rolls came flying out of the back of the pack and finished third, causing me a nice trifecta but because of my own reluctance, I let a $3800 super get by me. And that was not the bad one. In the Pocahontas S(last race). both my P4 & P5 was useless. But my best pick of the day was Patrona Margarita, a grand daughter of Pulpit and broodmare sire was Naevus, a son of Mr Prospector, whose ML odds was 30-1. I like Upset Brewing and Sunny Skies the best for their class, though Kelly's Humor had beaten them both last out, though they finished up in a 14:50 for the last eighth of that stakes. But I could not leave out Primo Extremo, another daughter of Overanalyze, who I thought would be hard to run down based of 2 wins in 2 tries. I ended up boxing Patrona Margarita and Sunny Skies in my exacta, added Primo Extremo in my tri and box the super leaving Kelly's Humor off my ticket. And again it came back to bite me as Kelly's Landing came from mid pack late to nose out Sunny Skies, costing my an exacta, trifecta and super. Total payout on those three bets was over $19,000. My thought has always been to box but if I had keyed that race instead in that instance, it would have been a big benefit to me. If I had paid more attention to these two races instead of trying to hit what I believe are gimmick bets, I probably would have came out much better than I did. Money management is an important key that you will do as a handicapper and can literally be the difference between making a little at the track or making a life changing sum. Or losing major sums. For those of you who are non believers in breeding after their first few races, I encourage you to look up the horse Trade Storm. He raced in Dubai and owned by Darley Stables and tolled in their lowest level for 19 starts before being purchased by Qatar Racing (the second biggest owner in Dubai). He won one of their low level handicap in his 20th race and then won a G2 in his next start. The difference was Darley and his trainers was putting the horse near the lead and when Qatar Racing brought him, their trainer decided to get him to relax early and make one late run. He won later go on to run 3rd in the G1 Woodbine Turf Mile and returned the next year to win that same race before running 3rd in the 2014 G1 BC Turf Mile. His sire Trade Fair was a G3 winning sprint son of Zafonic, a G1 winning son of Gone West who won the English 2000 Guineas. His broodmare sire is Slip Anchor, a son of champion Shirley Heights and from the same broodmare sire line as Animal Kingdom, won the G1 Epsom Derby during his brief racing career. He always had the breeding but needed someone who would let him run his race instead of being forced to run a style that did not suit him. This is more common in racing all over the world than you could ever believe. Another breeding reference that I would encourage you to look at is Ultimate Eagle. He is a son of Mizzen Mast who hails from the same line as Uncle Mo but three generations before. Mizzen Mast also had a more distance loving female family than did Uncle Mo. Ultimate Eagle's dam is Letithappencaptain who won minor stakes throughout her racing career on turf but she is a daughter of Captain Bodgit, who ran second in the G1 Ky Derby to Silver Charm as the favorite after winning the G1 Florida Derby and G1 Wood Memorial, beating Pulpit in his last two races. Ultimate Eagle began his career with three sprints on the all weather track at Hollywood Park and showed late interest though no threat to the winner in each. Sent to Del Mar and stretched out on turf for his fourth start, he was with the leader throughout tracking a fast pace and broke his maiden. Entered in an $80,000 OC in his next, he set a slow pace and wired the field, again at 1 1/16 mile turf. He was then entered in the G2 Oak Tree Derby at SA. Off at 34-1, he set a fast pace and when challenged in deep stretch, he found another gear to hang on to win at 1 1/8 mile turf. He beat a lot of top horses in this race. Entered next in the 2011 G1 Hollywood Derby at 1 1/4 miles and off at 14-1, he set a leisure pace for six furlongs and then kicked in to win while not seriously threaten. The horse that followed him all the way around was Imagining, a G1 winning son of Giant's Causeway, who did not have enough early speed to harm Ultimate Eagle. It was his fifth start before anyone finished ahead of Ultimate Eagle on turf and if you were savy enough to believe in breeding, you would had the opportunity to collect $177.60 for $16 of total bets for $2 WP on his four wins. This is a prime example of why I turn my focus to breeding and will do so for the rest of my betting days. Good Luck and have fun. Edit: Ultimate Eagle's first crop of 2 YOs starts racing in 2018. He is a stallion that is siring in the state of California. He is a G1 winner on turf, but also won the G2 Strub S on conventional dirt. He has the bloodlines to throw speedy types who will carry their speed over a route, especially if allowed to dictate their own pace.
UPDATE on Ebola Bet. Kyle v Woody bets expired "by October 31st". Who wins? How much? Explanation here.
If you don't want to read all this, just skip and read the TL;DR at the end of the thread. So I made this thread about the PKA 192 Ebola bet a while back: http://www.reddit.com/PKA/comments/2hxydb/pka_ebola_bet_from_pka_192_summaries_and/ First off, when I originally made that thread, I said the Kyle v Woody bets ended at the end of October 31st. But on reflection, I'm going to be really pedantic about it and use "by October 31st" meaning October 31st 12:01am local time for Woody and Kyle is the end of the bet. Which is now expired! Recap so far: Kyle v Chiz Chiz gives Kyle $60 because of the Western Hemisphere shenanigans. As everyone now knows, this area includes the western part of Africa, the centre of the infection. This bet also expired by October 31st by the way, but actually Kyle probably won like 2 days after the deal. If we would be really nice to Chiz, we would for instance take what we would think Chiz meant, in cutting a line vertically down the Atlantic, and meaning North and South America only, in which case he would Chiz the bet. This is because they bet on 10 contractions, yet only 2 have happened. There was a stipulation about if the number of contractions got to 5, the time period would extend, but this didn't happen. However, fuck Chiz (/jk), we should probably go with the area including Europe and West Africa, as that is factually accurate of the definition of the Western Hemisphere, so Chiz loses. For cases that have happened in the US, this website is pretty much the best source there is: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/2014-west-africa/united-states-imported-case.html Rundown for the outbreak and the bet:
4 total confirmed cases in the US who were treated on in American centres.
2 total confirmed cases of people who contracted the virus while on American soil , both in Dallas, Texas.
1 death due to Ebola on American soil, although this person was a non-US citizen, visiting family, so although it's very sad for the family, we can say that this person doesn't count for the bets from PKA 192.
[Doesn't count for bet] Sept 30th - Liberian man contracting it in Liberia, visiting family in America is diagnosed with Ebola, being treated in Dallas, Texas.
[Doesn't count for bet] Oct 8th - Liberian man passes away.
[Counts] Oct 10th - A healthcare worker at Dallas, Texas tests positive for Ebola.
[Counts] Oct 15th - A second healthcare worker at Dallas, Texas test positive for Ebola. Was on two flights after being in contact with Ebola, (on the 10th and the 13th). No passengers have tested positive as of yet.
[Doesn't count] Oct 23rd/24th Medical aid worker returning to New York City, US from Guinea, who would have contracted it in Africa, tests positive for Ebola.
Oct 24th - The first healthworker has recovered and has been discharged
Kyle v Woody - Expiring by October 31st and the point of this thread What are the bets?
Kyle and Woody bet. Kyle says with $10 and 3/1 odds that '10 US people while in the 50 states and the Palmyra Atoll contract the Ebola virus.' Woody disagrees. If Kyle is right, Woody pays $30 to Kyle. If Woody is right, Kyle pays $10 to Woody.
Kyle and Woody bet that where Kyle says that 'There will be 1 US death to Ebola of someone living inside the 50 states or the Palmyra Atoll.' Woody disagrees. No specific terms were laid out, but we can assume $10, 3/1 odds etc. because these are Kyle and Woody's terms for the other contraction bet. I wouldn't like to have to assume things, but this is the only thing I can do.
What are the results? For the first bet about 10 contractions, we know what the answer is. Woody's Palmyra Atoll didn't come to Kyle's rescue surprisingly, and as only 2 contractions are confirmed and positive in the US for this, it doesn't look good for Kyle. So Kyle gives Woody $10 For the second bet, I made a real stupid mistake. I made a thread telling people Kyle had now won the death bet when Thomas Eric Duncan died, but I was completely wrong. Thomas was not a US Citizen, and Kyle says "And I'm betting at least 1 US death.", which should mean one US citizen death while in the US. Or was I wrong? Because Kyle says after they agree to the deal " "Yeah, Woody is betting that not one single person in the 50 states will..." which you'd think would include Thomas, because he was in the US state of Texas while he died. In my opinion, there is too much personal interpretation needed to define whether Kyle or Woody wins the death bet. Depending on how you use the quotes can shift each side to win the bet. Therefore, IMO, the death bet should be voided due to not enough clarity of the deal. The bet still active - Kyle v Murka Expires at the end of the year.
Kyle and Murka bet $10 with 3/1 odds where Kyle says that "10 US people while in the 50 states contract the Ebola virus". Murka disagrees. If Kyle is right, Murka pays $30 to Kyle. If Murka is right, Kyle pays $10 to Murka, right.
At the moment, Murka is winning. It could all change, but the current infections at the moment in the US seem to be under control, and only 2 out of 10 contractions have happened so far, with almost 3 months gone, and only 2 months left. TL;DR Chiz gives Kyle $60. Kyle gives Woody $10 with the contractions bet. And the sticky situation about the death bet between Kyle and Woody leads me to say that IMO, the death bet should be voided because of the lack of clarity of defining key points when deciding who wins the bet. Chiz --$60 Kyle Kyle --$10 Woody P.S. You may think I'm taking this whole thing too seriously, or that you may feel that I could be spending my time doing better things that writing a thread on a web forum discussing a bet 4 guys from a different continent had on an internet podcast about a deadly disease, and you're probably right. But hey, someone was probably going to do it! And it was me! I don't really mind though if the crew don't go through with the bets. It's just a bit of fun making this thread. Also, if there's anything I oversaw, let me know. "I'm betting on mass death, I love it!" - Kyle, 2014 Edit: Wow! Thanks for the gold! First time a post of mine has been gilded, thanks so much.
The dosage profile most handicappers wants to follow today is severely flawed. It is that way because since the original chef-de-race sires were released, there may have been a dozen added from more than 500,000 possibilities, and this includes Mr Prospector and Alydar. Since a profile must have a fairly equal balance of sprinters to distance horse to come close to be accurate, anyone can see the problem. I researched the triple crown races from the 1960 to current and there have been 22 horses that have not qualified based on the 4.00 DI and 1.25 CD theory. 10 of those occurred in the Preakness which technically the DI should be on the high side and even slightly over, 5 in the Belmont and 7 in the Ky Derby, including the last 3 derby winners. The system has been broken 15 times since 1990, giving further evidence is it due more to updates than any other factor. Before then, it was broken 7 times including 5 times in the Preakness, twice in the Belmont and none in the Ky Derby. A few of these races were not really eligible for the system due to the natural of the tracks, which stipulates for fast tracks only. Starting in 1960, Greek Money was the first to break the dosage in the 1962 Preakness. Information on him is limited but it looks like the Preakness Stakes was his longest win but also he won mostly on grass. His grand sire was Hyperion who was better known as a grass sire but is in the pedigree of at least a dozen Ky Derby winners. His broodmare sire was Nimbus, a son of Nearco, who won the English 2000 Guineas and Epsom Derby on grass. However, he sired little as a stallion and should not have been a chef-de-race. But his dam comes from an important dam line and while fillies are not considered in dosage, she probably is the most likely reason Greek Money broke the dosage. Damascus was the second to break dosage and he did so in both the 1967 Preakness and Belmont Stakes. He also would later win the Travers Stakes at 1 1/4 miles and the Jockey Club Gold Cup, ran then at 2 miles against older horses. just to mention a couple of races. His sire, Sword Dancer, also won the Belmont Stakes, Travers, and Jockey Club Gold Cup as a 3 YO among his many wins and was one of the stoutest bred horse you will ever see. He also sired many with distance capabilities and though he was a better turf sire, there is not one good reason he would not sire a distance loving son. Then add Phalaris, Selene, and Blue Larkspur, all three 5x4 inbred into Damascus, and you have the making of a distance loving horse. Phalaris, back then, is what Nearco is today and actually is the sire line of Nearco and many more. Selene was St Simon's best producing grand daughter whose two full brothers sons in Damascus pedigree is grand sire of Tom Fool(sire of Buckpasser and Tim Tam) and great grand sire of Native Dancer. She is also the dam of Hyperion. Dosage simply missed one on this one because pedigree is definitely there. Master Derby was next in the 1975 Preakness to break the dosage and according to dosage was the most speed oriented of them all. His sire, Dust Commander, won the 1970 Ky Derby becoming the first grand son of Bold Ruler to win the Ky Derby. His broodmare sire, Royal Coinage, was a champion 2 YO sprinter but also sired Venetian Way, who won the 1960 Ky Derby. However, this sire line was better at siring sprinters than distance type runners and since he is sire of the dam, it should have affected his pedigree pretty considerably. The 3rd dam is a daughter of Crafty Admiral, whose grand sire is sire of three Ky Derby winners and a TC winner and his broodmare sire is none other than War Admiral, also a TC winner. Since I believe the dam has the most influence in a pedigree, I have to agree that he should be over but not near as much or as speed oriented as they are saying. Aloma's Ruler was next in the 1982 Preakness S. His sire, Iron Ruler, tried against the best throughout his career and ran 2nd four straight times in top preps for the Ky Derby before his owner decided to pass and wait for the Preakness. Since he should have needed help getting that little bit of extra distance, he was bred to a daughter of Native Charger, a G1 winning son of Native Dancer. Aloma's Ruler's second dam complete in all the big filly races of her time, though they were not graded back then, including a close 2nd in the 1 1/2 mile CCA Oaks. He should have been borderline for the distance, at worst, but dosage placed him significantly over, so I would have to disagree with this finding. Conquistador Cielo was next in a muddy edition of the Belmont. He too had a fairly high dosage but one of the main rules of dosage is it does not consider anything but a fast dirt track. He was a son of Mr Prospector who has always been known for passing on his mud loving ability. Conquistador Cielo became Mr Prospector's first foal that ever won at 1 1/4 mile or further and the reason is in the dam family. Conquistador Cielo's broodmare sire, Bold Commander, a son of Bold Ruler, sired 1970 Ky Derby winner Dust Commander. His third dam was a daughter of Tim Tam, who was on his way to victory in the Belmont S to complete a TC sweep when he snapped his sesamoid bone a few yards from the finish and finished 2nd. Fourth Dam, Dustwhirl, is a full sister to TC winner Whirlaway and was a top producer in her own right. The Belmont was the only time Conquistador Cielo ever won at 1 1/4 miles or further, so I would have to agree with dosage on this one. Snow Chief was next in the 1986 Preakness Stakes. Dosage said he could not successfully negotiate a 1 1/4 mile in top company and he hit that imaginary brick wall in the Ky Derby and finished 11th as the heavy favorite. He had beaten Ferdinand the only two times they met before the Ky Derby, in the Hollywood Futurity & Santa Anita Derby, but Ferdinand got the biggest prize in the Ky Derby. Snow Chief came back in The Preakness and won easily by 6 lengths. Both his sire Reflected Glory and broodmare sire Snow Sporting came from sire lines that produced many top distance runners. Apparently they did not sire enough to warrant consideration to be a chef-de-race and the dam line was slightly tilt towards speed, also. So I will be neutral on this one, but tend to agree with assessment. Prairie Bayou was next in the 1993 Preakness. Prairie Bayou ran nothing like his sire, Little Missouri, who liked to get the lead and put others to sleep with a slow pace. His broodmare sire, Wavering Monarch, did his best running from slightly off the pace but he is the sire of Maria's Mon, who had a similar style to his sire but has sired two Ky Derby winners. However, Prairie Bayou's trainer seemed to recognized the dam is inbred to Tom Fool's two best sons, Buckpasser and Tim Tam(near TC winner) who both had a style he employed. Prairie Bayou had finished a fast closing second in the Ky Derby as the leader of that year's 3 YO crop, so the Preakness was no real surprise. Unfortunately, he broke a cannon bone in the Belmont Stakes and had to be put down. And since Wavering Monarch's dam is inbred to supreme and cluster mare La Troienne, who also is the sixth dam in the female family, I would tend to disagree with the final assessment. Just proof that dams do mean a lot to pedigrees. Louis Quatorze is next as winner in the 1996 Preakness. His sire, Sovereign Dancer, is a son of Northern Dancer whose dam, Bold Princess, is a daughter of Bold Ruler. Sovereign Dancer is bred throughout his pedigree with racing royalty but did not display that on the track or at breeding, other than being sire of Gate Dancer. Louis Quatorze's broodmare sire, On To Glory, was a half brother to Ruffian, and showed promise but ended up being an average sire and runner at best in the end. His daughter, On To Royalty, was by far his best running foal and producer, so she definitely had influence in the way Louis Quatorze ran. But I will agree with dosage assessment, his speed should have been a little high. Real Quiet is next as winner of the 1998 Ky Derby and Preakness and just missed winning a triple crown. Real Quiet's sire was Quiet American, a son of Fappiano, who was a late developing runner who stunned the bettors when he came from last and easily won the G1 NYRA Mile H(now Cigar Mile H)as a 5 YO, breaking the track record in the process. Quiet American's broodmare sire, Dr Fager, owns the world record for a mile on dirt, set while carrying 134 lbs. His 2nd dam Quiet Charm, is also 2nd dam of Dare And Go, the horse responsible for snapping Cigar's 16 race winning streak. Real Quiet's broodmare sire is Believe It, third in the Ky Derby and Preakness to Affirmed and Alydar. But where he really picks up class and distance capabilities starts at his 2nd dam, Meadow Blue, a full sister to near TC winner Majestic Prince. His 4th dam, Your Hostess, is a full sister to Your Host, who is best known as sire of 5 Time US Champion Kelso. So I absolutely totally disagree with dosage and its profiling on this one. This one and the next one I will list convinced me the dosage system was flawed and if I wanted to use breeding, I would have to research it myself. It took me a while to figure out how, but that is what I now require before betting. Charismatic won the 1999 Ky Derby and Preakness and he is another one whose TC was denied due to injury after seemingly home free. Charismatic's sire Summer Squall, is a 1/2 to A.P. Indy and ran 2nd in the 1990 Ky Derby to Unbridled before winning the Preakness, beating that same rival. Charismatic's broodmare sire, Drone, won all 4 of his starts before being injured and retired. Drone's sire, Sir Gaylord, was a 1/2 brother to Secretariat and his best son, Sir Ivor, was a champion in Europe and bred on the same line as Drone. With sires of Foolish Pleasure and Native Dancer in the dam line, along with being inbred 5x5 to Mahmoud, Charismatic's pedigree was screaming for more distance, definitely not less. Simply cannot fathom why dosage says he is over on dosage and would prefer lesser distance. Commendable won the 2000 Belmont Stakes by setting a slow pace and then having just enough left to hold off Ky Derby 2nd Aptitude. Commendable's sire Gone West, was a high class runner whose best distances top out at 1 1/16 miles, but he ran against the best of his year which included Alysheba, Bet Twice, Lost Code, Gulch and Cryptoclearance. He was best known for siring sprinters but occasionally could sire a decent distance turf horse. His bloodlines hinted that he should be able to, too. Commendable's broodmare sire, In Reality, also was best known for sprinters to mid distances horse. However, Commendable's dam, Brought Twice, is a 1/2 sister to Fappiano and they hail from Cequillo dam line, a daughter of Princequillo out of Boldness by Mahmoud. Despite the presence of Cequillo, I feel Commendable pedigree was tilted a little too much towards speed, so I would have to agree with dosage assessment. Sarava won the 2002 Belmont Stakes as the longest long shot in Belmont Stakes history at 70-1. Sarava's sire Wild Again won the inaugural running of the BC Classic beating Slew O' Gold and Gate Dancer after a three way battle between these for the length of the stretch. However, Wild Again, like most of his foals, seem to enjoy going 1 1/8 miles much more than the classic distance, with the exception of Milwaukee Brew. Sarava's broodmare sire, Deputy Minister, was Canada's 2 YO champion mostly because of his sprinting abilities and he continued to prove he was better at sprinting through his career. Deputy Minister did sire a couple of fillies who were U.S. champions and loved to run but for the most part, his foals loved mid distances the best. Sarava dam family is full of sprint type mares. So I will have to agree with this assessment based on dosage. Giacomo pulled off a huge upset in the 2005 Ky Derby. Giacomo's sire, Holy Bull, won 13 of 16 lifetime starts but only one at 1 1/4 miles and that being the Travers Stakes. He was the beaten favorite in the Ky Derby when he stumbled at the start. He never lost when he broke first but also never hit the board when he didn't. Holy Bull had two separate influences of major distance sire of Mahmoud, the first his son The Axe II and second Grey Dawn II, a son of his daughter Polomia. Giacomo's broodmare sire, Stop The Music, is one of many from the Hail To Reason sire line but was unfortunate to be born the same year as Secretariat. Stop The Music was award the win in the Champagne Stakes after Secretariat tried to savage him as he was going by, one of only 2 losses for Secretariat as a 2 YO. Stop The Music's best son, Temperence Hill upset Genuine Risk in the Belmont Stakes at odds of 53.40-1. Since he crosses with Prince Bio, a close relative of Princequillo, on the dam side, I would think he would be under on dosage. But he is also one the pedigree experts can not be faulted for missing. Prince Bio was to Europe what Princequillo was to the U.S. A Distance Loving Sire. Mine That Bird pulled off a major upset at 50-1 in the 2009 Ky Derby on a sloppy track. Mine That Bird's sire Birdstone, won the 2004 Belmont Stakes, foiling Smarty Jones attempt at a TC at odds of 36-1. Birdstone's sire Grindstone also won the Ky Derby in 1996, as did his sire Unbridled in 1990. Mine That Bird's broodmare sire is Smart Strike, the sire of both Curlin and Lookin At Lucky. While Smart Strike was a solid runner, he was even a much better sire and his line is starting to really spread out. My take on his pedigree is this is another dosage had no business missing, based on the sire records of both the sire line and broodmare sire line. Dosage is supposed to be about pedigree but when you omit two top lines, it will not be successful for too long. It was already flawed by not considering dams. American Pharoah won the TC in 2014 as the favorite. His sire, Pioneerof The Nile ran 2nd in the 2009 Ky Derby and his sire Empire Maker ran 2nd in the 2004 Ky Derby before foiling Funny Cide's TC bid in the Belmont. American Pharoah's broodmare sire Yankee Gentleman was a minor state bred winning son of Storm Cat. However, his dam, Key Phase showed a little ability winning 5 of 6 starts, including the G1 Santa Monica at 7 furlongs. But other than that, his female family is one of the few families I have seen with no major stakes winner through five generations. So I would have to agree with dosage on this one, but actually believe his DI should be even higher. He was be beneficiary of what turned out to be a weak crop. Nyquist won the Ky Derby in 2015 as the favorite. His sire, Uncle Mo, was a miler during his racing career but won the BC Juvenile Dirt at a 1 1/16, mostly because of his high class but also most were still developing and had yet to catch up. He was leading first crop sire, but most top out at around 1 1/16 mile, except this one. Nyquist broodmare sire, Forestry, was a son of Storm Cat whose biggest win came in the 7 furlongs G1 King's Bishop. Forestry's dam, Shared Interest won the G1 Ruffian at 5 and ran second in two more G1's. Her third dam, Sequence, is also the second dam of Mr Prospector. Most of Nyquist's dam family won a stake, but most were what look like sprints. His pedigree, top and bottom, is much better than American Pharoah, but still tilted a little too much towards speed. Nyquist breaking the dosage makes a lot more sense than the horse above does. Always Dreaming won the 2017 Ky Derby on a sloppy track. Always Dreaming sire, Bodemeister ran second in the 2012 Ky Derby And Preakness. However, I really believe he would have been a much better horse if allowed to rate. He is bred too good to tinker with his best running style. Always Dreaming's broodmare sire In Excess is also grand sire of Uncle Mo. So I expect Always Dreaming's best distance will be around a mile, much like Uncle Mo. Always Dreaming's dam, Above Perfection, was a G3 winning sprinter that ran second in the G1 Prioress Stakes. So I agree with the assessment of dosage on this one. I believe he was more a beneficiary of a sloppy track more than talent and I believe his three races since points that out.
Yeah the second picture is of a crane hook on the Balder. It's a construction barge, and I believe the largest in the world! We used that giant hook to put in the first APL Buoy in the Gulf of Mexico. The APL Buoy is like an underwater gas pump for oil. The ship places itself over the top of it and the APL Buoy rises up into the bottom of the vessel and loads it up with oil. It was a pretty cool experience installing it! We had Nat. Geo out there filming us the entire time!
When I first started diving I was walking a pipeline in zero visibility for a survey. I came up to a "wall" that wasn't supposed to be there so I called out to topside and told them there was something in my way. Topside called back and said that they didn't have anything marked as being there. So I started banging on the "wall" explaining to them that there is clearly something in my way. About half way through my explanation the "wall" moved and smacked me in the face making me scream like a school girl at a horror movie! The "wall" was a Goliath Grouper best I can figure. Still not too sure.
Besides that, another time I had just got done with a dive and I was coming back up. The visibility was beautiful! Clear as far as the eye could see. I was running through my deco stop and had to stop for 15 minutes , otherwise I could risk getting bent. Then, not even ten feet over head, HUNDREDS, of hammerhead sharks started swimming past! That was both terrifying and beautiful.
One of the scarier things that I haven't mentioned that happened to me was when I was walking on bottom and started seeing little greenish lights light up everywhere. At first I was thinking it was some Abyss type stuff going on, then I was like Oh shit! I might have a brain tumor! But then I found out it was just some luminescent phosphor I was stirring up on the bottom. It's actually quite beautiful!
Well I wasn't diving in the 70's and 80's just to clarify. But from what I understand, most companies used the standard US Navy dive tables. After a while companies started researching their own dive tables and using those. As far as gas mixes, most dives were just surface supplied air. So you had crap bottom times, nitrogen narcosis, and an increased chance of getting the bends. Then the companies started using mixed gases instead of just surface supplied air so they could get better bottom times and decrease the chances of a diver getting bent.
There aren't really various types of underwater welders. You are really just a Commercial Diver which is a "jack of all trades". Whatever people need you to do, you go underwater and do. Now for Nuke Reactor diving there are specific certifications and security clearances you have to get, but that's about it.
A normal work schedule for me is 28 days on, 28 days off. 12 hours a day when I'm at work with the occasional 16 hour days.
Work day is easy enough. You show up, do your dive and then the rest of the day is yours to do whatever you can think of. The pay during the apprenticeship isn't too phenomenal. Probably between 20-25 an hour. But you get overtime everyday and the occasional dive with depth pay. The schedule doesn't change after the apprenticeship, but the money increases exponentially.
On average guys usually tend for two years. But, if you're shit hot it could only take months if you're with a smaller company that will give you a lot of dives! It also helps to have your own "hat"/dive helmet!
No, fortunately I don't. I do know of two guys that were killed within the same month from Manta Rays though. They were working on bottom and all of the sudden they were dragged straight up super fast and were bent really badly causing them to die, Turns out the Manta Rays like to play with diver umbilicals.
Getting bent is when the nitrogen bubbles in your body start to expand from not properly decompressing. It sucks. There are all sorts of different types of "bends" Some aren't so serious, some are life threatening.
It's pretty easy. Come up with the money, haha! The dive schools will get you all your certs and teach you everything you need to know. After that you are thrown to the wolves and have to start a sort of "apprenticeship".
The advice I would give is don't give up. If you feel uncomfortable/scared in dive school, work through it. I was telling the guys in WTF earlier, I thought I was a tough guy and wasn't scared of anything. I got in dive school and they put me in the Decompression Chamber and I found out I was claustrophobic. I had to get over it real quick. I saw a lot of real deal tough guys drop out because some shit about diving scared them. It's honestly worth it though. I've lived 4x the life most people have and seen stuff 99% of the world will never see first hand and as a plus I can afford to do whatever I want with my family! It's definitely an adventure! As far as learning to weld before hand, don't waste your time. It's COMPLETELY different subsea!
Starting pay is tricky. If you choose to stay in California you'll probably get paid real good because the union there. But work is hard to find from what I hear. In the Gulf of Mexico the starting pay will prob be around 20 an hour as a tender. It doesn't sound like much but keep in mind that this is entry level and that you get paid 12 hours 24/7 as long as you're on the job plus any overtime, plusdepth pay for a dive! Commercial Divers do anything in the water. There are all sorts of fields to choose from. You could go offshore into the oil fields and make decent money. You could go dive in sewage and make a killing! Or you can even go dive into nuclear reactors and make a grip doing inspections.
Not really a huge variance. You wont make as much diving inland as you will offshore. Unless you dive sewage or reactors. Like any other job, do it because you love it. The money is good but honestly it won't make you happy if you don't like your job. Cliche I know.
No military or college required to dive. But of course it wouldn't hurt.
One month on one month off 12 hours a day 7 days a week when you are offshore. Some inland gigs are more like a 9-5.
Deepest I've been is 375feet. The deepest a human body can go on record is 1,500ft. That is the last record set by Oceaneering. I couldn't really notice a difference on my body that deep. Now on straight surface supplied air past 150feet I've experienced Nitrogen Narcosis. It's like drinking a whole bottle of whiskey and smoking a joint all at once. It's pretty intense.
We definitely haven't explored a fraction of the oceans bottom.
You know what's kind of funny? I'm actually scared to death of heights. I won't go higher than six feet off the ground! My body just won't let me! But I'll damn sure jump into whatever body of water you want me to and go down as deep as I can!
I have met women that dive and they are just as awesome at this job then most of the guys out there.
There are size requirements, mostly just don't be obese. The body doesn't like to process nitrogen if there is a lot of fatty tissue. I know three guys straight out of dive school who couldn't get jobs because they were just too large.
I have been on a vessel where that happened. I wasn't in the water. I can't name any names but here is the story.
We were out cutting down some legs after hurricane Katrina and the diver that was in the water cutting at the time forgot to cut vent holes in the top of the leg while he was cutting 30ft down. Needless to say a huge gas pocket built up and reached where he was cutting and exploded. The explosion was so massive that it pushed the vessel back. He was obviously right next to the leg when it exploded. All of his bones were crushed like mush and the glass on his helmet was shattered as well. He died instantly. There was a huge investigation and the project was shutdown for about three months.
Most significant advance in safety would definitely have to be the introduction of "saturation diving". Decompression is the most dangerous part of the dive and this limits your decompression to one time during your project.
What made underwater welding dangerous was the exposure to gases, sloppy decompression tables, lack of knowledge on behalf of companies, and "cowboy" attitudes to be honest.
Now days there are different gas mixtures that companies use to limit the nitrogen in your body and more refined decompression tables that we use. Also safety policies have become the standard. Before it was just kind of a "fuck it" let's get it done attitude.
Honestly, go to the military or get a degree in some sort of engineering. I got lucky to get into ROV. I had a Gas Turbine background from the military and was already a commercial diver. So getting into ROV as well was a no brainer for me.
Off the coast of Equatorial Guinea at about 100ft depth I saw an octopus that looked just like Blinky from Pacman. I shit you not. I doubt it had ever been seen by any body else before and that it was some sort of unknown species. Seen other cool things like "headless chickens", at least that's what we call them. They look like a chicken you'd buy from the grocery store, just floating around in the water.
I was pretty sure I'd drown when I got my umbilical pinched top side. It gets super hard to breath and every breath you take sucks water into your helmet. It scared the shit out of me. Luckily I had my bail out bottle and the problem got sorted top side!
Thanks a lot man! It's not that bad, you should come give it a try!
What got me into the field was a guy named Sam. He lived across the street from my father here in Houston and him and his GF were divers. I didn't even know the job existed. Well, she worked for NASA in the Neutral Buoyancy Lab with Astronauts and I remember just thinking that was the coolest thing. He worked offshore and made good money(I presume) and he was home half the year. I always thought that that was a good life! Adventure, money, and time off! I wish I could find that guy because he was a huge inspiration to me!
I've had a few encounters that made me want to stay out of the water but unfortunately bills made me jump back in, haha! The one time I really got spooked was from a giant grouper that I thought was a wall in zero visibility water. At least I assume it was a grouper!
They would have to search with ROVs and even then it would be like finding a needle in a hay stack unless they knew exactly where it went down. I hope they do find it soon though. That way all those families can have some closure.
No I haven't read it. Never even heard of it to be honest with you! I'm going to have to check it out now though. My favorite book about offshore life is Don't Tell Mom I Work On The Rigs, She Thinks I'm A Piano Player At A Whorehouse. That's the most accurate depiction of the "offshore lifestyle" to me!
Never in a small sub. Always surface supplied air when I'm in the water. But as I said I am also an ROV pilot. That's just a remotely operated vehicle. It's kind of like playing a REALLY expensive video game!
You just have to seriously ask yourself if this is something you want and can do! Most people only last 5 years in this field. But if you play your cards right, at your age, you may only need five years!
Yes I have actually! There was a really cool ship called the Green Lantern that was a few hundreds of years old that sunk in the Spanish Main off the cost of Texas. Lots of old Oil Lanterns and stuff like that, but we weren't allowed to touch anything!
Sorry, I read that out of context at first. The reason we weren't allowed to touch anything is because they didn't want us to disturb the way it had sunk. We were just there to take a survey of the wreckage.
Very significant. I know of some Project Managers making 200k and then there is General Managers that can make 300k. When you're in the oil industry they through around big money. At least that's big money to me!
With work experience you can slide into this position. If you get your project management cert that definitely helps get you into that position. To be honest, about 80% of the people I know working in a project management position got there by working there way up from the bottom of the industry.
Wake up, eat, drink coffee, bullshit with the guys, go to the morning meeting, see if we have to dive for the day, if so dive, come back up, deco chamber, eat, reddit, reddit, eat, movies, call wife and kids, sleep.
As a commercial diver you'll hardly ever get water in your eyes. Your whole head will stay dry because of you "hat" or dive helmet. Unless something goes horribly wrong! But if you're going to get scuba certified "suck it up and get used to it"! ;)
I have a lot of respect for the work top-side welders do. Our welds subsea are ugly and shitty. You get mass amounts of slag in your weld and you be hard pressed to find a good looking line. I guess if I wanted to try and impress a top-side welder I'd tell you about the time I had to weld around a pipeline in zero-vis going off of nothing but touch and the little light I could see from my arc all while trigger fish are biting at the exposed skin on my wrist! That was a lot of fun!
The largest, most publicized, project I worked on was with an ROV installing the first APL buoy in the Gulf of Mexico. The tools we used were the ROV of course, two massive cranes, and tons of ball-grab joints. The clump weight for the APL bouy was as big as a 3500sqft two story house!!!The installation took about two weeks and we had Nat Geo filming us the entire time which made it a little nerve racking to be honest! It didn't help that my Supervisor at the time was acting like a douche bag and quoting Top-Gun in front of the camera every chance he got!
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