“The Redboard” takes looks back at past race results and analyzes my picks for the Steam tip sheet–the good, the bad, and the ugly. While I may make some excuses, I won’t gloat on past scores after the fact, as the definition “red board” implies. This column is more of a handicapping exercise–to determine track biases, horses that had bad trips, overlays that ran deceptively well, and underlays that had no excuses for running poorly–with the goal of picking profitable winners in the future. So here it goes . . . the Redboard, issue three:
Keeneland, Sunday, October 7, 2018
The results for Steam‘s top-pick selections were as follows: three wins, one second, and one third on the 10-race program for a strike rate of 30 percent and in the money ratio of 50 percent. Return on investment (*ROI) was -31%, or -62 cents for each two dollars wagered on its top picks on the card.
RACE 1: $50,000 claiming for three-year-olds and upward which have never won two races. 7 furlongs on a FAST track. Weather CLEAR, 83 degrees.
Pryor (7-1) got a dream trip stalking the freewheeling Twin Farms (9-2), who carved-out hot early splits of :21 3/5 and :44 3/5, took command at the quarter-pole under jockey Luis Saez, and won going away by six lengths. Steam‘s top selection, Dig Charlie Dig (9-2), never picked up his feet and finished sixth of seven, beaten 21 1/2 lengths. Second-place finisher Portal (2-1) bobbled at the start, Dr. Baskin (14-1), who finished last, was bumped at the start, and Twin Farms was fractious in the gate.
RACE 2: $80,000 optional claiming, “money-since” allowance for three-year-olds and upward. 8 and one-half furlongs on a FAST track.
Top pick Big Dollar Bill (9-5) used an honest pace to his advantage (six-furlongs in 1:10 2/5), moved into contention at the quarter-pole, and drove past Hot Shot Kid (6-1) less than a sixteenth of a mile from home to score by a widening length and three-quarters. Securitiz (8-5) bobbled at the start.
RACE 3: $30,000 maiden claiming for three-year-olds and upward. 6 furlongs on a FAST track.
D’ambrosio (1-1)–the top pick–stalked front-running Shackled (6-1) and Just Like Richie (41-1) on the rail through an opening quarter-mile in :22 4/5 and a half-mile in :46 4/5, was fanned out into the three-path at the three-sixteenths-pole, and swept to the forefront at the quarter-pole to win by 2 1/4 lengths under jockey Jose Ortiz, Jr. Longshot Just Like Richie got needed class relief dropping in for a tag for the first time and stayed on well be be second at boxcar odds.
RACE 4: $10,000 starter allowance for fillies and mares three-years-old and upward. 7 furlongs on a FAST track.
Chicago raider Bizzee Mischief (8-1) took the Polytrack-to-dirt angle to the bank, as the Steve Manley trainee broke like a shot, set splits of :22 3/5, :46 2/5, and 1:11 1/5 and scored a gate-to-wire victory in 1:24 3/5 despite being hounded by a host of rivals the entire trip. Jockey Mitchell Murrill got the daughter of Into Mischief home in front by a nose on the wire over Arcelor (24-1). Top pick Honey Bunny (1-2), who was bumped around at the start, hit her best stride too late, and was two noses off the win in third. Mizzen Air (6-1), broke inwardly at the start, Racey Reecey (20-1) lunged slightly at the start, and Dancing Waves (Ire), who went off at 11-1, had to steady on the backstretch.
RACE 5: Maiden special weight for two-year-olds. 8 and one half-furlongs on a FAST track.
Plus Que Parfait, part of a coupled entry that went off at a healthy 8-1, stalked a legitimate pace set by the California invader Absolute Control (51-1), was collared by top pick Harvey Wallbanger (6-5) inside the quarter-pole, but fought back gamely on the rail to regain the lead, prevailing by a dogged nose at the finish. It was six and a quarter lengths back to Cutting Humor (5-2) in third. Better Charge It (23-1) bobbled at the start, Cutting Humor broke outwardly at the start, and Absolute Control was bumped at the start. Steam‘s top three picks boxed–Harvey Wallbanger, Cutting Humor, and Plus Que Parfait–returned $23.90 for the exacta and $37.85 for the 50-cent trifecta.
RACE 6: $200,00 Indian Summer Stakes for two-year-olds. 5 and one half-furlongs on FIRM turf.
In arguably the most visually impressive win on the program, Strike Silver, who went off at overlaid odds of 5-1 and was dead last at the quarter-pole after getting bumped hard at the start, unleashed a massive late turn of foot to get up for a neck win over the determined filly Chelsea Cloisters (4-1) in the final strides under jockey Julien Leparoux. Top pick All About It, who went off at underlaid odds of 5-2, was a respectable fourth of 12, beaten a length and a half for all the marbles.
RACE 7: Maiden special weight. Fillies and mares two-years-old. 7 furlongs on a FAST track.
Top selection Into Mystic (1-1) broke running under jockey Jose Ortiz, Jr., set legit splits of :22 4/5, :46 4/5, 1:11 1/5 and 1:24 flat while taking this field of 12 gate-to-wire by three comfortable lengths. Bess (56-1) was a sneaky good second after getting shuffled back and staying on in the final eighth.
RACE 8: $250,000 Dixiana Bourbon Stakes (G3T). Two-year-olds. 8 and one half-furlongs on FIRM turf.
In what proved to be another exciting turf race on the program, Current (9-2) found his best stride inside the eighth-pole and rallied stoutly from off-the-pace to nail the game Henley’s Joy (4-1) by a nose on the wire in a blanket finish. Salvator Mundi (29-1) was another nose back in third. Top selection War of Will (7-5) did all the heavy-lifting on the front-end, setting fractions of :23 2/5, :48 4/5, and 1:14 4/5, clung to a tenuous lead an eighth of a mile from home, but faded to be fourth of 13, beaten a length for all the money.
RACE 9: $500,000 Juddmonte Spinster (G1). Fillies and mares three-years-old and upward. 9 furlongs on a FAST track.
Blue Prize (Arg)–off at odds of 9-2–scored a three-quarter length win over arch-rival Champagne Problems (8-1) despite shying from a shadow in the stretch run and ducking out repeatedly. Top pick Talk Veuve to Me (2-1) was overbet and had no excuses stalking a moderate pace (:23 3/5, :47 3/5, 1:12 1/5, and 1:37 flat) in the four path and tired to finish sixth of 11. Fuhriously Kissed (70-1) came out at the start, Southernperfection (90-1) came in at the start, and Skeptic (28-1) was unprepared at the start.
RACE 10: “Money since” or non-winners of three races lifetime allowance for fillies and mares three-years-old and upward. 8 furlongs on FIRM turf.
Cheeky Cherub (12-1) broke altertly but was allowed to settle off the pace while saving ground on the inside, then rallied with aplomb when produced in the stretch under jockey Julien Leparoux to nail even-money favorite Excellent Sunset (Ire) by a neck on the wire. Psalmody (5-1) was another neck back in third. Top selection May Lily (4-1) stalked the pace in the second flank but had no kick while five in the stretch drive.
The main track played fair compared to days one and two, which favored front-running types, while deep closers won all three turf races on the card . . . The meet’s leading rider, Jose Ortiz, Jr., (4 wins) and leading trainer, Todd Pletcher, (4 wins) teamed up for a three-bagger on the card; Julien Leparoux had a pair of winners on the day . . . There is a $43,039 carryover in the one dollar Pick 6 (races 3-8) on Wednesday’s October 10 program.
*Return on investment (ROI) is calculated by dividing the net profit by the total amount invested.