I had a few moments and I began to replay the last few weeks leading up to the Breeders’ Cup. Our place parlay yielded a small profit, and we had a great time betting the weekend. For the group, it was a winner. But for me, I was left scratching my head and asking what happened?
Never before have I picked so many winners and left money on the table. I know that sounds pretty silly. But I put in the time, and consulted the E-Z Win Forms with an open mind. If you are one with an ego, you would be slapping yourself on the back. But if you are a true gambler, it has you searching through your tickets asking why did I come so close? Here are a few scenarios that I faced in 48 hours of the best racing during the year.
Race #5 – B/C Marathon = I really fell in love with a runner. Caleidoscopio was all the buzz talk all during the works. No saddle, but looked like a steam roller waiting to be unleashed. So, I put my money into the exacta and trifecta, and allowed a 17-1 Argentine-bred to slip right through my fingers. All week long I practiced what I was preaching, but it came down to a dirty 1/2 length for Grassy to best Atigun for place. Moving forward, when you like that second or third tier runner at a price, just drop $5 to win, and thank yourself later… Mistake #1 …
Race #8 – The Filly and Mare Turf = I have replayed this race so many times that it still hurts… William Buick and I feel like a boulder was dropped on our noggins. The Fugue was by far the best, and ran a boxed in third place finish. Now, I never really get mired down into the “what-if’s,” but when Mike Battaglia interviewed him first rather than going to Javier Castellano aboard Zagora. I knew for once that I had a legit bitch. The Fugue was kept in the box along the rail, and riders overseas are trained to save every bit of ground possible. Buick is exceptional, and his record speaks for itself. But, he kept this gal in tight, and still should have went wide at the 1/4 pole. She still would have won, and it is rare to hear a rider admit this. I heard that John Gosden drilled him publicly with a shouting match that got ugly. She was the best, and I had a enough on her to choke an elephant. But, try and cash that ticket, and I’ll still be smoking big cigars. – Bad beat of 2012.
Race #5 – The B/C Filly and Mare Sprint = I consulted the president of Winning Ponies, and he took away any of my hesitation to hammer Groupie Doll. I had seen her live at Keeneland, and let me tell you she is scary. I thought she may be a poly-lover, and the dirt may keep her a few lengths back. After our conversation, I was 100% locked in on her. I had the trifecta and good money on the chalk who did not disappoint. What I didn’t do was lay the money on the super. The $1 ticket paid $500, and I left a chunk on the table. He was at Santa Anita, and had a better view of works and interviews. He helped me to stay on course, but this should have been a big score. – Leaving money on the table.
Race #7 – The B/C Sprint = Seldomly will I fall in love late. I liked this gal a great deal, and as the day went on. I fell in love with a 20-1 morning line filly against the boys with Mizdrection. Money-man Mike Smith did his job, and Dangerous Dan’s runner Unbridled’s Note ran a huge second place. I had the exacta, but left money on the table not spending more money to get the trifecta. It paid $360, and I had a $40 exacta a few times. Once again, I didn’t go far enough. Oh, and for all of us that wagered her price down to almost 7-1 were not disappointed. She ran a big one for the Puype barn. Not looking down the road can hurt more than you know.
Race #8 – The B/C Juvenile = This was an absolutely great race. I have a few to focus on for next year, and the race paid me well. But, a long nose, or a short head-bob can be the difference of a good day and a great day. Shanghai Bobby did not disappoint and showed me the guts I saw in New York. I began leaning toward Capo Bastone, but the J. Paul Reddam runner caught my eye. The exact connections of the Derby winner had a nice price. When they hit the 5/16ths pole, he steadied a bit under Mario Gutierrez. I can’t slight his ride, and matter of fact I applaud his efforts as a some big-name riders may have acted out and caused him to lose ground. But, they buckled down and chased a very good game. Mark it in your notebook now – He Had Enough. I had the gimmicks, but the head-bob loss hurt worse than anything. But, I think I will be following Team O’Neill this year. Congrats goes out to Ms. Rosie Napravnik for becomming the second lady rider to win on the big day. Snapped at the wire !
OK, OK, enough crying… I had a great day, and Winning Ponies gave me a great foundation with the E-Z Win Forms. I have went into a week long hibernation, and now I am coming out after a short nap. I can’t wait to hit some ” Big A” runners, and get Fair Grounds in my sights on Thanksgiving Day. Don’t forget the rest of Churchill, Hollywood Park, and it won’t be long until Gulfstream opens the doors. So, what are you waiting for? Get your E-Z Win Fomrs in hand, and lets start this weekend. I will start my capping on Friday in New York, and Churchill will offer up some great racing action for Saturday. Be sure to check back, and let us know how your Breeders’ Cup weekend turned out.