At the Gate - Wednesday
November 21, 2012
By Mike Dempsey
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The new week gets off to a good start on Wednesday with a solid nine race betting card at Aqueduct, and then we have plenty of outstanding stakes action coming up over the four day holiday weekend.
Wednesday's feature at the Big A is the $80,000 Stardusk, a 1 1/16 mile turf event for three-year-old fillies that drew a field of eight.
The Chad Brown trained Pianist is the 4-5 morning line favorite, exiting a fourth place finish in one of the divisions of the Valley View (G3) at Keeneland on Oct. 19.
The daughter of More Than Ready drops into a softer spot here and will be tough to beat if she runs back to her good looking win in The Given at Belmont Park on Sept. 20 over a yielding turf course.
With the price being on the light side I am going to look elsewhere, and trainer Graham Motion is saddling three of the eight fillies in the field.
Angegreen is one of three runners sent out by the Motion barn and she is going to be the biggest price of the trio. She was Group 2 placed in Italy, and then was the beaten favorite in in the Pucker Up (G3) in her U.S. debut off a 3 1/2 month break.
She then came up short in the stretch last out in sixth place finish in the Banner Gala as Baffle Me took the field gate to wire. Johnny V. sticks and this gal showed some promise in Italy and we will give her one more shot to show she can run here in the U.S. and today she figures to go off at a generous price.
Motion's other two runners are Nayuarra (20-1) and Absolute Crackers (5-1).
Thursday's feature is the $150,000 Fall Highweight (G3) which drew a tough field of six sprinters who will go six furlongs on the main track.
Poseidon's Warrior is the 8-5 morning line favorite and is looking to rebound off a 14th place finish in the Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1).
Caixa Eletronica is the second choice at 9-5 and is also coming off a subpar effort in a seventh place finish in the Bold Ruler (G3)
Rick Dutrow is bringing Willy Beamin back off another short break and is 6-1 on the morning line The gelding ran second in the Discovery Handicap (G3) on Nov. 17. Tricky Rick is very good with the quick turnaround, and don't forget Willy Beamin won the King's Bishop (G1) just three days after winning the state bred Albany back in August.
Saturday's Big A card features four graded stakes including Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) champ Groupie Doll taking on the boys in the $350,000 Cigar Mile (G1).
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Here is today's opening from Aqueduct to get the day off to a good start:
AQU Race 1 Clm $14,000 (12:20 ET)
5 Hold That Broad 5-2
3 Alston Gunter 3-1
6 Won Fast Bullet 2-1
1 Jemaru 6-1
Analysis: Hold That Broad dueled for the early lead, drifted out turning for home, drifted outward in the stretch and weakened inside the final furlong to check in third, beaten a length for the top spot. The gelding was making his first start off a four month layoff and his first go for the Ness barn. This guy owns solid early and mid pace numbers and should be tighter for his second start off the bench. The barn is 30% winners with runners making their second start off a 45-180 day layoff.
Alston Gunter is coming off a game win last out against $20K claimers in a race taken off the turf in his second start off the claim by the RRod barn. This guy has been competitive versus tougher and looks well spotted here dropping in for a $14K tag. The gelding looks headed in the right direction for a sharp outfit. The barn has been on a roll at the meeting, hitting at a 36% clip.
WIN: #5 to win at 9-5 or better.
EX: 3,5 / 1,3,5,6
TRI: 3,5 / 1,3,5,6 / 1,3,5,6,7
Today's Featured Race of the Day from Aqueduct:
AQU Race 8 OClm $25,000N1X (3:43 ET)
5 Souper Speedy 3-1
6 Last Gunfighter 4-1
3 Big Business 2-1
4 Conspiracy 4-1
Analysis: Souper Speedy came off a long layoff with a solid runner up finish last out. The colt bobbled after getting bumped coming out of the gate, tracked the early pacesetter and could not catch the loose on the lead gate to wire winner. The winner was D'tiger, who came back to beat restricted $15K claimers in his next start on Nov. 18. The colt showed plenty of promise as a juvenile, breaking his maiden in his debut and then running a game second in the Remsen (G2) here last November in his first go against winners. He figures to move forward second off the bench.
Last Gunfighter came off a 6 1/2 month layoff to break his maiden last out for the Chad Brown barn. The colt tracked the early pace, came with a good wide move and finished up well with something left in the tank. The barn is 29% winners (with a +ROI) with runners making their second start off a +180 day layoff. He is one of two in here coming off maiden scores and may end up getting overlooked on the tote.
WIN: #5 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 5,6 / 3,4,5,6
TRI: 5,6 / 3,4,5,6 / 2,3,4,5,6
These are price plays for exotic players looking to find a couple of extra contenders to use in their trifecta and superfecta wagers. Or for those with smaller bankrolls, you might want to get in a small win-place wager.
R2: #2 Handy Andy 8-1
R4: #5 Angegreen 15-1
R9: #10 Knock Rock 8-1
Good luck today!
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Mike covers the New York racing circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga) year round as well as Keeneland, Churchill Downs, the Triple Crown, and the Breeders’ Cup.
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