At the Gate - Thursday
March 20, 2014
By Mike Dempsey
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There was sad news out of New York yesterday as it was reported that trainer Dominic Galluscio passed away on Monday night after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 55.
Galluscio is currently tied for 12th in the trainer standings at the inner track meeting at Aqueduct with 10 wins from 50 starters. The trainer could win off the claim, with first timers and campaigned stakes horses that included Lord of the Night, Organizer, Dr. V’s Magic and Le Grande Danseur.
His first winner as a trainer came at Aqueduct in 1981 with Cher Cheval and his 1,000th career victory was at the Big A with Discreet Force on February 17, 2013.
Galluscio is survived by a daughter, Dominique Marie Galluscio, brothers Robert, Raymond, Joseph and Gerard, sisters Marie Britt and Denise Cote, and many nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be at Park Funeral Chapel, 2175 Jericho Turnpike, Garden City Park, from 5 to 9 p.m. on Friday, March 21, with religious services offered Saturday at 11 a.m. Burial will be at the First Reformed Church in Germantown, N.Y. on Sunday.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in the name of Dominic Galluscio to the Backstretch Employee Service Team (B.E.S.T.) at Belmont Park, 2150 Hempstead Turnpike, Cottage 28B, Elmont, N.Y. 11003.
Coming up this weekend we have a pair of Derby points races –the $550,000 Spiral Stakes (G3) at Turfway Park on Saturday and the $800,000 Sunland Derby (G3) at Sunland Park coming up on Sunday. Each race will offer 50-20-10-5 points to the top four finishers.
I’ll take an early look at the Derby preps tomorrow.
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Here is today’s opening from Aqueduct to get the day off to a good start:
AQU Race 1 Clm $25,000N3L (1:20 ET)
1 Coolusive 8-5
5 Make a Fortune 9-5
4 Poliziano 8-1
2 Readthesmokesignal 6-1
Analysis: Coolusive catches a weaker group here after checking in sixth last out against Alw-1 optional claimers at Gulfstream Park in his first start off a six-month layoff. The runner up in the race was Red Hot Randy, who came back to Alw-1 optional claimers in his next outing on Feb. 23. The colt figures to be fitter second off the bench for the Nevin barn that has been sending out live runners at the meeting.
Make a Fortune tracked the early pace and could get past the loose on the lead gate to wire winner. The six-year-old was seven lengths clear of the rest of the field in the runner up finish. He makes his second start for Kenneally who took this guy off Jacobson. He owns the top last out speed fig and is a logical exacta threat here in what could be a chalky start to the day.
WIN: #1 to win at 8-5 or better.
EX: 1,5 / 1,4,5
TRI: no play
Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Aqueduct:
AQU Race 7 OClm $30,000N2X (4:14 ET)
1 Prohibition 3-1
3 Call the Clock 10-1
5 Go Get the Basil 4-1
7 Sinistra 9-5
Analysis: Prohibition was the beaten chalk last out at this level, pressing the early pace from the outside going around the first turn and weakening late to finish fourth, beaten two lengths for the top spot. Two back this guy earned a career top beating state bred Alw-1 foes in gate to wire fashion by 15 1/4 lengths. The gelding has really picked it up since getting claimed by the Lynch barn and looks capable of bouncing back off his last effort.
Call the Clock makes his first start since last June where the colt was outrun trying turf for the first time in a New York Stallion Series race. The colt broke his maiden on the inner track last February going a flat mile. The colt has decent looking works on the morning tab for the Hennig barn that is 2 for his last 9 (with a +ROI) with runners coming back off a +180 day layoff.
WIN: #1 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 1,3 / 1,3,5,7
TRI: 1,3 / 1,3,5,7 / 1,3,5,6,7
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.
R1: #4 Poliziano 8-1
R2: #4 Buddy’s Smart 8-1
R4: #4 Real Estate Rich 8-1
R6: #6 Biscotti 10-1
R6: #8 Contender’s Queen 12-1
R7: #3 Call the Clock 10-1
Good luck today!
HORSE RACING EXPERT
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.
Last Year Mike had a solid Triple Crown, correctly picking the winning horse in 2 of 3 races. He selected I'll Have another to win The Preakness, and nailed Union Rags to win the Belmont Stakes as his top pick.
Mike has also had past succes in the Kentucky Derby, winning with Animal Kingdom in 2011 and rode his top picks, Super Saver and Street Sense, to the finish line in 2010 and 2007 respectively.
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