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ATBA Falls Sales Stakes
Turf Paradise Phoenix, Arizona
November 1, 2015 Race #08
6 Furlongs 1:10.38
Curt & Lila Lanning, Owners
Frank Lucarelli, Trainer
Jake Barton, Jockey
Taste's Blitz (2nd)
Waste It Wisely (3rd)
$18.40 $5.20 $4.40
Order of Finish - 2, 1, 5, 10
Please Give Photo Credit To: / Coady Photography
$25 Million Championship Simulcast at Turf Paradise and All OTBs
Once a year, the best horses in the world assemble to compete against each other in one of 13 races that comprises the $25 million World Thoroughbred Championship Breeders’ Cup (BC). This year’s two day event will be hosted by Keeneland Race Track in Lexington. Kentucky.
Friday’s schedule at Turf Paradise: Gates Open: 9:00 am, 1st Simulcast: 9:30 am. 1st BC Race: 12:30 pm, 1st Live Race: 12:55 pm.
Saturday’s schedule: Gates Open: 7:30 am, 1st simulcast: 8:00 am, 1st BC Race: 9:05 am. 1st Live Race: 11:30 am.
Friday’s BC Races: $1 million Juvenile Turf; $1 million Dirt Mile’ $1 million Juvenile Turf fillies; $2 million Distaff.
Saturday’s BC Races: $2 million Juvenile Fillies; $1 million Turf Sprint; $1 million Filly & mare Sprint; $2 million Filly & mare Turf; $1.5 million Sprint. $2 million Mile Turf; $2 million Juvenile; $3 million Turf and $5 million Classic. Admittedly, the BC is an annual treat, a cornucopia of Thoroughbred excellence.
After all, the best horses in America are squaring off against some of Europe’s Grade A talent. Therein, the handicapping challenge and the accompanying headache that goes with it.
The goal of handicapping a horse race is to analyze the competition and eventually (hopefully) narrow your selections to the Top 3. From there, money management comes into play as to how you’re going to allocate your bankroll:
Win wagering, exactas, trifectas, etc. With BC races, any BC race, it’s difficult if not impossible to narrow your selection to a Top 3, due to the fact the talent runs so deep.
Take the BC Classic, for example. A field of 10 horses is expected. A case can be made for 8 of the 10. Unless you feel Triple Crown winner American Pharoah is “The One”, you’re looking at a sizable investment.
So, let’s start there: Is there any BC race where a horse is such a standout because of his record that he/she can be singled and then build the rest of your bet from there?
There are two BC races where singling a horse might be in order: Private Zone in the Sprint and Golden Horn in the Turf.
Private Zone, who finished third in this race last year, has won three of his five races this year (all Graded stake and he’s coming off a win in the Forego (G1) where he beat 11 rivals while not being fully asked for his best.
Golden Horn has won seven of his eight efforts in Europe, including his last victory, the prestigious Prix del Arc de Triomphe, in which he bested 16 rivals.But that’s only two of 13 races where standout horses are being signaled. What to do with the rest of the BC races?A few helpful handicapping hints (hopefully): European horses do well on the turf (their normal and preferred running surface in England, Ireland and France). They struggle if racing on the dirt.
Give preference to horses which have won or finished in the money in Grade 1 races. Graded races, which are marked by a G1, G2 or G3 following the name of the stakes, indicate the level of competition. G1 races are the best and toughest.
Take note of horses’ workouts at Keeneland. If they’re good workouts, it’s an indication they’re taking to the surface and that’s a plus.Last race indicator. Did a horse’s last race indicate he may be falling off form, or, is he/she rounding into a best effort? If you spot the rounding into best effort horse, you assured a decent price.
Points for jockey and trainer. Normally in regular horse races, this evaluation can be a tie breaker when deciding between/among horses. But since all jockeys and trainers are the world’s best in BC races, this consideration loses its importance.
Handicapping the BC Classic: Let’s take a look at one race, the eagerly awaited BC Classic, and see if we can narrow the expected 10 horse field down to the Top 3. First, due to the quality of talent and running styles, the BC Classic becomes a tactical race: that is, a single mistake by any of the entrants will cost him/her the victory.To start, I’ve eliminated Effinex and Hard Aces from Top 3 consideration, feeling they’re over matched with the rest of the talent.
The key to the BC Classic, I feel, rests with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah and the brilliant race mare Beholder. Both of these horses do their best running on or near the lead. If American Pharoah tracks close to a pace-setting Beholder, the danger would be to let the mare carve out too slow early fractions, thereby having wind in her sails in the stretch drive of the 1 ¼ mile Classic.
If American Pharoah presses Beholder too early, he may come up with less than what is needed for the stretch drive, giving a host of closers a chance at the prize. Another scenario would be If American Pharoah and Beholder go at it right from the get go. This could compromise both their chances of winning. I don’t think this tactic will unfold.
The question mark in the Classic is the European import Gleneagles. The 3-year-old’s European form is impressive with five G1 victories. In his last start, his first against older horses, he could only manage a 6th place of nine effort. That and making his first start on dirt, are question marks.
The Top 3 in the Classic: American Pharoah, Beholder and Honor Code, not necessarily in that order.
Enjoy the world’s best horses. Good luck.
Horse racing fans who can’t make the trip to Kentucky will converge on Turf Paradise Friday October 30th and Saturday October 31st to watch and wager on the simulcast of the Breeders’ Cup. Triple Crown winner American Pharoah is among the contenders for the Breeders’ Cup Featured race, the Breeders’ Cup Classic on Saturday.
Gate opening and times are as follows:
Friday: Gates Open: 9:00 am. 1st Breeders’ Cup Race: 12:30 pm. 1st Live Race: 12:55 pm.
Saturday: Gates Open: 7:30 am; 1st Breeders’ Cup Race: 9:05 am. 1st Live Race: 11:30 am
The two-day, 13-race Breeders’ Cup Championship, which will be contested at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky for the first time, will be simulcast in its entirety at Turf Paradise and all 62 OTB (Off Track Betting) sites.
To mark the event, Turf Paradise will offer live local racing on Friday. In addition to live racing on Saturday, Turf is also offering all day buffets allowing fans to watch the Breeders’ Cup races in style while taking in a day of live and local horse racing.
On Friday the gates open at 9am with the first Breeders Cup race at 12:30pm.
A special day of local racing at Turf starts at 12:55pm.On Saturday, the gates open at 7:30 am. The first Keenland simulcast is 8amand the first Breeder’s Cup race is 9:05am. The first live race at Turf Paradise is 11:30am
The Breeders’ Cup all day buffet at the clubhouse is$29.00. The Turf Club offers a more formal atmosphere for $38.00. Clubhouse Reservations: (602) 375-6470. Turf Club Reservations: (602) 375-6472.
The show piece of the Breeders’ Cup races is the $5 million Classic at 1 ¼ miles. The talent runs deep in this year’s Classic, what with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, the mare Beholder, who soundly beat the boys in the Pacific Coast Classic, Honor Code, Liam’s Map, Tonalist, Frosted and Keen Ice to name a few.
Turf Paradise General Manager Vince Francia said, “This offers horse racing fans the best of both worlds. Where else can you watch and wager on the Breeders’ Cup in style while taking in live, local horse racing."
In addition to offering live local racing through May 8th the season also includes
What: Breeders’ Cup Party
When: October 30th and 31st
Where: Turf Paradise 1501 West Bell Road
Grandstand admission is just $2
Clubhouse Buffet $29
Turf Club Buffet $30
Favorite Winning Vision didn’t disappoint her backers by easily capturing the $35.000 Princess of Palms Stakes Saturday at Turf Paradise.
Ridden confidently by Scott Stevens for owner CJ Racing and trainer Molly Pearson, Winning Vision ($4.00) tracked the pace-setting Mechaya (6th) into the stretch, and then put 2 ¾lengths between her and runner up Be Proud at the wire with Always a Chance third in the field of eight fillies and mares.
The 4-year-old Winning Vision, ran the 6-furlongs in 1:09.08 for her fifth win in 11 starts for earnings of $131,508.
Eight fillies and mares, shipping in from six different states, will make for an intriguing race in the $35,000 Princess of Palms Stakes Saturday (Oct. 24) at Turf Paradise.
The eight race card, which includes three turf races, gets under way at 12:55 pm. The Princess of Palms will be run as the sixth race at 6 furlongs.
The three entrants shipping in from southern California are Always a Chance, Winning Vision and Mechaya.
Always a Chance, one of two horses entered by Robertino Diodoro (the other is Mechaya), is the probable pre-race favorite due to her competitive races at Del Mar and Santa Anita against mid-level claimers. The 6-year-old mare comes off a third place finish as the favorite at Santa Anita in such an event, October 8.
Winning Vision, trained by Molly Pearson, has put together three in-the-money finishes including a win at Los Alamitos. The 4-year-old filly has won four of 10 efforts and has been in the money in eight of those tries.
Mechaya has not raced since July 15 of this year at Del Mar. The lightly raced 5-year-old mare has won two of eight lifetime efforts.
Two horses shipping in from the Canterbury summer meet are Makinmymark and Queen Kate.
The front-running Makinmymark drew the rail and will be looking to play a catch me if you can game in search of her seventh lifetime victory. She finished seventh in this race last years the favorite.
Queen Kate, trained by Valorie Lund, put in four in the money efforts at Canterbury and a victory at Prairie Meadows.
The 7-year-old Paris in April ships in from Boise for trainer Paul Treasure. A winner of eight of 27 lifetime starts, Paris in April has finished in the money in three of four outings in 2015.
Be Proud, trained by Dan McFarlane, who won this race last year with Maker or Breaker, ships in from Kentucky Downs where she finished fifth in that track’s $298,000 Sprint Stakes. Prior to that, the 4-year-old filly summered at Canterbury where she won two of five starts with two seconds.
Lady Jila campaigned in Colorado at Arapahoe Park, where she won two of three stakes efforts for trainer Sharlot Martinez. At 8-years-old, the Arizona bred Lady Jila is the elder of the field.
But she also leads all entrants in earnings - $259,118 – and race record at Turf – 28-9-2-5.
Veteran sprinter Absolutely Cool came flying from last to circle his opponents and win Opening Day’s (Oct. 17) $35,000 Bienvenidos Stakes at Turf Paradise.
Ridden confidently by Jake Barton the 8-year-old trainee of Valerie Lund and owned by Karl Krieg, was 2 ¼ lengths clear of pace-setter Bourbon Sense with the late-running Jamaican Memories third in the field of eight older horses.
Absolutely Cool covered the wet-fast 6 ½ furlongs in 1:15.58 and returned $6.60 as the 2-1 favorite.
Absolutely Cool, who relishes the local strip as shown by his 25-7-7-7 record, bid his time in eighth until launching is patented late-kick at the half mile pole, blowing by Bourbon Sense inside the sixteenth pole.
Absolutely Cool, who won this year’s prestigious Phoenix Gold Cup and who has twice finished third in the Bienvenidos, now sports lifetime earnings of $324,727 from a record of 40-9-11-10.
Handicappers will be challenged to come up with a clear favorite in Saturday’s opening day $35,000 Bienvenidos Stakes at Turf Paradise, the quality goes that deep.
A 136-day meet will run from Oct. 17-May 8, with racing conducted primarily on a five day a week basis, Saturday thru Wednesday. Post time will be 12:55 pm.
In the Bienvenidos, run at 6 ½ furlongs, six of the nine entrants have won stakes. Two of the nine – Absolutely Cool and Jamaican Memories – have finished third in this event, the former in last year’s running and the latter in 2013.
Speed is in abundance with four of the nine looking to dictate the pace, thereby making it tempting to go with one of the confirmed closers.
The speed horses:
Bourbon Sense: Coming off a runner up finish in Ruidoso Down’s Thoroughbred Cup at 1 1/16 the 8-year-old scored a wire-to-wire win in Arapahoe’s Classic at 1 1/8 miles in his prior start. His best effort locally at the Bienvenidos’ distance was a third place effort in April of this year.
Omar: One of two (the other is Countercyclical) entered by last meet’s leading trainer Robertino Diodoro, the 6-year-old has four victories locally, including a win in the Caballos del Sol and a third place effort in the Phoenix Gold Cup.
Gamblin Jack: Coming out of Hawthorne via Canterbury Down, the 5-year-old has won five of eight starts at the distance.
Ankeny Hill: The probable favorite due to his recent double fourth place finishes in two Del Mar stakes and his southern California form, the 5-year-old finished fifth in the Phoenix GoldCup after leading until deep stretch.
Redsolocup: The Washington bred is coming off a win in Emerald Downs’ Chinook Pass stakes at the 6 ½ furlong distance.
Jamaican Memories: The 7-year-old relishes the local course with a record of 32-4-5-13. However, he’s been out since August and may be in need of a start.
Absolutely Cool: The veteran at 8-years-old and one with a stellar local resume: 24-6-7-7.The winner of this year’s Phoenix Gold Cup, Absolutely Cool knows how to come galloping late.