Saturday, 23 May 2009

HANA Predictions 09-05-23

Canterbury Park is one of those tracks that I would really love if they ran once a week, instead of four times. Other than that, it’s a reasonably nice track, and one of those that offer free streaming and race replays (always a huge plus). It’s also home to today’s HANA pool party, which will take place in the 8th race:

#1 Darby Lee – Jamie Ness horse that shows no other turf forms on her pp sheet and I initially didn’t like the added distance, but I found some ancient history replays for her turf starts at this track (1 1/16 miles), where she showed a nice finish; had a great winter at Tampa and is worth some thought in this company, although her speed is definitely limited

#2 Jody’s Included – rapidly slipping down the Claiming ranks, as well as the track hierarchy, but at least she didn’t seem to get worse with every start, and a repeat of the TuP form might be enough to be a contender, especially if she gets into the race a little earlier this time; no idea how to rate the stable change or the meager last workouts

#3 Candiquik - warrants attention for the exotics on jockey and trainer angles alone; second off a very long layoff, and on last year’s forms has a chance; seems to need a slower pace and there’s no speedster in the field; switch to turf and the added distance both are concerns, so is the fact that she hasn’t run a decent SF in 10 months despite hugging the rail on most attempts

#4 Lil Crafty – ouch! to those speed figs, let alone stable stats

#5 Devil Not Me – let’s just hope she stays healthy

#6 Fancy N Quick – TuP transfer has by far the best recent speed in this field; constantly competitive in comparable class; the big question is why she has such a low-percentage jockey

#7 Play N Fair – Two starts last June are the only two in 18 months and horrible stats all around combine to make this a throwout

#8 Call Her Broke – would have to step up a lot from her Fonner performances; distance and turf look good, but I wouldn’t take her at 6/1; angles don’t look that good on closer inspection

#9 Rossiya – this one obviously likes turf miles, but it’s a guess if this is a prep start (no official workouts since May 3, are you kidding me?)

#10 Elegant Star – Jamie Ness has cooled down a little lately (gee, wonder if it has anything to do with his little “unmarked bottle” mishap) and this one wasn’t even particularly convincing before Jamie’s labeling malfunction, especially SF-wise

#11 Deb Doright – has indeed done alright at TuP, where she has run consistently high SF’s; on the other hand Eikleberry found a way to go the extra furlong on her in almost every attempt, so I shudder to think what he’ll do from the outside gate; was the favorite four times in last six starts and won only one, plus I don’t think the stable change will help


To tell you the truth I’d never play this race if it wasn’t the HANA pool. If taken off the turf, it’ll be interesting to see how this no-frontrunner race develops on a frontrunners’ track. There are just too many questions and maybes to make a compelling argument for the exotics. If the horses look right in the paddock, the best Win selections may be #6 (8/1 ML) and #9 (10/1). Of the favorites, only #1 might be worth the cost, but I don’t think I’ll bet her.

In other news:

Props to Railbird for finding these two articles on Rachel Alexandra’s victory, the first a hilarious one from The Onion, the second one calling racing “one of the last strongholds of entrenched testosterone”. Yeah, it really is just us, Destruction Derby and those underground manatee clubbing tournaments that I visit every Thurs... I’ve said too much.


Ended up with a single bet on #11 Deb Doright after this race was taken off the turf (I liked her visual improvement when switching to dirt in her last race). Always nice to to bet on an outside post on a track you don’t know just to find out that they’re starting right into the first turn. Great ride this time from Eikleberry, but he still couldn’t prevent her from going 100 extra yards. In the end #1 edged my horse out, #2 was third (wonder why?).

Borderline unsportsmanlike conduct to start races from this position anyway, although it’s just as questionable that American tracks take races off the turf everytime two or three drops have fallen over the last month.


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