December 7, 2013

Horses with a sense of humor

Check this out this budweiser commercial which is more about horses and snow and fun than their main product! original post is by

December 2, 2013

Save and Make Money- Cyber Monday Only Special

I had the talk about Black Friday and no spending with my friends, well at least no crazed spending on Thursday 8pm onward.. till Friday 8pm and it worked. There was a lot of positive response, rest and family time for all who took the pledge. 

But now how about taking it a step further: Cyber Monday and saving? 
Open your own checking and savings account, park approx $500 for 120 days with Capitalone360 (formerly INGDirect) and you will get some sweet bonuses of up to $ 200 combined from those two accounts.

You do need to make five small purchases with your checking card so deposit enough in your checking account for those five packets of gum! 

Get more bonuses if you have a kid or kids, open an account for your kid - a custodial account and get a $100 bonus per kid. For Saving! ‪#‎Saving‬ not spending!

Here is the spiel from the email I got!
Today only, open a Capital One® ShareBuilder® Custodial account with promo code GIFTSTOCK13
By Dec. 31, 2013, make just one trade or automatic investment
Bingo! You've earned a $100 bonus to help get that kid off to a good start.

Click and Save:

I have benefited from opening free account with Capitalone360 during CyberMonday and made roughly $150 in bonuses for parking about $400 in two accounts. Eventually, I have removed the money and those accounts have only about $10 in them, but are still free and secure.

If you are up for it, check out this post and if you open (online today) you may have to send them a copy of your license by phone photo upload and deposit some money ($500 in savings) and probably 40-50 in checking. Then once your checking card arrives, make 5 careful small purchases and after that lock up your checking card. Then wait 4 months and your bonus will be in both accounts, probably sooner in one of the accounts. Enjoy!

Disclaimers: Trademarks belong to respective owners. We do receive small referral bonuses if you sign up and meet conditions. We are not compensated in any other way. Conditions accurate as of posting, we are not responsible for changes in terms by the issuing banks. Happy Saving!

November 1, 2013

BC Dirt Mile 2013

5 Fed Biz.. and 11 Pants on Fire.. are both on fire and have very good speed to stay up close and then take a run at it.

BC Juvenile Turf Hunch Plays

Since the earlier race BC Marathon was won by London Bridge and 2nd was Blueskiesandrainbows (both are some sort of bridges).. in the next BC Juvenile turf,
I am going with #8 Bon Accord  - an accord is like a bridge!
 Go Rosario!

October 10, 2013

New Fed Reserve Chair Announced

Reposting a portion from Bloomberg..
President Barack Obama will nominate Janet Yellen as chairman of the Federal Reserve, which would put the world’s most powerful central bank in the hands of a key architect of its unprecedented stimulus program and the first female leader in its 100-year history.
Janet Yellen, vice chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, was the favorite in surveys of economists and had the backing of 20 members of the Senate Democratic caucus who signed a July 26 letter to President Barack Obama. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg
Obama turned to Yellen, vice chairman of the Fed since 2010, after the other leading candidate, former Treasury secretary and White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers, withdrew from consideration amid mounting opposition from Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee.!

August 22, 2013

Be careful with GTBets Promos

I read the fine print.

So when I get an email promising a "Free $25 bet" sometime back and a "Free $100 bet" recently from a website that offers horse picks, I thought it sounded too good to be true. Now, that website manager also posts CA track picks in this board regularly.

So the gist is this: You get an email or see GTbets promo - 100 for travers or pacific classic be wary before you sign up. That website is EU based.

They did not respond to my query if it was a parimutuel wageting ADW.

Answer: [B]They are NOT.[/B]

They claim to offer track odds for some bets and they cap tri/sup payouts at their own odds limits.

Also, the kicker comes at the time of Money Withdrawal.

They have a minimum fee of $50 or $60 or 8% of your withdrawal. etc.

It is TOTALLY NOT WORTH IT, in my opinion. Also they do seem like a "sports book" and not a licensed ADW.. Now some of you may be familiar dealing with those. But, I would not and I feel that protection for your money (whether what you deposit or worse, what you win after capping or luck - is not there).

August 17, 2013

Saturday Del Mar Oaks, Saratoga Sword Dancer and Arlington Million Day Plays

Plays will be scattered through this post

First I will start with the turf 
Del Mar Oaks - DMR Race 8
1 1.8th mil on turf for fillies 3 yo.

the #4 Emotional Kitten is my top pick. Seems to have improved the game, matured and doing well inspite of not little issues along the way. Seems to be gunning for a G1.

:1: Wishing gate seems to have a decent late turn of foot and it seems to be consistent of late. With Garett Gomez as the jockey on a closing style horse, it's always a danger. He is back and hungry for big wins.

as is :3: Discreet Marq - who will likely be really up close to the pace and try to steal a G1. But.. I think :3: will be within the super, but not a winner perhaps today. Not at 1 1/8ths.

I am taking the view that in this larger field, the early speed horses might get into a 'sort of duel' and that #8 Need you now, the Mike Mitchell trainee or #3 Discreet Marq, would not be able to pull away from the field.


WP on #4 Emotional Kitten

Exacta 4,1 box.

Dime super 4,1 w 4,1 with 3,8 with ALL

August 13, 2013

Coast-to-Coast Art Train to Stop in Pittsburgh - The 412 - June 2013

I Love Trains.

Love riding on trains, love watching trains go by, love the sound of the train whistles (especially the toot ones) and love watching a long train wind its way through the fields.... I could go on and on.

Now picture this. A train clad in brightly colored LED panels, rolling through the countryside, perhaps through the Altoona horseshoe bend!
Sep 6 - Starts from New York, NY

Rolls through Pennsylvania for most part...Must figure out when the train passes between Lewistown PA and Altoona PA... those are the closest spots for viewing, and I am hoping it passes in the dark!

Anybody know any information about this?

Sep 8 - Stops at Pittsburgh PA
Hat tip to Pittsburgh Magazine for the cool rendering of LED colored coaches

Coast-to-Coast Art Train to Stop in Pittsburgh - The 412 - June 2013

August 11, 2013

Sunday - Monmouth, Saratoga, Del Mar and Presque Isle Plays

Sunday Aug 11, 2013
Monmouth R1
6F Clm 7000 for fillies and mares 3yo & up

1 Rock star loyalty looks like it could get into an early pace battle with 3 Bluegrass rumor, while the 7 Bay head beauty could come from off the pace. I don't see any major value in the 7 or the 3.

So a Win bet on 1 Rock Star Beauty hope it sustains the early speed.

Exacta of 1 w 7,3
and 7 with 1, 3

Will add Saratoga, Del mar and Pid plays by editing or as new post

August 8, 2013

Congratulations Calvin Borel

Hearty Congratulations go to Calvin Borel, who was inducted into the Racing Hall of Fame today along with Invasor (champion horse), Lure (great horse at a Mile) and a few others including August Belmont (the person who bred Man O' War and many other stakes winners) and played a crucial role in revitalization of Saratoga in the early 1900's.

July 20, 2013

Parx Spot Plays for Saturday

Parx Spot plays

Race 1 Maiden Claiming

 Wahoo legal - Blinkers on, drops from MSW, Lasix first, 107 lb, others are at 118/114 etc.

 Crowned Warrior - ran well last time and ships in from Delaware..

win on the  and 1-2 ex box ..

July 9, 2013

Attack of the Clones

A lawsuit that has been filed against the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) is coming to trial next week in Texas. The lawsuit is seeking the repeal of a rule in AQHA's rule book which would force AQHA to admit cloned horses to run alongside.

Abraham & Veneklasen Joint Venture
American Quarter Horse Association

"UPDATE JULY 8, 2013: Parties attended the docket call this morning in federal court and announced they are ready for trial. The Court has set July 16 as the trial date. It is anticipated the trial will take two to three weeks."

If this ever gets over to thoroughbred racing, you can imagine the furore it might cause and on the hand, you can also see copies of geldings like Wise Dan being made and if those turn out to be stallions, the line can be restored.. Hmmm

July 1, 2013

Big Independence Day Bonus for Opening Free Bank Accounts

I personally own a CapitalOne 360 bank account and I think it is a good deal - only till July 3rd.

Seems like a relatively low key thing to make $76 to $176 depending on what you sign up for. The approximate annualized return is 29% on an initial investment of $ 600 - which is risk free and your principal will stay in checking and savings accounts. 

Fine print: You have to put up $ 500 in your savings account initially. 
if you get the checking account, you have to make 5 debit card purchases or 5 deposits, so if u have to keep enough money if you are making purchases (to avoid fees).

Disclosure: I get some referral bonuses, but I can share some of that to you via amazon pay so pm me after you sign up!

June 18, 2013

Royal Ascot - Queen Anne Stakes and others

So... This is Animal Kingdom's big race in the UK over a straight mile on an undulating course. While the toteboard is showing some second favorites among Declaration of War and Elusive Kate, I am going to explain here my reasons for picking others as contenders/competitors to Animal Kingdom.

I am going to take a shot with the other Gosden horse  Gregorian (only a gr3 winner).
Then with  Trade Storm (he came well from a slow start in the Zabeel mile in Mar).

and also with  Aljamaaheer.

The reason I am picking the  Gregorian is because he is now riding with lesser weight than his other races where has run close to the top position at finish or won.

I am taking also some exacta shots with  w 
Also a place shot at  Sovereign Debt. might regret for not adding him to exacta.
I am going against the 4 Declaration of War... overhyped excuse horse in my opinion!

Good luck AK, Good luck all horses to finish well and safe.

June 17, 2013

Got an email today from Nike about custom sneakers.

You can customize colors, sole, trim colors, laces etc and also add a personal ID (upto 6 characters on each tongue - they do screen for some "offensive words" like f* words etc.--but the screening program is not very good). However if you do play around and are able to get past the screening program that does not mean the company may still manufacture it as I am sure they might have a human check prior to actual production or printing. So, your order could get cancelled (or you will be emailed) at some stage if you really want to risk using words that may violate their policy.

Anyhow, my choices would be Holy Bull or Ghost Zapper - Hope they are not "trademarked names".

and if I had $ 145 to spend on sneakers I would get either of those as a commemoration those great horses' achievements.

Here is the Nike Personal ID store link.

I am just doing this for fun as I recently watched Ghost Zapper's BC classic win and am generally pumped up by front running winner (like Fort Larned now) and hopefully Verrazano (at 1.25 mi in the future?). Below, is the video of the front running Ghost Zapper in his BC Classic record making run at Lone Star Park (record time:

Disclosure: No Benefits derived from this posting

June 11, 2013

Great Trainer Sir Henry Cecil Passes Away

Sir Henry Cecil, the Scottish-born trainer who had a superb record of 25 British Classic winners and over 75 winners at the Royal Ascot, passed away at the age of 70. He died from complications arising out of cancer. He was the trainer of Frankel, the highest rated horse in the history of thoroughbred racing (well, at least by the British rating agency Timeform).

More on BBC

June 3, 2013

Penn National Mile 2013 - Visit

The visit to Penn National Racecourse for the Penn mile - the half a million dollar turf mile race for 3 yrs in North America (or at least USA), was a great success. I got to take along with me several friends who were all new to horse racing and one of them showed avid interest in handicapping and also ended up placing some bets.

Here is a clip from the start of the race...
The start of the Penn Mile Race
Of course, he played big longshots and unfortunately for us, the race he bet went to the favorites in 1-2 positions. Rydilluc came first, the odds on Charming Kitten (who came 2nd) were only moderate (The other fav Noble Tune did not fire). Still, it was a fun day to be out enjoying the great weather in Hershey PA area. The track saw a good turnout of people and the track side food was quite good. I had an odd combination of food - ice cream, really good potato chips and beer. Ok ok not so healthy.. but then I cook healthy food all the time, so I took a break today!

It was cool to see Johnny Velazquez, Joel Rosario and easily identify them. I could not identify Edgar Prado (but of course, I have never seen many pics of him for some reason!). I missed seeing Javier, Luis Saez and others as I was staring at the form.

I did however, get to see a jockey objection and disqualification, so I got to see good variety at the track!

A quick clip of the horses racing down the stretch at the finish!

Without much ado, here are some pics!

Dirt track, and beyond that was the turf track , Spectator standing close to finish line - staking out a good location
Post parade before Race 2, I think.

 Dirt track with the toteboard and results monitor.

Rydilluc with Edgar Prado (left)  - Charming Kitten (with Joel Rosario (right)

Rydilluc, winner of the 0.5 Million Penn Turf Mile

Friends, i am in the black shirt
The Capitol Building - at night - Harrisburg PA

May 31, 2013

Penn National Saturday - Rydilluc and others

Penn National's card for the Saturday 6-1-13 looks fabulous!

Rydilluc (Palm beach stakes winner), Charming Kitten, Noble Tune in the Penn Turf Mile (- Rosario,Castellano, Johnny V, Luis Saez etc.

Macho Macho in another race, Chamberlain Bridge in another..

I most likely going down to Penn National on Saturday then!

May 29, 2013

Belmont at Grand Central NYC

NYRA Takes Belmont Fun to Grand Central
05/28/2013 11:38 AM ET

New York City commuters, tourists, and visitors will have a chance to experience the fun of a trip to Belmont Park thanks to a promotion scheduled the day before this year's Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
The Thoroughbred racing experience at Belmont Park will be inside the Grand Central Terminal with the inaugural Belmont Stakes Fan Festival set for Friday, June 7.
From 8 a.m. until 8 p.m., the east side of Vanderbilt Hall will be turned into a mini version of historic Belmont Park, with four interactive event zones open to the more than 750,000 daily commuters, tourists, and visitors to New York's iconic train terminal. By participating, fans will have the opportunity to win Belmont Stakes items, and also be entered to win one of four prize packages including Belmont Stakes Day hospitality and other packages.
Among the activities are:
Tweet to the Finish, a Twitter sweepstakes in which entrants follow @NYRANews from their Twitter account and tweet the hashtag of the horse they think will win the Belmont Stakes. A randomly selected winner will receive a Belmont Stakes Day trackside hospitality package for two including clubhouse seats, trackside parking, and buffet lunch. Second-, third-, and fourth-place finishers will also receive hospitality packages for different dates in June.
Stakes Stampede, where fans propel a horse displayed on a screen to the finish line by running in place.
Winner's Circle Photo, in which fans can stand in a replica of the Belmont Park winner's circle and get their photo taken to share with friends via email and social media channels.
Mini Belmont Races, complete with a bugler and professional race caller Larry Lederman, in which fans can jump on one of three mechanical ponies and head around the racetrack to the finish line.

May 24, 2013

Friday May 24th 2013: Betfair Hollywood R5

8-Ain - this horse has shown good ability to rally in all of his last 3 races. has been pointed well recently so expect him to do *really* well. Win Contender.

UPDATE: Ain is scratched..... All bets are off as far as I am concerned. 

6- Father of Science - one of the horses to beat. With the blinkers on, is going to be up close and also Drysdale is good at turning around imports to fire on turf. Win contender.

7- Niagara Falls - this one is a 'false fav' and while he may not win, he will be in the top 3 or 4. Has prior experience running long races and pedigree is super strong to survive and then close well.

4- Vibrato Jazz. this is an experienced horse and will improve after his last race after the layoff. Also gets top rider..

Imaginary Wager of $ 100
  $27 Win on Ain = ($27)
 $2 EX BOX (8-6-4)= ($24)
$1 TRIFECTA BOX (4-6-7-8) = ($ 24)
$1 Super 8-6/8-6-7/6-7-4/7-4-5-2 = ($25)

May 22, 2013

Indiana Downs Freak Numbers

I paid attention to it only at the end of the day. I had wagered small amounts on Indiana Downs Races 5 and 6 on Horse #s 9 Smooth Town (in race 5)  and Horse #3 Lucy Ring, #6 Action Lady.

#9 Smooth Town was a steward scratch, so you can't do much about it.

#3 Lucy Ring went off as post time favorite at 0.90 to 1(not great odds) and came second.

ok no big deal.

The funny thing is when I paid attention at the full chart.

TWO NUMBERS dominated the day there. 5 and 7

That  is it. See for yourself. Screen capture is from Twinspires. (fair use). Races 4-5-6-7 ALL had the number 7 horse win. Crazy crazy crazy... haha

May 18, 2013

Preakness 2013 Picks

Been quite busy last few weeks. Did not even get to analyze or play the derby, except for hoping that Revolutionary did well. And yes, he did well enough to come 3rd.

FREE Equibase Past Performance Chart for Preakness 2013 (pdf)

Now, on to the Preakness analysis. The important thing to note is that Rosario is absolutely red hot as a jockey and I wish him and Orb all the best of luck. They do indeed look really strong. Not sure if they look 3/5 odds strong. But hey, I will probably place a souvenir bet on # 1 Orb. If he wins this and then wins the Belmont to take the Triple crown, those souvenir tickets would mean a lot.

The main thing about the Preakness this year is the reduced field, leaving only 9 horses in the fray, which makes lot of top jockeys available for other horses that had different rides in their last race. Case in point - Mike Smith jumps on board #7 Will Take Charge, a colt who did well in the Rebel Stakes to beat Oxbow. Will take charge had to check in the Derby in the stretch and that hurt his chances. If this horse gets a better trip and his decent workout from 13th May (48.20/4F) indicates he is in good shape, then he is surely worth playing in the exotics like tri/supers and also a good PL/SH bets.

I do not have very high hopes from #6 Oxbow, because if you notice one thing, he briefly came close to the lead in the Derby and then ecked out a 6th. He did not do much in the Arkansas Derby (came 5th). He went to the lead in the stretch in the Rebel and the Risen Star, but got beat in both of those (2nd and 4th respectively). His margin of victory was improving only in his 1m70yd LeComte Stakes among his recent races. So.. what do I do? You are getting odds of 15-1 on the M/L. It does not hurt to throw a PL/SH bet, because this one shows up at almost every race and grinds it out quite well. If his odds remain at bigger than 12-1 he is worth keeping in the exotics/PL/SH pools.

There are two others I like, although their odds may not be that great, but still will remain good odds considering Orb is becoming a prohibitive favorite.
These two are #4 Departing and #5 Mylute.  Mylute is the one I favor between the two, mainly because of the talented jockey Napravnik and also because this horse has done well in good competition. Mylute closed well in the Derby and we don't know if the steadying early on hampered his chances in any way. If he gets a better trip, Mylute could do exceedingly well. So, WP bets are worth placing and if the Show pool looks good throw some in there too.

Departing has gone really well, winning most of his races and the one race he came 3rd, the two horses that beat him, did awfully well in the Kentucky Derby. 

So, to summarize, this is what I will likely bet

  • Win bets on #1 Orb (souvenir), #4 Departing (fresh horse), #5 Mylute
  • PL bets on #5 Mylute, #7 Will Take Charge
  • PL on #6 Oxbow, if odds at 5 mtp remain above 12-1 on him (and proportionally at place pool).
  • SH bets on #6 Oxbow, #7 Will Take Charge 

I am absolutely tossing out Goldencents if he is less than 10-1. If he is over 10-1, a small win bet, but I really feel like this is an excuse horse.

Betting basics for Preakness

TO BE HONEST, I am not happy with just a nine horse field in the Preakness, when we could have had up to 14 horses!

Good luck and Happy and Safe Racing

May 14, 2013

Racing handle vs Casino Revenue Trends

This may or may not be of interest to many readers, but this is an important discussion in the long term health of the sport of horse racing. From a bettor's perspective, racetracks can survive only if there are some organic sources of revenue - and by that we mean, wagering handle coming into racetracks at a regular clip.

Update: Please note, I got a comment that in this dataset, the casino revenues are net house winnings, while the racetrack handles are prior to takeout. So US racetrack revenues maybe much lesser. I have to figure out how to incorporate to an average takeout. So assuming that the WPS pool takeout is the average takeout ~ 16-18%, horsetrack revenues should dip a lot more? Of course, they also get money from Slots. So it gets complicated.

A review of casino revenue change over last ten years and comparison of US racetrack handles is presented below.

The data source is available here for viewing/download.

The gist of the data trend can be seen in this one plot:
Gambling vs Racetrack Revenue - 10 yr trend
What we see is that casino revenues have been going up at a very healthy rate since 2003, and while they fell a little during the economic downturn of 2008, they have climbed back up again. Horse racing handle, however, has just begun to claw its way back up, in 2012.

Also, notable of course, is that off track betting easily eclipses on track betting by over ten times volume.

Note that actual revenues of casinos are in the 35-37 Billion range and total horseracing wagering revenues are in the 12-14 Billion range. Both are recorded in US Dollars.

What do you think about these trends? Do you think horse racing will eventually cross over above it highs in 2004 in the coming years?

Also see Ongoing discussions at paceadvantage

Data sources Accessed on May 14 2013:
Jockey Club:

May 13, 2013

Preakness: Bets just to cash a ticket

The 138th Preakness Stakes, the middle jewel in the Triple Crown Series in American (US) thoroughbred racing, will be held coming Saturday - May 18th, 2013 - at Pimlico in Maryland.

You can get official information from the Preakness Website.

While I have not looked at the full card being offered on that day (a very nice card is being offered over the two days Friday and Saturday), but I thought I would share some thoughts on how to bet the Preakness with a returning Derby winner. 

Of course, it is very common that the Derby winner returns to compete in the Preakness. In the last 25-27 years, Grindstone seems to be the only who did not start at the Preakness after a Derby win.

Statistically, out of 26 starts of returning Derby winners, we have 10 of them going on to win the Preakness.  They also finished 2nd in 7 cases and 3rd in 3 starts. All in all, 20 out of 26 times they ran in the money. So a show bet seems to have a high probability of getting some money back. 
Now let us look at the general trend of the toteboard odds at Preakness.

The Derby winner has gone off as the favorite in 16 out of those 26 starts. In some (3-4) of those 16 starts, they have been odds-on favorites (less than even money), but that is not to say they won or finished on the board in those cases. Some examples of compelling favorites not finishing on the board have been Barbaro (rip),  Fusaichi Pegasus, Street Sense etc.

But, a lot of these Derby winners do run in the money and having said that, their win odds are not so great. But if you just want a thrill of cashing a ticket, then betting the Derby winner to PL/SH and a small bet at Win could be had for all of under ten dollars. $2 Win, $ 3 PL and $5 Show. 

That is about basic betting for now. During the week and after the post position draw on Wednesday, I will present a more detailed analysis of the 14 runners and also try to predict some bettable choices!

May 4, 2013

2013 Derby Picks

Here is some analysis of the Kentucky Derby line up for 2013.

"Run for the roses" by colts, geldings (and fillies when they qualify).

Revolutionary (Lifetime chart)

He has definitely shown good improvement and some great fighting qualities in the last two races (his only two stakes races). It has to be noted that he was 4.25 lengths behind Orb, in Orb's maiden breaker race. He has always finished "in the money" (or on the board 1st, 2nd or 3rd position in every race he has run). Calvin Borel, a multiple Kentucky derby winner and a recent hall of fame inductee, will be the jockey for Revolutionary. His trainer is Todd Pletcher, who is one of the top trainers in the game and has several other horses in this Derby.

Orb (Lifetime chart)

Orb has been working out great and he definitely has solid credentials now, after having won the Florida Derby in convincing fashion. Trained by Claude "Shug" McGaughey III, Orb will be ridden by currently super hot jockey Joel Rosario. Add to this all the glowing praise from different experts, including hall of fame trainer Baffert's eye.
BUT, Orb will not deliver much value as a betting choice, so in a 19 horse field, if he is lower than 4-1, I don't see much value betting him!

Frac Daddy (Lifetime chart) He made a good run for 2nd in his last race. Anything can happen, especially in the slop.

Charming Kitten has the accomplished and experienced jockey Edgar Prado, who has won at Kentucky Derby before with Barbaro and has ridden other horses to victory in Triple Crown races. If he places Charming Kitten forwardly this one can do well do be in the top 3. post position rules that option out somewhat.

Golden Soul Again, this one has shown good closing moves and improved the gaps while finishing. Definitely worth a pl or sh bet (ie in the exotics).

May 1, 2013

Workouts from CD

Pay attention the notes on Vyjack (-) and Golden Soul (+) in this discussion on workouts.
Oxbow again looked very uncomfortable jogging a mile the wrong way. Vyjack switched leads several times through the stretch, perhaps not the best of signs, while galloping under trainer Rudy Rodriguez. He’s scheduled to blow out Thursday.
Falling Sky was full of run, as usual, flying by the finish line as he’s been doing on a regular basis for more than a week, while Golden Soul continues to make a very favorable visual impression
Lukas might have tricks up his sleeve so take a closer look at Will Take Charge and Oxbow, although Oxbow seems to be the tiring sort to me...

April 30, 2013

Late additions to Derby Field

The field for the Longines Kentucky Oaks is drawn and the post positions have been assigned. 
The morning line favorite is Dreaming of Julia, followed closely in the odds by Beholder and Unlimited Budget.

The field for the Derby though is still slightly in flux, with the 20th positions rotating among a few horses. Fear the Kitten, who was supposed to be in with 6 points, is now out and instead comes in

Giant Finish, third in the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes (gr. III) on March 23, will enter the May 4 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), trainer Anthony Dutrow confirmed April 30.


Equibase data on Giant Finish
The Brisnet Past Performance charts for most of the horses are available here (pdf)

Rosie Napravnik on CBS 60 minutes

A profile of a very young jockey, who is also a female jockey and her climb to the top echelons of thoroughbred racing in US. Check out the video below.. or at this link (new window on CBS)

April 25, 2013

Ricardo E. Legall - Trainer of Maiden Breaking Filly - Jealous

Ricky Legall, as he is known, was an exercise rider in the nyra circuit, who has recently started training horses and won his first race out as a trainer.

Congratulations Ricky Legall. A more detailed discussion on this topic can be found here.

April 23, 2013

Early PPs for Derby and Oaks Field 2013

The early past performance charts for kentucky derby and oaks 2013 are out!

Here are some workouts of the Derby contenders. Note that I do like Revolutionary and Verrazano, but I am going through the PPs and crystal ball to figure out other contenders soon!

Revolutionary has shown immense ability to overcome setbacks and major trip issues and still beat the others in his prep race.

Normandy Invasion


April 19, 2013

Game on Dude vs Ron the Greek, Charles Town Classic 2013


CHARLESTOWN CLASSIC 1030pm EST - at Charles Town Tracks

This weekend will bring around the $1.5 million (total prize purse) Charlestown Classic at West Virginia. Set at One and one eighth miles, this Grade II race for horses 4yo and up has a post time of 1030pm EST.

Here is the Equibase entry list for the race.

I predict that Ron the Greek will be ridden aggressively and up close to the pace. As they turn for home, he will show an aggressive turn of foot and a fast closing Caixa Electronica will also compete with him and these two will break away from Game on Dude and finish a length ahead of Game of Dude.

Predicted Finish

Ron the Greek
Caixa Electronica
Game on Dude

The other important races for us this weekend

Illinois Derby 6:15pm EST post time At Hawthorne Racetrack

1. Bells Big Bernie 20-1
2. Dewey Square 8-1
3. Street Spice 20-1
4. For Greater Glory 15-1
5. Ground Transport 8-1
6. Taken by the Storm 15-1
7. Dakota Mac 30-1
8. Abraham 8-1
9. Show Some Magic 6-1
10. Fordubai 20-1
11. Stormin Monarcho 15-1
12. Siete de Oros 5-1
13. Departing 7-2
14. Narvaez 20-1

UPDATE: Longshot in PS --> Street Spice
9. Show Some Magic
12. Siete de Oros
14. Narvaez  (not playing this)


Winning Cause
2 Pick of the Litter
3 River Rocks
4 Hip Four Sixtynine
5 Where's Dominic
6 Sunbean
7 Examen
8 Cerro
9 Wings of Fortune
10 General Election
11 Pure Fun

6. Sunbean
3. River Rocks
11. Pure Fun

April 13, 2013

Wild Wild Run at Pimlico

Hi Folks,
           I was too busy with work (engineering stuff) so I could not watch the Bluegrass or the Arkansas Derby today. I had no real selection in the Bluegrass but I must say i am quite impressed by Java's War and also Charming Kitten.

But, what really brought me out to write a quick post was Spicer Cub's wacky but thrilling performance at Pimlico R 11 (4-13-13). Check it out below....

 or at the youtube link:  (hat tip to JustRalph on Paceadvantage)

April 11, 2013

Animal Kingdom to Breed in N America for Darley

So, we heard some good news and also some not so good news.

Just read in the news that Graham Motion and Team Valor International are parting ways as Valor hoped that Graham Motion would remain a private trainer, while Graham Motion says he was not ready for that. (Source DRF)


The good news which we gleaned from this article is that Dubai World Cup winning Animal Kingdom, will also stand in Kentucky during the North Hemisphere breeding season. Good to hear that a versatile, talented and proven stallion would be continuing his line in North America. The earlier deal would have kept Animal Kingdom in Australia.
Now, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum's Darley stables will house Animal Kingdom in Lexington KY. This will definitely make it easier for north american fans to at least catch a glimpse of this Kentucky Derby/Dubai World Cup champion.
Animal Kingdom, who is in England training for a race at Royal Ascot after last Saturday’s win in the $10 million Dubai World Cup, will remain under Motion’s care until the horse is retired, according to Irwin. Earlier this year, Team Valor sold a majority share in the 2011 Kentucky Derby winner to Arrowfield Stud in Australia, where he is expected to start his stud career this summer for the Southern Hemisphere breeding season. Sheikh Mohammed al-Maktoum’s Darley announced earlier this week that it had purchased a 29 percent interest in the horse and that the horse will stand the Northern Hemisphere breeding season at Darley’s Jonabell Farm in Lexington, Ky. (Source DRF)
Here is the official press release from Darley.
Arrowfield Stud and Team Valor International announced today that Darley has acquired a twenty nine per cent interest in the Grade 1 Dubai World Cup and Grade 1 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom. As a result Animal Kingdom will stand in the Northern Hemisphere at Darley’s Jonabell Farm in Lexington, Kentucky.  The son of Leroidesanimaux will stand in the Southern Hemisphere at John Messara's Arrowfield Stud in Australia.
For other information pertaining to visit/doing business with Darley, please use their Contact Us page.

April 10, 2013

Sudden Deaths, Breakdowns and Drugging of Horses: Multiple Problems in Racing

The common element in both news items below is about the use of drugs in horse racing, both legal and illegal ones and the probably impact that seems to be having on overall health of horses. This in turn, affects safety of jockeys and integrity of the sports from a bettor's perspective. The more serious issue is definitely equine health and jockey safety, so without further ado, here are the links.

Sudden Death Spike in California Race Horses in 2012 fiscal year

Another breaking story is the investigation by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) into the incidents of sudden deaths of horses. More detail can be obtained from the report.

Related news in Australia: (hat tip to Seabiscuit_AR from pace advantage forums)

Racing in Disarray (NYT headline truncated)
The New York Times had come out with an analysis last year of breakdowns and deaths and other incidents in horse racing, that shows that incident rates in US are double that of the racing in England.

Their data also lists incident rates by track for all the major tracks in US. In comparison, they also note that incident rate in Woodbine tracks (Toronto Canada) are significantly lower.

Interactive Video discussion of the risks for horses and jockeys.

The one angle which has not been covered (and perhaps harder to unconver too) is any kind of story related to the insurance on these horses and the payouts if any.


CHRB's annual report can be downloaded from

C H R B website

New York Racing Comission

Ontario Racing Commission (Canada)

April 5, 2013

Gulfstream Rainbow 6 Pool

Just for fun play.

R8 2, 5, 6
R9 4, 14
R10 5, 10
R11 7
R12 13
R13 12, 14
Wager Total $2.40

March 31, 2013

Animal Kingdom Wins Dubai World Cup 2013

Animal Kingdom, the Kentucky Derby winner in 2011, now firmly stamped himself as one of the greatest horses of his generation by winning the $10 million Dubai World Cup 2013.

Check this out:
Animal Kingdom has now won five of 11 lifetime starts with five runner-up finishes. His only off-the-board performance came in a sixth-place effort in the 2011 Belmont Stakes on a sloppy track (where he got bumped early on in the race and his jockey came out of the irons). The chestnut horse has won three of four starts on synthetic tracks.
All i can say is: WOW.. and his performance on all surfaces has been fantastic. Of course, he still does not have a Grade 1 turf victory. So, that's what they might try to score in England!

Read the ESPN story and watch the video at this link

March 26, 2013

The Cyprus Situation and Trust in Any Government

The way I see it, the Cyprus situation: where up to 40% of the money of the big depositors could evaporate in the process of the country's main bank being bailed out by Europe - is akin to a country's currency value (or purchasing power) being devalued significantly in case the country's is not able to meet obligations.

The Cypriot banks had lot of foreign money deposited in them due to the low corporate tax rates in the country. What they did with all this money? Well, they had bought lot of Greek sovereign debt!! Wow. Whether they did this foolishly believing it was an investment or whether they wanted to "help' out Greece, that I do not know.

But once Greece went into trouble and the value of that debt went down even more, Cypriot banks turned to their government looking for a bailout. Long story short, European banks (+Imf etc) have imposed the tax on deposits as a precondition and other austerity demands, but I guess you cannot make up a 17bn euro shortfall even if you fire the entire Cypriot government and cut all the politician salaries (and cut banker salaries also along with that).

But the government of Cyprus itself had huge public debt (at ~80% of GDP), and they are on the Euro (so they cannot just print new money, and if they did they would go the way of Zimbabwe). In the case of Cyprus, although their currency is the Euro (only in name), the (foreign) confidence in the government was gone - hence, when the time for the bailout came, instead of "devalueing" a non existent local currency, they are just doing some financial juggling and reducing the existing deposits of euros in Cypriot banks.

Note that (imo) these deposits are not actually stored in wads of cash or backed by gold equal to their value. They are merely a number in the computers of the world's money system.

This is my understanding of this issue. What do you think?

Update: After writing this, I came across an article on the Guardian which explains the problem in good detail, with some history. Apparently Laiki bank was bailed out by the Cypriot govt last June to the tune of several billion euros. (details here).
Full link

The debt of Cyprus will rise to 143% its GDP after this bailout. So Cyprus had better come up with some solid invention/economic product that will help them make that debt go down fast. Perhaps it might be bad for Cypriots to take some tips from the Japanese in innovation and industriousness, instead of protesting their government's actions.

March 23, 2013

Derby Preps: Spiral and Sunland this weekend

Spiral Stakes (Saturday Turfway Park R10) post time: 5:50pm Eastern

For Greater Glory might be a good value/longshot play and Uncaptured seems like a strong logical contender (for me). If he get a decent trip, he is going to be hard to beat.

Balance the Books is a great horse, but the combination of inner post and Leparoux makes me dread the trip scenarios.

On the trainer angle, the value plays would be My Name is Michael (Mott) and Channel Isle (currently hot Lukas)

Sunland Derby  (Sunday: Sunland Park R11) post time 7:40pm Eastern

(540pm Mountain-local)

I think  Shakin it up and  Dry Summer (my logical choice) could have a nice stretch battle, if Shakin it Up gets a good trip.

March 22, 2013

TVG to Drop Wagering Fee

In an effort to accommodate increasing requests for bettors, TVG will be dropping its 25 c wagering fee from April 1st , 2013. This is a welcome move and make TVG again a competitive choice for placing wagers when compared to many other ADW (advanced deposit wagering) services.

TVG will also be offering 10 hours of free streaming in a month. That translates to 2.5 hrs per weekend for a 4 weekend month. What is not clear however is if additional streaming would be allowed if you meet certain wagering minimums.  If anyone knows this information, please add it to the comments here or email us at psusaver@gmail dot com or Tweet to us @spicetruck

We attempted to access the same information at the TVG website, but TVG automatically keeps redirecting us to our state specific wagering portal. They still need to wise up on that part, that sometimes people might want to look at corporate and financial information. Well, that will be another topic.

March 16, 2013

Rebel Stakes: Oaklawn

Rebel Stakes

I am going with CARVE and TREASURY BILL at the top 2.

DEN's LEGACY, OXBOW and DELHOMME will be the choices for the 3-4 positions.

:2: Carve, Based at Oaklawn. Has improved in 2nd start at 8.5f over his first start and did so in a larger field.

:1: Treasury Bill, Has raced only in smaller (6) fields. Starts slow sometimes and this could be an issue in larger fields.

:3: Texas bling, After two good performances at 8f stakes, "bounced" (?) or did not do well at all at 8.5f graded stks. Serious question about class.

:4: Delhomme, he is a Pletcher trainee and Garrett Gomez rides him. Good workouts, did well against good competition at the G2 Remsen (9f) on the lead and now cuts back to 8.5f. Serious win contender.

:5: Hardrock Eleven, except for one good performance as a juvenile at 8.5f, has not done well at distances longer than 7f. No published works after his last place debacle on 23rd Feb. Toss.

:6: Den's Legacy, This one does not have "winner" written over him, but can give others a run for the money and might be a player in the exotics if he fires. Has consistently hit the board (3-2 or 1) in the last 6 starts - all of which have been stakes races. Good workouts in last several weeks. Has been sent here to take a shot a victory.

:7: Will Take Charge, Lukas trainee, other than I dont find anything worthwhile to note here.

:8: Stormy Holiday, did not impress me. toss

:1A: Title contender, will only be a pace contender in my opinion. toss.

:9: Oxbow, this one is definitely promising, but I can't push the button on him at these odds.

:10: Super Ninety Nine. He got lucky last time when nobody pressed him.. Remains to see if this is a versatile horse. at 3/2 ML I cannot make any bets on him.

So finally, post race, we see the amazing D Wayne Lucas grabbing lot of K Derby points here, finishing 1-2 with 
Will Take Charge and Oxbow!

Oaklawn Sat - Azeri Selections

Azeri Stakes

6: Don't Tell Sophia
7: My Miss Aurelia
1: Tiz Miss Sue 

February 23, 2013


I really like this undefeated colt from the Todd Pletcher barn. Most likely they chose the name in honor of the Portugese explorer or it could be that they did choose the name based of their familiarity with the bridge in NY.

Either way, I cannot wait for the question: Where does Verrazano go next...
and here is the (pun alert)..answer: Belmont, if you go east!

February 16, 2013

Black Caviar Comeback Race

Black Caviar is back winning races in scintillating fashion, after a seven month layoff following an injury.

She was found to have suffered torn muscles after her narrow victory at the Royal Ascot (news).

She just scored by over two lengths in the Lightning Stakes in Australia.

Enjoy the video below. or on Youtube

January 30, 2013


<p>LinkConnector Validation</p>

'LinkConnector Validation'

January 18, 2013

Los Alamitos Friday Night

I feel strongly for early pace setter "At Last a Wild Cat". only value in this field.

Superfecta bet box on: 2-3-5-7 .
Post race:
The 2 pulled up, not that it mattered, as the 1 (whom I did not select at all), came 2nd and the 6 came 3rd.
Pretty rough start at Los Alamitos today!

Race 2:
did not play

Race 3:

Played some small place bet on Tribal Warrior but really did not expect the big upset.

Race 4:

Did not play.

Race 5:

2 or 5, both horses name become with H.
post race: 2 won. (4.20, 3.00) 5 came second. paid 3.00.
$ 2 exacta paid  - $ 12.

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