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 

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