Recap of Stephen Foster Day 2016

by Ed Meyer

The Stephen Foster night card at Churchill Downs is always a great betting card and this year was no exception.  Here are some horses to watch coming out this stakes-filled card

The (G-3) Matt Winn Stakes – 1 1/16 on the dirt

#5 – Gray Sky = James Graham was aboard this son of Tapit, and I was intrigued from first glance. Gun Runner looked to have a paid workout under the lights at Churchill, and on paper it looked like an opportunity to nail the exacta or trifecta under the chalk.  He was 3/6 in the money (ITM) over the deep CD oval, and was exiting a race that should alert players. His last race was an O.C. $75,000 race at 6 1/2f, and his usual distance is one mile or better. I like to find runners making this cutback in distance and then jump right back to business. His record going shorter is 3/4 ITM and D. Wayne Lukas is (32%) ITM going from a sprint to a route. I have spoke to many trainers over the years, and some like to have a “tune-up” effort and get everything tied down. He finished up a game second to the impressive Gun Runner and I think he may be ready to begin his summer campaign. Keep your eyes peeled for the plump purses at Ellis Park.

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The (G-2) Fleur de Lis Handicap – 1 1/8 on the dirt

#8 – Brooklynsway = This filly has been up and down the ladder and has ran on every surface known to man. – She was making one of my favorite moves with the all weather to dirt switch. The Bernie Flint barn wins (20%) on this angle, and I’m really a backer of two off the all weather surface. This was her fifth start of the year, and I think we’re seeing a young lady who is maturing right before our eyes. She looks to have a versatile style and maybe a little less ground would be welcomed.

The (G-2) Wise Dan Stakes – 1 1/16 on the turf

#2 – The Pizza Man = This son of English Channel is a turf machine with 20/26 ITM efforts over the greensward. This was his first start off the layoff for the season and the bullet work on 6/11/16 sealed the deal he would go to post as the chalk. Going a 1 1/16 off the shelf against this level had me looking elsewhere for the race. But after seeing the six wide move showing a strong late kick has me waiting for his next effort. The Pizza Man will deliver.  It’s only when and where from here.

The (G-1) Stephen Foster Handicap – 1 1/8 on the dirt

#5 – El Kabeir = This son of Scat Daddy looked good on paper as he has faced some tough guys in the past. His first start back was on the turf in the (G-2) Dixie at Pimlico, and worked two straight bullet efforts in the morning before switching back to the dirt. That was his only start on the turf, and the barn wins (23%) on the second start off the layoff move. He finished up with good interest and is a bit a road warrior not needing to take his track with him. The summer / fall season may be very good to this runner.

AGOS Horses to Watch – 6/21/16

Churchill Downs Dixie Jewel (6/11/16 - Race #1 - #1 - 1 1/16 dirt) - jockey Robby Albarado in the irons for Grant Forster, and his filly was in tight and forced to steady right about the 1/4 pole.   Sometimes it's hard to regain your momentum and … [Continue reading]

Handicapping Tip of the Day #32 – Just Like Baseball

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AGOS Claimer of the Week: Parx Runner

Philadelphia train speedier than competition Speeding Train, a bay gelding captured the fourth race at PARX last Tuesday afternoon and earned this week’s agameofskill.com Claimer of the Week honors. The son of Silver Train won the $5,000 claiming … [Continue reading]

Russell Baze Retires. He is Horse Racing’s All-time Winningest Jockey

all time winning rider Russell Baze

 Northern California jockey Russell Baze shocked the horse racing world and abruptly retired at the conclusion of the Golden Gate card on Sunday, June 12, 2016.  Baze, who is originally from Vancouver, began his career in 1974, riding in Washington. … [Continue reading]

Recap of the Belmont Stakes Card (2016)

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Met Mile winner Frosted makes Monster Statement

 ELMONT, N.Y. — Earlier in the week, trainer Kiaran McLaughlin actually expressed concern that the eight-furlong distance of the Grade I, $1.25 million Metropolitan Handicap might be a tad short for his Grade I winner Frosted. The race that is known … [Continue reading]

2016 Belmont Stakes Analysis

with Wagering Strategies by Rich Nilsen Get the complete analysis of the 2016 Belmont Stakes with Nilsen's longshot top selection.  Nilsen gives out a Win wager on his top, longshot horse and has mapped out Exacta and Superfecta partwheel tickets … [Continue reading]

Bad boy Lani commanding respect in Belmont Stakes

 ELMONT, N.Y. — Somewhere between the whirlwind atmosphere that surrounded him in Kentucky, his brief jaunt to Baltimore and subsequent return to New York, Lani appears to have lost the memo that he is supposed to be the crazy one. The gray son of … [Continue reading]

Exaggerator 9-5 favorite for Saturday’s Belmont Stakes

 ELMONT, N.Y. — Being the focus of widespread attention isn't something that sits too comfortably with trainer Keith Desormeaux. It has nothing to do with the veteran horseman being ungrateful and everything to do with the fact he just doesn't want … [Continue reading]