Off the Charts Trip Notes – April 16, 2013

Off the Charts Trip Notes (April 16, 2013) spotlights horses throughout the country who encountered some type of significant or meaningful trouble in their most recent start or just gave an extremely impressive performance. Please note that horses spotlighted in Off the Charts Trip Notes are never an automatic bet back, but rather runners to give a serious look at given the trips and the trouble spotted by our expert handicappers at AGameofSkill.com.  Horses below listed in track name order.

At Aqueduct

HOBOKEN JOE (Race 2 @AQU, April 13,  6 furlongs, Maiden Claiming $25,000). Horrendous start for the second choice in a field of seven. The colt hit the gate, was turned sideways and had no chance even though he got to the middle of the pack after being pushed by his rider. The colt never had a chance but was claimed by David Jacobson. Looks like he will get a fresh start in more ways than one.

At Gulfstream Park

FAME AND FORTUNE (Race 8 @GP, April 5, Maiden Special Weight, 6 furlongs, Sloppy Track). Filly was hit at the gate but quickly sprinted into contention and then raced in very tight quarters near the leader before having to check hard going into first turn. She came right back to pass rivals and went after the leader three wide heading into the stretch. Debut runner could not catch the winner after such a rough trip but finished more than a handful of lengths ahead of the rest.

At Keeneland

SLAMMIN ROSE (Race 1 @KEE, April 10, 1 1/16 miles, Maiden Claiming $40,000). Second choice in a big field was off slow and dropped to last and then traveled wide until out of the first turn. She made a huge rush down the backstretch and was sixth entering the far turn, only a few lengths from the leader. The filly was forced to wait throughout the entire far turn and even lost ground trapped on the rail. When entering the stretch she swung very wide and immediately made progress toward the winner with another foe to her inside. A determined run got her the show position only a neck from victory. The eventful trip proved costly to the best horse in the race.

WAR DANCER (Race 7@KEE, April 10, 1 1/16 miles, Allowance 1X). Heavy favorite leaped at the gate, and after jockey Alan Garcia got control,  the son of War Front was left hopelessly behind with no visual chance of recovery. The Ken McPeek trainee made it to the back of the pack as the field entered the far turn and then launched a second rally that swept by the back and middle flight while traveling wide. The 3 year old colt continued to run and caught the leader, who had four appearances in graded stakes, a few lengths before the wire and appeared to have plenty left in the tank.  This was a good field for an entry level allowance and this colt could have whipped them by much, much more.

KIMALLOSA (Race 7 @KEE, April 12,  1 1/16 miles, Maiden, 3 YO). Fifth choice in a field of a dozen was moving like an easy winner in her second career race. The filly advanced along the rail down the backstretch. In the vicinity of the 3/8 pole she was about to take the lead when the others on the front squeezed her just enough to cause a scare. Her retreat took her to last place and all hope was lost. Inexperience may have played a role in the bad trip. Trainer Eddie Kenneally is very capable of having this one rebound quickly.

PERFECT TITLE (Race 5 @KEE, April 13,  1 1/16 miles, Allowance 1X). Fifth choice in field of eleven was taken up a bit at the start and fell far back.  Moved well into the far turn and looked to be a threat when a foe bore out badly forcing the Dallas Stewart trainee to go more than ten wide at the top of the stretch. The colt ran with determination and closed six lengths from the furlong marker to the wire and missed the show position by only a neck and the top spot by less than four lengths.

BYRAMA (Race 8 @KEE, April 13,  7 furlongs, Grade One). The British bred was last early and kept to the inside down the backstretch and was forced to pull back slightly entering the turn while next to last. The eventual winner past her at the top of the stretch and the filly was completely blocked once all were in the stretch. Rider Joel Rosario worked hard to move her to the outside and when it looked like she had room the eventual winner closed her in and bumped her inside the furlong marker. Rosario waited and swung her wide to have a chance. Byrama was going best of all, by far, once free and missed the win by less than a neck. The stewards disallowed Rosario’s objection against the winner for the incident in the stretch. This filly showed tremendous courage and determination. She must be strongly considered next out.

MISS DORA (Race 1 @KEE, April 14,  6 furlongs, $25,000) . Fifth choice in something of an evenly wagered field of eight competitors. This mare was sharp and away well, backed off early speed and tracked the first flight along rail. Moved into and through the turn very well while under a snug hold and then tried to go between the leaders at about the 3/16 pole. She was shut off quickly and then tried to go back toward rail but that avenue closed as well. Rider Marcelino Pedroza had no choice but to pull back to next to last and swing very wide with the wire approaching rapidly. This mare ran much better than her foes in the final 16th of a mile and got up to capture the show position.

HOTEP (Race 7 @KEE, April 14, 2013, One Mile, Turf, Allowance 2X). Fifth Choice in field of ten was next to  last until the far turn and began to make progress along the rail. Once into the stretch the six year old had plenty of room but no place to go. He moved in and out twice before making a final move back to the rail where the opening was too small and too late. Nonetheless, he finished fourth after a disqualification and lost show only by a head, and was less than three lengths from the winner.

PAROLED (Race 6 @KEE, April 7, Allowance 1X, 1 1/8 miles, Turf). Gelding broke in air and was quickly a dozen lengths from the front runner. The rider settled the horse and he advanced in behind others at the rear but running with them with ease. Entering the turn traffic thickened and the rider was forced to enter the stretch extremely wide before mounting a solid rally. It was a good effort only a nose from the show spot in a field of ten.

ALMOST AN ANGEL (Race 6 @Kee, April 11, Cl50-2L, 1 1/16 miles). Tough luck trip for this filly who could have easily won this race. She was steadied hard on the far turn, losing critical position and momentum. Made another move inside turning for home of the short stretch run and finally got clear too late. Flew home in the final yards to be a fast closing third.

At Oaklawn Park

DANCINGOVERTHELINE (Race 5 @OP, April 11,  6 furlongs, $10,000 Claiming). Second choice in the wagering was away well and looked to have excellent position. The Steve Asmussen trainee got in tight quarters at the half mile pole and shied away from another horse that looked to be bearing in, which caused the horse to abruptly break stride and slow down. The filly lost all interest and refused to participate, finishing last. Watch closely to see if she can rebound next time out.

At Parx

STROUD POINT (Race 2 @PARX, April 8, 6 furlongs, AOC 2x). The odds on chalk in a field of nine leaped at the start causing a poor break. The filly then raced wide the entire backstretch and was then somewhat wide into the turn as she approached the leader. The Patricia Farro trainee put her nose in front at the top of the stretch but the eventual winner, who had a perfect ground saving trip came back to win. The bad start and rushing wide down the backstretch cost this favorite more than most eyes will see.

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About Editor

Rich Nilsen is an 18-time qualifier to the National Horseplayers Championship (NHC), an event he has cashed in four times. He was the first player to finish in the top 10 twice. Rich was also a winner of a $24,000 package into Kentucky Derby Betting Championship I. A former executive with Brisnet.com and a member of the NHC Players’ Committee, Rich is a graduate of the University of Louisville Equine Business Program and is founder of AGameofSkill.com, a site devoted to horse racing education and promotion.

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