Off the Charts Trip Notes – July 8, 2013

Off the Charts Trip Notes (July 8, 2013) searches out 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  Horses below listed in track name order.

At Arlington

THE CUSHMAKER (Race 3@AP, June 19, 2013, 1 1/16 miles, AOC, $40,000) The filly was taken up slightly at start and was allowed to settle toward rear. Ran well down the backstretch and advanced until she was checked entering the turn due to the actions of the eventual runner up , lost several lengths which compromised her chances greatly. Made up ground and was then shut off on the inside about the 3/16th pole. Moving outward she was then able to run and closed well for third. Her rider objected to the incident entering the far turn and THE CUSHMAKER was elevated to second after the stewards’ decision.

DADDYSPENTDAMONEY (Race 5@AP, June 19, 2013, 6 furlongs, Claiming $16,000) Longshot was in tight quarters at start and shuffled to last. He began to advance and was running well along the inside when entering the turn. Moved outward several wide just before the top of the stretch to gain position and began to close resolutely and battled the favorite the final 1/16 of a mile to lose by a narrow margin. No doubt the early trouble prevented a trip to the Winner’s Circle.

At Churchill Downs

LE MANS (Race 8 @CD, June 29, 2013, Cl 8,000b, 6 furlongs). This guy got left at the gate breaking from the rail post over the sloppy going.  Making first start for sneaky good trainer Kenneth Wirth, Le Mans proceeded to make a huge late run and was flying past the eventual winner when he ran out of ground at the wire. Huge effort for new barn.

LUCKY PURSUIT (Race1@CD, June 22, 2013, 1 1/16 miles, Maiden Claiming $10,000) Second choice in the field was slow and stumbled from the gate and was quickly last, then hurried up to the field into contention just before the turn and then jostled with others. The gelding was anxious to get the lead and bulled his way through others to secure the lead midway down the backstretch. Continued to run and held second while defeated by a 36-1 runner. The early activity took its toll on LUCKY PURSUIT and probably caused his defeat.

At Woodbine

FOREVER A PEARL (Race 8@WO, June 19, 2013, 1 1/16 miles, Maiden Claiming $12,500) Longshot mare fell forward at start and then was hit hard on one side forcing her to last before she could take a normal stride. Began to show interest immediate and was crowded slightly at the back of the pack in the first turn. Advanced well down the backstretch, had to wait briefly in turn and then found hole at top of stretch. Was doing battle with several horses when the eventual winner from far outside, which would cut off an outlet. Once in third and about 90 yards from the wire she altered course to get room, closed quickly only losing the place position by a half length.

FANTASTIC PROSPECT (Race 3@WO, June 21, 2013, 6 furlongs, Claiming $10,000 3L) Heavily bet colt traveled well down the backstretch and moved out of turn with eventual winner when advancing to tackle a trio of embattled pacesetters. He was about to overtake the leaders when one came out close to the eventual winner and caused FANTASTIC PROSPECT to check very hard at about the 1/16th pole. The colt would have run second but was clearly better than the others.

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About Editor

Rich Nilsen is a 19-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 of the NHC twice. A former executive with and a member of the NHC Players’ Committee, Rich is a graduate of the University of Louisville Equine Business Program and is founder of, a site devoted to horse racing education and promotion.

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