Belmont Park: September 23, 2017, The Value & The Vulnerable, By Paul Hundley

Welcome to another edition of the column that sounds like it should be on one of those shopping channels, The Value & The Vulnerable! Yesterday we managed to close out with a winner, let’s build on that momentum.

RACE 1: 2-In the Mood is 9/5 morning line favorite, mainly because she’s one of only 2 in here that have raced, the other being 1A-Reyana Reya Delite. 6-City of the Dead is the 2nd choice running for Linda Rice, who’s 13% FTS and Sire City Zip is 15%. 3-Toni To is very interesting, despite the average numbers of Carlos Martin and Sire Broken Vow for FTS, the Dam has produced 7 winners of 7 racing foals, and over 50% at 2. However, Martin is 0 for last 15 when debuting in a Maiden Claiming Race. Also, I can’t look past that $11K pricetag was bought for. Mind you this wasn’t as a yearling, this was 3 months ago! 4-Glow Goddess doesn’t inspire me, except for the 8-1. That leaves 5-DREAM FEVER(5/1), Brian Lynch 16% FTS, Sire Midshipman 19%, the Dam has produced 4 winners of 5. The works are steady, if not spectacular. Nik Juarez has ridden in New York so far like he definitely belongs. $5 Win, $10 Place.

RACE 2: Let’s be real right now, the only reason 4-Warranty is the m/l favorite here is because of the Trainer. Has failed at this level her last 2 attempts, which BTW the last was 8 months ago. Yes Chad Brown has good numbers off a layoff, hell he’s got good numbers no matter the category. But in a race with seemingly not a ton of speed? VULNERABLE FAVORITE ALERT! I will also say I’m not crazy about Vasilika today either, has ran 2 good ones in a row but at Saratoga. Like 7-MADAME UNO in a small play here. Yes, has failed at this level last 3 on turf, but go 3 back to that Belmont run, that race today wins this, if that BRIS figure can be believed. Phillip Serpe is 2 of 5 so far at the meet. $4 Win, $8 Place

RACE 3: The Grade 3 Noble Damsel on tap here. Whopping field of 5! Really not much value to be found here in terms of a big price. I’d say based on field size and the expected pace, I will single 2-Sassy Little Lila on top in any horizontal wager I may have. She looks like the speed even though 3-Malibu Stacy ran great last out, the switch to Rajiv is a negative.

RACE 5: No pick in here, because they’re all untrustworthy, I wish I could give the whole field the VFA stamp of disapproval. However that will go to 1-Tommy T. I guess what I’m saying is; DON’T BET THIS RACE! But if you must, don’t trust”Double T” on top at that price, although I’m sure Switzerland will get played heavily and may end up the favorite.

RACE 6: Look, I am a HUGE fan of David Donk horses on the turf, andc9-Spectrolite in here has won 2 in a row for him, and more than likely lone speed in here. That being said, early speed has not done that great so far in these turf sprints, so I’m looking elsewhere. 2-Qhiskey Seven certainly offers value at 8-1, though trained by Linda Rice highly doubtful that price sticks. Has also failed at this level 4 straight, the price only matters if the horse gets there. My value in here is another 8-1 shot, 4-SOMEKINDOFMAGICIAN trained by Michael Trombetta (or as I call him, Mr. Trombetta) and ridden by the hot jock Joel Rosario. Did miss at this level last out after being taken up early. Should not be too far off early from the morning line favorite. $5 Win, $10 Place, $1 Exacta Key Box 4/ALL

RACE 8: . Once again leaning Rosario’s way on 8-RAPT(5/1), who just missed last out at this level and will be a better price than probable favorite Gauguin. Also an upgrade from Manny Franco riding. Sorry Rosario haters, but it’s true. Did finish well behind today’s rival 2 back but that was going longer at Saratoga . $5 Win, $10 Place

RACE 9: If you don’t like tirades, you should skip my thoughts on this race. First and foremost, I hope Sharp Azteca loses; in fact, I hope he finishes last, and I hope all of Jorge Navarro’s horses finish last not only as long as he is involved with them, but the owners who have looked the other way while this CHEAT pumps his horses with chemicals, COCAINE, amongst other things. Shame on the people who turned a blind eye to this guy all this time shame on the “news” sites that ignored this story, and extreme shame on anyone who defended or tried to just what this piece of crap has tried to do to further ruin the image of a sport that admittedly has not done alot to help their image.

Now, as far as the race analysis, very little chance at this race having value, unless Navarro’s horse posing as a lab rat or Divining Rod gets beat. I don’t foresee that, but I do like 4-DIVINING ROD here at 2/1 a heck of a lot better than Azteca at 4/5. Was a disappointing 4th last out but Daniel Centeno rides today, who has done very well with “Rod”. Arnaud Delacour is 28% 3rd off the layoff, and gets a 7lb break on the favorite.  I’d say single in horizontal wagers.


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