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Horse Racing: Tuesday, Garrity also goes to Parx

With McMudder, two different handicappers look at the same slate of races.

Chris Garrity

We're headed to Parx in beautiful Bensalem, Pennsylvania, today, where there's a 10-race card featuring some interesting and competitive races. .

We'll pass on the first few races, as they feature heavy favorites who figure to win at very short prices. While we love gambling here, the point of the whole deal is to make money, and betting on 2/5 shots is not the way to do it. While the nature of parimutuel wagering sometimes causes our picks to go off at 3/5 odds -- we make our picks in advance, and sometimes they go off at lower prices than we anticipate -- we try to avoid it.

In the fourth, though, we found a horse we like: 8-Gambit Girl, is our girl in this $40k maiden claimer at 5 1/2 furlongs on the dirt. She does not fit from a speed figure standpoint -- her figs are inferior to a couple of the other runners -- but she is dropping from straight maiden to maiden claiming, and this is the biggest drop in all of racing. We'll take her 9/2 morning-line price, and we will bet $10 on Gambit Girl to win.

The 6th is a fascinating race, one of the more interesting contests we've seen from Parx, in a while. It's a 7-furlong, $20,000 claiming race on the dirt for older horses, and the presence of 8-Mutaraabit, makes it fascinating: this is a high-class horse (Shadwell Stable homebred by top sire Medalia d'Oro), and one rarely sees this level of animal at Parx -- and never in a maiden claimer at Parx. This horse has obviously had physical problems -- he's a 5-year-old with only four career starts -- but he just as obviously possesses ability: he has hit the board three times, in four chances, against some pretty salty Maiden Special Weight company at Laurel and Parx.

So what the hell is he doing in a race where anyone with a training license can buy him for $20,000? One might think that trainer Michael Pino is trying to find a soft spot for him to break his maiden; but we will go the other way: we think he is damaged goods, and his connections are looking to cut their losses and get rid of him. At 1/2 odds, he is a stone-cold play against. We will take 6-Fort Apache, a first-time starter from the Scott Lake Barn, at 5-1. We will bet $10 on Fort Apache to win, and we will take another shot against Mutaraabit, and a shot against the bridge-jumpers, and bet $20 on Fort Apache to show. If Mutaraabit is 1/20 in the show pool -- and that is entirely possible -- and he runs out of the money, the show payouts could blow up the tote board, and we'll be ready if that happens.

In the 7th, a conditioned $7,500 claimer for older fillies and mares at 7 furlongs on the dirt, we are going to take another shot against a class-dropping favorite: we do not like 9-Sierra Forest, who last ran in an allowance race; we will instead go with second choice, 4-Special Risk, at 5/2. We'll bet $15 on the nose of Special Risk.

That's it for today. Good luck at the windows.