His first pick’s post time is 2:43 pm EDT
It's a slow day in the horse racing world today, which is unsurprising: we all need a bit of a break after the madness of Derby weekend -- and this year, "madness" is not just a figurative term.
There's a handful of cards across the country, and rather than focusing on any of them, we are going to use the old simulcast method, which is to scan all of them and see if we can unearth any handicapping nuggets. We've looked at the cards at Indiana Grand, and Evangeline and Louisiana Downs, and have found a few good plays. Let's go.
Race 2 at Indiana Grand (post time 2:43 pm; as always, all times here are Eastern), is a conditioned $5,000 claimer for fillies and mares at 6 furlongs on the dirt. We like 5-Long Legged Linda. She is amazingly consistent, she fits at this level, and we think that 6 furlongs is the perfect distance for her: she's tried longer, and she's tried shorter, but she's done best at this 3/4 mile distance. We think she gets a good stalking trip from the 5 hole, and takes over at the top of the stretch. We will bet her to win at 3-1. The bet: Indiana Grand, Race 2, $20 to win on 5-Long Legged Linda.
The 8th at Indiana Grand (post time: 5:31 pm) is a maiden race for Indiana-bred 2-year-olds, and it's at 300 yards on the dirt, which is something we don't see every day. And there's a standout here, and it's 9-Blue Eyed Newman. This gelding is trained by a high-percentage first-out trainer, Randy Smith, and he's shown some early zip in the morning, and that will come in handy in a race that will be over in about 15 seconds. Bet Blue Eyed Newman to win at 6/5 -- and then don't blink, or you'll miss the race. The bet: Indiana Grand, Race 8, $25 to win on 9-Blue Eyed Newman.
At Louisiana Downs, the 2nd (post time: 4:43 pm) is a $12,500 claimer for horses 3 and up. It's a mile on the grass, and there are nine entrants. We like the favorite in here, 6-Ryd a Star. This lightly-raced 5-year-old gelding is dropping from allowance company, and appears to have the rest of the field outclassed. We think he sits mid-pack for most of the race, and then blows away the field down the stretch. We think he wins by open lengths, and we will bet him to win at 9/5. The bet: Louisiana Downs, Race 2, $30 to win on 6-Ryd a Star.
Race 6 at Louisiana Downs (post time: 6:37 pm) is an allowance race at 5 1/2 furlongs on the dirt for Louisiana-breds 3 and older. The pick here is 3-Masterly: this 6-year-old gelding is in good form, and holds a significant speed-figure edge on the rest of the field. He's got some early speed, and while we don't think he gets the lead, he should be quick enough to be close, and then seize control of the race at the top of the lane. We will bet him to win at 5/2. The bet: Louisiana Downs, Race 6, $20 to win on 3-Masterly.
For a nightcap, we'll go to Evangline Downs in Opelousas, Louisiana, where there's a 9-race evening program. The 2nd, which goes to post at 7:18 pm, is a conditioned $15k claimer for Louisiana-bred horses 3 and older at 7 1/2 furlongs on the turf. We like 3-Canyon Fire in here: this horse has never started on grass before, but he has won both of his two career starts, and in is last, he showed a late-running style that should fit well on the sod. He's also trained by Brett Brinkman, who's hot right now, and who has a high strike rate (18%) with runners making their turf debut. We think he mows them all down late, and we will bet him to win at 9/2. The bet: Evangeline Downs, Race 2, $25 to win on 3-Canyon Fire.
That's all for today. Good luck at the windows.