Saturday PDJFund Handicapping Contest: RT picks 2 races at Lone Star Park, Garrity picks 2 stakes races at Churchill Downs
For the contest, each handicapper will designate one of his race picks per weekday and two on Saturday and Sunday. Win, place, show betting only. $20 per bet. Weeks run Monday through Sunday.
Play along and in future months you may have a chance to beat the pros.
RT bet $7 to win, $13 to place on 10-Teenage Kicks in the 9th race at Churchill Downs. Teenage Kicks kicked it into gear and gave RT a WINNER, returning $33.60. Garrity had two picks due to a scratch and put $20 to win on 9-Rinaldi in the 7th race at Belmont and $20 to win on 5-Mentality in the 8th race at Belmont. Rinaldi placed, but Mentality had the right mentality to WIN and returned $36. RT is now -$66.40 and Garrity is at +$68, heading into the final weekend of the challenge.
Churchill Downs, Race 8, Post time 4:43 pm EDT, $20 to win on 6-Cazadero.
Churchill Downs, Race 11, Post time 5:04 pm EDT; $20 to win on 5-Crystal Cliffs.
Why: The 8th at Churchill is the Grade 3 Bashford Manor, the first stakes race of the year for juveniles, and there’s a runner here who stands out like a six-footer in a 5th grade basketball game: it’s 6-Cazadero, who ran a hole in the wind breaking his maiden on May 29. He earned an 81 Beyer Speed Figure for that effort, which is extraordinary for a 2-year-old this time of year. Even better is that he did it at Churchill Downs, so we know he likes the racing surface. He’s stretching out from five furlongs to six, and there’s also a chance he could regress, “bounce,” as the sheet players call it, after such a big effort, but he appears so overwhelmingly superior to the rest of the field that we think he will win even if he runs a bit slower than he did last time. Our first contest play will be on Cazadero to win at 8/5.
Next, the 11th at Churchill, another stakes, the Grade 3 Regret, which is for 3-year-old fillies at a mile and an eighth on the turf. We like 5-Crystal Cliffs in this spot: she’s a lightly raced French-bred who won her first U.S. start, after two races in France last year, in an allowance at Churchill Downs on May 29. She looked like a runner that day, galloping comfortably and then winning with a strong late move; we think she looks poised to do the same today, especially since that race was at a mile and an eighth, the same distance as today’s race. We will bet Crystal Cliffs to win at 3-1.
Lone Star Park, race 4, Post time 5:35 pm EDT, $3 to win, $6 to place, $11 to show on 8-Granny Jewell at 15/1 ML.
Lone Star Park, race 6, Post time 6:37 pm EDT, $7 to win, $13 to place on 5-Midnightonthebayou at 8/1 ML.
Why Race 4: Listening to a podcast a few months back, one of the guys said that a key angle for him was to find MCL races, take a first time starter that’s mom won her first race and some siblings have won theirs. This filly qualifies. Of the dam’s two foals, one has won at first asking and the dam did as well.
Why Race 6: The only entrant in this that has a race experience, she was bumped at the break, moved inside along the rail and tried in stretch. Look for a much improved effort today as she just clocked a nice 6f breeze in :36.2.