Maiden America Saturday: The Hooptie Handicapper picks two 2yo races at Thistledown and two more at Saratoga
Maiden America 08.14.21
Yesterday, the choice of Splitsecondsonny, Lia Marina, and Stormy Stella, over the rest of the field for the exacta, was looking good with Tyler Gaffalione having a ton of horse under him. She ended up getting pinned in and had no chance. The other two wound up third and fourth. The bet cost $27, so that money flushed. In the sixth, as predicted, Pletcher’s horse Doc Doc Rock went off at even odds and ended up getting no cash as Sue Ellen Mishkin, the choice, did exactly as her half-sister, Elm Drive did and sat near the pace and exploded down the stretch to win by seven, paying $8.90 and $4.40. I put her in my virtual stable and we’ll watch for more good things from her.
Today we have two stakes’ races from Thistledown, the Saratoga Special stakes and a maiden special from Saratoga
Thistledown Race 1 – The $100K Best Of Ohio Stakes
Ohio bred 2yo’s going six furlongs
Tim Hamm & Winblaze/Winstar have stacked the deck in this first stakes with four of the seven entrants. The best of these appears to be 1-Corner Office (5/2), who has peeled off two-in-a-row. I would give 1-Condemnation a chance against his stablemates and the Shanghai Bobby colt, 5-Rumble Strip Ron (6/1) is going to give them a run for their money. He’ll be my choice.
Thistledown Race 2 – The $100K Best of Miss Ohio Stakes
2yo fillies going six furlongs
Staying away from the chalk again and taking the filly 5-Starlit Secret (5/1), who won at first ask in 1:06.9, bests the rest of these. This will be her second race and she’ll take the lead and not look back
Saratoga Race 6 - $100K Maiden Special
2yo’s going six furlongs
If you are thinking about taking Asmussen’s 8-General Strike (5/1), don’t. Of the fourteen Union Rags horses he’s trained, zero of them have won at first ask. For this race, I am going with Shug’s colt, 10-Montauk Point (7/2) out of Violence. Look for 9-Don’t Wait Up (10/1) to hit the board for a price
Saratoga Race 9 – The $200K Saratoga Special
2yo’s going six and one half furlongs
There is going to be a ton of money bet on 8-Doctor Jeff (2/1) and why not? He has done everything asked of him, crushing a 91 Equibase score at first ask and drilled a :59.6 work on August 8, making RudyRod feeling confident about his chances today. Maker’s colt out of Bodemeister, 6-Stolen Base (8/1) just smoked the last half furlong in :06.45 seconds and then worked a :47.5 on August 7. His win fetched a 76 Equibase rating and if pace still makes the race, look for Jose to have him flying late. 11-High Oak (12/1) was the benefactor of a sizzlin’ pace as he caught Labarde and Life Is Great by a neck in his debut at Belmont. This Gormley son has been working well and returns Junior to the irons. It wouldn’t surprise to see him pick up a check today. Pletcher has two in this with 7-Double Thunder (6/1) off his dubious win in The $150K Bashford Manor. When Landsdowne, Glacial, Tapped Off and Knocker Down all blasted off at :21.0, :45.3 & :58.14, they were spent in the final furlong, leaving Johnny V his shot at taking them down. It wouldn’t surprise me if Asmussen dumped Santana in favor of Manny Franco on 12-Red Run (30/1) due to the Gun Runner colt fighting him the entire trip in that same Bashford Manor. Red Run came into the race as favorite, lugged in badly at the start and thrashed on the backstretch, deleting his energy, focus and determination to beat the other horses; instead, he chose to beat Ricardo. Based on his 1:01 work of late, Manny may be the one to take this at a price. I am going with Westley Ward’s 1-Nakatomi (8/1) who arrived home from the UK after getting an eighth place finish in the Norfolk Stakes at Ascot. This colt knocked down a 103 Equibase number on debut in the slop at Keeneland and has just worked a :48.1 and 1:01.1, appearing that he’s ready to take all comers.
I am going to exacta and trifecta in some type of combinations with Nakatomi, Red Run, Stolen Base and Doctor Jeff.
Race 1 – Rumble Strip Ron
Race 2 – Starlit Secret
Race 6 – Montauk Point
Race 9 – Nakatomi to Win/2xPlace with Nakatomi, Red Run, Stolen Base and Doctor Jeff in exactas and trifectas.
Happy Hunting 😊