In the latest edition of our weekly feature with Maryland racing analyst Gabby Gaudet, she gives us a Pick Three ticket at Laurel Park, and we drill down into the details of the eighth race, a maiden special weight event. Plus, we dig into Gabby’s handicapping toolbox to see which tools work best in events like this.
The skinny: Maiden special weight, three-year-olds and up, 6 furlongs on the dirt
Notably: Morning line favorite Larry Le Roi (6-5) has lost against similar three times at the distance.
Gabby’s bottom line: “This is a very interesting maiden special weight race. You have to respect the favorite, #3 Larry Le Roi, but if you’re not sold on his short odds, you’ll have a chance to make some money with the entry of #1 Awesome Bill and #1A Bourbon Bullet (9-2), #5 Bravest, or #7 Grandiflora (5-1).”[boxify cols_use =”2″ cols =”6″ position =”right” box_spacing =”5″ padding =”3″ background_color =”gray” background_opacity =”10″ border_width =”1″ border_color =”blue” border_style =”solid” height =”180″ ]GABBY’S PICK THREE
- Race 7 — 1, 3, 8
- Race 8 — 1, 3, 5, 7
- Race 9 — 2, 4, 10
Ticket cost: $18 ($0.50 unit)[/boxify]
“Let’s start with the big favorite, #3 Larry Le Roi. On the one hand, he was second last time out, and he has the best Beyer speed figure in the field. That means he’s going to take plenty of betting action and also makes him a threat in here. On the other hand, he’s kind of a bad actor. He got loose in the post parade before his debut race, for example. I think that’s probably one of his biggest hindrances. Another is, I’m not sure about the quality of his last race, even with the good speed figure. Negrito, who won, was kind of a longtime maiden and had lost his first five races, so I don’t know how much stock you want to put into that maiden special weight and the Beyer speed figure last time. So if you don’t want that – 6-5 morning line favorite …[boxify cols_use =”3″ cols =”6″ position =”right” box_spacing =”5″ padding =”3″ background_color =”gray” background_opacity =”10″ border_width =”1″ border_color =”blue” border_style =”solid” height =”240″ ]BOURBON BULLET PEDIGREE SPOTLIGHT
- SIRE: Tiznow, two-time Breeders’ Cup Classic winner who stands for $75,000
- DAM: Relaxing Rhythm, a daughter of Easy Goer, whose career record was 9-8-0-0 with earnings of $338,294; won four stakes including the G2 Molly Pitcher,
- HALF-SIBLINGS: Five runners who have earned at least $100,000, including G2 winner Spring Waltz (13-6-4-0, earnings of $402,335)
I did speak a little bit to Jose Corrales about his entry, the #1 Awesome Bill and #1A Bourbon Bullet. He’s planning to run both of them. He says that Awesome Bill has been ready for a long time, but he just really couldn’t find a race for him. You can kind of see that because he’s been working for so long here at Laurel, since May and pretty much without a break since early July. But Bourbon Bullet I really like, and he said he thought this horse was pretty talented. He’s out of Relaxing Rhythm who was a very fast sprinter, which I love for a debut, and Horacio Karamanos does hop aboard. The thing that I kind of look at for horses debuting in these races is who looks to be the furthest along work-wise… I don’t really like to see gate workouts in the works right before a maiden race (which Awesome Bill has). For some reason, in my opinion, you just don’t see horses respond that well, so I like the other half of the entry, the #1A. He’s also a half to some really nice horses.
We also have #5 Bravest. He was trained by Dickie Small, and then after he passed they gave him to Bernie Houghton. They’ve tinkered with him a little bit in the morning, and I think he’ll run better here. Plus, his debut — though it was in maiden claiming $40,000, that was a very good maiden 40. It was equivalent to a maiden special weight here at Laurel, and the winner went on later to win a stake at Aqueduct with a 99 Beyer. I think Bravest is defintely one to watch out for in here.
Finally, I’m really intrigued by #7 Grandiflora. In his debut — I guess they didn’t think he had much talent — they debuted him at maiden claiming $25,000. He was on the lead but completely bolted at the quarter pole and took another horse out with him. And he still came back to finish third. His next, in a maiden special weight, was a huge improvement. It was brutal; he was only beaten 3/4 of a length after rallying while practically on the outside rail. I was impressed with the closing kick he showed, and we saw two horses that beat him, including Mount Coronet, win next out.”
(The video below includes excerpts from Grandiflora’s first two starts: in the first, he is inside on the lead before drifting out; in the second, he is towards the rear in yellow, then comes widest in the stretch.)
(Featured image, of Ben’s Cat, by Laurie Asseo.)