In the latest edition of our weekly feature with Maryland racing analyst Gabby Gaudet, she scopes out the Marylander Stakes.
RACE 6 — MARYLANDER STAKES
The skinny: A stake for two-year-olds, going seven furlongs.
Notably: A pair of stake-winning, once-beaten runners — Golden Years and Hear the Chatter — figure to take all the action.
Gabby’s take: “The horse to beat is Golden Years. But if he doesn’t like the slop, maybe Made Bail or Chase Lane can take advantage.”
[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 =”460″ ]ANATOMY OF A LONGSHOT
#6 MADE BAIL (15-1 morning line)
- Susan Cooney homebred son of Closing Argument has won two of three starts, makes his first foray into stakes company.
- Won an allowance race by five on Thanksgiving day.
- Both victories came on wet tracks — once rated good, once muddy — and an off-track is likely today.
- “His races visually have been very impressive,” says Gabby (see video of his last below). “He just won in hand last time out.”
- Cooney recently retired stakes-winning barn star Embarr. She’s hoping this horse can fill those shoes.
- Bottom line: “The horse to beat is Golden Years. To beat him, I’m throwing in Made Bail.”[/boxify]
ON AND OFF THE TICKET
- High praise: Golden Years (1-1) broke his maiden by sitting several lengths off the pace and running on late. Then he won the Maryland Million Nursery by pressing the pace. He ran credibly to be fourth against a very tough group in the James F. Lewis, III Stakes. Gabby says: “Golden Years is going to love going seven furlongs and might even want to go farther… He stands out among this field on class, and I also like that he’s shown some versatility by both pressing and closing… He’s the horse to beat.”
- Don’t forget about: Chase Lane (20-1) owns two wins on off tracks but has been soundly beaten twice in good stakes company: in the Sapling at Monmouth, which was won by subsequent Breeders’ Cup Juvenile participant Souper Colossal, and in the Lewis, locally, which was a tough race. Gabby says: “He had a horrible race last time out, but I’m going to throw that one out and look back to his form on sloppy tracks.”
- Not so much: Hear the Chatter is 8-5 on the morning line and has recorded three straight Beyers of 76 or higher — clearly the second-best profile on the page — while beating West Virginia-breds in four consecutive stakes races. But Gabby’s not impressed and says, “I never trust Charles Town speed when they ship out of there. A lot of times, they’re just one-dimensional.”
BEYOND THE FIGS
Some handicappers treat their speed figures — whether they’re Beyer figures, Sheets numbers, or some other fig — as Gospel. But in today’s race, Gabby’s giving a lot of support to two horses — Made Bail, in particular, but also Chase Lane — whose figs don’t stack up against the top contenders in here. Made Bail’s best Beyer in three starts is a 59, while Chase Lane’s best in four is a 63. On the other end of the spectrum, Golden Years has registered Beyers between 76 and 80 in his three starts, and Hear the Chatter enters off an 83.
Why the love?
The slop, for one thing. Some horses take to it and some don’t, and both Made Bail and Chase Lane are proven winners on the wet going.
But there’s more to it than that. Gabby points out that these young horses are susceptible to sudden improvements. “Made Bail seems to be developing with every race,” she says. “His races visually have been very impressive. Golden Years numbers may be much higher, but it looks like there’s a lot more to Made Bail [than we’ve seen so far].
“Some of these two-year-olds pop up with with really nice races,” she adds. In this race, for example, Special Invitation (12-1) has improved from a 38 Beyer in his career debut to a 72 last out, in his fourth start. That’s a lot of improvement in a short time.
“He’s a very attractive horse, and he’s one that’s developing,” she says. “Even though his speed figures have been on the lower side, I think there’s more to him.”
And a Pick 4…
- Race 6 – 6, 8, 9
- Race 7 – 1, 5, 8, 12
- Race 8 – 2, 9
- Race 9 – 1 (actually, she likes the 1A in here), 3, 8, 11
- Ticket cost ($0.50 unit): $48.00
MADE BAIL’S ALLOWANCE VICTORY[su_video url=”https://www.theracingbiz.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/WMCap37_x264.mp4″ poster=”https://www.theracingbiz.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/MadeBailmccue.jpg” title=”Made Bail rolls on Thanksgiving day.” width=”420″]
(Featured image, of Ben’s Cat, by Laurie Asseo.)