Delaware Park Racing Notebook, Vol. 13
by Doug McCoy
Every week during the Delaware Park racing season, The Racing Biz will publish The Delaware Park Racing Notebook. This page is designed to give helpful information to both horseplayers and horsemen about the racing picture at Delaware Park from the past week.
In the notebook, you’ll find:
- “Horses to watch” section highlighting both horses who have shown promise those who may have had poor “trips” in their last starts.
- “Clocker’s Corner” where track clockers will point out horses who have worked in noteworthy fashion during the past week.
- Track tendencies or biases during the week’s races. While it would be great if every race track was completely fair and even and an equal number of speed horses, stalkers, and closers won each day, observant handicappers know this just isn’t the case. Every track’s tendencies and biases (favored styles) change and vary, often from one racing program to the next due to any number of factors, most notably weather. While these changes are often minor, there are also days where a certain type of horse (like a speed horse) has a decided advantage, and there also days where one portion of the racing strip is a better spot to race over (like the inside) than another.
- Leading trainers and jocks and who’s been hot during the last week.
HORSES TO WATCH
- REFLECTION – Was tucked in behind a wall of horses from the far turn to near mid-stretch of last and never was set to strong drive. Winner the time previous, with a cleaner trip and stronger finish he should be tough with $25,000 level non-two lifetime turf runners.
- JUMP STREET – This one was a bit overmatched last time in first start for Lake stable. Drop from 25k to 15k class level could make this one a winner next out.
- SPECTACULAR KID – Broke slow then was bothered by green horse early, made a middle move then tired. Half to two turf winners could win at healthy price soon.
- ALBERTOS AL QUINTO – Was hung wide throughout last and deserves another chance.
Delaware Park clocker has this to say about several noteworthy morning moves
- INDIAN LOVER – Will be looking for repeat performance of last out victory after 5-furlong drill in 1:00 1/5 galloping out in 1:13 2/5 on 9/5
- SPECIAL INTENTION – Gave dull effort in mud at SAR, bounced back with sharp half in 47 3/5 from gate on 8/31
- MASTIC – Will look to rebound after poor finish at PEN, getting 5 furlongs in 1:00 4/5 on 9/4
JOCKEYS AND TRAINERS
Keiber Coa, who has been quietly knocking out a solid living in the Mid-Atlantic region for the past several years, had a big week, winning five races from 17 mounts for a 29 percent strike rate. He now has 16 wins at the meeting, good for 10th in the colony.
Brian Pedroza, who finished third in the overall standings last season at Delaware Park, also had a good week, winning with three of the seven mounts he rode. Scott Spieth continues to ride in good form and also won three races last week as he continues to rank second behind Carol Cedeno in the overall standings. Cedeno, Edwin Gonzalez, Alex Cintron, Jomar Ortega and Feargal Lynch each booted home two winners during the same period.
From the bettor’s perspective, the top riders have been Spieth and Jomar Torres. They are the only two returning more than two dollars per two-dollar wager; each has returned $2.28. Others near the breakeven point include Pedroza ($1.92) and Lynch ($1.94).
On the trainers’ side of the slate, Larry Jones won with three of the five horses he sent to the post last week. Jamie Ness, Lynn Ashby, Jose Rodriguez, and Mertkan Kantarmaci each saddled a pair of winners.
Jones is just one win behind Arabian powerhouse trainer Jerenesto Torrez with 16 wins in the overall standings — Torrez has 17. Kantarmaci has won with six of his 13 starters and is winning at a 46 percent clip.
Four of the top 10 trainers by wins are returning bettors a a positive return on investment. They are headed by Joseph Arboritanza ($2.52 return per $2 wager), followed by John Rigattieri ($2.32), Anthony Pecoraro ($2.31), and Mike Gorham ($2.13). Kantarmaci’s six wins leave him short of the top 10 winners in the colony, but he’s returned bettors more than $4 per win wager.
TRACK BIAS REPORT
- 08/28 – Main track was very stalker/closer-favoring after the dark day on Sunday, with late runners dominating the main track races. The outside portion of the strip also seemed to be the part of the surface horses traveled the best over.
- 08/30 – Surface changed throughout the racing program, with the track being sealed for the early races while it dried out from overnight rain, and then the surface was harrowed for later races.
- 08/31 – Track played close to even for the Thursday program as both speed rivals and stalker/closers had some success. The portion of the track from the three to six or seven paths appeared to be the favored portion of the surface.
- 09/02 – Track was sloppy with standing water most of the day making it difficult to ascertain trends and favored portions of the strip.