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Saratoga Stack 9.4.23
Closing Day card topped by a loaded Hopeful
And then there was one.
Closing Day at Saratoga on Monday. Melancholy best describes my mood on the final Monday of the meeting. Sorry to see the best 40 days of the summer come to an end, but it also means football season is here and fall is upon us.
But admittedly, not as down as I usually am on the closing day of the meeting.
I had this romantic idea about being able to handicap every race this summer like it was a full-time job. All the sneaky trip horses I’d find. All the great picks I would make with all this extra time. Winners and bags of cash for all.
Did not quite work out that way. Took me a few weeks to find a schedule and workflow that made sense. Battled with confidence in trying to make public picks every day. Felt way too rushed at times - especially on Fridays with the StackCapping and Friday Four-Pack. I probably should have communicated to my wife that yes, I would be publishing when we’re on vacation.
If you hear a woman in Middlesex County screaming for joy after the finale Monday, she did not hit the Pick 6. She’s just celebrating the meet being over.
The picks themselves were just okay. C/C- work from me. At best.
I think it was Mike Maloney in Betting With an Edge who wrote about the idea of “crushing their souls.” Meaning when you have a strong opinion, you have to maximize it to its fullest extent. You’re going to be wrong more than you’re right, so when you’re right you HAVE to crush it.
I didn’t do that.
The Travers is the best example. Had the winner. Loved the runner-up at a price. Thought the third-place finisher made sense. From Travers Day.
My betting strategy feels like trifectas that will key both Arcangelo and Disarm in all three spots and go from there. So if they both run in the number, we’ll have the trifecta at some level.
My “top-four” for whatever it’s worth would be 2-6-1-7
No excuses, but I did not crush their souls, in a race that I had nailed.
Even this past Saturday when Thin White Duke to the Harvy Pack at 9-1, I should have buried it. I didn’t.
Again, no excuses.
I may write more about the whole experience at some point, but thankfully we get 11 more chances today to make some good decisions.
TODAY’S STACK IS PRESENTED BY NYRA BETS
Thanks to NYRA Bets for a great summer. And thank everyone who signed up with our MUT200 promo code.
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Day 40 of 40. Still time to sign up! And Belmont at Aqueduct is right around the corner!
Maybe it’s not over?
Linda just two back heading into Monday. She has 8 horses running in 7 races today. Chad counters with…well 10 horses in 8 races. Chad still a strong favorite to hold on. 4/5 vs 3-1? Sound right? Should not diminish what Linda did this summer. She had a big meet.
As did jockey Irad Ortiz. He needs six wins to tie Ramon Dominguez for the most wins in a summer at Saratoga. The meeting is longer now, but Irad missed three days due to suspension. He looks to be on some live mounts today and has a legit shot at those six wins.
I expect the Fox broadcast to mention this roughly 1000 times today. In fact, I’ll take the over on that number.
In the Spinaway Sunday, Ways and Means was bet massively from the jump. Getting 3-1 on Brightwork felt like an overlay, and that one held on for the win. Ways and Means seemed to clip heels early in the race and wide from there. The trouble probably cost her the win and it won’t be shocking when she is favored again next time these two meet.
Race 7 was embarrassing to watch, as the jocks let Indian Mischief go :52 for the half and walk home at 10-1. Speed ran 1-2-3 around the track in a classic NY turf race where no one wanted to go. As a bettor, it would be nice to know which races they’re going to let the speed steal it on the front end.
Manny Franco’s good summer should not get lost in the shadow of the gaudy Irad numbers. He rode a great race getting Alpine Princess to finish on the outside in race 6.
Our Two-Minute Pick didn’t show much in race 8. We were against the favorite - she ran out of the money. And we picked the winner as our second choice, but none of that helped our bad pick.
Three races on the inner turf today, which I thought was kind to speed and runners near the rail. It could help a longshot in the Bernard Baruch.
Let’s find some winners to end the Saratoga Summer 2023
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Red Burgundy showed speed on the dirt and now gets to turf where there is some breeding. Trainer De Paz has been a “win late” trainer per Jim Mazur’s Progressive Handicapping stats. Will back them up with the two Clement horses
Coppa Girl ran into a Saratoga-loving Into Happiness last time. Working well. Raging Sea will beat me.
You want Public Sector here at 2-1? I don’t. I’m going to trust Tyler Gaffalione to blast off from the rail with Bring Me a Check and try and take them all the way around on a turf course that should play to that running style today. That should allow Emaraaty to pounce late. Won’t be floored if he wires the field.
Linda Rice 23% route/sprint on the dirt at Saratoga the last five years. She has six wins with this move this summer at Saratoga. A sure-to-be overbet Lord Captain for me.
Update: Both Linda’s scratched. Note Steve Asmussen has his son his horse Senor Jobin. I land there after the scratch.
Good luck to Steve Byk and DeeTee stables with Scherzando. Looks to have a shot in here. Some real turf breedering for Okaloosa. Voleuse gets blinkers but will be overbet for sure.
Weird race where no one in the body of the race has ever run and all six AEs have experience…guessing game where you need to watch he board and will-pays.
I’ll guess with Wisecracker. Half to a fast Baffert horse that sold for $3.5 million. But really a guessing game here.
The plan with Overacting should be just going. Find myself looking for the speed in these inner turf races. Sals Deam Girl had some trouble in last and can be there in the end. Waterville will be coming late.
Race 8 - Our Two-Minute Pick Presented by NYRA Bets.
One more bad thumbnail!
Willing to give Agility another shot after a sluggish start in his last. Win for Gold a wire threat. Asymmetric could get a setup here. Even Fast Buck Freddy feels like a player.
Tough race. New face Borletti the tepid pick. I guess Alexis Zorba can win - Chad has great numbers off these layoffs.
Terrific rendition of The Hopeful. Note that Beyer Team has raised Valentine Candy’s debut from a 66 to an 85. Timeform has bumped it up to a 108. These numbers make him a real player in a race where I have open to six horses.
Muth scratching hurts everyone else's price as he might have been the favorite.
Timberlake might inherit that role but I land there. Loved his move to 7F and has been working strongly. Gold Sweep had the massive trouble in the last and could turn the tables. Be You had a better trip, but beat Locked last time. That one got a 93 Beyer in next out win. Great race on paper.
Some okay turf pedigrees in here. I’ll tab Chulligan on top. Plenty of trouble in his last and has had time off - I think scratched at least once up here. Scramanga is out of dam that was all turf. Even Pascal Moon could move up on the green. Meanwhile, it will probably be Linda and Chad 1-2.
I’ll have some sort of full recap in the next week or so. Thanks to everyone who read these this summer.
If you found it helpful, want to suggest a change or think I suck..comments open below.
Good luck if you’re playing. Thanks for reading.