According to trainer Nick Zito, his Kentucky Derby second-place finisher, Ice Box, will skip the Preakness and prep for the third leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes. Zito will start Jackson Bend, whose 12th place finish in the Derby was the first time in 10 career starts that he finished worst than second. With the defection of Ice Box, Dale Romans trained First Dude, 3rd finisher in the Coolmore Lexington Stakes on April 24th will be added to the entry box, joining stablemate, Paddy O’Prado, who was 3rd in the Derby.
Recapping Day 9 (Saturday, May 1st) at the Pimlico Spring Meet…
Best Bet Southwest (# 6; 10th race on the turf; 3-1) was not ready to race coming off the shelf as he tracked the leaders early but dropped back out of contention as the field entered the stretch, finishing up 6th.
Best Bet pick scorecard from 6 selections at the Pimlico Meet: 1 WIN – 2 PLACE – 1 SHOW.
Longshot Omara Devil (# 2; 6th race; 9-1) lagged behind the early speed as anticipated, but could only muster a mild rally to get up for 3rd place, 2 ½ lengths behind the winner, returning an adequate $6.60 to SHOW in a 7 horse race.
Longshot pick scorecard from 7 selections at the Pimlico Meet: 1 WIN – 0 PLACE – 1 SHOW
SHOW Parlay Play of the Day, $93 on Beach Harbor Man / Happytheman (# 1/1A; 5th race; 4-5) entry saw Happytheman break alertly for the lead and held it to the wire, winning by 1 length. Beach Harbor Man was not a threat to hit the board for the odds-on favored stablemates, finishing dead last. The payoff was a poultry $3.80 to WIN, $2.40 for the PLACE and $2.10 to SHOW. The parlay is on a 7 day win streak with $98 to “Let It Ride” on Day 11.
For the Pimlico Spring Meet, Day 11 (Thursday, May 6th)…
Best Bet: Safety Valve (# 9; 5th race on the turf; 2-1)
This 4 year old son of Distorted Humor took the winter off, but has been prepping in the A.M. for his 2010 debut. He’s established himself as a nice turf runner whose only time he failed to hit the board in 5 tries was in the Gr. 2 Virginia Derby at Colonial Downs. With 2 wins and 1 third place effort in 3 turf races at today’s distance (1 mile), he’s smartly placed to score at first asking to start his 4 year old campaign.
Longshot: Sumacha’hot (# 6; 8th race; 10-1)
Last September he was an upset winner of the Maryland Million Classic. This one-time $15k Claimer has been on the shelf since a dull effort in the slop at Laurel. His Deep Stretch-Closer running style requires a quick early pace, which should be provided by 2 or 3 of his foes. Considering he’s best suited for distance races instead of sprints (like today’s 6 furlong contest), this race might just serve as a freshener. Then again, he is 1 for 1 at today’s distance and has a win and a second over the Pimlico dirt course.
SHOW Parlay available bankroll: $158.45 ($153.80 bankroll – $93 wager + $97.65 return)
SHOW Parlay Play of the Day: $98 on Minnamana (# 8; 3rd race on the turf; 7-2) is a risky play due to the race having a full field of 11 and he’s a 9 year old gelding making his 2010 debut. You never know how long a runner this old can retain his form. I settled on him due to his turf record 7-6-5 in 27 starts while never being off the board in 5 efforts at today’s distance (1 1/8 mile) and is 1 for 1 on the Pimlico lawn. If Minnamana hasn’t lost a step, the SHOW Parlay could get a significant return.
Looks like Day 11 will be a beautiful one with sunny skies, so enjoy the exciting chase scenes thoroughbred horse racing has to offer. Good Luck!