Pimlico Selections and Pletcher Talkin’ Smack

April 07, 2011 | Gary Quill

In all my years of following thoroughbred horse racing, I’ve heard a fair share of “guarantees” and the rhetoric that trainers will spew about their horse(s) to give the media something to report. Not until the day after the Florida Derby (Monday) had I heard (or read) words that could be interpreted as “Smack Talk”. And it didn’t come from the winning trainer.


Nick Zito-trained Dialed In won the $1,000,000 Florida Derby by a neck, traveling the 1 1/8 mile (aka 9 furlongs) in a time of 1:50.07. One day prior, in the Florida Oaks, Todd Pletcher-trained 3 year old filly, R Heat Lightning ran the same distance in 1:49.09, a full second faster than her 3 year old male counterpart. Pletcher, who also trains the reigning 2 year old champion, BC Juvenile winner and #1 Kentucky Derby contender Uncle Mo must have felt the need to find fault with Dialed In’s performance saying, “To me, even though they ran on different days, usually it’s not a good sign for the colts when fillies run faster”.    


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Recapping Day 4 (Thursday, April 7th) at the Pimlico Spring Meet…



Best Bet Smart Woman  (# 10; 9th race on the turf; M/L 3-1; P/T 3-2) turned out to be the Post Time favorite due to a few scratches. She was ridden smartly, just off the early pace then made her move with 2 furlongs to run to prevail, paying nice mutuels across the board despite her short odds… $5.20 to WIN, $3.60 to PLACE and $3.40 SHOW.

Best Bet pick scoreboard from 4 selections at the Pimlico Meet: 2 WIN – 0 PLACE – 1 SHOW.

Longshot Diana Girl (# 4; 3rd race on the turf; M/L 20-1; P/T 11-1) didn’t disappoint my handicapping instincts as she ran a nice stalking trip early, never was able to accelerate through the stretch to catch the winner, but had enough left in the tank to capture a small purse amount as she finished 3rd, paying a healthy $7.00 to SHOW. Hmmm, she should have been the SHOW Parlay Play of the Day pick instead of Longshot pick (sigh).  

Longshot pick scorecard from 4 selections at the Pimlico Meet: 0 WIN – 2 PLACE – 1 SHOW


SHOW Parlay Play of the Day$32 on Love Tour  (# 5; 2nd race; M/L 6-1; P/T 3-1) took a ton of early money, opening at 8-5 which should have indicated an honest effort. What we got for our SHOW parlay play was a an unfortunate mishap to the horse, as the rider had to pull him up entering the first turn. He was vanned off due to being lame. You cannot predict these kind of incidents in horse racing, but by the same token it killed the 3 day SHOW parlay amount. Friday is another day to try to start a new SHOW parlay winning streak.       



For the Pimlico Spring Meet, Day 5 (Friday, April 8th) has a 70% of rain. So I avoided the turf races (5th, 7th & 9th)…



Soup Of The Day:  Sausage Gumbo


Best Bet:  So Picky  (# 4; 8th race; 7-2)


This race is for 3 year old fillies, non-winners of 2 lifetime or have never won a race other than a maiden, claiming or starter. Bottom line is within this group could be a nice filly or two. One could be So Picky who took 3 tries before breaking her maiden by 6+ lengths going one mile, with the addition of blinkers. Here she’ll stretch out to 1 1/16 mile and has the final furlong times to be able to rally past the early pace-setters, which there is no shortage of in this contest.          


Longshot:  Masabi King (# 6; 4th race; 5-1)


Going with the hot trainer/jockey combo of John Rigattieri and Dyn Panell. This guy has early speed and won’t have but maybe one foe to deal with to get the early lead. He was aggressively placed ($10k Claimer) in his last race after breaking his maiden in a $10k Maiden Claimer, when the pace was too quick for him, but today drops down a level ($5k) to where he should be able to rebound and carry his speed the full 6 furlongs..       


SHOW Parlay available bankroll: $80.30  ($112.30 bankroll – $32 wager + $0 return)


SHOW Parlay Play of the Day:  $20 on Chenoasilver (# 7; 1st race; 9-5) on paper is the best horse in the race. Hence, the track M/L oddsmaker has him at 9-5. For the SHOW parlay purposes, all he has to do is beat 4 of the 6 other runners in this race to return a profit for us. Considering this guy has finished ITM in 8 of his 11 lifetime races makes him a low risk play. But regular rider Juan Acosta, who has mounts 4 other races won’t be in the irons, which usually is cause for concern.