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Betting with Ellis Starr - August 5, 2017

Posted by on in 123racing Pick6 Wager
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Key Bets & Races for Saturday, August 5


Pick 3 Starting with Race #7 at Saratoga (Lure Stakes) – Post Time 4:34 PM ET

Race 7 – ProjectedVorticityAubenasRing Weekend

Race 8 – Minnie BlipVertical OakDivine Miss GreyFaypienAmerican Gal

Race 9 – War StoryBreaking LuckyKeen IceGun Runner

Cost is $80 with potential for 10 times that based on some of the odds of the contenders.

West Virginia Governor's Stakes - Race #7 at Mountaineer – Post Time 4:35 PM ET

The Player gets the ground saving rail as he stretches out from a comeback sprint following 11 months off, a big effort rallying to miss 2nd by a neck with a career best Equibase figure. Second in the 2017 Indiana Derby before the rest, this well bred colt is likely to run a new career best figure and post the upset opening at 8 to 1. Iron Fist just won the Grade 3 Cornhusker Stakes, then was flattered when runner up Texas Chrome came back to win. Santana has been up for 2 of his last 4 wins and that most recent effort earned a field high last race 111 figure so he should be very competitive again. Page McKenney is all heart, having been 1st or 2nd in his last 12 races going back to two years ago when 2nd in this race. Now with 33 first or second place finishes and $1.5 million in the bank, he shows no signs of slowing down and if Page McKenney goes to post anywhere near his 9/2 starting odds those will be the highest odds he's gone to post at in 12 of his last 13 races and very playable to win and place to be sure. Favorites Matt King Coal and Madefromlucky as well as Fear The Cowboy are all consistent but NOT standouts, so I'll use them in the second position on exacta plays, particularly noting Matt King Coal has the speedy Red Dragon Tattoo right next to him to take away any early speed edge he might otherwise have.

Bet The Player to win at odds of 2 to 1 or higher.

Consider a win and place bet on Page McKenney at 2 to 1 or higher.

Play an exacta consisting of The PlayerIron Fist and Page McKenney over The PlayerIron FistPage McKenneyMatt King CoalMadefromlucky and Fear the Cowboy

Test Stakes - Race #8 at Saratoga – Post Time 5:10 PM ET

Divine Miss Grey is in the best form of her life and can post the upset, opening at 12/1. She started out well regarded last fall then dropped all the way down to the 16K claiming level, winning but claimed into the Gargan barn. It didn't take long for vast improvement to take place including three straight wins, all around one turn with Franco aboard, who rides here. The 103 and 100 Equibase figures she earned in her last two races are on par with the stakes level effort by Chalon last time out and better than American Gal's recent grade 3 stakes winning effort so she gets top billing. Minnie Blip is as impossible to pass up for a win bet as Divine Miss Grey as she opens at 15/1 in spite of Castellano getting on for the first time. Having improved in all 3 starts to date, the most recent with a field high 108 figure, Minnie Blip was flattered when the runner-up came back to win and also came back with a tremendous 6th best of 122 four furlong workout over the track, signaling another "A" effort. Faypien ships in from California for Baffert off two straight stakes wins, the most recent in the two-turn Summertime Oaks with a 102 figure. Bejarano takes off an entire day at Del Mar to ride this filly as well. Vertical Oak and American Gal finished 2nd and 1st, respectively, in the Victory Ride Stakes last month and both should run well again.

Bet Divine Miss Grey AND Minnie Blip to win at 4 to 1 or more and add a place bet if 8 to 1 or higher.

Play an exacta box consisting of Divine Miss GreyMinnie BlipFaypienVertical Oak and American Gal.

West Virginia Derby - Race #8 at Mountaineer – Post Time 5:21 PM ET

Both Patch and Lookin at Lee are likely to be overbet and really aren't the most likely horses to run well in this race anyway. Patch finished third in the Belmont Stakes when last seen but someone had to and his Louisiana Derby runner-up finish in April was good but nothing that makes him the one to beat here. Lookin at Lee will be bet because of his runner-up effort in the Kentucky Derby BUT he's a deep closer and hardly ever gets there. Instead we have to very playable horses at decent odds in Colonelsdarktemper and Phat Man. Colonelsdarktemper finished 2nd to Irap in the Indiana Derby last month and 2nd to McCraken in the Matt Win Stakes prior to that. If either of those horses were entered here they would be the odds-on favorite so this colt's 8 to 1 odds are to be taken advantage of as he has a square shot to win by repeating either of those last two efforts today. Phat Man won the Long Branch Stakes at Monmouth last month, his first two-turn race since missing by a nose in April. His back to back 105 and 103 figure efforts stack up with the 100 and 104 efforts Colonelsdarktemper recently put in and are as good as the 100 Patch earned in the Louisiana Derby and the 101 Lookin At Lee earned in the Kentucky Derby so Phat Man fits on all counts for Joe Sharp, who saddled Girvin to win the Haskell on Sunday at 9 to 1. B Squared, Impressive Edge, Heartwood and McCormick can all be used in the second position on exacta tickets.

Bet Colonelsdarktemper and Phat Man to win at 2 to 1 or higher.

Play an exacta consisting of Colonelsdarktemper and Phat Man over ColonelsdarktemperPhat ManPatchB SquaredLookin At LeeHeartwood and McCormick.

Whitney Stakes - Race #9 at Saratoga – Post Time 5:46 PM ET

One of the most interesting aspects in handicapping this year's Whitney are the potential early pace scenarios. Gun Runner won the Stephen Foster Stakes and Razorback Handicap this year leading from start to finish and led the field nearly lead all the way in the Dubai World Cup before being passed by Arrogate. The last time he won from off the pace was back in March, 2016 when victorious in the Louisiana Derby and I fear he is very set in his ways now. This could be problematic because not only has Tu Brutus gone to the front at the start in all three of his U.S. starts, but Cautious Giant looks to have been entered to insure a fast pace for his stablemate, War Story.  Both War Story and Cautious Giant share common ownership and Cautious Giant is strictly a sprinter stretching out to two turns so slowing him down much from the fast fractions he has been running in shorter races appears improbable at best.

The issue of pace above leads me to my contenders in this race, starting with Breaking Lucky, who gets the two post position and as the horse inside of him in the gate, War Story is going to be coming from behind, so Breaking Lucky could find himself right off whoever the pacesetter or pacesetters are in the early stages. That scenario resulted in a near upset at 48 to 1 odds in last year's Woodward Stakes at Saratoga, in which Breaking Lucky was beaten three heads on the wire in a blanket finish. He had no shot in the Stephen Foster when last seen as Gun Runner opened up an easy lead all by himself, but this is a different race and it could be that Breaking Lucky could improve off his career best 119 Equibase figure from last year's Woodward to post the upset in the Whitney. War Story hasn't run nearly as fast as many of the main contenders in the Whitney, with a career best 108 figure earned winning the Queen's County Stakes last December at this mile and one-eighth trip. However, most recently in the Brooklyn Stakes War Story put in a very strong late run to draw off by two lengths. Javier Castellano was a key to that effort when riding the horse for the first time and with Castellano aboard again, it may very well be that War Story will be in the same position in the early stages of the Whitneyending with the same graded stakes winning result. Gun Runner can't be completely eliminated as a contender even though most of the various early pace scenarios do not favor his recent running style. Still, with 125, 129 and 122 figures earned in his last three races, he is definitely faster than any other Whitney entrant when he leads from the start. Although Gun Runner has earned his last four wins on the lead, going back to June of 2016, he did win from off the pace in the run up to the 2016 Kentucky Derby when winning the Risen Star Stakes and Louisiana Derby. In the event regular jockey Florent Geroux can get Gun Runner to relax off likely early leaders Cautious Giant and Tu Brutus, it may very well be the rest of the field is running for second because he is the fastest horse in the field. Keen Ice has won just three races in 22 career starts, but his two wins other than his maiden victory have come in very high profile races. In the summer of 2015 here at Saratoga, he defeated American Pharoah. Then, nearly two years later in the Suburban Handicap, he defeated heavily favored Shaman Ghost. That recent effort earned a 112 figure and even though Keen Ice has been unable to put "A" efforts back-to-back, the pace scenario in the Whitney may flatter his late kick to help him win his second graded stakes in a row.

Bet Breaking Lucky and War Story to win at odds of 2 to 1 or more.

Play an exacta of Breaking Lucky and War Story over Breaking LuckyWar StoryGun Runner and Keen Ice

Consider a four horse exacta box among those horses as well.

Consider a four horse trifecta box among those horses as well.

De La Rose Stakes - Race #10 at Saratoga – Post Time 6:22 PM ET

Boreale won very nicely in her U.S. debut in 6/14 after six and one-half months off. She beat males in two of her last 3 starts in France is can improve nicely 2nd off the layoff, particularly with Castellano riding. Her starting odds of 20/1 are way out of line with reality and on that count she gets top billing. On Leave figures to go to post as the 1st or 2nd betting choice and for good reason as she's 5 for 9 in her career including the Riskaverse Stakes at Saratoga last summer. Bar of Gold would be one of the favorites if the race were on dirt because 18 of her 20 races have been on the main track. She ran big in her first turf start in months on July 14 when settling for 2nd after leading late and with Irad Ortiz, Jr. riding back and opening at 10/1 she's as playable as Boreale. Sassy Little Lila and Sky Miss Sky add to the depth in this field.

Bet Boreale and Bar of Gold to win at 4 to 1 and add a place bet if you choose.

Plan an exacta box consisting of BorealeBar of GoldOn LeaveSky My Sky and Sassy Little Lila



    HEBERT, TOMMY Thursday, 02 August 2018

    Fished or smells fishy on July 23 at Louisiana downs made bets super exactly payed 680 bucks so I thought well the system blows up no results no specs nothing to see my cash in the 123 site well next morning it comes back up and behold 68 bucks had it for 10 cents and this is the smells bad part it showed Erie downs as the payer wtf hells going on at 123 bet

    HEBERT, TOMMY Thursday, 02 August 2018

    To add to the bummed out me Erie had no races that day , just to make sure I wasn’t nuts

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