Friday’s report was by far the worst-performing one we’ve done in 5 weeks of publishing the Racetrack Super Scout. In attempting to come up with enough races to “keep the customer satisfied,” I stretched some Instant Value Handicapping principles too far. Lesson learned!
For Saturday we’re emphasizing quality over quantity. We believe we have a clear view of the two major Kentucky Derby prep races, plus a run-of-the-mill false favorite at Gulfstream. Let’s get back on the winning track with Saturday’s report!
Keep on cashing,
Roger and Kyle
GULFSTREAM PARK, (Saturday, April 2, 2022)
RACE 3. Grade 3. 1 mile and 1/2. Turf. (Analysis for turf only).
False Favorite: #2 Harajuku (9-5).
Reason: No wins in the USA. She has only 2 wins lifetime, so she could qualify for a low-level allowance race or a race restricted to nonwinners in the past year. I suspect that’s where Harajuku will show up next, after she loses here.
#6 Beautiful Lover (3-1). She owns some of the fastest times in the field in marathon races. Not surprisingly she has also racked up more wins than most in here. Rosario, her regular rider, passed up a potential big day at Oaklawn to ride at Gulfstream. Beautiful Lover might be one reason why.
#7 Family Way (2-1). She just missed in the Grade 3 Very One Stakes last time out. Prior to that she ran decently in the Grade 1 EP Taylor. She’s a winner of a $500,000 stakes at Kentucky Downs, she gets the rider who owns all her US wins and placings, and she’ll enter the starting gate razor sharp.
BONUS RACE: THE FLORIDA DERBY (Race 14)
False Favorite: Simplification (5-2)
Reason: Tough call here. Simplification has done so much right. He’s versatile. He has impressive, open-length wins against tough customers. But his final times in 2-turn races are slow. He also tends to cause problems for himself. I see just enough vulnerability to justify betting against him.
#2 Classic Causeway (7-2). He has yet to win without the early lead, but he has shown rate-ability in his own way:
- In the Sam Davis he dueled through fast early fractions but saved enough oomph to draw away in the stretch and post an exceptional final time for a young 3-year-old.
- In the Tampa Bay Derby he easily took control of the early pace, but he rated kindly in hand before drawing away late. The final time was slow, but the race was a glorified workout in reality.
Classic Causeway, unlike Simplification, has mastered the skill of breaking cleanly from the gate. Because of that, he’s more likely to be positioned where Irad Ortiz wants him and to avoid mishaps of all kinds. His professionalism early and in midrace and his widening victory margins through the stretch suggest trainer Brian Lynch has only scratched the surface of his talent.
Pacewise, no rivals look fast enough to wear out Classic Causeway early:
- Classic Causeway (Sam Davis): 6F in 1:11.2
- Charge It (maiden): 6F in 1:10.2*
- White Abarrio (Holy Bull): 6f in 1;12.1
- Pappacap (Lecomte): 6F in 1:12.2
- Simplification (Holy Bull): 6F in 1:12.3
(* Charge It posted a 1:10.2 in a 1-turn race at a mile, essentially a sprint.) He faded late, coming home in a slow :25.4 for the final quarter mile. He ran a more respectable final quarter next time out, when he posted a 6F split of 1:11.2, again in a 1-mile sprint.)
Given that Classic Causeway owns both a pace and final-time advantage, he will be our only bet in this race. Rather than wagering just half of our hypothetical $40 race bankroll, we’ll bet the whole enchilada. Classic Causeway is our best bet of the weekend.
OAKLAWN PARK (Saturday, April 2, 2022)
BONUS RACE: THE ARKANSAS DERBY (Race 12).
False Favorite: #6 Secret Oath (5-2).
Reason: The favoritism for Secret Oath seems to come from her trouncing of extremely weak rivals and from the baseless excitement of a filly taking on top colts.
There’s no denying she’s the best filly in the Midwest and West, but that’s not enough. She did register a final time in the Honeybee Stakes that was faster than the local boys managed on the same day. But given that none of those boys are seen as top contenders here, that accomplishment doesn’t amount to much either.
Gary Stevens said Secret Oath is better than Winning Colors. That statement shows that the only thing Gary is running these days is a fever. Winning Colors won her prep for the Santa Anita Derby in a time that was among the fastest in a 20-year span of the Santa Anita Oaks. Secret Oath ran only the 4th fastest Honeybee in the past 6 years. She also posted a final time nearly a full second slower than earlier Honeybee star Eight Belles.
Very little in Secret Oath’s resume qualifies her for favoritism in a Grade 1 race against colts.
#4 Doppelganger (3-1). Bob Baffert’s revenge tour continues. Before handing this horse over to former assistant Tim Yakteen (so that Doppelganger can earn qualifying points for the Kentucky Derby), Baffert removed the blinkers and worked this horse 6 furlongs in a stunning 1:10.4. With Baffert’s ace John Velazquez assigned the mount, it looks like Baffert is pulling out all the stops.
#8 Cyberknife (8-1). His allowance win at the Fair Grounds ranks as one of the fastest clockings at 8.5 furlongs on the Kentucky Derby trail this year. He owns a topnotch pedigree and has one of the best trainers in the country getting him ready. His maiden win at Churchill Downs rang up at a sizzling 1:09.3, showing that he possesses excellent early speed. Combine that with his perfect stalking trips in 2 of his 3 races around two turns, and you get talent and professionalism that might be unmatched in this race…or in the 3-year-old class of 2022.