RTSS False-Favorite Report, Friday, February 23, 2024

In case you lost count in all the excitement, all 7 false favorites we identified last weekend went down to defeat! Better yet, the RTSS reports nailed 3 winners in those 7 races.

In one of the races in which we didn’t pick the winner, the trifecta contained the three horses in our “Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs” list (with our picks finishing second and third). In the Risen Star Stakes and the Rachel Alexandra Stakes at the Fair Grounds, we correctly predicted that the morning-line favorites would lose (but we failed to land on the winner in either race).

All in all, a decent week. Let’s go for a repeat at least!

FAIR GROUNDS

RACE 4. Maiden Claimer $12,500. 6 Furlongs. Dirt.

False Favorite: #3 Chrome Racer (7-2).

Reason: This 5-year-old mare drops to the bottom maiden level at FG for the first time. She’s 0 for 12 and enters off a dull effort when she was dropped to $20,000. We see a trip to Delta Downs to face $5,000 horses as more likely than a trip to the winner’s circle here.

BETS

#8 Miss Pearl Hart (5-1). She owns the fastest early fractions as she drops to this level for the first time. The jockey switch to journeyman Mitch Murrill should help this 3-year-old filly ration her speed better. Or maybe she’ll just run these cheapies off their feet.

#9 Trouble Free (4-1). This mare debuts as a 5-year-old. That’s a red flag, but her recent 4-furlong work was clocked in a time faster than the race times of most rivals in this event.

Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs

  • Not applicable because of multiple debut and lightly raced horses.

RACE 7. Optional Claimer $100,000 N1x. 5.5 Furlongs. Turf  (Analysis for turf only).

False Favorite: #9 Copper Em (4-1).

Reason: She has run two impressive races and four really bad ones. After three consecutive bad ones she returns to the turf, a surface upon which she finished a game second the only time she tried it. Given that trainer Asmussen has kept her on dirt for so long, this shot at an abbreviated sprint on grass seems more like desperation than “the plan all along.” Maybe she can no longer carry her speed very far. Maybe they’re seeking a softer surface because of some ailment. With stretch fades in all five races since her debut win at 5 furlongs, Asmussen seems have her here for the shorter distance rather than for the turf. And that sounds negative to us.

BETS

#4 Tipsy Runner (6-1). She roared down the stretch and posted a blazing final furlong in defeating MSW company on this surface and at this distance. Thomas Amoss gave her three maintenance works since that late-January win. He hits with 18% of his horses coming off a maiden win.

#5 Foxxy Cleopatra (8-1). This $300,000 daughter of Munnings won on the Turfway polytrack in her debut. The close-up runnerup came back to win, and the two of them finished nearly 10 lengths ahead of the third-place horse. Trainer Larry Rivelli hits at a 30% rate with horses coming off of long layoffs. She’s had a series of long, strong works, with her most recent one being the fastest.

Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs

  • Not applicable because of multiple lightly raced horses.

GULFSTREAM PARK

RACE 8. State-Bred Optional Claimer $20,000 N1x. 7.5 Furlongs. Turf (Analysis for turf only).

False Favorite: #2 Crystal Coast (2-1).

Reason: Two negatives jump out at us: her last two turf races are the worst races showing in her past performances and Jose Ortiz (a favorite jockey of trainer Jose D’Angelo) opts to ride the second-choice (Palace Flirt) for a much smaller stable. Beyond that, Crystal Coast has no speed-figure advantage and actually owns a huge disadvantage in terms of speed on grass.

BETS

#1 Peace Seeker (4-1). She finished a late-rallying third in a race completed in fast time for this level. She’s winless since 2022 but had been running well over her head until her most recent start. Turf is clearly her preferred surface, and now that she’s competing at a reasonable level and apparently fit, she has a better chance at victory than she’s had in quite a while.

#6 Palace Flirt (5-2). As the most lightly raced runner in the field (only three starts), she has the potential to improve and possibly even become a minor stakes type. Jose Ortiz rode her when she broke her maiden last time out, which was her first try on turf. Her raw time equals the best raw time posted by Beach Party Bingo (second-best BRIS rating in the list below), who earned a figure 4 points higher for a race at the same track and distance.

Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs

  • #1 Peace Seeker (4-1), 81
  • #3 Beach Party Bingo (6-1), 80
  • #6 Palace Flirt (5-2), 76

RTSS 2024 CUMULATIVE STATS

False Favorites: 37 (4 scratches)

Losing False Favorites: 24 (64%)

Races Bet: 41

Winners: 9

Total Wagered: $4,100

Total Return: $1,974 (assumes no bet on our $29 winner because other top pick went off at $1.90-1)

(Total Return assumes $100 per race, split between 2 horses in $10 increments, with lower-odds horse overweighted OR betting 1 horse if odds are below 2-1)


STAKES RACES for 3-YEAR-OLD COLTS

Races: 4
Horses Bet: 7
Winners: 1 (25%)
Total Wagered: $400
Total Return: $160