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Friday, April 9, 2010

Yonkers Raceway - Round 3 of the Levy, Hop Sing Returns

We return for another week of handicapping the Yonkers Raceway card which features not only the third preliminary leg of the Levy Memorial Pace, but also the final of the Sagamore Hill pacing series. Last week my selections provided several (albeit small) winners in addition to a few three horse boxed triples. Nothing that would make you rich, but the picks provided for an enjoyable evening.

Something which we should discuss is what I am providing in the blog are my handicapped selections, meaning how I feel who will be the first three (or four in the case of superfectas races) finishers, assuming the race goes as I feel it should. This is a different from gambling. As we know, races do not always go the way we think they will (fast fractions, boxed in, etc.) so sometimes (more often than not), our handicapped selections will lose. They key is to bet the ones you feel provide the best value after you handicap the race. For example, your top pick may be a likely winner, but if it goes off at 2-5, do you want to bet it, especially if the horse you think should finish second goes off at 10-1? Of course, not; things go wrong in races. In this case, you will probably be a better gambler if you played your second pick. The point is while I am providing my handicapped selections; you need to see how the odds are turning out before you finalize your selection(s). That being said, it is my sincere hope that my selections are helpful to you.

News Item: Hop Sing Returns to the Racing Wars.  Why?
Former Presidential Series Final winner Hop Sing, winner of $$966,574 lifetime, returns to the racing wars for the first time since August 17, 2009.  Hop Sing pulled up and did not finish in early January of 2009 racing in a $30,000 claimer.  After that race, there was a failed qualifier in April (2:08.4) which was followed up with a July qualifier where all seemed well as he paced a mile paced in 1:57.1.  All seemed set for his pari-mutuel return when Hop Sing was entered into an August 17, 2009 race (in for a $25,000 claiming tag) when he quickly lost contact with the field and was distanced.  Then, after a 2.5 month layoff with a successful 1:59 qualfier, he disappeared inexplainably for five months before qualifying on April 2 inn 1:59.4.  This week he drops in for Saturday's 4th race (NW $12,000L6).  Clearly, Hop Sing has his problems and his best days appear far behind.  One would hope have hoped the nine year old gelding would have been retired from racing, but here he is.  Hopefully he will get out of the race on all four legs.

Without further ado, here are my picks for Saturday night at Yonkers Raceway:

1st Race - $16,000; Non-winners of $12,000 in last six starts
2 - Dr Dre N                   5-1  Will be right there provided he avoids getting parket.
4 - Faucon Stena             4-1  Has been knocking atthe dorr for a while.
7 - Jolly Lester              10-1  Minor spoils if he can get decent position early.

2nd Race - $25,000; Sagamore Hill Series Consolation
1 - Bet the Town             5-1  Returns from Meadowlands victory after two seconds in series.  Draws rail.
2 - Very Upset Richie     3-1  Last much better.  Note may overbet at 3-1.
5 - Big Slick Z Tam        4-1  Completes the triple.

3rd Race - $20,000; Non-winners $19,250 in last six starts
2 - Fox Valley Tribal       3-1  Drops out of Levy into much easier company.
4 - Eagle Now                5-1  Won last and eligible for repeat.
3 - Live To Reign N        4-1  Gets much better draw this week.
6 - Royal Man                 8-1  Chance for share with trip.

4th Race - $16,000; Non-winners of $12,000 in last six starts
3 - McRaes Mate A       10-1  Impressive parked out trip at Freehold; steps up.
6 - The Awful Truth         8-5  Tried getting the top from the 8 hole last week; drops and can win.
1 - Johnny Walkter          6-1  Second race off layoff and draws rail.

5th Race - $50,000; Levy Memorial
2 - Atochia                      9-5  Draws easiest post in awhile; should make the best of it.
7 - Winbak Fox               8-1 Lands share with trip.
8 - River Shark                6-1 Draws the worst of it.  Needs to be rated.
1 - Chasin Racin              3-1 Railbird needs relatively moderate pace.

6th Race - $50,000; Levy Memorial
2 - Southwind Lynx         3-1  Horrible trip in last, wins with better trip.
3 - Poker Hat                  7-5  Never better.  Threat
6 - Real Nice                 12-1  Picks up the rest for minor spoils.

7th Race - $50,000; Levy Memorial
4 - Foikled Again            8-5  Hit his best stride. Looks to repeat.
1 - Corky Baran             4-1 Takes advantage of rail to land second.
3 - Badlands Nitro          4-1 Had returned from retirment and performing well.  
6 - Blueridge Western     3-1 Draws outside of main contenders.

8th Race - $50,000; Levy Memorial
2 - Southwind Tabor      5-1 May do in easiest of the five divisions.
4 - Western Ace            8-5 Can't ignore
5 - Go Go Solano          4-1  Been pleasant surprise in series.  May land share.

9th Race - $50,000; Levy Memorial
1 - Wholly Louy              8-5  Draws rail after three good races from mid to outside.   Should capitalize.
4 - Days of Courage N    6-1 NZ bred has found his stride.
7 - Hypnotic Blue Chip  10-1 Don't ignore.  Dangerous if speed duel up front which Mr Wiggles may provide.

10th Race - $66,400; Sagamore Hill Final
7 - Giddy Up Delight       4-1 Looks to sweep series.
6 - Mr Rockford              5-1 Should compete to the wire.
2 - Woodstock Hanover  3-1  Big post relief.  Watch if you get odds.
1 - Riopelle                      5-1  Completes exotics.

11th Race - $27,000; Preferred Handicap (PP 1-4 Assigned; 5-8 Drawn)
2 - Ghee's House            10-1  Expect better trip this week.
8 - Lindy's Bandit             6-1  Bad post hurts chances.
5 - Roxies Big Guy           5-1  Share with trip.

12th Race - $20,000; Non-winners of $18,000 in last six starts
1 - Image of Dawn           3-1  No chance in last.  Gets coveted rail.
2 - Tough Love                5-1  Gets needed post relief
5 - Psilvuheartbreaker      5-1  Returns to more realistic level.
8 - Icandodgebullets       10-1  Drops down off win but gets poor post.  

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