Greatness: The word is used much too often in our culture. The professional sports world is a classic example where we are bombarded with being told which over hyped athlete has achieved "greatness". The Turk doesn't like to toss that word around easily, but friends, one of the saddest deaths in racing in the past few years was the great, Tuscan Evening, winner of the 2010 Modesty Handicap. I went to look for a picture that captured her spirit and this Jamie Newell photo gazes right into the mare's soul. Thanks to Jamie for this image and check out more of Jamie's inspired work at this link. If I talk too much about what that animal meant to me I'll get emotional, and I'd rather just remember her spirit and her will to win and know that she's on the other side waiting by the Rainbow Bridge for her kin and connections to join her.
The Little Turk has a soccer tournament this weekend which will limit my horse playing but not my handicapping. It's important to study the various racetracks you wish to play and the Arlington Millions is always a mid summer target of mine, so today's Millions Preview Day is like required reading. I'd like to hope that one day when Illinois racing is stabilized and Arlington Park becomes the track it is capable of being that they will do one key thing: You've got to get the purses much higher on Preview Day to attract the types of horses that will actually come to Millions Day. I won't even complain about the poly track, which I dislike, but turf favoring trainers do feel better about running over the plastic when the races come off so I won't rant about that today, but the purses have to get better.
Arlington Park Race 8-9-10
I've assembled no bet as I'm unlikely to play the sequence. That said, I'd be comfortable playing it as handicapped, as a Pick 3, with all the horses in blue covered as the base bet and then making some tough choices to get the investment to a reasonable size.
The races themselves will lend themselves to good betting and I see value in each of them. Today's a good day to play the 3rd and 4th bettors favorites on the tote board to win when you're drinking and socializing and not really handicapping, not that I condone such behavior! Saratoga and Del Mar open soon. I digress, but what a great thought.
Anyways, have fun with this friends or any other races you will be playing. I'm a big Summit of Speed fan and generally I dig the Hollywood Gold Cup, so in between soccer games I'll be checking in, keeping it on the down low of course. The post race analysis will be more important to me and studying the race pace and the way the jocks and trainers play it. Hopefully Millions Day will have the same great weather and track conditions: Firm, 5 inch grass height, cut and watered, temp rail 6 feet in or lane 3.
Good Stuff, Turk Out!