Sunday, September 8, 2013
The Nomination Is In: The Presque Isle Downs Mile
I'll be the first to say it, I hate the way Presque Isle Downs changed their big weekend around. In years past, this race came on Friday Night, with Saturday Night being the Masters. This year? They put this race up against the home opener of the Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers. Really? Tomorrow's game goes up against the first Monday Night Football game of the year, Really? Is this about your simulcasting revenue or actual fans in the seats?
I question if racinos like PID really do care about horse racing fans. For the past few years I've talked up PID and I talked up the savvy of having their big weekend the first weekend after Saratoga closes. They lost all that good will with this years scheduling AND their pathetic website which doesn't feel at all like horse racing actually happens at this track or that Groupie Doll is coming. Do they know who Groupie Doll is? Do they care? Rosie Napravnik is coming. Do they know that Rosie is an exciting rider and fan favorite? Do they care? Is that crickets or the sound of old people pulling slot handles.
This race is WIDE OPEN. Wide open, after I think Hogy. Wayne Catalano wins 22% off the turf to fake dirt switch and a Grade 3 winner on fake stuff in late May. Expect to watch him press pace before winning by a few lengths.
Beneath Hogy there is real value to be found. Name recognition will bring dollars to Gourmet Dinner, Photo Shoot and Ponzi Scheme but I'm leaning in a few different directions in a completely speculative manner. I like the current form of Whatthecatdrugin; it's a minor step up in class for the 6 YO gelding with $252,000 in career earnings but likes the fake dirt and will go fast to the front and try to wire it. I'm expecting in top four.
Alpha Bettor/Awesome Overture/ Occasional View and Super Chunky is a blanket finish on paper; Alpha Bettor is a Grade 3 and Grade 2 winner in past three races. A nice :47 1/5th 4F bullet at WO in early September. A serious win challenger but I'm going to slot him 2-3 or 4.
Awesome Overture is a lightly raced 4 YO Awesome Again son. Nice run in Grade 2 Seagram Cup at WO. Class but results not there yet. 2-3-4-5 seems to be the slot.
Graham Motion/Augustin Stables Occasional View also steps up in class but has nice N3X with at PID on July 4. 2-3-4-5 seems reasonable and win wouldn't shock me with real value north of 10 to 1 possible.
Super Chunky upon further review is no better than 4th or 5th here and I'm going to drop him back and insert someone from the next group Hoofit, Gourmet Dinner or Ponzi Scheme. Hoofit, with Edgar Prado up for Graham Motion, hasn't won in over 11 races but he's come close lately and if forced to pick, I'm taking him for the 3-4- and 5 spot.
10 cent Supers and 50 Cent Trifectas are on the menu and this is a race worth swinging for the fences at.
Have fun friends, even if PID could have made it funner.