Weekend Overview: So Heatseeker turns out to be more than a G-3 level horse. El Gato Malo narrowly loses his unbeaten tag to a stubborn Colonel John and Bsharpsonata remains tough to beat. These are just a few of the things we learned this week. In fact Bsharpsonata actually dominated Game Face with a very professional display in the Davona Dale. This little filly is all class and maybe way better than her figures suggest. Hey Byrn also looked very good when taking an allowance race over a decent field of 3yo's but for me the weekend was all about Ever A Friend.
Performance of the Week: The Kilroe Mile was roundly expected to be the coming out party of War Monger. He had the credentials of a budding star but instead we saw the emergence of another top class miler. Ever A Friend was simply scintillating in the Kilroe. Ever A Friend is a horse I actually played a few times when he was in the Clement barn. He got my support in some minor events at Saratoga but he always seemed to be no more than a decent allowance type horse. That has changed in a big way since joining Mike Mitchell. He has been transformed into a Turf Mile machine. He turned in a Kip Deville level performance. You will not see many Turf Mile events won in a more brilliant fashion this year. He stalked a decent pace and like in his last race he shut off beautifully just off the speed. But unlike last time when he was carried extremely wide he was able to accelerate smoothly and power away. The field was not stellar but they looked like allowance horses in his wake. Put him on your watch lists and track him all the way to the BC Mile.
Race of the Week: The Gulfstream Park Handicap was short in numbers but it made up for it with a nice tight finish involving the top 3 contenders. The pace set by Kiss The Kid was modest but fair and when they all lined up at the top of the stretch you just knew it was going to be a barn burner. Sir Whimsey prevailed to notch nice back to back victories for the year while the Fairbanks team may consider themselves unlucky. In tight on the rail is never the place you want to be in a hard stretch drive. Kiss The Kid couldn't match strides with the top two but he was far from done. He hung on quite well all the way to the line. If you haven't seen it, watch it! You can do so by clicking on the Race of The Week headline.
Flop of the Weekend: Awesome Gem really should have done better in the Santa Anita Handicap. He ran pretty flatly from start to finish and if you couple this performance with his inability to win his prior start his BC Classic third place finish is looking more and more lucky. Not sure what the future holds for him but clearly he is not the heir apparent on the West Coast.
TCR Mover’s and Shakers: We have a new overall #1. Heatseeker bursts to the head of the pack courtesy of his well timed move in the Santa Anita Handicap. Through the first three months of the season we've had 6 different horses ranked #1 overall. That will likely continue to fluctuate until May when hopefully the classiest horses have the accomplishments to match. Bsharpsonata becomes the top Three Year Old Female with her third stakes win of the campaign. Indian Blessing and Proud Spell may have something to say about that fairly soon but you have to be impressed with Bsharpsonata's professionalism and versatility.
Tip O’the Cap: It is not often that I highlight another blog but I've spent a good deal of my morning reading through the archives of Ten Furlongs. It's a fairly new blog but there is a wealth of information there regarding the Derby. My tip of the cap this week goes to the proprietor for the high quality content.
KC Handicapping: The week was slightly frustrating as I had some decent and generally accurate thoughts but things didn't really work out in a way that returned me any profit. Go Between and Champs Elysees ran quite well but Heatseeker got the jump on both of them and had enough to last to the wire. The Game Face/Bsharpsonata exacta I suggested paid a decent $18.80 but it came in the reverse order that I was looking for so nothing returned unless you had the foresight to box it. There may not be any picks at all next week as I'm out of town for a family wedding.
Cumulative record of selected horses: 3(2)-0-2-1 (-$6.00 -100.00% ROI)
Overall record: 477(229)-89-81-68 (-$45.00 -4.72% ROI)