Monday, March 24, 2008

Weekend Review

Weekend Overview: A rather bland weekend made worse by the cancellations at Gulfstream. Sugar Swirl would have likely been one of the highlights. Instead much of the buzz this Monday morning has to do with the Dubai World Cup meeting next week and the Florida Derby. Perhaps rightly so, both of those are pretty big events and the Dubai World Cup will be especially exciting as we'll see Curlin and Premium Tap face off.

Performance of the Week: Adriano looked somewhat spectacular visually in the Lane's End. It's not the first time he's seemed overpowering, he has turned in some great performances on the grass but this win on Polytrack really opens up his options. Once he moved to the front he never looked like getting caught. He looked both like a horse who was enjoying himself and like a horse who could have gone around again. Adriano is still a longshot for the Derby but has to be the main danger for the Lexington.

Race of the Week: The Distaff Handicap at Aqueduct was my favorite race of the week. The aptly named Rite Moment came from off the pace strongly to nail Your Flame In Me who looked like she'd run them off their feet. Rite Moment was produced expertly and just got up in time. this little filly has barely put a foot wrong this year for Contessa, her first graded stakes win was well deserved.

Flop of the Weekend: Has On The Acorn even finished the San Luis Rey yet? He settled down fine early on just as he usually does but I think he must have fallen asleep because he never picked up at all once the running began. A puzzling effort for such an experienced horse.

TCR Mover’s and Shakers: I thought this would be the week when the Female Sprint division got a new leader. Turns out I was right although it's a completely different horse than I suspected. Sugar Swirl would have gone to the top but her race was cancelled due to inclement weather. Rite Moment seized the initiative and improved to 5-4-1-0 on the year with a nice victory in the Distaff Handicap. Adriano was the only other significant mover as he jumped to 3rd in the Three Year old Male division.

Tip O’the Cap: Mullins and Baze need to get some credit first for the turn around in Boule D'Or and second for the strategy that allowed him to beat superior horses in the San Luis Rey. Two starts back this horse was third in a claiming race and now he's a G-2 winner. Mullins has done a good job just as he's done with a bunch of others of improving a horse who was obviously not producing his best earlier on in his career. Baze and Mullins deserve a lot of credit for the swashbuckling tactics on the backstretch. They decided that their horse could not accelerate as quickly as the other horses so they'd try to draw the sting out of their kicks by opening up really early and it worked to a "T". What looked like a kamikaze move turned out to be a perfectly judged ride. I think it's shocking actually that more connections don't try this in usually slow run turf marathons.

KC Handicapping: Not a great week for the selections as the drought in March continues. Halo Najib and Icabad Crane both put in decent performances but neither were good enough to win. On the Acorn and Duke of de Buqe were simply horrendous.

Cumulative record of selected horses: 4(3)-0-1-1 (-$8.00 -100.00% ROI)
Overall record: 488(238)-89-85-69 (-$67.00 -6.87% ROI)

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