How to Bet Saturday’s All-Stakes Pick 4 at Oaklawn Park

Oaklawn Park - Coady Photography Thanks to the split of the Rebel Stakes (gr. II) into two divisions, Oaklawn Park will be able to offer an exciting all-stakes Pick 4 on March 16 that includes both halves of the much-anticipated Road to the Kentucky Derby prep race. I’ve put together a Pick 4 play that includes a strategy I rarely utilize—using “ALL” in the most competitive leg. The rest of the sequence looks predictable enough that spreading deep [...]

Spot Plays for Southwest Stakes Day at Oaklawn Park

Jack Van Berg breaking his maiden at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography High-class Monday racing action isn’t common, but Oaklawn Park is making an exception by scheduling three graded stakes races for February 18, Presidents’ Day. It’s a fun card with a lot of options, so let’s go through the fields and look for some spot plays…. Race 3: Maiden Special Weight There are some promising first-time starters in this race, including #1 Good as Money (a Calumet [...]

Derby, Oaks Contenders Face Off on Saturday at Fair Grounds

Serengeti Empress winning the Pocahontas Stakes (gr. II) at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks contenders will shine at Fair Grounds on February 16, a busy day of racing that includes four graded stakes races at the New Orleans racetrack. The highlight of the day is unquestionably the $400,000 Risen Star Stakes (gr. II), which offers 50 Kentucky Derby qualification points to the winner as part of the Road to the Kentucky Derby Championship [...]

City of Light Shines Bright in Pegasus World Cup

City of Light winning the Pegasus World Cup (gr. I) - Photo by Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography For the second straight year, the Pegasus World Cup (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park marked the last hurrah for a brilliant five-year-old at the peak of his powers. The manner in which City of Light won the Pegasus on January 26—defeating a stacked field of graded stakes winners with complete authority—leaves fans simultaneously marveling at the brilliance of his performance and [...]

How to Bet the Pegasus World Cup

City of Light (outside) battles to victory over Accelerate in the Oaklawn Handicap - Coady Photography Accelerate or City of Light—who’ve you got? It seems that the majority of handicappers will be picking one of those two runners to win the $9 million Pegasus World Cup (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park, and it’s easy to understand why. They both won Breeders’ Cup races in November and will be tough to beat if they run to form at Gulfstream. [...]

Should You Bet Deep Closers in the Pegasus World Cup?

Question: Will deep closers who rally from the back of the pack have any chance to contend for a significant piece of the purse in the 2019 Pegasus World Cup (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park? It seems like nine-furlong races at Gulfstream Park often receive special scrutiny since they start so close to the first turn and there’s always concern about horses drawn outside getting hung wide and losing all chance. But might the running style of each individual horse [...]

Accelerate Fits Profile of Past Pegasus World Cup Winners

Accelerate winning the Pacific Classic (gr. I) - © Benoit Photo The Pegasus World Cup Invitational (gr. I) will be held for the third time on January 26th, and while two previous renewals isn’t much of a sample size for identifying race trends, already we’re seeing that it takes a special kind of horse to win North America’s richest horse race. One trend is already obvious. The first two winners of the Pegasus World Cup were Arrogate and [...]

Breeders’ Cup Depth Runs Deep in Third Pegasus World Cup

Accelerate winning the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) - Coady Photography For the third straight year, the top two finishers from the Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I) are set to contest the $9 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park, but this time around the Breeders’ Cup representation will extend well beyond just the Classic. Accelerate and Gunnevera were the gallant 1-2 finishers in the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs, and that would [...]

Is Seeking the Soul Unstoppable in the Clark Handicap?

Seeking the Soul winning the 2017 Clark Handicap (gr. I) - Coady Photography As we approach the end of 2018 and enter the winter racing season, only two Grade 1 dirt races for older horses remain to be run this year, and one of them—the $500,000 Clark Handicap (gr. I) at Churchill Downs—is coming up this Friday. That said, on paper, this year’s renewal of the nine-furlong event bears a greater resemblance to a quality Grade 2 than [...]

Top 10 Highlights of the 2018 Breeders’ Cup World Championships

Enable winning the Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. I) - Coady Photography No matter how you slice it, the 2018 Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs was a clear-cut success. Total wagering may have been down slightly from 2017, but the figures were still strong overall, and the racing was nothing less than top-notch. A decision to move all of the juvenile races to Friday (while transferring the historic Distaff back to Saturday) was an inspired idea, giving the two-year-olds [...]