How to bet the Travers Day all-stakes Pick 4

Saratoga - Photo by Adam Mooshian/Coglianese Photos If you enjoy playing multi-race wagers, you won’t want to miss out on the all-stakes Pick 4 on Saturday, August 22 at Saratoga. The challenging sequence culminates with the $1.25 million Travers Stakes (G1) and figures to produce a hefty payoff for bettors who can correctly decipher the winning combination. Let’s dig in and put together a play on a ~$50 budget. Race 8: Ballston Spa Stakes (G3) Saratoga’s leading trainer [...]

Grass Championships Wide-Open at the 2018 Eclipse Awards

Enable winning the Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. I) - Coady Photography When Eclipse Award voters fill out their ballots at the end of the year, they will be faced with several challenging decisions, and while the battle for Horse of the Year is receiving most of the attention, the showdowns to determine the 2018 champion turf horses figure to be just as contested. There certainly won’t be a unanimous choice for Champion Grass Male or Champion Grass Female, [...]

Fast Finish Secures Sword Dancer Victory for Glorious Empire

Glorious Empire winning the Sword Dancer Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga - Photo by NYRA/Coglianese Photography The old saying that “pace makes the race” was proven true once again in Saturday’s $1,000,000 Sword Dancer Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga. The 1 ½-mile “Win and You’re In” prep race for the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Turf (gr. I) attracted ten starters, but thanks to a pedestrian early pace over a very firm turf course, it may as well have been [...]

Why I’m Betting Sadler’s Joy in the Sword Dancer Stakes

I’ll be the first to admit that #10 Sadler’s Joy isn’t really a horse you can rely on as, say, a single in an expensive multi-race wager. But regardless, I think he’s the most likely winner of Saturday’s $1,000,000 Sword Dancer Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga. Sadler’s Joy can be frustrating because more often than not, he either moves too soon or moves too late. As a deep closer without any tactical speed, timing his late run can be very [...]

How to Bet the Woodford Reserve Manhattan Stakes

Hi Happy winning the Pan American Stakes (gr. II) - Photo by Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography Handicapping major turf races in New York is often a question of identifying the horse with the most brilliant burst of acceleration, since slow early paces tend to place a premium on the ability to finish fast down the homestretch. With this in mind, how can I side with any horse other than #1 Robert Bruce in Saturday’s $1 million Woodford Reserve [...]

How to Bet the Peter Pan/ Man o’ War Double at Belmont Park

Sadler's Joy winning the Sword Dancer Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga -Photo by NYRA/Chelsea Durand/Adam Coglianese Photography The action in New York heats up on Saturday at Belmont Park as a stakes-laden card is headlined by the $700,000 Grade 1 Man o’ War. The all-stakes Pick 4 that commences in Race 8 with the $150,000 Runhappy Stakes will be an extremely popular horizontal wager, but I am also interested in the last Daily Double on the 11-race slate. [...]

Keying Hi Happy in the Man o’ War Stakes

Hi Happy winning the Pan American Stakes (gr. II) - Photo by Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography If you’re looking for a handicapping challenge, I encourage you to test your skills on Saturday’s $700,000 Man o’ War Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park. Held at 1 3/8-miles on turf, the Man o’ War has attracted a highly competitive field of ten accomplished horses. The problem is, you can argue that some of these horses may have peaked a year [...]

Playing Saturday’s All-Stakes Pick 4 at Gulfstream Park

Gulfstream Park Scenic Turf Gate (Coglianese Photos) The Saturday card at Gulfstream Park is shaping up to be a competitive day of racing, and for handicappers the all-stakes Pick 4 beginning in Race 11 looks like a particularly intriguing sequence. Three of the four races include clear favorites, but there’s no guarantee that all of them will win, and an upset or two could result in a solid payoff. Here’s my take on the sequence…. Race 11: Eleven [...]

Sadler’s Joy Returns in Mac Diarmida Stakes

Sadler's Joy winning the Sword Dancer Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga -Photo by NYRA/Chelsea Durand/Adam Coglianese Photography The 2017 season was a big one for Sadler’s Joy. The son of Kitten’s Joy entered the year as a lightly-raced, inexperienced colt with no stakes experience, but over the course of eight starts from January through November he threw his name in the ring as one of the best turf horses in the country, never finishing out of the superfecta [...]

O’Brien, Stoute look for more Breeders’ Cup Turf glory

Highland Reel should enjoy a firm track as he tries to defend his Breeders' Cup Turf crown.   The first place to look for the winner of the 1 ½-mile Breeders’ Cup Turf is, quite clearly, the European contingent. European horses clearly excel at this trip on turf, and with nine of the last 12 editions of this race being won by trans-Atlantic raiders, their connections know how to cope with the journey. Six of the 14 runners [...]