Arlington Park spot plays: Larry Rivelli set for big Saturday

Racing down the homestretch at Arlington Park (Coady Photo/Arlington) Saturday could be a good day for trainer Larry Rivelli. With 21 wins from 45 starters—a 47% strike rate—Rivelli is leading the trainer standings at Arlington Park and will have five runners on the Illinois racetrack’s Saturday card. The star of the show is Daddy’s Boo, who could have a live chance to upset the Arlington Matron Stakes (G3), but Rivelli also has a couple of serious players entered [...]

Saturday spot plays for Churchill Downs

Bobby's Wicked One turns for home in command of the Commonwealth Stakes (G3) - Keeneland Photo Proving once again that there’s more to racing at Churchill Downs than the first Saturday in May, the Louisville racetrack has put together a solid evening of competitive events for Saturday. The 11-race card kicks off at 6 p.m. ET and includes two stakes races, the $125,000 Aristides Stakes and the $120,000 Mighty Beau Stakes. Let’s go through the action and look [...]

Saturday Spot Plays for Churchill Downs and Arlington Park

Classy Act winning an allowance race at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography With 25 stakes races scheduled to be run from coast to coast, Saturday will be a busy day for racing in North America. Churchill Downs and Arlington Park have both put together appealing cards, with Churchill offering two stakes races and Arlington providing a couple of quality allowance events. Why don’t we dig through the action and come up with a few spot plays? Churchill Downs [...]

How to Bet the Quality Derby Week Maiden Races at Churchill Downs

The Twin Spires at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography The Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Oaks and 11 other graded stakes races are the obvious highlights at Churchill Downs this week, but racing’s future will also be on display in a series of quality maiden special weight races. Across Friday and Saturday, five special weight events—three on dirt, two on turf—will be conducted over a variety of distances. The participants might be winless, but these competitive races could serve as springboards [...]

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 [...]

Keeler Johnson’s Post-Breeders’ Cup Santa Anita Spot Plays

Santa Anita - Photo by © Breeders' Cup/Todd Buchanan 2014 If the Breeders’ Cup has you in the mood for playing the races and you find that you’re not ready to call it quits at the end of the Saturday card, never fear—there’s plenty more memorable racing on Sunday, including a nice card at Santa Anita that features two graded stakes races. After looking over the day’s events, I’ve come up with a few spot plays to consider, [...]

Keeler Johnson’s Breeders’ Cup Saturday Spot Plays

Divisidero winning the 2016 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (gr. I) - Coady Photography As usual, the Breeders’ Cup Saturday card is packed with large fields, competitive races, and exciting wagering opportunities. When you pit this many talented horses against each other, you’re bound to find an abundance of live contenders offering appealing odds. With this in mind, I’ve gone through the Saturday card gathering up a few “spot plays.” Basically, I’m just looking for non-favorites and longshots that [...]