Friday, 14 February 2020 14:00

Key Races & Bets for Saturday, February 15

Written by Ellis Starr

John B. Campbell Stakes – Race 4 at Laurel - Post Time 1:50 PM Eastern

Wait for It is one of three horses who, combined, have the bulk of the probability to win in my opinion. He opens at 5 to 1 whereas the other two, Someday Jones and Monongahela, opens at 5/2 and 2/1. That makes Wait for It the one to write about first and to consider betting on to win, particularly as he gets the rail to save ground and as he's making his fourth start and third route start after coming back from five months off. The pattern is easily identifiable, as he earned a 100 Equibase figure in his comeback, than 111 and finally 113 when winning a classified allowance race around two turns at Parx last month, from the rail no less. Flattered when runner-up Senior Investment (who is in this race) came back to win at the end of the month, this horse with seven wins in 18 career dirt starts should not be surprise as the 113 figure earned winning last month is the same as the 113 figure Monongahela earned when third in the Native Dancer Stakes at the end of December, but that one opens at 2/1.

Someday Jones was the winner of the Native Dancer, with a career-best 120 figure, off 116 prior to that and 112 three races back. His pattern is identifiable too and like Wait for It, Someday Jones is making his fourth start off a layoff. He's 10 for 22 on dirt and has no knocks except low odds. Monongahela won the Swatara before the Native Dancer, with the same 120 figure Someday Jones earned in the Native Dancer, and as it appears the 1 1/8 mile trip of that race was a notch too far for him, cutting back to the distance of his last two wins, including the Grade 3 Iselin Stakes last June, gives him a shot to return to winning form.

Bets

Win: Wait for It at odds of 2/1 or more.
"If" (and it's a big if) Someday Jones is 2 to 1 or higher at post time, he can be bet to win as well.
 
When making multiple win bets, use a "Dutching" tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

There's no point in playing the exacta here with two of the three logical horses being the favorites, but there is value in the pick 4 which starts in this race, as well as the pick 3 and double.


Pick 4
Race 4: Wait for It, Someday Jones, Monongahela
Race 5: Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey, Naughty Thoughts, Bankruptonthebeach
Race 6: Dreams Untold
Race 7: Saguaro Row
, Blue Eyed Girl, Victim of Love, Needs Supervision
(At the $0.50 minimum, the cost of this bet is $24)

Pick 3
Race 4: Wait for It, Someday Jones, Monongahela
Race 5: Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey, Naughty Thoughts, Bankruptonthebeach
Race 6: Dreams Untold
 (At the $0.50 minimum, the cost of this bet is $12)

Double:
Race 4: Wait for It, Someday Jones, Monongahela
Race 5: Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey, Naughty Thoughts, Bankruptonthebeach
 

Wide Country Stakes - Race 5 at Laurel - Post Time 2:18 PM Eastern

Bankruptonthebeach won her only start, last July at Monmouth, and did so as a mature horse coming from off the pace in fourth although that was her debut. Something sidelined her from then until now but she's been in regular training in New York for Jason Servis and gets Irad Ortiz, Jr. to ride. Although the 76 Equibase figure last summer is light compared to the figures of some of the others, she's likely much more physically mature and my feeling is if she won off the bench once she can do it again.

Princess Cadey has destroyed the field in two of her last three races, by nine lengths and seven lengths, respectively. Both wins came after the claim by high percentage trainer Gonzalez and the most recent effort came here at Laurel in a one turn mile race, so there is no issue with cutting back to seven furlongs here nor with expecting improvement off the easy win two weeks ago. The 92 figure earned in that race was better than the 90 figure Belle Aurora earned winning the identical Gin Talking Stakes at the end of December so this gal fits at the level for another "A" effort.

Belle Aurora is three for six in her career, the first four on turf and the last two, both wins, since moving to dirt. She won at a mile around one turn two back with an 87 figure then won the Gin Talking at this seven furlong trip with a 90 figure so fits on all counts, although opening at 3 to 1 she's the worst of the three contenders in terms of value for win bets.

For second place on exacta tickets played, I'll also use Naughty Thoughts, who is fairly consistent with 12 in-the-money finishes in 13 career dirt races. For pick 3 tickets played we are using her as well as it's inexpensive insurance and she might go to post at decent odds.

Bets

Win: Bankruptonthebeach and Princess Cadey to win at odds of 5/2 or more.
"IF" Belle Aurora is 3 to 1 or higher, she can be bet to win and if that's the case I think it will be likely Bankruptonthebeach may be below the 5/2 minimum threshold so we'll end up betting just two of the three win contenders to win.


When making multiple win bets, use a "Dutching" tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

Exacta: Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey and Bankruptonthebeach over Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey, Bankruptonthebeach and Naughty Thoughts.

Trifecta: Box Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey, Bankruptonthebeach and Naughty Thoughts.

If you played the pick 4 in race 4, there is no reason to play the pick 3. However, if you didn't or if the none of the contenders in race 4 won, we should start a pick 3 here as well as a double.

Pick 3:
Race 5: Belle Aurora, Princess Cadey, Naughty Thoughts, Bankruptonthebeach
Race 6: Dreams Untold
Race 7: Saguaro Row, Blue Eyed Girl, Victim of Love, Needs Supervision

Double:
Race 5: Belle Aurora
, Princess Cadey, Naughty Thoughts, Bankruptonthebeach
Race 6: Dreams Untold

Miracle Wood Stakes - Race 6 at Laurel - Post Time 2:51 PM Eastern

When I first looked at this race and saw Irad Ortiz, Jr. in to ride Dreams Untold¸ I thought it this might be a horse Irad and his agent felt was Derby (or at least Preakness) material, given the Miracle Wood is for three year olds only. However, noting Firenze Fire later on the card in the General George as the reason the jockey is riding at Laurel and not Gulfstream today, I wasn't disappointed as Dreams Untold is the horse to turn the pick 4 into the equivalent of a pick 3 and turn the pick 3 into the equivalent of a double. He appears to be a standout in the sequence, having won by 14 lengths last month in the second start of his career. Regardless if the race was at Parx, the Equibase figure of 111 shouts loud and clear this is a talented horse, and since he's still running in a one turn race, and with a huge figure edge over the next best (111) horse, it's his race to lose. Granted, his 5/2 morning line odds will be severely lowered so there's little value in win bets, but there may be profit potential in the exacta and trifecta, as well as on multi-race tickets.

For those exotic wagers like the exacta and trifecta, New Commission and Albert Park are the horses to use. New Commission cuts back to one turn and ran on nicely for second in the similar Helft Stakes one before last while Albert Park was a clear second in the seven furlong Pasco Stakes in his most recent race.

Bets

Win Bets: Dreams Untold at 3 to 2 or higher.

Exactas:
Dreams Untold over New Commission and Albert Park.

Trifecta:
Dreams Untold
over New Commission and Albert Park over ALL.
Dreams Untold over ALL over New Commission and Albert Park.

Pick 3:
Race 6: Dreams Untold
Race 7: Saguaro Row, Blue Eyed Girl, Victim of Love, Needs Supervision
Race 8: ALL

Barbara Fritchie Stakes - Race 7 at Laurel - Post Time 3:20 PM Eastern

Blue Eyed Girl and Saguaro Row get co-top billing in my opinion but the scales are tipped squarely in favor of Blue Eyed Girl insofar as win bets go as she opens at 8/1 compared to 9/5 for Saguaro Row. Blue eyed Girl has won 6 of 10 races on dirt including three in a row, the most recent at Laurel last month with Cintron up for the first time. Saguaro Row is likely to be the favorite off wins in the Interborough Stakes at Aqueduct last month with a 102 figure, and having won the Pumpkin Pie Stakes in November two before that with a 101 figure. Both efforts were stellar, but when Blue Eyed Girl won a second level allowance last month she earned a 101 figure (after 98 and 97 in her two races prior to that) so she's as fast as the favorite in my opinion and has to be strongly considered with an upset chance.

Victim of Love and Needs Supervision are two more very nice fillies, with eight wins between them in 22 races. Victim of Love beat Needs Supervision by nearly four lengths last month in the similar What a Summer Stakes at 9 to 1 (vs 3 to 5 for Needs Supervision) but Needs Supervision beat Victim of Love two before that in the Safely Kept Stakes. Considering they have both good, and poorer, races, in the past month, they appear to have less chance to win then either Blue Eyed Girl or Saguaro Row but I think we'd be foolish to not use them on pick 3, 4 and double tickets involving this race.

Bets

Win Bets: Blue Eyed Girl to win at odds of 2 to 1 or more.
Instead of a win bet on Saguaro Row, we will play an exacta of Saguaro Row over Blue Eyed Girl, Victim of Love and Needs Supervision.

Exactas:
Blue Eyed Girl over ALL and then (the opposite) ALL over Blue Eyed Girl
Box Blue Eyed Girl and Saguaro Row
Blue Eyed Girl and Saguaro Row over Blue Eyed Girl, Saguaro Row, Victim of Love and Needs Supervision

General George Stakes - Race 8 at Laurel - Post Time 3:49 PM Eastern

This year's General George is much more wide open then the 4/5 starting odds on Firenze Fire make it appear, or at least I hope so. If the prohibitive favorite does not win, the multi-race tickets like the pick 3 will pay handsomely, hence using ALL on the pick 3 play started in race 6. As stated previously, the reason Irad Ortiz, Jr. is here is to ride Firenze Fire and there's no doubt if he repeats either his winning effort in the Fabulous Strike Stakes in November, or his runner-up effort behind Mitole in last summer's Forego, he can win. Other than that, he's just as fast, and NOT FASTER, than any of a number of these, and although he won the Dwyer, a one-turn mile race, in 2018, he's 0 for four at seven furlongs to a mile since then.

As such, I'm looking at two particular horses for win bets and to key (along with Firenze Fire) on exacta tickets. The first of the two is Wicked Trick, one of a pair from the Linda Rise barn. He's won six in a row, four since Rice claimed him for $16K in August. Lezcano takes off a day at Aqueduct to ride the horse and has been up for three of the four wins since Rice took over his training. The most recent, a one-turn mile on 1/20, earned a 113 figure. That's better/faster than the 109 figure Firenze Fire earned winning the Gravesend Stakes in his most recent race. With a good post and stalking style, there's little doubt Wicked Trick won't be rallying strongly into the thick of the action in the stretch.

The other horse with a shot is Factor It In, likely to go to post at double digit odds as he opens at 15/1. He's 5 for 11 on dirt in his career and has won two in a row, both at Laurel, with 106 and 112 figures which stack up nicely with the best here. He loses Lynch to Still Having Fun but Ruiz is 5 for 16 for trainer Mancilla in the last year and the trainer is RED hot lately with a 9 for 21 record at the meeting. Although claimed for 25K in November, we must remember Rice also has a top contender claimed recently, and this colt has some quality to him as he raced in stakes races in the second and fourth starts of his career.

Bets

Win Bets: Wicked Trick to win at odds of 5 to 2 or more AND Factor It In at odds of 4 to 1 or more.

This is where a "Dutching" tool, like the free one at Amwager, does a world of good as it proportions the bet based on the odds to help maximize profit.

Exactas: Wicked Trick, Factor It In and Firenze Fire over ALL.