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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

Dick's Picks at Kentucky Downs


Day 4: Sunday, Sept. 11, 2016

Updated Sept. 11, 2016 at 9:56 am CDT

NOTE:  Late scratches #7 in the 4th and #13 in the 8th.

I have a deadline to post this, and it fell before we know whether rain hit the track on Saturday. NOTE: The track was rendered yielding after rainfall following race 6 on Saturday.

All bets are four-horse $2 exacta boxes (total cost $24) unless indicated otherwise. Kentucky Downs' exacta takeout of 18.25 percent is among the lowest in the nation.

UPDATED on race day. Scratches are shown with a strike-through.

Race 1. Maiden Special Weight, Fillies 2YO, $130,000, 1 Mile

1. Charged #14. Daughter of Elusive Quality roke poorly in her debut and was throwing flames in the stretch. Finished that turf race in just over 11 seconds.

2. Joust #4. Daughter of War Front was beaten 7 3/4 lengths by Coasted in her debut at Saratoga but beaten onoy 1 3/4 length by the second finisher. Coasted subsequently won the P. G. Johnson Stakes at the Spa.

3. Carolina Courage #3. Daughter of Scat Daddy, a good turf sire, tries turf for the first time after running so-so on a sloppy track in her debut.

4. She's Trickery #16. Daughter of Proud Citizen gets a weight break. Finished second in her debut, which was on dirt.

In case of scratches:

Tapanel #11 is a daughter of the great sire Tapit making her debut.

Que Hansen #1 had an excuse in her debut -- she was cut off at the break from the gate. She didn't quit trying, though.

Clearly Claire #8 ran well in her dirt debut and could move up on turf. By Candy Ride out of a Giant's Causeway mare

Race 2. Allowance N1X/N2L, Fillies and Mares 3YO & up, $140,000, 6 1/2 Furlongs

1. Sashay #3. Jockey Geroux last rode both this one and Scatter Gun and opted to stay with Scatter Gun, but Sashay might win from off the pace if the ground is wet.

2. Scatter Gun #1. Should flash early speed. Won here by daylight last year. Her first race since last October.

3. Neilinger #12. Since breaking her maiden at Fair Grounds, she's been third or fourth four straight races.

4. Bruised Orange #11. She showed promise breaking her maiden at Keeneland at first asking but has been inconsistent since.

In case of scratches:

Mo's Love #8, a relatively inexpensive son of Uncle Mo, may have woke up winning for the first time last race. She finally got her act together.

Remember Lucy #16 could do some damage from off the pace. At the same time, it might help her to break from the gate more sharply. Mixed signals.

Race 3. Maiden Special Weight, 2YO, $130,000, 1 Mile

1. Shareholder Value #2. Trainer Amoss has strong stats in this kind of situation, and he adds jockey Geroux to the mix. A $190,000 son of Uncle Mo.

2. En Hanse #1. It doesn't say so in the PP's, but he was bothered in the backstretch in his debut when he finished well to get third. Might run better this time. Trainer Maker knows his way around here and we've seen Hansen offspring run pretty well here this meet. Corey Lanerie has already improved on his 2015 KD meet.

3. Mascarpone #10. A better break from the gate, and he could hit the board.

4. Artful Union #4. Hard trier teams with jockey Hernandez, who knows this course well.

In case of scratches:

Stay Awesome #9. First-timer from the Casse barn cost $300,000 and gets Leparoux.

Solanair #12. Pace factor could hang on.

Race 4. Allowance Optional Claiming $62,500 N2X/N3L, Fillies and Mares 3YO & up, $145,00, 1 Mile

1. Maryanna Star #8. Corey Lanerie rode both this one and Flying Tipat last time out. Both horses ran well at the track last year, and Lanerie rode them both then too. He stays with this one.

2. Kitten's Roar #4. Attracts the services of Geroux. Though he finished ninth at Saratoga in his most recent, he was beaten only three lengths. Has been on the board in six of seven turf races.

3. Bonita Cat #12. She has a new lease on life since being taken off dirt. After one good effort on synthetic she was beaten only two lengths in the Grade III Pucker Up.

4. Moon Medal #3 has been claimed for $40K twice within the last year, most recently out of a race he won at Saratoga. Trainer Stidham is 39 percent first off the claim.

In case of scratches:

Impreached #5. Things didn't work out too well for her in that last start at Mountaineer, but before that she was on the board eight of nine times.

Princess Princess #7 is a veteran of three graded stakes -- she ran pretty well in two of them -- that were sandwiched around a win and a second in an allowance and a listed stake. She was an also-eligible scratched on Thursday from another optional claimer. She was my top pick then, but this race looks a little tougher.

Shes a True Beauty #13 broke her maiden here last fall, looks like she's been pointed to return here since running early in the Saratoga meet.

Flying Tipat #2. See notes for Maryanna Star. Flying Tipat was a late trainer scratch in the $350K Ladies Turf on opening day. She hasn't done that well lately above the $25K optional claiming level.

Race 5. Allowance Optional Claiming $62,500 N2X/N3L, 3YO & up, $145,00, 1 Mile

After a couple of horses, it's difficult for me to separate much of the rest of the field, so I will bet one horse $4 to win and $8 to show.

If the turf is firm or good: Bank Float #9. Three wins, a second and a third in his last five starts, all on turf.

If the turf is yielding or soft: R. Great Adventure #10. He's been running pretty good Brisnet figures, one of the best of which came in his most recent race, which was on yielding turf. He didn't run all that badly in the grade III at Arlington.


Taghleeb #3
Nileator #6
Silver Dagger #11
Bourbon Happens #8

Race 6. Starter Allowance $25,000, Fillies and Mares 3YO & up, $75,000, One Mile 70 Yards

1. Daddy's Boo #5. Front-runner has won on both firm and yielding turf. Geroux rides.

2. Sequiota #4. If the pace is pretty quick, this one can close. Prior to her last race, she finished first or second seven straight times. In that last race, she was behind a very slow pace and couldn't advance on the field.

3. Distorted Type #6. When switched back to turf earlier this year, she won two straight followed by two more races that were sneaky-good. She's had some time off and may be ready to roll again.

4. Yum Yum #2 has run well on firm, good and yielding surfaces; she has one win from six turf starts with two seconds.

In case of scratches:

Donita's Ruler #7 ran second in her only start on turf, and that occurred at Kentucky Downs.

Ascot Girl #9 would have to step up.

Race 7. Starter Allowance $25,000, 3YO & up, $75,000, One Mile 70 Yards

1. Halo Nation #11. Under the same ownership and trainer, he's advanced from $16K claiming to hitting the board in a grade II at Woodbine in just five races, and now he's here.

2. Procurement #12. I don't know if trainer Maker had this race, or a race like this, in mind when he entered Procurement in a $25K claimer at Saratoga two races back. Whatever the purpose, it looks like a good spot has been procured.

3. Cammack #2. He finished third here last year in an N2X allowance and has won five straight under excellent management.

4. Revolt #1. On turf, he has six straight board hits and 19 of 28 overall.

In case of scratches:

Flashy Chelsey #6 won an allowance here last year and then ran fourth in a grade III at Churchill Downs. On turf, has hit the board nine of 11 times.

Let Us Be Glad #4 has his the board on turf eight of 12 starts.

Sayler's Creek #10 is 30-1 on the morning line. That second-place finish at Kentucky Downs you see on the PPs came in a 2014 allowance when he was the 2-1 favorite.

Race 8.  Dueling Grounds Oaks, Fillies 3YO, $200,000, 1 5/16 Mile

1. Try Your Luck #6. Her excellent resume shows three wins and two thirds in her last five starts including a win in the Grade III Pucker Up last time out.

2. Outsider Art #11. Finished third in a Saratoga grade II two races back and won an optional claiming race here last year.

3. Galilea #4. Was beaten only 1 1/2 length in the Pucker Up by the top choice.

4. Mines and Magic #13. Finished third in a grade II on dirt two races back, then connnections thought enough of her to enter her in a grade I on turf, and she finished seventh, beaten only 3 1/4 lengths.

In case of scratches:

School Board Prez #1 is getting better and better in recent races.

Inconclusive #3 was beaten only three lengths in the Pucker Up and finished second to Outsider Art here last year. She didn't have the best trip in the Pucker Up, but it's doubtful she would have won even with the best of trips. She was steadied when on the rail as horses were coming by her.

Race 9.  Exacta Systems Dueling Grounds Derby, 3YO, $350,000, 1 5/16 Mile

1. Oscar Nominated #11. He wasn't cut out for the Grade I Kentucky Derby, and the Grade III Penn Mile wasn't enough distance to suit him. With some trouble, he came close in the Grade II American Derby. Stepping back up to grade I company in the Secretariat, he was bottled up for quite some time in the far turn and finished with good energy. Fifth to the wire, he was beaten less than two lengths. The winning jockey in the Secretariat, Geroux, is in his corner today. He has run well on both firm and good turf.

2. Airoforce #10 used Kentucky Downs as a launching pad last year. After breaking his maiden in his debut at the track, quite an accomplishment in and of itself, Airoforce won the Grade III Bourbon, barely missed in the Grade I Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf and won the Grade II Kentucky Jockey Club in the slop. He failed to move forward on the Derby Trail earlier this year and has been hit-or-miss since then. I'm tempted to say he'll either win or finish off the board, but he looks good enough to hit the board even on an off day. Further, based on his past performances, there should be no concern if the turf is wet.

3. Yo Carm #8. Bombs away. You'd think she must break well to have a shot. She won her most recent race; she won five races back; and in the three intervening races she ran poorly. There could be various explanations for these poor performances. She was "bumped, bothered start", "bothered start" and "broke slow" in those three races. All three of the intervening races were grade III's, and two of them were on dirt. That said, trainer Block certainly knows from experience what it takes to win going long here. Robby rode him in two of the three races with early trouble, and one would think that experience would help, not hinder, today.

4. Crescent Drive #2. Connections thought enough of him to run him in the Grade I Toyota Blue Grass, his only start on dirt, and it didn't work. He was given a break a short time later and now returns second off the layoff for a trainer with a high percentage under that circumstance.

In case of scratches:

Manitoulin #5. Very well bred one comes in three races after breaking his maiden going 1 3/8 mile. Since then, he's run well both times facing winners.

Path of David #6 is well intended but needs to step back up.

Race 10. Maiden Special Weight, 3YO & up, $130,000, 1 Mile

1. McHenry #3. This is his fourth start. He had legitimate excuses his first two races and barely missed in his third.

2. Itsthebourbontalkin #12. Trainer Wilkes and jockey Hernandez have had good fortune together lately. As for the horse, he's finished second twice in four starts. Switch back to turf in his most recent at Ellis Park bodes well since horses from that track have done well this meet.

3. Kabang #10. In his last two races, both at Saratoga, he attracted the services of Jose Ortiz, winner of the jockey title there. It looks like this deep closer won't have all that much speed in front of him.

4. Curlins Vow #2. Has been knocking on the door.

In case of scratches:

Tough But Sweet #15, a $250,000 purchase with two races under his belt, ran well when switched to turf in the second one.

Barahona #16 hasn't quite figured things out yet and needs better racing luck. It's hard to say if things will add up for him in this one, but he has shown a willingness to persevere in the late stages of his races.

Good luck to us all!


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