Opening Day at Belmont is upon us, and like most of you, we're experiencing a bit of post Saratoga depression. The good news is that we're coming into today off a wonderful summer where we displayed a flat bet profit while winning with 10 of our last 35 selections & crushing it in our "Beatable Favorites" category.

Let's keep the summer streak alive !


I'd like to leave this bit of info here for y'all. When we're using the DRF Formulator platform while writing our columns, if we say "Sprints", for the most part we mean any one turn race, and when we say "Routes", we mean any TWO turn race. ( For example, we consider a 1 1/8th mile race at Belmont an elongated sprint, and a 6 1/2 furlong race at a Charles Town a route. ) We feel this way, because in our eyes, it's the number of turns that necessitate more energy than being relaxed on a straightaway. Sometimes the sample size for our study can be too large to manually break down, so there may be a few from one category in another, but usually the end result is pretty much the same!

Today's Beatable Favorite(s): None

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Belmont - 9/7 - Opening Day


Race  1


2.La Maquina Gris

3.Ragnar Lothbrook

#1 MONACO spit the bit at the halfway point in latest, but cuts back to one turn today and the runner up from that afternoon came back to win next time out. Philly pilot comes in for the mount, and we'll give this one a tepid nod in the meet's opener. #3 LA MAQUINA GRIS is a fairly consistent sort ( been a part of the super in six straight ) and was a clear runner up at this level when last seen up here at The Spa ( we haven't left yet ! ). #5 RAGNAR LOTHBROOK is a bit light from a speed figure perspective, but we like the way he improved from the first start to the second, and as this is only his 2nd try over a fast surface, we'll give him a shot for further improvement.


Race  2

1.Bustin Hoffman 

2.Saloon Girl


#2 BUSTIN HOFFMAN makes his debut today, and this Cowboy typing at Midnight likes his chances based on the 384 Tomlinson figure for the distance as well as the fact that the sire has been doing exceptionally well of late ( 18% with runners of this type over the last five years ). Would like to see this one sending beneath Kendrick. #4 SALOON GIRL has a bullet gate breeze on display for today's career starter, and that always merits inclusion in our eyes. Gal only went for three large at auction, but you must respect the barn, and Double D has done some good things for them as well. #5 CARTAYON is decently bred and can round out the top three.  NOTE: AS OF 12:29, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #1 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  3


2.Miss Katie Bug

3.Greased Lightning

#5 MERCURIAN faded badly after just a half'a mile in the last, but posted some honest enough numbers in the prior quintet of outings, and if  the most recent was just an aberration, then perhaps you can give this one another shot at a square price. #7 MISS KATIE BUG is dropped to a career low in the first start off the claim by Papa Englehart and should get a nice stalking trip from this outside slot. #1 GREASED LIGHTNING was a bit flat at Timonium, but hung up an adjusted 69.8 in the prior outing and is eligible to rebound.  NOTE: AS OF 12:39, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #3 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  4 

1.Tanya's Gem 

2.Blue Atlas

3.Esther the Queen

#5 TANYA'S GEM is about a 10% better horse on the turf than the dirt, and that being said, the 68 earned in the recent dirt try appears solid with this group. Bobblehead excels with speedy turf sprinters. #8 BLUE ATLAS is put up for sale for the first time today by Pletcher, and you can expect Todd to be aggressive with his stock early on at the meeting to reverse the course for what was ( for him ) a slightly disappointing Saratoga meeting. #9 ESTHER THE QUEEN hasn't been seen since Hector was a pup, but was doing some good work last year and is an obvious factor if sound.  OFF TURF: 3-6(MTO)-7(MTO)-5-10


Race   5


2.Our Whim

3.Impazible Creek

You can feel free to draw lines through the last two of the #6 PARANOIA, as she's gotten smacked around a bit at the onset of the last duet, and brown filly has partaken in the super over the prior eight starts just before that. Never been entered this cheaply, so connections will have this one ready to go. #1 OUR WHIM is a nibbling nibbler, that's for sure. 21:1-9-5 lifetime mark pretty much says that this gal likes to run "amongst" the horses, rather than "in front" of 'em. Seems like an ideal "unders" candidate. #2 IMPAZIBLE CREEK finished 2nd in her lone "second off the L/O" try and finds herself at her lowest level to date. May spice things up beneath.


Race  6 

1.Lady Bergen


3.Baby Boss

#6 LADY BERGEN has loads of speed and fought the good fight when finishing second up north a month ago at this level. Four year old filly is 1 for 2 over this oval ( the loss coming in the debut ) and last win came beneath today's pilot. Grab her by the tail to get the glory. #8 SATISFY has improved with each start, and the second & third place finishers from the recent tally, came back to finish 1st & 2nd in their subsequent outings ( improving the speed figures by an average of six points ). Has a tremendous shot if the above gets hooked up w/the rail horse early on. #3 BABY BOSS closed out the tri in this race on 8/8 and has yet to miss the top four in any start over a glib surface. 


Race  7

1.Anne Dupree

2.Semper Sententiae 

3.Competition of Ideas

#11 ANNE DUPREE was claimed out of the last for $40,000 and is promptly brought back in a spot where she is protected against the purchase. Gal went 39-58-75-73 in her turf "routings" and we like to see that kind of improvement with lightly raced runners. #1A SEMPER SENTENTIAE ( cross entered tomorrow, so check the changes ) had a difficult sojourn in the overture on opening weekend in Toga town, but posted a nice numero that afternoon, and pedigree tells us that there is MUCH room for improvement. Jockey upgrade ( at least from the last meet ) duly noted. #6 COMPETITIONOFIDEAS has been a bit of a money burner thus far, but has the hood added today, and should be left in the hopper. OFF TURF: 6-1A-9-7-1  NOTE: AS OF 12:31, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH THE #4 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  8 

1.Broadway Run

2.Miz Mayhem

3.Souper Striking

#3 BROADWAY RUN is but a half length shy of a three for three ledger, and you can draw the ol' "upwards arrow" alongside the Beyer figures. We love that this one draws directly outside our secondary selection, as it will permit Saez to employ whatever tactics he deems fit. #2 MIZ MAYHEM has won a sensational five in a row, and has the ability to either send or rate a bit. Hard to fault with those siding here. #7 SOUPER STRIKING bested half the field in her lone turf dash, and as that was merely her debut, ( and as there's been some nice progression since ), we'll give this one a shot trying this trip for the second time.  OFF TURF: 3-5-4-6-11(MTO)


Race  9 

1.Hot Mesa  


3.Dublin Leprechaun

#1 HOT MESA went 59-62 in his first two starts ( and only starts over a fast track ), then caught the mud--a turf route--and goo again. Alvarado sticks around and this one is uuber dangerous if able to catch a fast track once again. #3 ATMOS is an $80,000 bred animal who is now in for 1/4th of that amount for today's career opener, and the last workout was the best one yet. #6 DUBLIN LEPRECHAUN has closed out the exacta in three of his last four on the brown stuff, and one of those figs came back a 63.2, which kinda fits with these. 



Saratoga           ( Final )   80-404   ( $865.30 )     Beatable Favorites:   7-40  ( 17.5% )  Favorites Win %: 142-404 ( 35.2% ) 

Belmont             ( Final )  88-499   ( $829.00 )     Beatable Favorites   12-39  ( 30.7% ) Favorites Win %: 170-499 ( 34.1% )

Indiana Grand     ( Final ):  3-8       ( $12.40 )      Beatable Favorites:   N/A                    Favorites Win %: 4-8         ( 40.0% )

Aqueduct Spring ( Final ): 15-138   ( $167.50 )    Beatable Favorites: 6-15  ( 40.0% )    Favorites Win % :61-138   ( 44.2% )

Aqueduct Winter ( Final ): 67-317   ( $493.40 )    Beatable Favorites: 4-17  ( 23.5% )    Favorites Win %: 121-328 ( 36.9% )

Graded Stakes     ( Final ):  7-45     ( $46.00 )     Beatable Favorites: 2-3    ( 66.7% )     Favorites Win %: 20-45    ( 44.4% )

All Triple Crown, Breeders' Cup, Selected Grade 1's and Travers full days  ( These are also counted in the "Dirt Tracks" category ):

( 2014-2018 Final ): 53-334   ( $466.00 ) Beatable Favorites: 16-49 ( 32.7% ) Favorite's Win %: 110-334  ( 32.9% )  +/-: -30.2% against a 17.1% takeout  

Poly Tracks 2014-6 (All Final): 85-568      ( $819.20 )   Beatable Favorites : 15-68    ( 22.1% ) Favorite's Win %: 163-587    ( 27.7% ) +/-: -27.6%  against a 15.6% takeout

Dirt Tracks  2014-8 (All Final):1946-9413 ($16,325.50)Beatable Favorites : 286-1026( 27.9% )Favorite's Win %: 3445-9507( 36.2% ) +/-: -13.6%  against a 16.7% takeout

Cumulative Stats   (All Final): 2031-9981 ($17,144.70) Beatable Favorites : 301-1094( 27.5% )Favorite's Win %:3608-10094( 35.8% )+/-: -14.1% against a 16.6% takeout