SaratogaBets Handicapping - Kevin Cox's Belmont Selections & Analysis - 6/18


One was the loneliest number for us here yesterday.  

Today's Beatable Favorite(s): None

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. Additionally, when it comes to layoffs, we consider more than 50 days in a dirt to dirt scenario a layoff, more than 58 days in D to T or T to D a layoff, and more than 67 days in a turf to turf deal a L/O. Furthermore, if we amend our selections for a wet track, and the track becomes fast, our original selections are in play.


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Belmont - 6/18


Race  1


2.Storied Fella


#1 DATESFREEDOM ( cross entered yesterday, so check the changes ) returned after an 8 1/2 month layoff to show some early hoof before playing the fade ( after getting smacked around at the onset ), and now gets the wonder drug for today's second off the shelf try. The bow -- way back when -- may "look" to have been grotesque, but we actually assigned him an adjusted Beyer of 48.4 from that day, and it came AT a higher level, & WITHOUT Lasix & front wraps, which are now a part of the makeup. Being we go anywhere in a maiden's PP's to find something positive...   #3 STORIED FELLA showed precipitous improvement from the first start to the next, and gets the "Big L" off that effort. #5 SENSIBLECONCLUSION should be no worse than 3rd in a race where our listed troika will suffice. 


Race  2

1.Ocean Deep

2.Prayer Book

3.Super Wicked Charm

#1 OCEAN DEEP has been a completely different animal since being switched back to the verde two months back, & posted an adj. 68.7 last time out, which fitsdecently here, doesn't it ? Grey fella outran his odds in the lone start when breaking from the pine, and we'll lean this way at a price. #4 PRAYER BOOK closed out the tri @ 29-1 when last in action, and gets a nice jockey change after being "hard held" in that event. #5 SUPER WICKED CHARM may plod along for a piece.  OFF TURF: 7-4-1-6-5 


Race  3

1.Streaming Tap 

2.Super Quality

3.Rugged Union 

#2 STREAMING TAP had no palpable excuse for the poly flop down in Hallandale Beach a couple'a months back, but bested more than half the field in his initial turf try, and did decent work on the synthetic prior to that ( which we feel translates nicely to the green stuff ). Gelding gets in light & deserves a chance to make amends. #4 SUPER QUALITY has the hood added & is up for grabs for the first time today ( which is saying something, as this one went for 300 large at Ocala just a year ago. Take a peek pre race. #7 RUGGED UNION only bested three in his first start after 16 flips of the calendar, but had an awful ride that day ( gets a jockey switch today ), and is another pricey purchase with a "For Sale" sticker attached to his butt for the 1st time.  OFF TURF: 6-1-8-1-11


Race  4 

1.Bad Guy

2.Durkin's Call

3.Dream Bigger

#1 BAD GUY has missed the board in five straight, but is halved in price whilst dropping to his lowest level to date, an chronic nibbler may be a bit better than the recent belies ( 69.6 adjusted BSF ). In a wild anomaly, this one breaks from the wood for the first time -- in his 34th start on the dirt. Uncharacteristic bullet breeze on the 7th tells us that this one may be a bit closer to -- or even ON -- the lead this afternoon. #6 DURKIN'S CALL has hit the board in two of three off a break & is another who's yet to see this level. #2 DREAM BIGGER is a bit of an in and outer, but the 4-9 mark at today's dist. ( 1-10 otherwise ) is reason enough to include. 


Race  5


2.Holiday Jazz

3.Boss Cara

#5 THE GODDESSOFSNAKES takes the obligatory hike in class after being snagged for three dimes on the 22nd of May, and if you can see your way clear of that disappointing effort on a "good" turf course, what you have is a runner on a 3:1-0-2 streak when going over a fast track. 18% jock & 18% shotcaller on a 6:4-0-1-1 tear of late when working in tandem ( $8 x 2, $6 & $5 ), and there may be some hidden value here. #3 HOLIDAY JAZZ ( spotted yesterday ) was a stumblin' and a bumblin' at the onset 22 days in the rear, but still managed to split the allotment at 12-1, and dismiss barn at your own risk. #2 BOSS CARA ( another entered on Friday ) missed the super in the first five starts to her working life, but has done just the opposite in her octet since, & makes all kinds of sense. 


Race  6 


2.Wolfie's Dynaghost

3.Sanctuary City

#3 PENALTY showed zilch in the comebacker, but has done decent work at today's distance of ground, and we'll swing away in a feature where we feel the favorite may be a tad overbet. #5 WOLFIE'S DYNAGHOST was in the rear with the gear when going over softish ground on 5/22, but forgetting about that, is an honest 5:1-1-2 when going long on a firm lawn. Best chance of winning is by sending, and hoping the inside is off his game a bit. James Ferraro has done a fantastic job with #2 SANCTUARY CITY, as this $5,000 homebred goes over the $400,000 mark with a a mere 2nd place finish today, and as that's happened in his last troika, it's quite feasible. 


Race  7


2.Beauty Amazed

3.Carpe's Dream

#6 PARQUETRY got walloped when facing winners for the first time ( while also making his first try off a respite ), but rider sticks around ( which is encouraging ) and blinks are now a part of the package. Mild choice in an extremely salty optional event. #10 BEAUTY AMAZED was "rewarded" after the Ireland maiden breaker by receiving the unkindest cut of all, and gets Lasix for his North American bow. Expecting Saez to send this one early on to try & overcome the outside post position. #2 CARPE'S DREAM has improved w/each passing sod start, and is another now in receipt of the wonder drug.  OFF TURF: 9-3-6-1-5  NOTE: AS OF 12:09, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH, THE #7 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  8 

1.Air Attack

2.Prince James

3.Pioneer Spirit

#6 AIR ATTACK is two of six at the trip, and returns off a brief freshening. Meeeeeekest of selections. #2 PRINCE JAMES ( uncoupled barnmate with the above ) is dropped in class after likely being placed above his sweet spot over his last quartet, and could wake up. #3 PIONEER SPIRIT is an absolutely sensational 14:7-0-5 at today's dx., and nine year old "horse" ( THAT'S the spirit !! ) is reacquainted with blinkers after having them removed for the first time in 48 starts. 


Race  9 


2.Forty Two Ace

3.Amedeus Music

#1 GIRAMONTE fell short by only a head when placing directly in front of a next out winner in his sole "true" start off a respite ( at 9-1 ), and did the same in his one start when first to load. There is but one only other signed on with sprinter's speed, and given this one ran a 21 & 4 opening quarter last out, we're hoping for a gunning from the gate. #9 FORTY TWO ACE went coast to coast like butter and toast in his sole start off a hibernation, and has been gelded since last in action. BIG switch to Saez in play. #2 AMEDEUS MUSIC was much better when going over the gramma for the 2nd time two fortnights back, and we'll toss in the mix.  OFF TURF: 7-2-1-9-4  NOTE: AS OF 12:13, DUE TO A LATE SCRATCH, #10 WILL BE OUR 3RD SELECTION.


Race  10




#2 STJAMES has gone 57-66 in both starts over firm going, so right off the bat, who knows where his ceiling is in that regards, and as the adjusted figaro from the lattermost of those was a 71.9 ( which fits with these ), we'll bite at what will likely be a big #. #3 THISTLE has shown zippo in either start thus far, but is "2nd off the L/O-2nd time firm ground" today, and we like that there's no scary drop. #5 REMOTE tried to run without the jockey last time out, but that's not entirely legal, and rates another shot -- especially if able to get back to the penultimate effort.  OFF TURF: 1-3-5-7-9


Belmont             ( Current ): 68-287  ( $391.60 ) Beatable   Favorites    4-19 ( 21.1 % )  Favorites  Win %: 107-287 ( 37.3% ) ( As of Saturday morning ) 

Graded Stakes   ( Current ): 6-28      ( $50 )       Beatable    Favorites:   0-1   ( 0% )       Favorites  Win %:  8-26      ( 30.7% )


Aqueduct Spring         ( Final ): 34-134   ( $317.10 ) Beatable   Favorites     2-8  ( 25% )    Favorites  Win %: 42-134  ( 31.3% ) 

Aqueduct Winter         ( Final ): 107-438 ( $926.20 ) Beatable  Favorites: 11-40 ( 27.5% )  Favorites Win %: 166-440 ( 37.7% )

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

( 2013-2021 Final ) 74-465  ( $703.70 ) Beatable Favorites: 18-57 ( 31.6% ) Favorite's Win %: 140-414 (33.8%)  +/-: -24.3% against a 16.8% takeout  

Polytracks   2013-16 (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  2013-22 (All Final):3253-16594 ($28,115.40)  Beatable Favorites : 403-1475( 27.3% )Favorite's Win %: 6248-16604 ( 37.6% ) +/-: -15.3%  against a 16.7% takeout

Cumulative Stats    (All Final): 3348-17162 ($28,934.60)   Beatable Favorites : 418-1543( 27.1% ) Favorite's Win %: 6411-17265 ( 37.1% ) +/-: -15.7%  against a 16.6% takeout