Louisville: Asi Siempre, Indian Vale, Sugar Shake
by Franco Raimondi (email@example.com) / Globeform ()
Last update: 2007-05-03 08:07:49 (First published: 2007-05-02 15:16:59 )
Churchill Downs: Three names stick out in the 8.5-furlong Louisville Breeders’ Cup (G2).
But – with only seven runners – that means we have only narrowed this down to a little under half the field. Can they run 1-2-3 and make an easy trifecta? Very possible, but if you want to make a healthy profit you have to make your pick, and choose the winner. That decision may not be be so easy, as Santa Maria Handicap (G1) winner Sugar Shake is set to meet last year’s Spinster Stakes (G1) winner Asi Siempre and the lightly raced Grade 2 winner Indian Vale. Can we sort one out on recent form perhaps?
Nope. They all won last time out.
LOUISVILLE BREEDERS’ CUP (G2)
Churchill Downs 4 May 2007 – 8.5 furlongs dirt
Horses presented with best Globeform, sire, rider.
Top ranked horse on 100, with other ranked down in pounds
100 – INDIAN VALE (A.P. Indy) GF 119+ in 2005 / 2007: GF 113+ / J Velazquez
..91 – ASI SIEMPRE (El Prado) GF 112 / G Gomez
..88 – SUGAR SHAKE (Awesome Again) GF 111 / D Flores
..88 – LEMONS FOREVER (Lemon Drop Kid) GF 114? May 2006 / GF 105 / M Guidry
..88 – BAGHDARIA (Royal Academy) GF 105 / R Bejarano
..87 – DELICATE DYNAMITE (Old Trieste) GF 106 / R Albarado
..85 – FIERY PURSUIT (Carson City) GF 102 / C Borel
Indian Vale was so impressive in her comeback race at Aqueduct in March, when setting her own pace and just glisding away for an easy 5 ½-length win over A True Pussycat, who had won a minor stakes race in January and also been a respectable third to India in the Azeri on her two preceding starts. Indian Vale performed to GF 113+ and she has performed to GF 119+. She returned that high number when winning the 2005 Falls City Handicap (G2) by 6 ½ lengths. She runs in front, and there is asnother classy speed runner here, Sugar Shake. She ran to her career best when landing the Santa Maria Handicap (G1) alst time out. Indian Vale has a couple of advantages over her. Firstly, she stays 9 furlongs – so has suoerior stamina, and secondly, she carries 4lbs less than Sugar Shake.
As Siempre, a game winner of the Spinster Stakes (G1) last fall, before being second past the post (demoted) behind Round pond in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1), also has a good chance. She closed into slow fractions, and was visually most impressive, when beating Pyramid Love by a length (at odds-on) in the Doubledogdare (G3) at Keeneland last month. Like Indian Vale, she stays further than this 8.5-furlong trip, and that will be a plus – as the early pace should be solid.
A: 4 INDIAN VALE
B: 1 ASI SIEMPRE, 7 SUGAR SHAKE
WIN: 4 Indian Vale
2 EXACTAS: 4 with 1, 7
A: 4 with 1, 7 with 1, 7
B: 1, 7 with 4 with 1, 7
C: 1, 7 with 1, 7 with 4
A: 4 with 1, 7 with 1, 7 (2)
B: 4 with 1, 7 with 2, 3, 5, 6 (8)
PICK 3 PLAN
R8: 4 Indian Vale
R9: 5 Marcavelly
R10: 11 Rags to Riches
R8: 1 - 7
R9: 5 Marcavelly
R10: 11 Rags to Riches
Aegon Turf Sprint: Wanna play with fire?
Stamina is the the key in the Kentucky Oaks, where we have a heavy favorite, but those who prefer raw speed, and a wide open contest can turn to race seven on the same card. The Aegon Turf Sprint (G3), run over 5 furlongs on the lawn, is a tough race to solve. So much can go badly wrong in so little time, and serious betting on this event can be compared to playing with fire.
RACE 7 – The Aegon Turf Sprint – 5 fur. Turf
Roi Charmant is the horse with a touch of class in this turf sprint. There are some tough, battle hardened speed merchants in this field – but no real star, and two California shippers look interesting. If they can handle Churchill Downs, they have a very good chance. Roi Charmant is an experienced sprinter, who has come up against better than these and done well. He has been second to Night Chapter and Get Funky on his last two starts, both over 6.5 furlongs at Santa Anita, and this drop in distance will be to his liking.
Ellwood and Jake, a 4-year-old with 3 wins from 6 starts, also makes a lot of appeal. The son of Mr Greeley came back with a solid win over the smart runner Doppio at Santa Anita in March. His runner-up had good form going into the race, and won next time out. Ellwood and Jake won at Del Mar last year, and he is probably an adaptable horse. He is not quite as good as the best here, yet, but he is not far off and he is by far the most likely improver in the race.
The Nth Degree won the Shakertown (G3) at Keeneland on his last start, beating Congo King by a neck, with Sgt. Bert 1 ¼ lengths further adrift in third. The winner is 3lbs worse off with both this time and Congo King is perhaps the best card. He had a terrible trip at Keeneland, still very nearly won, and he has post one here. That may or may not be a perfect spot but at least he should get a ground saving trip. Followed by traffic problems in the stretch? Possibly, but on bare form he is in with a winning chance.
Unbridled Sidney, a true course and distance specialist, must also be considered. She is the tepit morning line favorite, following her good win over Smart Enough in the Cherokee Run last time he ran – only worry is, that was way back in November. She is 4-for-6 at Churchill and 6-for-11 over 5 furlongs.
Gaff, good enough to run fifth behind Proud Tower Too in the 2006 Golden Shaheen (G1), is also hard to toss out – despite two below par efforts lately. On his best form, he beats most of these, and he represents the in-form Steve Asmussen barn.
This is not a race to get heavily involved in, but it is the first leg of the Pick 4.
We will play the six mentioned in our plan, with Rags to Riches the key in the Oaks – all three leading contenders in the Louisville and Whatsthescript backing up our P3 banker Marcavelly in the American Turf.
A: 8 ROI CHARMANT
B: 7 ELLWOOD AND JAKE
C: 1 CONGO KING, 3 THE NTH DEGREE, 5 UNBRIDLED SIDNEY, 6 GAFF
WIN: 8 Roi Charmant
EXACTA BOX: 7 and 8
A: 7, 8 with 7, 8 with 1, 3, 5, 6
B: 7, 8 with 1, 3, 5, 6 with 7, 8
C: 1, 3, 5, 6 with 7, 8 with 7, 8
PICK 4 PLAN
R7: 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8
R8: 1, 4, 7
R9: 2, 5
R10: 11 Rags to Riches
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