The Brock Talk

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Female Sprinters Bring Handicapping Challenges And Possible Rewards To Match

The Sentient Jet Filly and Mare Sprint may not have all the history of many of the other Breeders’ Cup races having been run only three times, but the third renewal may be one of the best wagering opportunities of the two days. With a full field of 14 set to go to the post and four of the six favorites breaking from outside the number 10 post position, there may be some opportunities.

Favorite Rightly So comes into the Breeders’ Cup off of wire-to-wire victories in the the grade 1 Ballerina at Saratoga Aug. 28 and the July 5 Bed of Roses Handicap (gr. 2) at Belmont Park. She appears to be plenty fast enough to get to the lead with plenty of time before the final turn having a full three-eighths of-a-mile before making the turn. She is stands out with defending champion Informed Decision, Gabby’s Golden Gal and Champagne d’Oro as the only fillies or mares coming into this race with grade 1 win at the seven furlong distance of this year’s female Sprint. Trainer Tony Dutrow has told the press he has no concerns about the outside post, but that is probably not his only concern.

Defending champion Informed Decision appears to have lost some of her form from last year and comes into this race off of a nice third-place finish in the six furlong TCA Stakes (gr. 2) at Keeneland behind fellow Sprint entrant Dubai Majesty over the Keeneland synthetic. She is a multiple grade 1 winner and has won three times at this distance. She also won the Humana Distaff (gr. 1) at Churchill Downs last year and finished a good third in that race again in July, so she does seem to have a fondness for the Churchill Downs surface. That along with the benefit of breaking from post 4 may give her the boost she needs to repeat but betting her at anything less than her 7-2 morning line does not seem to offer enough return for the risk.

The female sprinter who may throw a monkey-wrench into this race is Bob Baffert-trained Gabby’s Golden Gal breaking from post number seven at 15-1 odds. Although she has not raced since winning the grade 1 Santa Monica Handicap over Santa Anita’s Pro-Ride surface in January, her Saturday morning work at Hollywood Park was very impressive, going a half-mile in :46 4/5 with the greatest of ease. She has all the qualifications to win this race but they were all accomplished more than 10 months ago.

At 15-1 morning line odds and the 1 post, My Jen could also offer some value. In her last race she defeated fellow Breeders’ Cup foes Moontune Missy and Sara Loise in the grade 2 Gallant Bloom Handicap at Belmont Sept. 25. But the 3-year-old filly has taken exceptionally well to the Churchill Downs surface since arriving from New York and has the stalking running style that might set up well for her if she can manage to stay out of trouble along the rail of a full field of sprinters.

Breaking two gates outside of My Jen, Secret Gypsy will be trying to add to her three-race winning streak in the Filly and Mare Sprint. Since winning the $100,000 Saylorville Stakes at Prairie Meadows in June, Secret Gypsy has won graded stakes at Saratoga and Del Mar while compiling her six-race record this year at six different tracks. She also has a victory over Churchill Downs from five starts under the Twin Spires, but Secret Gypsy seems to take her race track with her wherever she runs. She has no grade 1 wins during her 17-race career, but at 12-1, it may not be wise to discount her.

The 2010 Filly and Mare Sprint provides great wagering possibilities from the $2 win ticket to the more exotic trifectas and superfectas. Like it’s male counterpart on Saturday which has a rich history of rewarding those that can decipher the sprint puzzle, this race seems primed to follow suite.

1. Secret Gypsy
2. Rightly So
3. Gabby’s Golden Gal


Anonymous said...

I think Sara Louise is the best longshot pick on the board as well as Gabby's Golden Gal. She'll be super fresh off just the one race and we all know what she was capable of last year. In the Gallant Bloom she was closing furiously once she found her stride in the stretch.

Enjoy the races, it should be a tremendous day!


John Califano said...

I don't bet, but I like Gabby's Golden Gal for the win. I've been hearing nice things about her and apparently she's been working really well.

Safe trips to all.

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