Saturday, March 2, 2013

Gotham Stakes 2013

AQUEDUCT - March 02, 2013
Race 10 - 5:02 PM
Gotham S. (Grade III)
Purse - $400,000
Distance - One And One Sixteenth Miles

1 – Transparent
1A – Now and Then
2 – Champion Boy
3 – Escapefromreality
4 – One Pass
5 – Amerigo Vespucci
6 – Siete De Oros
7 – Vyjack
8- Elnaawi
9- Sky Captain
10 – West Hills Giant
11 – Overanalyze

For four of these horses this will be a rematch of the Withers Stakes from 28 days ago – where Escapefromreality finished 2nd, immediately (and conveniently for me) followed by Siete De Oros, Amerigo Vespucci and finishing 5th Champion Boy.

The winner of the Withers Stakes, Revolutionary – will be sitting this one out – but I highly recommend watching Revolutionary muscle through the last two furlongs and willing his way to the Winner’s Circle in this video: 

With his late running style and courage in the final stretch he’s certainly on my radar leading up to the KY Derby.

This is also a rematch of the January 5th - Jerome Handicap – where #7 Vyjack defeated Siete De Oros and Amerigo Vespucci.

 Vyjack enters this race undefeated in three outings – however he also enters this race as the second morning line favorite – going off at 3/1.

#11 Overanalyze is the (slight) morning line favorite at 5/2 --- however he has been off for 98 days since his victory in the Remsen Stakes, where he narrowly defeated Normandy Invasion. The question you have to ask yourself as bettor is: Will this horse be better for having fresh legs and three months training since we last saw him – or – will he come out rusty?

In my opinion the Gotham boils down to the potential that Overanalyze brings to this race versus Vyjack’s recent and steady success – however there are a few horses that I believe could surprise this Saturday.
Strangely Sensitive Cheetah
still thinks Eartha Kitt
was the best Catwoman

#8 Elnaawi (Son of Former Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense) has only two races on his resume, but won his last outing and his breeding suggests distance may not be a factor for this horse. Going off as a bit of a mystery and at 8/1 in this race makes him intriguing.

#4 Ore Pass has won two out of his career three races and he may be the early leader in this race. He hasn’t been tested at this distance – and I think he’ll fade a few furlongs short….but I believe he’s also possible of pulling out a long shot upset here, especially if the track is muddy – 12/1 has me thinking.

Two horses that concern me are #1a Now and Then who enters this race with only one 6 furlong race to his credit – (however it was a victory) and #9 Sky Captain who was a fall time favorite with fans but has finished a disappointing 5th and 2nd in his last two races.

Sky Captain concerns me because I believe this horse could have a lot of talent and is just looking for the right race to flash his potential – at 8/1 odds he has my attention.

In closing, Vyjack is the horse to beat in this race --- and if weather isn’t a factor I don’t see this horse finishing any worse than 3rd. If the track is sloppy they may still run the horse to give him a feel of running in the beginning of the month – but they may not push him to win on a muddy track – that goes for any Kentucky Derby hopeful.

I believe Overanalyze is a bit of a risk in this race for the odds they’re giving – but he could be the most talented horse in the field.  

I also can’t help but bite on the “mystery” of Elnaawi –

Closing Speed likes:  7,8,11

I believe the best option in this race is to take one of the favorites to win followed by a longshot.

Exacta $1 – 7,11 with 3,6,8,9 = $8

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