Saturday, February 25, 2017

Risen Star Stakes 2017

Risen Star Stakes
Fair Grounds Race Course
Post Time: 5:00 PM CT
Distance: 1 1/16 m (Dirt)

1 –  Girvin
2 – Untrapped                                                  
3 – Local Hero   
4 –  Arklow                                                         
5 –  Shareholder Value                                 
6 – Guest Suite                                                
7 – US Officer
8 –  Cool Arrow
9 –  Mo Town
10 – Takeoff
11 – Sorry Erik
12 – Horse Fly
13 – It’s Your Nickel
14 – So Conflated

Full Disclosure --- I think this race is completely up for grabs. I do believe there are a few “throw away” picks here……but, not as many as any bettor might like -- I would not be surprised to see a mild upset here....or a relative long shot pull off a victory!

Let’s begin with the favorites.

#1 Girvin – is going off at 6-1 – I see this horse as being closer to 8-1 or 10-1  -- he has 1 victory in 2 races, at this point I believe his odds (and hopes) are based on his Sire Tale of Ekati – very good horse in his day, but “he’s” not running today.

#3 Local Hero – has 1 victory in 3 races – in two of those races he finished second – and his lone victory was his last race here at the Fairgrounds. Local Hero has a great starting spot – and he’s very comfortable taking an early lead and not letting up. Currently he’s going off as the second favorite, that could change (in many ways) before the bell. His sire was Hard Spun – and this horse looks like a contender.

#6 Guest Suite – has won 3 out of 5 races --  He most recently won the LeComte Stakes here at the Fairgrounds with an impressive run in the mud  -- very solid choice here.

** However #2 Untrapped finished 2nd in the LeComte and Untrapped was gaining ground on the leader as they hit the wire… 10-1 odds he could surprise -- also HorseRacingNation has him ranked higher than Guest Suite.

Rounding out the Lecomte were the following horses:
#10 Takeoff (3rd), #4 Arklow (4th), #5 Shareholder Value (5th).

The favorite is #9 Mo Town – he has won 2 out of 3 career races – and his last victory at the Remsen Stakes is definitely worth a view:

As you can see Mo Town finishes strongly -- However I am not crazy about the 91 days he’s had off since his last race, or that he’s switching tracks. 

Strangely Sensitive Cheetah
can't help but sing
along to Motown's
Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch!!!
It would not surprise me if he needs this race to shake off some rust, also would not surprise me if he doesn’t take to the track – could be a big disappointment.

**Also can we PLEASE stop celebrating his sire Uncle Mo – he had a terrible name, and was a relatively disappointing 3 year old horse – I don’t care how well he breeds!

Also in the mix is #8 Cool Arrow – (sounds like a bad Marvel Super Hero, or a nickname that Cupid is hoping will pick up steam) – Cool Arrow has 3 victories in 6 attempts – he also has the most earnings of any of these horses $282K. He recently picked up a win over #7 US Officer in the Remington Springboard Mile Stakes – at 15-1 this horse has my attention.

However both Cool Arrow and US Officer are coming off of a 76 day layoff.

You know.....maybe you call me Cool Arrow???
Meanwhile rounding out the bunch are the Longshots….however these odds have me interested.

#11 Sorry Erik – 30-1 odds --- 3 wins in 8 attempts – that’s a lot of experience for a horse this age. And he’s fresh off of a victory.

#12 Horse Fly – 30-1 odds – 1 victory in 6 attempts – Also fresh off of a victory.

#13 It’s your Nickel – 30-1 odds – 2 victories in 3 attempts – Fresh off of a victory

#14 So Conflated – 10-1 odds – 2 victories in 3 attempts and winner of the California Derby  – Fresh off of a victory.

All of these “longshots” have raced in the last 20 to 35 days -- and at this age, that kind of consistency can help.  

My picks and my betting strategy would be completely different in this one.

Closing Speed likes: Local Hero, Untrapped, Mo Town

If I’m betting $10 on this race I like:

$1 Exacta - 3/9 with 2/6/8/11/14