The wait is finally over & Nirvana is upon us ! Happy Saratoga, everyone !! Enjoy the opening day festivities, and remember, NEVER drink & drive ( ESPECIALLY here ), and if you're at the track, be sure and say "Ah-lo" ( just like that ! ). Let's get right to the card !!

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!

Today's Beatable Favorite(s): Race 2 - #4 Drynachan  Race 4 - #6 Azzedine ( Fr )  Race 5 - Pletcher Entry

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Saratoga - 7/20 - Opening Day


 Race 1

1.Nobody Move

2.Italian Charm

3.Hardly a Secret 

They start out the meet with the traditional break in front of the fans & a "Theyyyyy're off at Saratoga!" from the throngs. #2 NOBODY MOVE ( "Nonsense. By all means--move." - Val Kilmer, Tombstone ) is 1 fer 3 in 2nd off the shelf tries, and Rudy Rod has a crisp 5:4-0-1 ledger with 2nd off the L/O mid level dirt routers coming in off a win, with mutuels of $3, $5, $18 & $5. #8 ITALIAN CHARM ( I can relate ! ) has won both starts when entered for this price, has a pair of thirds when going from green to brown, and from a limited sampling, Maker is 2 for 4 when going turf to dirt with his mid level routers who hit the board less than two fortnights ago at 10-1 or less ( $5 & $8 ). #7 HARDLY A SECRET has a win & a placing when going from one turn to two, and Amoss ( 28% on the norm ) owns an 8-19 ,ark ( 42% ) w/second off the claim dirt stayers at this level who crashed the fiesta in last & are 6-1 or lower ( positive ROI ). 


      Race 2

1.Too FooFoo For You


3.Classy to D' Bone ( AE )

#1 TOO FOOFOO FOR YOU has posted two exceptional speed figures in both starts to date, and there appear to be no world beaters here to get clear of this speedster. Winner from the most recent came back to win a $75,000 stakes down in the Bayou, essentially replicating the last race Beyer. #3 CARALICIOUS bested half the field when a bit green in the overture, ( "Overture, curtains lights. This is it, the night of nights !!" ), and is eligible to mover forward second time out. #11 CLASSY TO D' BONE (AE) needs one to get out in order to get in, but showed some improved early hoof in latest, and gets a MAJOR upgrade in the jockey department today.  OFF TURF: 4-1-10-9-3  BEATABLE FAVORITE: #4 DRYNACHAN


Race 3

1.Fourtythreeoeight N 

2.Strong Side


Not really digging this race, so tread lightly. #8 FOURTYTHREEOEIGHT N goes from grass to sand today, and finished 2nd the only time that was attempted in the past ( w/out a layoff ). Slight improvement in the jockey area today, and we'll give this one the meeeeeeekest of nods in a wide open event. #2 STRONG SIDE is 5:0-3-1-1 when making this surface switch and fared well here on my dad's birthday last year. #6 MONTELEONE got the job done the lone start when in for a tag, and Rosario finished up the Belmont meet in fine fashion. 


      Race 4

1.Shiny Copper Penny

2.Teryn it Up

3.Big Agenda

These three & no more for all our rolling action. The conditioner of the #2 SHINY COPPER is a woeful 5-368 over the last five years ( 1% ) and has just an 18% ITM rate during that span as well, but we have a way to get that batting average up a bit. By using the DRF Formulator platform, we ascertained that when it comes to turf routers that hit the board less than two fortnights ago ( yes---they really use the term "fortnights" ! ) @ 30-1 or under ( any tag ), this barn is a sweet 15:3-3-1, with the winners coming back a robust $18, $13 & $52. Hoping Leparoux SENDS early, and we hopefully get what will be one of many "merry go round" races up here this summer. #9 TERYN IT UP has a nice overall body of work, has a "For Sale" sticker attached to his rear for the first time this afternoon, and blinkers are back in play. Sensible addition. #7 BIG AGENDA was an honest enough third when being hiked up to this level in the first start off the claim for RR, and colt seems to be progressing slowly but surely from a #'s perspective.  OFF TURF: 4-7-8-1-2(MTO)  BEATABLE FAVORITE: #6 AZZEDINE (FR) doesn't make our first cut, so why would we accept favoritism?


      Race 5


2.Wild Type

3.Winandyourin Gin

These three and no more for all our rolling action. #9 MERTZ may get "Lucy" on the lead here, given the brief freshening, nice speed, and outside draw, & is reunited with Irad today. #3 WILD TYPE has a touch of trouble at the onset of the debut down in Louisville, but still managed to get the show dough nonetheless that day. 18% bossman is 3 for 10 with second timers under these conditions who were 1-2-3 23-47 days ago, w/the winners coming back $3, $11 & $4. Note that two returnees from the most recent ( from three different races ) came back to win, with an average Beyer figure improvement of three points for the triad. #4 WINANDYOURIN GIN has a maturity edge over the entire field, boasts the highest Tommy of the lot, and has a bullet gate breeze on the ledger--something that always merits inclusion.  BEATABLE FAVORITE: PLETCHER ENTRY


Race 6

1.Hay Field

2.Dancing all Night


#3 HAY FIELD got up in time to best cheaper just a handful of days ago & is wheeled right back by 'Miah this afternoon. Over the last 60 months, said conditioner is a whopping 7 for 13 with those who tallied less than 10 days ago, and this one owns a 4:1-3-0 mark at the dist. as well. #1 DANCING ALL NIGHT hasn't been seen in nearly an entire calendar, but was doing some good work last annum, and of course, Shug knows a thing or two about having 'em ready. #5 CYPRIANA outran her odds when finishing second in the comebacker on 6/24, and Hennig is on the Mark with 2nd off the shelf allowance dirt dashers who made the tri last out, being 3 fer 9 in that area. 


Race 7 

1.Giant Zinger

2.Hollywood Cat ( AE )

3.Sweet August Lady 

#12 GIANT ZINGER was all out in procuring the sheepskin by a sliver down at Elmont 26 days ago, and Mott is a saucy 3 for 6 with second off the break turf stayers coming in off a maiden win ( 10-1 or lower ). The payoffs were $7, $12 & $16, and there's a sub category of 1-1 right here. #3 HOLLYWOOD CAT  (AE) was another who recently got up by a sliver, and for all her efforts, ended up in a new barn afterwards. The good news tho, is that it's the Servis barn, and he conducted some miracles at Belmont & Monmouth over the last few months. With new acquisitions who are coming in off a score at 6-1 or under ( T/R ), he owns a 3 for 7 mark ( $5, $7 & $11 ) & is also 1 for 1 over this strip. #2 SWEET AUGUST LADY rounds out the top three.  OFF TURF: 5-1-2-3-14(AE)


 Race 8


2.Lonely Road


#4 FIGHTRESS was impressive to the naked eye when winning right out of the box for newbie conditioner Norm Casse ( who's done very well thus far ), and there's been a snsational bullet breeze since that day, so at least there's still some starch left in the collar. Most timid of selections in a cool rendition of the Schuylerville. #5 LONELY ROAD stepped up his game in a big way when snatching the sheepskin downstate five weeks ago, and the pedigree suggests there's still some room for improvement. #8 EYEINTHESKY completes the quartet of Casse runners in here ( 3 Mark, 1 Norm ), and could improve a bit off the slightly boxed in effort in last. 


 Race 9

1.Altea ( Fr )

2.Punked ( Ire )

3.Andina Del Sur

#7 ALTEA (FR) hasn't quite set the world on fire since arriving in the states, but the numeros are surely creeping upward, and as the blinkers go on today, we found out that Brown is 6:4-1-0 when doing such with grass runners going long at this level off sabbaticals of three months or less ( $11, $39, $30 & $9 ). Those are hefty returns for a runner being led over by this clan, and Irad climbs aboard. #1 PUNKED (IRE) ( second half of the uncoupled entry w/the above ) is a bit lighter from a speed fig. aspect than our top choice, but is also slowwwwwly on the improve and draws snugly. #6 ANDINA DEL SUR got the job done in her only "third off the layoff" try, and that's enough reason to include.  OFF TURF: 3-4(MTO)-2-1-5


 Race 10

1.Dark Energy

2.Hello Holiday

3.Double Deep

#2 DARK ENERGY had to tap on the breaks a bit in the most recent outing, but still ended up closing out the superfecta that day, and as there are no superstars entered in this conditional claiming event, it & could move forward in Cheri has a good shot to get her first career win. #11 HELLO HOLIDAY faded late in the game on 6/16, but won the only time he was up fer sale, and could take a step forward in today's second off the hiatus foray. #9 DOUBLE DEEP has partaken in the super in all six trips to the track this year, and gave an okay performance in her first spin on the lawn.  OFF TURF: 8-9-11-2-1



Belmont             ( Final )  88-499   ( $829.00 )     Beatable Favorites   12-39  ( 30.7% ) Favorites Win %: 170-499 ( 34.1% )

Indiana Grand     ( Final ):  3-8       ( $12.40 )       Beatable Favorites:   N/A                  Favorites Win %: 4-8        ( 40.0% )

Aqueduct Spring ( Final ): 15-138   ( $167.50 )     Beatable Favorites: 6-15  ( 40.0% )    Favorites Win % :61-138   ( 44.2% )

Aqueduct Winter ( Final ): 67-317   ( $493.40 )     Beatable Favorites: 4-17  ( 23.5% )    Favorites Win %: 121-328 ( 36.9% )

Graded Stakes     ( Final ):  6-40     ( $43.20 )     Beatable Favorites: 2-3    ( 66.7% )     Favorites Win %: 17-38    ( 44.7% )

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

( 2014-2018 Final ): 52-332   ( $463.20 ) Beatable Favorites: 16-49 ( 32.7% ) Favorite's Win %: 109-332  ( 32.8% )  +/-: -30.3% against a 17.1% takeout   

Poly Tracks 2014-6 (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  2014-8 (All Final):1905-9004 ($15,457.40)   Beatable Favorites : 279-986( 28.3% ) Favorite's Win %: 3301-9098( 36.3% ) +/-: -14.2%  against a 16.7% takeout

Cumulative Stats   (All Final): 1990-9572  ($16,276.60) Beatable Favorites : 294-1054( 27.9% )Favorite's Win %: 3464-9687( 35.8% )+/-: -14.9% against a 16.6% takeout