Sometimes as handicappers, we have a tendency to only watch the horse we bet on in a given race. I try not to do that as much as possible, but it happens a lot. And because of this, we are probably more apt to notice anything out of the ordinary that our horse encounters, overcomes, or falls victim to. On Thursday at Kentucky Downs, I noticed interesting occurrences with two of my top selections. And you’re gonna want to watch both of these replays for yourself. You may agree or disagree with my observations.
Race 4: Paper Clip
Sent of as the third choice at 3.9-1 and running with blinkers off under John Velazquez for Wesley Ward, I expected Paper Clip to come from off the pace in this MSW event. But the race did not unfold as I anticipated. Paper Clip was rushed into early contention, battled for the early lead, got swallowed up turning for home, was at least five lengths behind the leaders in the final 3/16ths, and then flew home to almost get 2nd, missing the win by about 1 1/2 lengths. It was a very strange trip. One can’t help but wonder what might have been the outcome had Johnny taken Paper Clip back in the early going. The chart below does not adequately illustrate the trip. I’m not saying Paper Clip was best, but she ran very well all things considered. Go watch the replay for yourself. You need to see it. Then add her to your stable mail. She’s going to run big next time.
Race 7: Malibu Party
I really thought I was on to something with her in this MSW for 2yo fillies. Sent off at 14-1, I used her in a contest and with real money. But I don’t think that fact is in any way affecting my perception of her effort. She had a great trip early, looked like she might win briefly turning for home, and was never going to be a threat to the winner. Never. But she was clearly headed for 2nd, and probably would have been within 2-3 lengths at the wire, until she veered in badly late to interfere with Lady Leah and Freedom Passage. There is no doubt in my mind that had she run 2nd, she would have been DQ’d. And I think her rider knew that too. Watch the replay. After the bumping, he basically stops riding and let the other two kick on, maybe because he knew he would come down. But without the incident, Malibu Party is much closer at the end. Watch for her return.