Before beginning this week's handicapping edition, I must pass along my sincere thanks to Travis Stone of Louisiana Downs and Nick Tammaro for the great work we were all a part of for the 32nd Super Derby. Travis's call was outstanding and Nick and I did manage to produce a some strong picks, so all in all, the trip was a rousing success and indeed a pleasure.
The race of the week this week is the Grade 1 $1,000,000 Woodbine Mile to be held on Sunday at Woodbine in Ontario, Canada. It is considered a key prep race each year for the Breeders' Cup Mile and there are certainly some horses in the field of twelve that will be a part of the field for the Mile in November. Here is the analysis:
My top pick for the Woodbine Mile is #4 Courageous Cat, who is working a two race win streak entering this event. He has not raced, however, since July 2, when he won the Grade 1 Shoemaker Mile at Hollywood Park at even money. The Bill Mott trainee has posted Beyer figures of 103 in each of those two wins. You have to be impressed that the horse went coast-to-coast in the space of a month for those scores, as the other of the two wins came in the Grade 3 Poker at Belmont Park. I will use #9 Side Glance in the second spot. He won the Group 3 Sovereign Stakes at Sailsbury in Great Britain last time out on August 11. He also ran 3rd in the Group 2 Summer Mile at Ascot on July 9. His Racing Post ratings in the last four starts have all been at 113 or better, so he certainly should be a factor in this spot. How about a nice juicy 30-1 shot to like in here with #3 Woodbourne? Woodbourne ran 3rd behind Court Vision (who is back to defend his title) in last year's Woodbine Mile at odds of 52-1. His first win since that shocking show finish was last time out on August 20 in an Optional Claiming race at this distance. This gelding is most definitely a horse for the course with seven wins in twenty starts over the Woodbine greenery. Finally, I will put #5 Right One in the fourth spot off the win in the Grade 3 Jaipur at Belmont on July 16. Trainer Christophe Clement has a well-deserved reputation as a turf ace and he has had this gelding on a roll since coming to North America. He has three wins and a third in four starts since arriving here in April. Here is the play for the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile:
$10 WIN #4
$1 TRI 4-9 with 3-4-5-9 with 3-4-5-6-8-9-12
Remember, They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers placed in conjunction with these selections. They are merely suggestions. Tune in again next week for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!