Friday, January 25, 2008

The MAXXAM Gold Cup

There are two big Stakes races on Saturday night at Sam Houston Race Park. The $100,000 MAXXAM Gold Cup has a field of six (five betting interests) and my top pick in the feature is Tap Dancing Mauk. The Dale Romans trainee has been off since winning the Zia Park Distance Challenge at the MAXXAM distance of 1 1/8 Miles. The Sire is 1996 Preakness winner, Louis Quatorze. The Asmussen entry of Reporting For Duty and Red Rock Creek will be next. Reporting For Duty faced some of the top three-year-olds in the land last year and acquitted himself quite well. Red Rock Creek has a shot, but is 0 for 7 over the Houston main track. The most intriguing horse in the field is Honest Man, who has won three straight and posted a 99 Beyer figure in his last score at Fair Grounds.
The other Stakes race on the program is the $50,000 Sam Houston Distaff. I will side with the entry of Miss Peachtree and Buy The Barrel. Miss Peachtree gets Martin Escobar aboard and Buy The Barrel is trained by Hard Spun's conditioner, Larry Jones. Dallas Keen will send Lemony Cricket to the post in the Distaff after she hit the board in her last five efforts. Bob McNair's Stonerside Stable is represented by Bold Angel, who has two lifetime wins, both coming at Sam Houston Race Park. Here's wishing the best of luck to you all.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Saturday the 19th

Sam Houston tonight might present a couple of nice opportunites featuring former Stakes winners at the Houston track. Banquo is a former Asmussen trainee that scored a win last time out as part of the New Year's Eve card here. He runs in the 6th race. Later on the card in the 8th race is Snuck By. It is hard to believe (for me) that he has not won yet this meeting. I think tonight might be the night for it, though. Might be worth a look at the 7th to see if you can hook a Pick Three with these races tonight. I myself selected Chivas Royal in the 7th, but maybe you can ferret out a better price for that leg of the action. Also tonight, we have guest announcer James Witherite-Rieg calling two races (and three on Sunday) tonight. He does a fine job as the voice of Harrah's Chester Downs in Pennsylvania and handled a tough night last night with hard rain falling with aplomb. Check it out tonight at Sam Houston Race Park.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Sam Houston Saturday Night

Tonight at SHRP features an interesting turf race for the eighth race on the menu. A winner from Texas Champions Day returns to action (Jenz Benz, winner of the San Jacinto) and she faces a tough bunch of runners in this spot. Quincy Hamilton rides Baby Doll Blues, who won over the Houston turf last time out. A longshot to like could be the Danny Pish trainee, Senora Tormenta, who is a nice 8-1 on the morning line. Exclusive Hopper comes to Houston from South Florida, where she was running at Calder Race Course. The pick here will be Jenz Benz, who is coupled in a betting entry with Wild Encounter, also a former Stakes winner at SHRP. Her turn of foot on TCD was an impressive one and if she duplicates that, she should score again.