by Dustin Fabian
January 27, 2018
Value is the paramount metric I use when handicapping races. A horse I love at 3/1 odds is often not a horse I love if those odds are 3/5. And a Pick 4 pool becomes a lot more enticing when there’s $500K in the pool, as compared to $5K.
I think that’s why carryover and mandatory payout days mean so much to me. I’ve learned that a carryover represents ‘dead money’ – money I can win, but money that can’t beat me. When I’m handicapping the races on a given day, one of the first places I turn is Xpressbet’s carryover chart. Even a small(ish) carryover can lead to a big payday.
But nominal size isn’t the name of the game this Sunday at Gulfstream Park. No sir. They’re going big this time of the year. So big in fact, that there’s a $3.9 million carryover in the Rainbow 6 that must be paid out Sunday. Talk about dead money!
Nailing Sunday’s sequence won’t be easy, though. Gulfstream, as usual, has put up its best defenses on mandatory payout day, most notably a six-race sequence chock full of competitive, even fields. I’m not sure you’ll find any heavy favorites in this lot. And to make your challenge even tougher, as of this writing, there is a 30% chance of precipitation on Sunday in Hallandale (down from 80% earlier in the week), so be sure to keep an eye on conditions throughout the card.
But like I said, get this one right and you’ll be swimming in cash. Here is a recommended ticket for the Rainbow 6 that begins with Race 7, at 3:05PM ET. Selections are based on fast and firm conditions, so please consider that while making your bets.
The kickoff leg of the Pick 6 is a tough one-mile starter allowance on the lawn and finding the winner won’t be easy. Ultimate Cause goes out for the potent Mike Maker/Tyler Gaffalione tandem while Bonita Springs gets a deserved drop in class and returns to her preferred surface. Madame Uno makes her first start for David Fawks and Javier Castellano rides, while Farcical Feline has excellent tactical speed and a pair of wins at the distance.
Three-year-old turf fillies take center stage in the second leg and, I’m going to sound like a broken record, but this is another competitive bunch. Camila Princess, who breaks from the rail, has won a pair of turf races and is ‘must use’ to me. I’ll also use Loooch Racing’s Nikki’s Cause. She keeps Castellano and has won two races locally since December 7. Finally, Wesley Ward’s Nootka Sound is a filly that you should probably use. She blew the doors off a MSW field at Keeneland last April before a poor effort at Royal Ascot, where she faced a massive field of 22 runners. I can overlook that.
Victor Barboza Jr. puts his go-to rider, Emisael Jaramillo, on a first-time starter, the outside-drawn Gran Red, and that’s a money move for me. Barboza and Jaramilly have scored at a 33% clip in 2017/18 and have a flat bet $2.34 ROI. That’s huge. No clue if he can run or not, but the human connections are in his corner. I’m also using Octopythius, who goes out for a good debuting barn (Eddie Kenneally) and I’ll use Gitgo, who gets Castellano and drops in class off a decent debut at Tampa Bay.
Princess Knoll was claimed out of a similar race two back (that one had N3L conditions) and has been 1st or 2nd in 6-of-7 local starts. She means business. First Distinction may sit ‘the’ trip, especially with the red hot Luis Saez in the saddle. She likes Gulfstream as well (10-2-2-3).
Dance Rhythms was absolutely untouchable in her first local start and I love that the Romans barn gets aggressive and protects her after offering her at a $50K tag last out. She’s a single in my book. Plus, being by Algorithms and out of a Hard Spun mare, she’s very appealing on a wet track. The fact that Luis Saez keeps the mount only ups my interest.
If you’ve made it this far (in both this blog and your picks), I give you a bunch of credit. This isn’t an easy sequence to handicap. I’ve you’ve gotten this far, have some fun with it. Use some horses and see what happens. I’ll be betting Francesco Appeal, Inmyfathersimage, Paden, Sandro and Starship Apollo.
Race 7: 1, 4, 7, 9
Race 8: 1, 5, 6
Race 9: 2, 7, 9
Race 10: 2, 3
Race 11: 4
Race 12: 4, 8, 9, 10, 12
Ticket Cost: $72.00