by Brian Nadeau
October 18, 2018
We’re back to battle with the Stronach 5, with a tough sequence stretching four tracks. To refresh, the Stronach 5 is a Pk5 wager spread across as many as four tracks and three surfaces (dirt, Tapeta and turf), inside of 45 minutes, with a $1 minimum and ridiculously low 12% takeout. I’ll be putting together some prospective tickets in this space each week for a wager that is undoubtedly as good as it gets for the bettors. The pools have been very healthy and interest seems to be building, so swing away!
*** Please take note that this analysis is done upwards of 48 hours in advance, so obviously weather, track conditions and especially late scratches can and will have an effect. Please check back around 12pm Friday for an update. ***
Leg 1: Gulfstream Park West R7 (4:36 ET) – 2yof Florida breds 50k MCL at 5 ½ furlongs
Another tough puzzle at GPW to start things off, so I want to spread, with top honors going to #4 WHATEVERUSAYDEAR (9-2), who likely comes out of the best race, an MSW at Del Park in her career debut, where she was a decent 4th after a slow break. There’s price appeal on #1 BEGIN (6-1), who ran by far her best race the lone time she sprinted on dirt, and the fact it was in her career debut three-back says she should be better this time. I’ll also use the horse to beat, #10 CRUMB BUN (2-1), though she’s tough to trust after six straight losses, has no upside, and her best career figure came in the slop. I’m a sucker for MSW droppers in these races, so I’ll also toss in #7 SUM MO CASH (8-1), who made up a lot of ground late on debut and should be tighter today.
Pk5 A horses (listed in order of preference): 4,1,10,7
Obviously I don’t have a lot of confidence in this spot, so I’ll also use #3 FLYING MY WAY (6-1), who goes for a sharp Plesa barn, but one that is 0-for-25 with firsters, #9 IMMACULATE HEART (15-1), a wakeup 6th in her dirt debut, and #8 LA RUBIROSA (12-1), who has a bullet gate drill for her a debut, for Machado and Berrios, who are 4-for-19 when getting together.
Pk5 B horses: 3,9,8
Leg 2: Santa Anita R3 (5:03 ET) – 2yo 30k MCL at 1-mile
Post is huge here, and the two best horses are drawn inside, so that’s why I only want #1 AGRONOMO (3-1), and #2 R B EYE (4-1), as the former has two big figures (for these) and the latter was a solid 3rd going two turns last time in his dirt debut and runs as a first-time gelding.
Pk5 A horses (listed in order of preference): 1,2
I’m going to use the ML favorite, #6 STAY IN YO LANE, as he wins this with ease if he runs back to his debut, but that last run was so bad, with no apparent excuse, that I find him tough to trust.
Pk5 B horses: 6
Leg 3: Gulfstream Park West R8 (5:09 ET) – 3upfm AOC at 1 1/16miles on the turf
We need to take a stand somewhere and there are a lot of reasons it should be on #4 NIKKI’S CAUSE (9-5), who looks primed off two big wins against weaker and the fact she now goes off the claim for Joseph, a potent 33% move. I also think it’s a great sign she got a little freshening off those two wins and now returns in a spot where she isn’t in for a tag.
Pk5 A horses: 4
There will be no backups here, but if you are looking for a bit more coverage then #1 Baroness Vontrappe (6-1), #5 Seafire (5-1), and #2 Whiteheelgirl (20-1), and #7 Snirvana (8-1) are all in the mix, though they don’t have the firepower of the pick.
Pk5 B horses: NONE
Leg 4: Laurel Park R10 (5:24 ET) – 3up N1X at 1-mile on the turf
There are a lot of horses here who could win on their best day but only two that are consistent enough to win every time out, and that’s how I’ll approach this, as #3 CAN DO ANYTHING (9-2) and #12 BANJO BILL (3-1) bring it every time on the grass and the former gets bonus points for beating a real comer for Augustin Stable two-back and the latter because of her course and distance 2nd to a repeat winner last time, along with her tactical speed, which can negate this bad draw.
Pk5 A horses: 3,12
I’m not enamored with anyone else but you will get some value with #15 DON’T POKE THE CAT (5-1), and the last time he was on turf he was a good 3rd in a fast race over the course/distance and has shown he likes turf with some give to it.
Pk5 B horses: 15
Leg 5: Golden Gate Fields R5 (5:53 ET) – 3upfm MSW at 6 furlongs
Last week I advocated for simply taking the two best horses in a deep race and calling it a day, as you could use countless more yet not even have the winner, or run the risk of spending excess money looking for something that isn’t there. That’s the theory here, as #4 DESERT SMOKE (2-1) and #3 SNEAKERS (5-2) simply look better than an average bunch. The former has a ton of speed and is the one to beat, but does meet other pace presence, which is why the latter, who doesn’t have a lot of early speed, is appealing as well since you know she’ll be rolling late.
Pk5 A horses: 4,3
Deeper tickets can look to #2 Saburai (5-1), #10 Hal’s Buddy (8-1), and #7 Dutton’s Legend (20-1), though none of them have the consistency or the figures of the top pair, and there don’t deserve to be on the B-line.
Pk5 B horses: NONE
Main Ticket: 4,1,10,7 with 1,2 with 4 with 3,12 with 4,3 = $32
R1 B Backup: 3,9,8 with 1,2 with 4 with 3,12 with 4,3 = $24
R2 B Backup: 4,1,10,7 with 6 with 4 with 3,12 with 4,3 = $16
R4 B Backup: 3,9,8 with 1,2 with 4 with 15 with 4,3 = $12