by Brian Nadeau
November 28, 2019
Back to battle in this week’s Stronach 5, which once again has a 100k guarantee and will include the Opening Day card at Gulfstream Park’s Championship Meet. To refresh, the Stronach 5 is a Pk5 wager spread across as many as four tracks and up to 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.
*** 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 4pm Friday for an update, as well as on Twitter. ***
Leg 1: Laurel Park R8 (3:50 ET) – 3upfm 5k N2L at 7 furlongs
It seems like we start off every week with a horse that is suppose to win and looks about 7-5 to do so, and this week is no exception, as #4 CHICKEN DINNER (9-5), who just beat a few of these last time, looks best and the controlling speed to boot. I’ll take the bait and single her, since she’s also lightly raced and has more upside than anyone, and #1 Alphabetting (9-2), who she beat by just a half-length last time, seems a lot tougher to trust.
Pk5 A horses: 4 (listed in order of preference)
The aforementioned #1 ALPHABETTING got back untracked last time and warrants inclusion, but she still couldn’t win after sitting a dream trip stalking, while ‘Dinner dueled on the lead, and the prospective race flow doesn’t look as cozy for her today. I suppose #8 Priss (5-1) is worth a look, but she got the dream set up last time too and couldn’t get there when 4th, and at 1-for-17 with six 3rds, you know her m.o., which is the same for #3 Wekeend Flyer (3-1), who is 1-for-18 with six underneath finishes, and, while she’s got tactical speed, none of her last five dirt starts give her a winning chance.
Pk5 B horses: 1
Leg 2: Golden Gate Fields R2 (4:18 ET) – 3up 3.2k N2L* at 1-mile
I’m not sure if they wanted to throw us a bone or this is just the way things sussed out on this particular Friday, but this small six-pack looks like a name the score type of race for #5 TASTE’S LEGEND (1-1), who might be 1-5 on the class drop for Herbertson, who is 6-for-17 on the meet, so I’ll just take the perceived free square and try and use it to my advantage elsewhere.
Pk5 A horses: 5
This one looks like such a cinch that I’ll go it alone, though if you’re looking for a bit more coverage then #1 Zippin Wine (6-1) could surprise on the slight class drop, while #2 Charlie Cowden (5-2) was just all-out to wire lesser last time and could potentially get brave if he clears.
Pk5 B horses: NONE
Leg 3: Laurel Park R9 (4:20 ET) – 3upfm 40k MCL at 6 furlongs
It looks like we’ll have another strong favorite in Maryland with #1 SILENT FLUIDITY (8-5), who win this with her best, but also seems a bit tough to trust and has a descending figure pattern, and got no help from a tricky rail draw. I’ll use her, but I’ll try for a slight upset with #6 KICKSTARTMYHEART (4-1), who drew a nice attack post, will (hopefully) run for the first time on a fast track with blinkers, and fits off that good 3rd two-back at the level.
Pk5 A horses: 6,1
The term “tread lightly” immediately comes to mind with #3 GOTTAHAVEAHOLIDAY (5-2), who didn’t fire in her comeback at Parx, while dropping in for a tag for the first time too. However, she was eligible to need that run, and she wouldn’t be the first horse to not handle the Bensalem surface, and that prior trio of NY races wins this, so she needs to be used in some context. Some will argue #4 Dajem (8-1) needed her last too, but she also blew a 4-length late lead and has basically been running the same race every time, so the thinking here is she is who she is, and that’s not good enough here.
Pk5 B horses: 3
Leg 4: Gulfstream Park R9 (4:30 ET) – 3up 16k claimer at 1-mile (turf)
The good thing about being tight early is you can be a little expansive late, and that’s what we have here, as this looks like the typical tough GP open claimer. I have a trio of A’s, with #6 PHILO (10-1) on top, as his price will be right, he drew well, and Crichton is a ridiculous 41% off the claim, while #7 POWER WALKER (4-1) is the horse to beat with a much better post this time, and #9 MISSION DRIVEN (7-2) will roll late, which means his running style might negate this wide draw.
Pk5 A horses: 6,7,9
The B’s are a group of wildcards, and all have their merits, but their warts too, which is why they didn’t make the cut on the top line; #1 GRAY DUDE (8-1), #3 LOVE NEST (8-1), #10 DALARNA (6-1), #8 FLOWMOTION (5-1), and #4 CAN’T TRUMP KITTEN (10-1).
Pk5 B horses: 1,3,10,8,4
Leg 5: Gulfstream Park R10 (5:00 ET) – 3upfm 16k N2L at 1 1/16 miles (turf)
This one looks a bit more cut and dried than the other GP race, as #9 LA INCONDICTIONAL (7-2) should be a solid favorite on the class drop and figure edge she owns, over a group that has gone out of their way to show they don’t want to win a horse race (see more on that below). However, the post and tactical speed that #3 ALGODONAL (10-1) has makes her interesting, and she comes in off an MCL win, and I don’t think that’s a negative in these modest N2L’s.
Pk5 A horses: 9,3
We have the ability to use a few B’s here, so I’ll do it, but this list is littered with lifetime one times, so tread very lightly, as #1 PARTY DANCER (4-1), #4 FOR KICKS (12-1), and #10 HENRY’S TREASURE (5-1) are a combined 3-for-40. I could have also used #2 Karenina (6-1), but when you’re 1-for-23 lifetime, with 14 underneath finishes, you can beat me.
Pk5 B horses: 1,4,10
The tickets (I would advocate playing the All-A ticket for $2):
Main Ticket: 1 with 5 with 6,1 with 6,7,9 with 9,3 = $12
Leg 1 B Backup: 5 with 5 with 6,1 with 6,7,9 with 9,3 = $12
Leg 3 B Backup: 1 with 5 with 3 with 6,7,9 with 9,3 = $6
Leg 4 B Backup: 1 with 5 with 6,1 with 1,3,8,10,4 with 9,3 = $20
Leg 5 B Backup: 1 with 5 with 6,1 with 6,7,9 with 1,4,10 = $18