Log In

Weekly Bankroll Builder: Friday, August 3 Saratoga Pick 5 Ticket

by Brian Nadeau

August 1, 2018

We’ve got a very juicy sequence on tap Friday afternoon, so we’ll take a good swing. Whereas in the past I’ve put together one caveman ticket on a small-scale budget, I’m now going to try and present a bit more of an in-depth play that will utilize backup horses and tickets, while painting a broader picture of a suggested play.

*** Please take note that this analysis is done upwards of 36 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. ***

Race 1: 2yof 50k MCL at 5 ½ furlongs

The opener is a toughie, and tabbing the tote is highly recommended, as all six are first-time starters and any action on the board would be noteworthy. I don’t have that luxury Wednesday afternoon, so I’ll just try to blanket the field and use those that I think are logical. The rail is no bargain but #1 HONEY PARADE (7-2) has worked well and goes for Lynch and Saez, who are having fine meets, and this seems like the barn that might have the most intent here. The likely favorite is #4 VAMPISH (2-1), who goes for Rodriguez and Castellano, though the works here aren’t that inspiring. I think you also have to use #2 BALLYBRACK LASS (5-2) and #5 CASSIES DREAMER (9-2), who both look like underlays at their respective ML’s but won’t have to be monsters to beat this group.

Pk5 A horses (listed in order of preference): 1,4,2,5

The only other runner I could entertain is #3 Malibu Mischief (6-1), but with Contessa at 1-for-52 with firsters, it’s tough to endorse this gal.

Pk5 B horses (listed in order of preference): NONE

Race 2: 3upfm 20k MCL at 6 furlongs

This is the type of race that can make or break the sequence, as there are several different ways you can go, so price shopping seems imperative. It also seems like the right time to take a fresh new face, which is why I’m going with Laurel MSW dropper and turf-to-dirt runner #8 SALT POND (5-1), who didn’t do a lot of running on debut but one could surmise this is the spot Motion had in mind all along, and seeing Jose Ortiz ride only further solidifies that thinking. It’s tough to toss #6 MISS KAPINATOR (7-2), who dueled and tired against Florida-bred MSWs in her only start in September, but she goes for Pletcher, so you know she’s ready. If it weren’t for the January layoff then #3 TIMELESS BEAUTY (4-1) would be favored, as her races are simply better than the rest, but there’s no getting past her inactivity.

Pk5 A horses: 8,6,3

After the top trio the waters get a bit murkier, though #9 JORDY’S READY (9-2) has an improving figure pattern and #2 SATURDAYS VAPOR (9-2) could be loose on the lead, so both need to be respected. All of these gals have one thing in common; they aren’t very fast on paper, so I’ll also use #1 LIP SYNC (8-1), a Rodriguez firster who is hardly impossible against this crew.

Pk5 B horses: 9,2,1

Race 3: 3up NYB 25k claimer at 6 furlongs

Anyone on a budget will be singling #3 SUDDEN SURRISE (1-1), who is 4-for-4 locally and dropping off the Gullo claim, and while I do have him on top, he’s not a single, as it’s never a good sign to see a horse claimed for 40k and run for 25k in his next start. He’s the class and wins this with anything close to his best, but there are some red flags too. So, with that in mind, I’ll also go with #2 H MAN (2-1), who has been in fine form for quite some time and should trip out nicely just off the chalk. He may pay only $6 and change to win, but that could be double in the sequence with all the tickets that will be singled to the 3.

Pk5 A horses: 3,2

These two seem to lay over the field, so there will be no B-level backups, as anyone else would have to improve open lengths to get within shouting distance.

Pk5 B horses: NONE

Race 4: 3upfm 12.5k claimer at 1 1/8 miles

This looks like a competitive field on paper, but the hope is that #1 MIDNIGHT BOUNTY (5-2) will finally get to run on a fast main track, because if that’s the case, he really has a this field in bad shape. The tricky part is he’s been on off tracks in 3-for-4, though his best run was that fast track 2nd at Aqueduct in March. It’s also worth noting it would be his first start over dry land for Falcone, who is aces off the claim but didn’t get to show his true colors in the slop last time.

Pk5 A horses: 1

Behind the pick things get a lot trickier, especially because #5 MAJESTIC KINDNESS (7-2) beat him last time and certainly figures. I’ll slide in #6 AREWEHAVINGFUNYET (3-1) ahead of him, since he could improve off the Barbara claim and has a bit more tactical speed.

Pk5 B horses: 6,5

Race 5: 2yof NYB MSW at 6 furlongs

The final leg is littered with what look like average NYBs, which is why you have to think #5 MORE MISCHIEF (5-2) is in a good spot on debut for Brown, especially since she’s worked well and a hefty 350k as a 2yo in training. None of these other gals have shown much in the afternoon, and you have to think she’s cranked, which is going to make her very tough to beat.

Pk5 A horses: 5

As mentioned, the proven runners don’t really stick out, and #2 SHE’S TROUBLE (3-1), #6 GIVE ME A HUG (5-1) and #7 SHE WILL ROCK (4-1) all figure to be looking up at the pick. ‘Hug is the gal who could improve the most, as Pletcher ran her against open maidens on debut and takes the blinkers off today, which is a 28% move.

Pk5 B horses: 6,7,2

My Tickets

The main A ticket is 1x2x2x4x3 for $12, and that’s our starting point. But by adding in our B horses in with the A’s in the other legs, we can get more coverage and allow for some margin for error too. As you’ll see below, the backups tickets are a more cost conducive way of getting added coverage, without breaking the bank; if we played both the A’s and the B’s together, the ticket (4x6x2x3x4) would cost an robust $288, which essentially makes the stronger opinions the same as the weaker ones, whereas this is a much more reasonable $84. I’m also an advocate of playing you’re A ticket for $1 (or more), so you capitalize if you handicap it out of the park.

Main Ticket: 1,4,2,5 with 8,6,3 with 3,2 with 1 with 5 =$12
R2 B Backup: 1,4,2,5 with 9,2,1 with 3,2 with 1 with 5 = $12
R4 B Backup: 1,4,2,5 with 8,6,3 with 3,2 with 6,5 with 5 = $24
R5 B Backup: 1,4,2,5 with 8,6,3 with 3,2 with 1 with 6,7,2 = $36