by Brian Nadeau
October 23, 2019
Back to battle with this week’s Stronach 5, which continues to be one of the best bets on the track. 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 R7 (4:19 ET) – 3up ALW at 1 1/16 miles (turf)
An awesome opener that could easily play out as a small stakes and is ripe with contenders and a lot of speed, so I’ll look to come from off the pace and go with #8 ENGLISH MINISTER, who saw a four-race winning streak snapped last time, but it came going 1 1/2 miles in the Japan Turf Cup here, from a terrible draw too, so on the cutback, with a better post, he can get back on the beam. Belmont invader #1 DEVAMANI has been facing better and drew perfectly, and also hasn’t missed a beat in two starts since being claimed by Atras, so he looks primed on the drop here.
Pk5 A horses: 8,1 (listed in order of preference)
I may be asking for trouble playing against #9 O DIONYSUS on top, since he just beat ‘Minister, but he hasn’t been quite as good going this short, plus he could regress, so I’ll only use him as a B. I’m going to play against the three that want to be on or just off the lead, as this looks like it could have a hot pace, which would leave them wanting late, so even though #6 Golden Brown, #3 Saratoga Jack, and #11 Class and Cash have the credentials to win this, the race flow, amongst other things, might prevent it from happening.
Pk5 B horses: 9
Leg 2: Santa Anita R2 (4:30 ET) – 2yof Cal-bred MSW at 5 � furlongs (turf)
When things look tough to decipher, I’m a big fan of letting proven stats guide my way, and that’s what I’ll do with this six-pack, since there isn’t a lot to go on, in terms of proven afternoon form. In a race with just six, where three come from barns that are a combined 0-for-49 with firsters, I think it’s pretty obvious you have to look at #1 ELGOFRANCO, since Cecil is 2-for-8 on debut, and this Reddam homebred has a slew of works showing for her unveiling. I’ll also give one more chance to #4 SOFI’S GOLD, who didn’t fire at odds-on last time going longer but was 2nd, beaten just a neck, on debut, and Prat says he’ll ride, so a rebound may be coming.
Pk5 A horses: 1,4
Most will use #6 Flying Business, as that dirt debut was solid, and she did well to draw outside here, however, back to the stats, it’s a huge worry that Chew is 0-for-12 first-turf and 0-for-16 off this 61-to-180 day layoff, so I’ll make her prove it. You could also use #2 Via Alpina, since Dollase is only 0-for-6 with firsters, but the works here are light, so she may need this.
Pk5 B horses: NONE
Leg 3: Gulfstream Park West R8 (4:43 ET) – 2yo 20k MCL at 7 � furlongs (turf)
With post position at a premium going this trip, you could do worse than singling #1 RENEESINHEAVEN, since her numbers are much better than these, she drops in class, and won’t have to improve much, if at all, to break through. However, with Ward firster #7 CHEROKEE SOUND showing several promising works for a 30% debut barn, I’ll use two on the top line.
Pk5 A horses: 1,7
Normally I wouldn’t use someone from the 10-hole at this trip, but #10 WATERLOO SUNSET was a chasing 3rd going 5Fs last time, so that speed might allow her to clear before the quick run to the first turn, and if that happens she could get brave and prove tough to catch. Others with also use #5 Teacher Drama, who was 2nd at the level last time, but that race was painfully slow and she’ll need to improve, so she can beat me.
Pk5 B horses: 10
Leg 4: Golden Gate Fields R3 (4:50 ET) – 3up 50k Starter-Allowance at 6 furlongs
This is a tricky race, since it all depends on what you think of #5 PASSIONATE REWARD, who beat lesser in very fast time here last month for Mandella and now goes off the claim for Tamayo, which is a big 30% move. I’m taking the trusting approach, and one that says a Hall of Fame trainer just had had better in the shedrow and came north to lose this runner, while not trying to put one over on anyone. And, therefore, I expect another big run, if not improvement, for his new barn, which means the rest of these are all going to be running for second-money.
Pk5 A horses: 5
The problem when you single in a deep field is that if the single doesn’t win, then likely countless others could, because things have obviously gone awry with the heavy favorite and the mice can play while the cat is away. The second problem is you just can’t slot the seven next logical contenders in with your others A’s and go on with it, as the ticket would be huge. So, what I’ll do is split the difference and use #2 ELECTORAL, #7 STRETCH RUN, and #3 NOLONGERAHOBBY, who I view best-of-the rest, with my A’s in Leg 1-3 with my top two choices in Leg 5, #4 Bethabara and #5 Patriotic Punch, which will cut the cost of a fringe backup ticket down.
Pk5 B horses: 2,7,3
Leg 5: Laurel Park R9 (5:25 ET) – 2yof MSW at 1-mile (turf)
It’s a good thing I think the first four legs are going to be relatively formful, as the finale is a nightmare, and looks like the type of race where they are all the same on paper, and therefore anything can happen. And that’s what I hope does, since I’m going to hit the ALL-ball on the main ticket, root to be alive, and then root like heck for utter chaos. Of course, I can’t do that with the backups, so I’ll use a more condensed list led by stretchout sprinter #4 BETHABARA, and MSW droppers #5 PATROTIC PUNCH and #10 FACTORINTHEHEAT, and firster #6 ESPRESSOANDACHECK. Also, should #14 LOA draw in, she too will join this group.
Pk5 A horses: ALL (12)
Main Ticket: 8,1 with 1,4 with 1,7 with 5 with ALL (10) = $80
Leg 1 B Backup: 9 with 1,4 with 1,7 with 5 with 4,5,10,6 = $16
Leg 3 B Backup: 8,1 with 1,4 with 10 with 5 with 4,5,10,6 = $16
Leg 4 B Backup: 8,1 with 1,4 with 1,7 with 2,7,3 with 4,5 = $48