Player Quick Pick: Churchill Downs for 6/12/2014

Molly Jo Rosen

June 12th, 2014

by Molly Jo Rosen

Always remember to check Scratches and Changes before handicapping

I like the card at Churchill today, even if it's been hit by a lot of scratches. One race that has no changes is the 6th, a super interesting Maiden Special Weight for 2yo's. This race also starts the late Pick 4 if you're thinking about playing multi-race exotics. Reading into workout and training patterns is one of my favorite things and especially when it's a full field of mostly first time starters!

Churchill Downs race 6 | 3:16 pm ET MSW for 2yo going 5.5f

1-Tapitsphere: training well into debut for Asmussen ~ this is the kind of horse/owner/pedigree/pattern Steve is really good at

2-Mercer Mill Mae: no one preps a 2yo better than Ward & this filly is in against the boys off a better-than-it-looks debut given the troubled trip

3-Rakeitin: short worktab into debut for longshot specialist Lay

4-Goo Bird: steady pattern for semi-precocious pedigree

5-Unbridled Graduate: didn't exactly break clear in the debut

6-Stonebriar: didn't quite fire late in the debut effort, but Stall is 23% with 2nd-time-out maidens

7-Lockport: training well for Kenneally

8-Conquest Harlanday: Casse/Elliott/Conquest Stables have been on fire this year

9-Crowned Majestic: short worktab for small barn

When it comes to early 2yo racing (ie: before the season really starts - or - anything before August 1st), I find it's best to handicap based on the connections and look for the horses with experience. When in doubt: watch them on the track and trust your gut.

In this case, Asmussen sends two out: one who's training very well for the barn's top owner and another horse who has experience... so we definitely use both 1-Tapitsphere and 5-Unbridled Graduate. Given the connections and the morning line price, you can't ignore 8-Conquest Harlanday. I'll also throw 7-Lockport in given how well he's been training and the filly (2-Mercer Mill Mae) too with how rough her debut trip was.

Picks: 1 - 8 - 7 - 2 - 5