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Homeracing

Scully: Opening-day plays at Kentucky Downs

Profile Picture: James Scully

September 6th, 2017

Horseplayers love large and contentious fields coupled with low takeout rates and Kentucky Downs offers it all. That’s why it’s proven wildly successful in recent years, with a record $22,540,761.22 being wagered on last year’s five-day session, and the turf-exclusive track opens its highly-anticipated 2017 meet today with an intriguing 10-race program featuring four stakes.

Kentucky Downs offers the richest daily purses in North America at $1.7 million per day and first post is 1:25 p.m. (CDT).

Here are a couple of horses I am looking to play on opening day:

Race 5, an entry-level allowance, anchors the early Pick 4 (races 2-5) and #10 Awesome Boss can improve upon a troubled effort at Saratoga. The Street Boss filly was making her first start in five months for Kenny McPeek, an overall 12% trainer who wins at a 16% clip in the second start off a layoff, and Awesome Boss registered nice BRIS numbers after being knocked around and forced to go wide against an allowance field filled with stakes performers last time, rallying to be beaten only three lengths in fourth. I’m expecting a significant move forward and will single the promising 3-year-old lass in any multi-race wagers.

Race 10 serves as the final leg of the Pick 5 and late Pick 4 and #1 Iconic enter the 1 ½-mile maiden special weight off an encouraging performance at Ellis Park, racing much closer to the pace in a third-place showing. The sophomore offered a decent late kick in previous starts at Churchill Downs but left himself too much to do while retreating far back in the early stages, and the gray colt is starting to put it all together for a Dale Romans barn that has been heating up, winning at a 20% rate since mid-August. Look for Iconic to prove best from just off the pace with Robby Albarado.

Jockey7

The Jockey7 Wager, a six-race competition (races 4-10) between jockeys that awards points on a 25-12-9-5 scale for top four finishes, makes its debut today and Kentucky Downs will donate its commission for the wager to the Permanently Disabled Jockey Fund. Ed DeRosa discusses how to bet the Jockey7 Wager at brisnet.com and incorporates a Sabermetrics approach toward playing at the TwinSpires Blog.

Robby Albarado is my pick today.

Here is the morning-line for the Wednesday’s Jockey7 wager:

No.

 

Jockey

 

M/L

1

 

Robby Albarado

 

10-1

2

 

Shaun Bridgmohan

 

15-1

3

 

Jon Court

 

30-1

4

 

Tyler Gafflione

 

10-1

5

 

Jack Gilligan

 

30-1

6

 

James Graham

 

30-1

7

 

Brian Hernandez Jr.

 

12-1

8

 

Chris Landeros

 

15-1

9

 

Corey Lanerie

 

15-1

10

 

Feargal Lynch

 

6-1

11

 

Joe Rocco Jr.

 

6-1

12

 

Ricardo Santana Jr.

 

6-1

13

 

Jose Valdivia Jr.

 

15-1

14

 

Field

 

5-2

 

 

 

 

 

Good luck on opening-day!

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