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Homeracing

Sunday Ellis Park 'Place Payout' Suggestions

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TwinSpires Staff

August 4th, 2018

by JOE KRISTUFEK

Losing a tough photo for the win is frustrating, but now finishing second doesn’t have to suck!

No one hit the full card at Monmouth last week so we are rolling over the $10,000 “Place Payout” bonus to Sunday’s “Kentucky Downs Preview” card at Ellis Park. The challenge is simple, hit a $5 place bet in every race on the card. The more races you hit, the bigger your bonus. Check out the complete rules and OPT IN here.

You can make as many place bets in a race as you want, but remember, only the first one counts for contest purposes, so make it count!

Remember, we aren’t seeking out value with these recommendations. We are looking for the most likely horse to finish in the top two.

In this space, we will take a look at the undercard races 1-4. For opinions on the back-end of the card which are applicable to this contest, check out my “Ellis Park Kentucky Downs Preview Pick 5” column.

Good luck!

Race 1

#3 Pole Setter (5-2)

A full field of maiden 2-year-olds traveling two turns on grass will launch the card and the contest. Pole Setter might not have the most pristine grass pedigree, but he surely looks ready to run big first out of the box. It’s no surprise that trainer Brad Cox is winning at a 30%-plus clip at the meet, and regardless of pedigree, the 2-year-olds he believes want a route of ground will often begin on turf (see Monomoy Girl and many others).

Race 2

#1 Indian Gem (7-2)

Katie’s Reward looks like the most 1-2 candidate, but she’s on the rise for her third start in a month and I don’t completely trust her. Indian Gem, on the other hand, has been the runner-up in her last three dirt starts and the cutback from two turns to seven furlongs should hit her right between the eyes.

Race 3

#1 St. Denman (5-1)

In the first two starts of his career, St. Denman has finished behind a pair of tough customers in Hot Springs and Almoreb. The former has gone on to compete in stakes company while the latter just won again over the Ellis Park turf on Friday. This guy took a big step forward in his second career start, he’s posted a trio of useful works since, and he’s well drawn on the rail.

Race 4

#3 Ascot Day (3-1)

At first glance, 9-5 morning line favorite Homefieldadvantage looks like the right “Place Payout” horse here, but this will be her first start in a new venue and the rail draw might prove tricky. Ascot Day took some sneaky tote action in the career debut at Churchill, but the track came up sloppy and apparently, she didn’t like that very much. She returned to run a bang-up race second time out here at Ellis, finishing second behind a sharp winner. Speed holds very well over the Ellis Park main track and this filly should be in the thick of the battle from go to whoa.

Remember, for opinions on the back-end of the card which are applicable to this contest, check out my “Ellis Park Kentucky Downs Preview Pick 5” column.

Hope to see you at Ellis Park on Sunday for Kentucky Downs Preview Day!

 

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