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close-up image of a photo finish race

Selections subject to change due to late scratches, track condition, unanticipated track-bias, or other emergent factors. (And then there’s our shameless waffling.)


Wed, Jul 19

1) Run to Freedom : Improved exponentially on turf; slightly tentative ride hurt chance to beat proven grasser treated to perfect trip; bullish on mildly unorthodox pilot who takes over; turf only

2) It's All Reality : Connections sport pair of recent turf scores here, and this horse fits same profile; competitive to better last time over footing somewhat akin to graass; finds perfect tag and condition; Jan score says it all; turf only

3) Divine Sonet : Big fan of trainer, and swift work appears final touch for highly specialized placement; winning knack on synthetics, which implies more turf potential than failed tries reveal; early presser should find fractions suitable, affords jock some options; turf only

7) Divine Confection: Visible scores run gamut of local sprint distances; unable to muster late after chasing quicker foe in virtual match-race; like the reduction in distance; hectic pace renders her quite the stretch-threat; new-found condition explains 8-week gap


Handicapping tip of the day: Try to beat talking heads. Few possess real chops, and the selections of those that do have genuine insight get over-bet.  If the analyst seems sharp and has built a solid rep, absorb local knowledge and learn from the commentary. But play your own picks. It's more fun and gratifying, and you'll get better prices. When Mnr is dark, I grind out steady profits playing other tracks ( focus on just 1 or 2, and treat them like a job).  But the next tv analyst I listen to will be the first. In fact, I kill the sound. And I'm not a lip-reader.        

                   Mark Patterson


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