Friday, May 16, 2008

Paulie's Picks, 5/17/08

Two Saturdays ago, Big Brown raced four-wide on both turns and entered the stretch with the inevitability of a locomotive. All of the doubters, including me, were forced to shut our big fat mouths (after we picked our slackened jaws up off the floor, of course).

The winner of the Preakness appears to be a hopelessly foregone conclusion; all of the Derby contestants except Gayego are not going to bother, mainly replaced by overmatched G2 and G3 types, and a few classy allowance horses.

This is all very exciting because of the possibility of seeing the first Triple Crown winner in thirty years, but it's a bummer in terms of trying to find a bet. BB is going to open at 1-2 and his odds are most likely going to get even stingier at post time. The exacta pool should be about as anemic, and I doubt that the correct trifecta will even offer a decent risk/reward ratio, especially if Gayego is involved (which he really should be).

So what's the play? The only thing I can see that's worth a shot is the $1,000,000 guaranteed Pick 4 which starts with the 9th race and ends with the Preakness. Based on a $1 bet, here's the ticket I'm planning to play for $40 (the #9 horse is a likely scratch in the 11th, which would reduce the cost of the bet to $30):

9th race: 3,8
10th race: 2,3,4,5,6
11th race: 2,4,8,9
12th race: 7

If this doesn't appeal to you, you could play ten races at Belmont instead. Here are Paulie's Picks for Belmont's Preakness Day card:

1st race:
5 - Cool N Collective
2 - Mighty Gulch
3 - Ready Read

2nd race:
2 - Saumon Fume
1 - Talkhouse
5 - Golden Weekend

3rd race:
6 - Stonewood
5 - Bailsby
7 - Pocatello

4th race:
4 - Golden Amulet
8 - A Zero Tap
7 - Benny the Waiter

5th race:
3 - Bontempi
7 - Smart Enuf
4 - Piazza Di Spagna

6th race:
7 - Judge William
8 - Ready Enough
3 - Bethpage Black

7th race:
2 - Christmas Kid
6 - Genuine Devotion
7 - Mohegan Sky

8th race:
5 - Winzalot
11 - Fregata
1 - Can't Refuse

9th race:
6 - Wow Me Free
7 - Rite Moment
5 - Carriage Trial

10th race:
3 - Personal Shopper
4 - Too Tough Pete
8 - Dixieland Star

Tune in Saturday night for results.