News and Notes Del Mar Fall Week 3

• Three weeks of the four week Del Mar Fall meet are in the books, but they have saved the best for last with four very good days of racing this coming week, highlighted by the Turf Festival, with graded stakes on the grass all four days. Full fields and plenty of wide open races will make for some good wagering opportunities. This past week the main track returned to playing “fair” and the rally wide closers bias is long gone. I still prefer outside posts when sprinting on the main track, but there is no bias. And the same goes for the turf course now that it is worn down. They have been carding 4 turf races every day and the course is playing very fair. Early speed can win going long as it did twice on Sunday, however keep in mind, the inner rails have been out ever

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News and Notes Del Mar Fall Week 2

• Del Mar completed week two of their Fall meet this past Sunday and the main track remains a biased race track. On opening week the first two days favored early speed, then they over corrected the issue for the Breeders Cup and the track favored rally wide closers and the rail was completely dead for the weekend. This past week they ran just 3 days and although the race track was fair from a pace standpoint, the outside lanes are clearly the best. The bias is not as strong as it was for the Cup but it is still there. Outside posts sprinting, with tactical speed, will put you in the winners circle. The turf course is also biased as it consistently favors off the pace runners, even with the rails out 24 feet. Lone front runners, which are normally dangerous, always seem to get swallowed up at the

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News and Notes Opening Week Del Mar

• Del Mar completed their first full five day week of their Fall meet on Sunday. The main track had a strong speed bias on Wednesday and Thursday, but that tapered off on Friday as the track was considered “fair” for Day One of the Breeders’ Cup. That scenario changed dramatically on Saturday where the inside part of the track was “dead” and rally wide closers won all the races with the exception of the last, where Gun Runner overcame a double bias and still won as only a great horse can. The change from Thursday to Saturday was dramatic as far as a track bias can go, and we don’t overplay these conditions. Normally something like this only happens when the skies unload with a deluge of rain, and that was not the case at Del Mar last week. What we get this week when racing returns on Friday

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News and Notes Santa Anita Closing Week

• Santa Anita Park completed their five week Fall meet on Sunday, and now it’s off to Del Mar for their four week Fall meet starting this Wednesday. They kick it off with the “Let it Ride” stakes and five full days of racing the first week highlighted by the Breeders Cup Friday and Saturday. This is Del Mar’s first ever Breeders Cup and it should be interesting, as Del Mar is a small track when compared with Saratoga, Belmont Park, Santa Anita, or Churchill Downs. For openers, they are limiting the attendance to just 35,000 and no more. When Del Mar was built back in the mid thirties, it was meant to be a stop over meet after the large meets were conducted at Santa Anita and Hollywood Park. Sort of a fair circuit track if you will. But racing took off here in the decade of the 70’s

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News and Notes Santa Anita Week 3

• Santa Anita Park completed week three of a five week Fall meet this past Sunday with a fair race track, and one that was finally picking up speed and playing back to normal. The temps remained hot as Sunday afternoon reached 96 degrees and the fires continued to burn throughout the state, as they seem to do each and every October. We will call the turf course fair as well, even though all seven turf races over the weekend were won from off the pace. Most of these winners were short prices and were supposed to win, or at least be right there. The single ticket jackpot of the pick six went down on Sunday, as one ticket from Michigan was the lone winner for a payout of $549,864. The ticket was purchased for just $80 at Northfield Downs, in a suburb just outside Detroit. Although there were three

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News and Notes Santa Anita Week 2

• Santa Anita kicked off their five week Fall meet this past Friday and had strong cards throughout the weekend. The main track played fair for the first three days but the times were very slow, as the track had been dug up to play that way purposely, much like Del Mar was in their Summer meet. The turf course favored closers on Friday, but played fair for the weekend. Long shots dominated the card on Sunday with the early pick four paying $33,046 for a 50 cent ticket and only one player hit the 50 cent pick five, resulting in a payoff of $351,257. The pick six carries over into Thursday this week at $80,091 and the single ticket jackpot is now up to $71,434. Leading rider Flavian Prat won 4 races on Saturday and 3 of them were of the Grade 1 variety, while Corey Nakatani got the

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News And Notes Closing Week Del Mar

• Del Mar ended their 7 week Summer meet with a bang on Labor Day with overall handle up 5.1% vs. last year, but more importantly, on track fatalities dropped from 17 horses, to just 4 horses. The reason for the increase in handle had to be from a field size average of 8.6, well above last year and previous years as well. Most of the increase came from back East as on track attendance was down a tad, 13,240, or 1.5%. Field size was the real plus, as this is a circuit that normally runs just 4 days a week, and of course Del Mar ran five days a week, and ended the last week running six days. The ship and win programs put in place are a big factor drawing horses from out of state. Pick six carry overs were quite regular as favorites won at a 27%

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Turfdom News and Notes Week 6

• After weeks of favoring early speed, the main track is finally playing fair with runners being able to win from anywhere depending on the pace picture. The track has “tightened” up and the times are getting quicker, yet still not to the degree of last year. The turf course continues to favor off the pace runners regardless of where the inner rails are placed. Here again, depending on how quick the early pace is depends on how far back the closers can win from. Horses can win on the front end going two turns, but they need a dawdling pace and no pressure up front. Even in the five furlong sprints, stalkers and closers have the edge. Overall, favorites are only winning at a 27% clip, with dirt favorites at 31%, close to the national average, while turf favorites are only at 23%, well below the national average. As

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Turfdom Del Mar News And Notes Week 5

The main track picked up speed this past week at Del Mar as they “tightened” up the surface for their big main track stakes on Saturday. The second race on Saturday saw good allowance horses run six furlongs in 1:09 and change and the time for the Pacific Classic was right about where it supposed to be for those types of quality horses. The track has become more “fair” and it gives closers a reasonable chance if the pace is fast enough early on. That was not the case for the first four weeks of the meet. The turf course continues to favor off the pace runners but less so than it was. As the course gets worn down by the heavy usage, speed horses have a better chance of hanging on, especially if the early pace is slow. Compared to Santa Anita, this is still a long shot race

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Turfdom Del Mar News And Notes Week 4

Del Mar has completed 4 weeks of their 7 week Summer season and the main track continues to be slow, tiring, loose, and cuppy, but it is SAFE. Only 2 fatalities have been recorded this year compared to 17 last year. And the track did pick up some speed this week starting late on Thursday. Many horses just can’t handle the surface, even if they performed well here in 2016. The track is totally different from Santa Anita and totally different from last year. It does make handicapping very difficult. The best advice we can give is that most horses have been over the track once by now, and if they performed well initially, there’s a good chance they will do so again. Early speed or at least tactical speed is what is winning on the main track. No complaints on the turf course as it continues to favor off

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