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It’s hard to believe it is the last Friday night of racing for the Spring-Summer meet at Churchill. Last Sunday I bet a total of $60 on the 10-race card and made a profit of almost $80. Let’s see if we can get lucky again and at least duplicate it today.
As usual, we also will take a stab at the NBA playoff game and Game 7 of the NHL Conference Finals.
Let’s get started.
My Picks: 5,9,12. This is a Maiden Claiming race for $50K and I usually stay away from these but I like #5 Buffalo Shuffle trained by Chris Hartman. He actually won his last start but was DQ’d for bumping the eventual winner. He is 5-1 on the morning line and if he stays around that price he might be worth a small wager. An added asset is Hartman has had an outstanding meet.
My Picks: 8,5,3 This is a low level maiden claimer and I have to be sure to waste money on these. I don’t have a clue.
My Picks: 9,2,4 There are a couple of horses to mention here as possibilities but I’m not that thrilled about either. I think I will pass on this one.
My Picks: 14,4,6 The obvious pick in this one is #14 Lady Scarlet trained by Brad Cox. The problem is she will have to draw into the race because she is an also eligible. Therefore, I won’t know till before the race if she is in or not and therefore, I can’t bet it.
My Picks: 2,7,10 I like #2 Eyes on Target and #7 Nineeleventurbo and they look like they both could win. So, that’s go with a small exacta.
My Picks: 1,7,6 #1 Major Fed is interesting in here. Trained by Greg Foley, he had a solid 2020 campaign and will be making is 2021 debut which is a disturbing problem. Why hasn’t he run this year? That is an ominous warning that he has had an injury of some kind. So, at 7-5 odds I’m staying away.
My Picks: 3,2,6 Steve Asmussen sends out #3 Sundial in this allowance race and she looks like she could win this one. She won her last outing in April at Oaklawn Park by 3 lengths and my only worry is Asmussen doesn’t usually lay a horse off for 2 months after an impressive win. But, at 7-2 she is worth a shot.
My Picks: 6,4,2 Rodolphe Brisset trains #6 Demidog who was very impressive in her debut back in May. The daughter of American Pharoah is 4-1 on the morning line and I like her potential and also the trainer has won 5 out of 10 starts at the local track.
My Picks: 8,6,10 My pick is #8 Answer In trained by Brad Cox. He has three starts in 2021 beaten by a nose at Gulfstream, winning at Keeneland, and a disappointing 5th here at Churchill. And though, he finished 5th he was only 2 1/4 lengths back and was very wide for the whole trip. I think he is good enough to win in this spot.
My Picks: 2,9,4 The favorite is #9 Art Collector who is making his 2021 debut. He has won 5 out of 11 starts in his career and in 2020 won four out of 5 races including the Bluegrass Stakes (G2). But, his odds are at 7-5 and I don’t like the fact that he is coming off the long layoff so I’m going to try and beat him and opt out for #2 Strike Power trained by Steve Asmussen. He is coming off a strong 2nd place showing in the Maryland Sprint Stakes (G2) at Pimlico in May and at 4-1 morning line odds I like him better.
My Picks: 6,5,9 There are too many in this one that appear to have a chance so I’m passing and heading to the exits.
In Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the surprising Hawks led by the unbelievable performance of Trae Young look to take a 2-0 lead back home to Atlanta. The Bucks are favored by 7.5 points which seems a little high to me. I will agree that the Hawks might have caught them a little off guard in Game 1 but it might be time to start realizing that Atlanta is for real.
The question is this: Can the Hawks win if Young only scores in the 30’s and not the incredible 48 he put up in Game 1?
I’m picking the Bucks to win but will not cover the spread.
It’s game 7 of this hotly contested series between the defending champs, Lightning, and the upstart Islanders. New York is so gritty and are relentless and have no quit in them. Tampa is, well, Tampa. Very tough, very talented, and very experienced. But, in a game 7, anything can happen especially in hockey where a goalie can make the difference and win a game single-handedly.
There you have it for a Friday of racing and terrific playoff b-ball and hockey. Good luck everyone and I’ll be back tomorrow with the final day at Churchill which has a great card to wrap up the meet, the NBA game, and a possible Game 7 between Montreal and Vegas in the NHL.
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