Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Ajax Downs Tuesday Selections

Hard to believe that this is the last day of September. 2014 has just flown by for me, and it's crazy to think that we only have four cards of live racing left at Ajax Downs. Today we have a 10 race card headlined by the richest Quarter Horse race in Ontario, the $133,050 Alex Picov Memorial Championship, a quarter mile dash for the best older horses in the province. It's sure to be a great day of racing! Here are my program selections.

Race 1: 3-5-1
Welcome back to Ajax Downs for a terrific Tuesday card of racing! #3 Jessies Leaving is three-for-six this year, with some high speed figures and strong company lines that including Stakes level mare What Ta Wear and tough starter allowance runner Eyesa Zoomn. She stumbled at the break in her most recent start and it looked to me that the rider lost the irons, so you can cross that race out. If she breaks well today she'll be very tough. #5 Probie won three back against the talented Cat Vision, and has finished second in his two starts since then against Bold Six Love and Sign It Down, who finished 1-2 in a Stakes race at Hialeah back in the winter. If the track is wet, this horse will be very tough; he loves a surface with moisture. #1 Jj Maxwell has had a solid season, most recently exiting a win at this class level over Channelislandflyer (who also appears here.) He's hit the board in 15 of 21 starts, has to be respected. Be sure to play the Early Double!

Race 2: 2-7-1
The Early Pick 3 kicks off here. #2 Code 36 has been an easy winner of his last two starts, first for $3,000 claiming and most recently in this Speed Index condition. I'm looking for the eight year old to score a three-peat today. #7 Catch A Heart has run a couple of good races since coming to Ajax this year, but for the most part has been a pretty average runner. The drop into Speed Index company could be beneficial to him. #1 Cold Hearted Shark finished second behind Code 36 two weeks ago, and came back last week to win. I don't see him turning the tables on Code 36, but the rest of his competitors are not out of his grasp.

Race 3: 5-2-1
#5 Fames Winner competed in a trial for the Ontario Sires Stakes Futurity last week against big upset Wild Boyz Victory, Alex Picov Memorial Futurity runner up Arizona Bennie, and Allowance winner Sassy N Ready. This is a significantly easier group. He has already outfinished the morning line favourite back on July 6. #2 Extra Foxy Prince has yet to hit the board in four starts. It's not that he races poorly, but evenly. This is the easiest spot he's raced in. #1 Fool On Fire is a first time starter by Fire Finder out of the Thoroughbred mare What Is It Now. Fire Finder has been a decent sire and the rest of competition is not tough at all.

Race 4: 6-2-3
The $.20 Pick 4 begins here! #6 Storytime Blue has been facing way tougher horses than she faces today, with company lines including Eyesa Zoomn, Cat Vision and What Ta Wear. In her most recent start she was off a bit slow and got forced in. After that she never found her footing and ran an even fourth. Today if she breaks better she'll be the one to beat. #2 Donttellmemybusiness really seems to get along with jockey Aron Hunt, they are two-for-two together. This gelding exits a win against Cole Miner in a $5,000 optional claiming event. I think Storytime Blue is better, but it's not impossible for this gelding to win. #3 Oh Gary started the season off with a win, but after that he got put in spots where he was outclassed and couldn't compete. Two back he raced well in ON-Sired NW2 Allowance; the drop to claiming won't hurt.

Race 5: 2-3-5
#2 Selective Memory has raced well in all three of his starts, most recently scoring a fourth in the Alex Picov Memorial Futurity. He should be very tough today. #3 Chick Flick also qualified to the Alex Picov Memorial Futurity. He broke from the inside and lost some momentum early after taking a bit of a bump, but he didn't seem to recover at all and finished evenly to be sixth. Still outclasses the rest of the field. #5 Jess Shake Em has run two good seconds in her four race career that maker her look better than the longer shots in this race, but just doesn't seem to have the ability that my top two selections do.

Race 6: 3-6-1
This race is an open Allowance for two year olds. #3 Waving Sandy Home won her trial to the Alex Picov Memorial Futurity and finished a very good third in the final behind Jumping Guitar and Arizona Bennie. She also qualified to the John Deere Juvenile Challenge where she got a rough trip. Talented filly who has to be respected. #6 Cause I'm Dancing has also qualified to both the John Deere Juvenile Challenge and the Alex Picov Memorial Futurity, running respectable efforts in both. Most recently she won one of these open Allowance events. She will have to prove she can outrun Waving Sandy Home today. #1 Speed of Life looked like she was going to be the top two year old when she won her debut, a John Deere Juvenile Challenge trial. In the final she got a rough break and rallied well to be third. However, she scratched before the Alex Picov Memorial Futurity trials after flipping twice in the paddock. She then finished fourth in the same Allowance race that Cause I'm Dancing won, but before the race she was sharp and not behaving at all. Watch this one before the race if you're considering wagering on her, look to see if she's more calm and focused than sharp and nervous.

Race 7: 3-1-2
#3 Lil Shaz ran third behind Reckless an Wild in a trial for the Ontario Sires Stakes Derby before finishing seventh in the final. She then went back to Maiden company where she grabbed the victory. She looks to double up today and has found a field where that is possible. #1 Fastaz Task has been running well and finishing close all year, but just can't seem to get the job done. Perhaps today he will change that trend. #2 Another Shark had been running very close against some more respectable than average Maiden groups, but dropped in for $5,000 last time and got the win. NW2 will of course be tougher, but this is a horse who I don't think needed the drop to $5,000 to win. Competitive race.

Race 8: 7-3-6
#7 On the Edge of Glory didn't break straight in her debut on September 2nd, and was actually last for most of that race but made up late ground nicely to be fourth, beaten very little for third. I'm looking for some second time improvement today. #3 Strawflyin Bodacious exits a fourth place finish beaten a neck in a Maiden group that wasn't particularly tough in my opinion. The drop to $5,000 is logical. #6 Chicks Kisses is a tough horse to bet to win, she's six years old and hasn't won in 16 tries. Her last few races have been improved efforts so I won't totally discount her. The Late Pick 3 starts here.

Race 9: 4-9-1
This is our feature race today, the 41st running of the $133,050 Alex Picov Memorial Championship. #4 One Famous Glass is an absurd overlay at 8-1. The four year old gelding has won nine of his 18 starts, including a top level Allowance at Remington Park and most recently his trial for this race. He also finished fourth in the Grade I Leo Stakes at Remington. He's the classiest, he looked like he was going very easy in his trial win, and I think he will prevail. #9 Mitford is always very tough here at Ajax, sporting a local record of 11-6-2-1, not including a win in which he was disqualified. He finished second to One Famous Glass in their trial, and actually defeated him in last year's running of this race. #8 Country Boy Deluxe is another horse who loves it here at Ajax, with an 8-6-0-1 record over the surface. He's looking for his fourth consecutive win after getting up in the last stride in his trial. We'll see if he can double up. Remember to play the Late Double!

Race 10: 5-6-2
#5 Bye Me One Kool Bud either wins or misses the board. He was a Stakes winner at two and had a good three year old season, but did nothing in two starts this year. He's returning off a layoff with two bullet works from the gate, so I'm going to give him a shot to get back to the winner's circle. #6 Varsity Lace exits a third behind One Famous Glass and Mitford in the Alex Picov Memorial Championship trials, but unfortunately was not quite quick enough to qualify. She has run a lot of very good races this year and she has to be considered the one to beat here. #2 Charted By Dm also exits the One Famous Glass-Mitford trial, but he ran a very even eighth with no apparent excuse. He's run plenty of good races this year, including a third (very close to second) in the Ontario Sires Stakes Maturity, so I'll give him a shot for a bit of a rebound today.

Good luck to everyone playing today!

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