Power Cap

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19 October 2010

The Pletcher Trio

There are very few things that are certain in horse racing, one of which is that Pletcher will be represented in every race throughout the two days of the Breeders Cup program. He has operations set up in every region of the country so the odds of him not having a horse entered in each race are highly unlikely. The area where he has his premier group of runners stationed is the east or more specifically New York. He campaigned Quality Road exclusively on this side of the country along with Life at Ten and Uncle Mo, all top win candidates in their respective races.

Uncle Mo is short on racing experience with only two starts to his name, but long on reputation at this point with a dominating debut victory and an authoritative win last out in the Champagne. There are some issues that keep him from being a prohibitive favorite though, first of them being that both of his wins were over extremely fast surfaces. His win on Travers day was over a surface that was at least a second faster than usual and there were two races at six furlongs that finished up in 1:09 and change. The Champagne was contested after the Frizette, which had a final time of 1:35 3/5 and the Champagne was run in 1:34 2/5. The track variant for that day for the two routes were a 12, which is far lower than the 23 average that the meet has had so far. He will likely go off a short priced favorite in the Juvenile and his odds will probably be far lower than the acceptable value one can take on him.

Quality Road ran some scintillatingly fast races earlier this year with wins in the Donn and Metropolitan Handicaps, his last two efforts at Saratoga leave something to be desired. He set a mild pace in the Whitney Handicap and was narrowly defeated by the closer Blame and the Woodward he beat a weak field in a workout-like time of 1:50. They have had him training up to the Classic since his last start in early September and one has to wonder if the 1 ¼ miles is appropriate distance for this horse. His best races have come either at a one-turn mile or two turns going 1 1/8 miles. In fairness though his two tries at 10 furlongs were over sloppy surfaces chasing Summer Bird. Blame, Zenyatta, and Lookin At Lucky will likely lead the cavalry charge going into the stretch and a horse like Haynesfield on the lead will certainly make things harder for Quality Road in his attempt to win the Classic.

Life At Ten has been a gem of consistency for Pletcher with five wins out of six starts in and no off the board finishes this year. Her only loss of 2010 was the Personal Ensign where she dueled with Rachel Alexandra. She rebounded nicely from that defeat with a win in the Beldame though. The noticeable thing of her last race was her ability to stay a length or two off the leader while riding the rail and making a run at the top of the stretch after waiting to be called on for 7 furlongs. Her chief opponents in the Distaff are a pair of three year old fillies that will likely take a lot of support, Havre de Grace and Blind Luck. They have battled each other in three straight races, all of which had a combined winning margin of less than a length and will have to face older females for the first time. Out of the all the high profile Pletcher horses that will run Life At Ten may offer the best value from a win betting standpoint.


Amateurcapper said...


Interesting points on all three runners.

UNCLE MO looks like the goods, the way he finished faster the last 1/4 than the third 1/4 indicates he's much more than the usual juvenile speedball. However, until he proves it around two turns, he's as suspect as the rest. I won't be using the Juvenile with any other races, that's one I'll just be a spectator in.

As for QUALITY ROAD, I went off him due to his seemingly sub-par time in the Woodward. What do you think of the slowish times at Saratoga? Plus, the layoff may have him fresh but not race-ready. I expect him to blaze from the start and try to last the 10 furlongs a la BERTRANDO. QR's best asset is speed. He showed at 3 he could carry it 9 furlongs. By rating him like they've been doing, they take away what makes him special.

The Classic is another race I'll watch as a fan. Too many legit contenders for horizontal or vertical wagers to make sense.

LIFE AT TEN is a mare I'm really suspect about. She rallied wide when the best running was from off the pace and in the 3 path and out. Pletcher couldn't get ASHADO home on top in her last race, I can't expect him to have LIFE AT TEN at her best. I'm looking for a PLEASANT HOME kind of upset in the Ladies' Classic and view BLIND LUCK w/ the best chance to finish in the top two at a short price.

I'll check back often for more insightful analysis as the 'Cup nears.

G. C. said...

The original post was written by Joe Burns who started writing for power cap this summer but has been a wagering partner/syndicate member for a few years.

He is a solid capper.

Brian Appleton said...

I've grown to like Pletcher's training tactics more this year than ever before. He really knows how to win with speed horses.

I'm very excited about Uncle Mo!