So a lot of accolades flowed my way after last year’s Queen’s Plate because I was the only public handicapper to pick the top three horses (Moira, Hall of Dreams, Sir for Sure) for a $1 triactor that paid $200. But it wasn’t really me who did it. It was my rules. And others can use the same rules to achieve a similar result.
The rule is simple: For 1 ¼-mile races, which is the distance of the King’s Plate (and the Kentucky Derby, by the way), compute the closing fractions for 1 1/8-mile races the horses have raced in (how quickly did the horse run from 6-furlongs to the end of the race?). Hopefully, most horses in the field have gone that distance. If not, then examine closing fractions for 1 1/16-mile races.
So, using that rule for the King’s Plate, one horse veritably jumps off the program page: #6 Kalik. Racing at Belmont Park, his closing fraction on the turf was 34 3/5-seconds where 36-seconds is the quality standard. Compare this to the horse I liked best last year in the Queen’s Plate who came second, 16-1 Hall of Dreams, who had set a fraction of 37 3/5 seconds in a race leading up to the Queen’s Plate. How much quicker is the figure on Kalik? Take note, though, that turf fractions are quicker than synthetic track fractions. But still, Kalik’s sizzling fraction on Belmont turf appears to indicate Kalik will still crush on Woodbine’s Tapeta.
Second place goes to the rail horse, #1 Stanley House, because, even on the synthetic track he shows a 29 3/5 seconds closing fraction for 1 1/16-mile. The quality standard for that distance ON THE TURF is 30-seconds. So that figure is almost as big a standout at Kalik’s.
Next, with 30 3/5-seconds, is #15 Kaukokaipuu. Longshot #11 Touch’n Ride has the same closing fraction but has only two lifetime races compared to Kaukokaipuu who is nine-for-11 in the money and finished second in a stakes race open to all 3-year-olds.
In fact, if I were making a large show wager, Kaukokaipuu would be the one because of his consistency. With 17 horses in the field, the show price is likely to be generous.
So, as the rules have it, your triactor is 6-1-15: #6 Kalik, #1 Stanley House, #15 Kaukokaipuu.
All bets are off, however, if no one challenges #13, Paramount Prince, for the lead. No one challenged him in the Plate Trial so he simply aired gate to wire and he could do the same here but, with 17 horses, you’d think he’ll have company up front.
He’s a perfect 5-for-5 in the money so he’ll be tough to deny, but let’s have him last long enough to complete the superfecta. But there are numerous other possibilities: #11 Touch’n Ride (with as good a fraction as Kaukokaipuu), #12 Cool Kiss (37 2/5-seconds closing fraction in a 1 1/8-mile race), #3 Philip My Dear and #4 Twin City (37 3/5-seconds), #17 Moon Landing (31-seconds in a 1 1/16-mile race) and #7 Velocitor (36 3/5 as a 2-year-old). You may have noticed I didn’t include Woodbine Oaks winner Elysian Fields and that was because her closing fraction was a slowish 38 3/5 seconds in the 1 1/8-mile Oaks.
For an outlay of $5.60, here’s a 20-cent superfecta wheel that will give you a credible chance of winning: 6 with 1,15 with 1,15 with ALL. For a $5.60 superfecta that could pay a lot more, what about also inserting “ALL” in the third position: 6 with 1,15 with ALL with 1,15.
Should you spread out more than that? No one will blame you if you feel a bit unsettled by the fact Kalik has never raced on a synthetic surface or that Stanley House ran a strange Plate Trial race in which, for the first time, he settled at the back of the pack, giving himself little chance to win the race. What was that? But his races before that were superior. Maybe the best way to tackle this year’s Plate is to go with the obvious but also take a shot at the less-obvious.
After writing the above, I looked for the first time at the Equibase program and discovered, surprisingly, that Woodbine oddsmaker Ernie Perri had come up with the exact same triactor as I did and in the same order. I highly doubt he used the same closing-fraction analysis that I use for 1 ¼-mile races, but there it was. Does this strengthen the likelihood that that’s a winner? Very interesting.
Do you plan to take a shot at the 20-cent pick-5 that ends with the King’s Plate? Then take note of the high Tomlinson turf figures for some horses in the two baby races. In race 6, #1 Bold Embrace with a 417 Tomlinson figure is 8-1, #6 Never Silent with 395 is 15-1. #3 Golden Canary with 375 is 20-1 (although she may run in race 8 instead). Those are the top Tomlinsons in the field. A 20-cent triactor box 1-3-6 for $1.20 could pay hundreds.
And in race 8, #7 Triple Trea with 411 has odds of 10-1, #8 Bucyk with 406 is 4-1 and #11 Golden Canary with 375 is 12-1 (unless she runs in race 6). Will they figure into your wagers? Longshots like these have hit in the past in exactors, triactors and superfectas and have paid spectacular prices. Will that happen Sunday?
Note, too, that Sunday will be mandatory payout day for the Power Pick 6 and the Jackpot Hi-5!
May you hit for a King’s ransom!