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Though Ice Box appears best of rest

As I sit around with everyday horse bettors it seems like after every race they look back at the past performances and say, “Why didn’t I see that?”

As I look at the past performances for the horses that are going to run in this year’s Belmont Stakes I am envisioning that the race has been run and that I lost and now I am going to try and figure out why.

I will first cover horse by horse very quickly going in alphabetical order since we don’t have the post positions yet.

Dave In Dixie: Last minute shot taken by John Salder who will put Borel in the irons as he shoots for the moon.

Drosselmeyer: In his last race he ran second at 70 cents on the dollar behind Fly Down; trainer Mott put hall of fame jockey Mike Smith in the irons and the one good thing is that he has been bedded down here at Belmont and has had a trip around the oval.

First Dude: Just finished second in the Preakness in a very game effort, he has a lot of upside but just has one win and that was his maiden breaker going a mile at Gulfstream Park; he does possess good early speed and if left alone on the front end, look out.

Fly Down: Is one of two Nick Zito trained horses in here with the likely favorite Ice Box his other entry; Fly Down is a three time winner with his most recent win a rousing six length victory over Drosselmeyer; he has been working with a purpose at Saratoga.

Game On Dude: This is the other Dude in the race; this guy was a private purchase by the top connections of Lanni/Mercedes Stable and is trained by Bob Baffert, who opted to run this Dude instead of his big dude, Lookin At Lucky. He just won the Lone Star Derby going away at even money with Martin Garcia in the irons; that is interesting.

Ice Box: This is a three time winner and is one of those horses that comes from far back and wins by the shortest of margins – in his three wins he won by a nostril, a half and a half; his last work was a bullet so he looks ready for a big effort but the price may not be a good one.

Make Music For Me: This is another one time winner and that was on the grass. I just cannot find a reason to bet on him except he did finish fourth at 30-1 in the Derby?

Spangled Star: This is a late edition, trained by Richard Dutrow but he would really need to pull off some of his big time magic dust to get this guy to win.

Stately Victor: At least he has two wins on his resume with one the Blue Grass Stakes on synthetic and his maiden breaker came on the grass; he has been working well and he did beat First Dude in the Blue Grass but…

Stay Put: This is a three time winner who loves the off track so if the track comes up sloppy give this guy a big shot and he did get a nice prep on May 1 at Churchill Downs, and all three of his wins came on dirt tracks … two on the slop and one a fast track, albeit against much softer competition.

Uptowncharlybrown: Top trainer McLaughlin takes over this guy’s training and the last time a Kentucky Derby winner did not run in the Belmont Stakes was 2006 and that year McLaughlin won with a horse named Jazil; can lightning strike again for McLaughlin?

So after the race, where does that leave us? These two Dude horses are a must use and if they finish First Dude to Game On Dude, that would be a reversal of the Preakness with Baffert finishing second behind First Dude instead of him winning with Lookin At Lucky.

Well, Lucky sits at home and that will leave Game on Dude with the hot connections of Baffert and Garcia to get the job done; and if that scenario doesn’t work, it most likely will be First Dude, and the two Nick Zito horses, Ice Box and Fly Down, in the top three one way or the other.

But I will take my shot with the two Dudes as the price will be right with the exacta.

 

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