Educated guess: Smarty loses Edge

May 11, 2004 3:07 AM

The 129th Preakness Stakes looks like a very competitive field of nine. I am hoping for a little better weather than the Kentucky Derby had to offer.

I know the question: Can Smarty Jones be beat? The answer, as all horse players are aware, is a resounding yes! But who will beat him? Well of the nine entered (Smarty Jones, Imperialism, Lion Heart, The Cliff’s Edge, Borrego, Eddington, Rock Hard Ten, Little Matth Man and Water Cannon) five will get the most consideration on the win end. They are the ones that ran in the Derby.

We must again use history to arrive at the horses with the best chance. In the last 20 years, only Red Bullet in 2000 has won the Preakness after skipping the Derby. So that leaves us with a field of five to pick the winner from — Smarty Jones (the Derby winner), Lion Heart (second), Imperialism (third after a troubled trip), The Cliff’s Edge (fifth after losing both front shoes) and Borrego (10th).

I will pitch Borrego because he has never won a stakes, so that leaves four. Smarty will be everyone’s favorite and a victory would really make for a great Belmont. I sort of felt bad about all the problems jockey Elliot has been having with that assault charge three years ago. It looks like he will continue to ride but some of his luster is gone.

Lion Heart will run his race as he always does, but just seems to come up a little short. Imperialism will go, after Kristin Mulhall his 21 year old trainer stated he wouldn’t. Said Mulhall, "Honestly, I don’t think Smarty Jones is beatable in the Preakness." I think that maybe just maybe owner Steve Taub put a little pressure on his young trainer.

If anyone is going to beat Smarty, it will be The Cliffs Edge, who has been training great. I don’t see him losing any shoes in this race and should steer clear of any trouble in this small field.

My answer is: The Cliffs Edge, Smarty Jones and Lion Heart.

Horses according to JM

Since we are talking horses, I just have to tell all about this horse system. I ran into a friend of mine, JM, who is a big bettor and has never had a real job his entire life. JM was going to make some pick fours at Hollywood Park for night racing and just happen to ask me who I liked the best in the last race. After our conversation, he told me about this system that he was playing.

It just made me laugh so hard. I told him he lost his mind. But he said I should chart it and check the results. Well, I saw several winners including a $22 and a $36 horse. Just for fun I will pass it on to my readers and they can check it out and get back to me.

I personally have never used any systems or recommend them. I am not using this and I am not going to recommend it but it could have some use in a fun type of way. Now don’t laugh until you have charted it.

Start with the #1 horse and just go down the line according to the morning line. If the one horse is 10-1 it’s a bet, if the two is 2-1 it’s a bet, if the three is 3-1 it’s a bet, if the four is 4-1 it’s a bet, if the five is 5-1 it’s a bet, if the six is 6-1 it’s a bet. There is no bet on the seven as there are no morning lines that are 7-1. If the eight is 8-1 it’s a bet. There is no bet on the nine. If the 10 is 10-1 it’s a bet. There is no bet on the 11. If the 12 is 12-1 it’s a bet.

So now we’ll see if the system comes up with some winners.

Best most often aren’t

Did you ever wonder why when playing horses it seems like you always throw out the wrong horse? Did you ever wonder why when betting on sports you seem to eliminate the winner?

The answer is that when picking between several selections our human nature tends to go with the one that looks to have the better or more obvious chance. What you need to do is eliminate that horse.

I’d send coach packin’

Did anyone get to see the Pirates game on Sunday? The score was tied in the bottom of the eighth and the Pirates had the bases loaded with two out. The runner on third was about 15 feet off the bag and got picked off! I would fire the third base coach and send the guy down to the minors. That won’t happen after seeing all the players in the dugout pat him on the back and feeling sorry for him.

Oh, gee.