Dan's Double: Anticipating Drama on Travers Day

(Eclipse Sportswire)

When it comes to making money when handicapping races and betting on horse racing, it’s all about picking winners. Dan Tordjman, America’s Best Racing’s New York correspondent, is one of the brightest young minds in the game.

Each Week, Tordjman – DanonymousMan to those who follow him on Twitter – will provide readers with his two best bets of the weekend and strategies for how to bet them. Tordjman will keep track of his return on investment (ROI) throughout the year and, as a bonus, he will also provide picks for a selection of the key races on the Triple Crown trail and the road to the Breeders’ Cup.

Come back every week and be sure to follow Tordjman on Twitter.

Saturday, Aug. 27

Saratoga Race Course, Race 7, $500,000 Ballerina Stakes, 2:59 p.m. ET

#4 Sheer Drama: This super-classy mare ran one of her most memorable races on the dirt at Saratoga last summer, winning the Grade 1 Personal Ensign Stakes. She followed that up with a fourth-place finish, going long, in the Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff. When Sheer Drama returned this year, cutting back to seven furlongs in the Madison Stakes at Keeneland, she posted a new career-top Beyer Speed Figure (100) and Equibase Speed Figure (109) for herself at the distance — beating the likes of Stopchargingmaria and Wavell Avenue in the process. Not surprisingly, she regressed significantly when asked to stretch back out to 1 1/16 miles in her next start at Churchill Downs. She’s only had one race since then, the 1 1/16-mile Ogden Phipps Stakes on Belmont Stakes day, and that effort looks worse on paper than it really was. Sheer Drama was wide all the way around and was still fighting late. I think she’ll love cutting back to the seven-furlong distance and we already know she likes the main track at Saratoga.

Strategy on $10 Budget

$1 exacta key box 4 over 3,5,8,9,10 ($10)

Strategy on $25 Budget

$4 exacta box 4,8 ($8)

$1 exacta key box 4 over 3,8,9,10 ($8)

$.50 trifecta 4,8 with 4,8 with ALL ($8)

Strategy on $50 Budget

$1 trifecta 4,8 with 4,8 with ALL ($16)

$1 exacta 4,8 with 3,4,8,9,10 ($8)

$1 exacta key box 4 with 2,3,5 ($6)

$10 win and place on #4 Sheer Drama ($20)

Saratoga Race Course, Race 9, $700,000 Priority One Jets Forego Stakes, 4:12 p.m. ET

#1 Catalina Red: I haven’t always been high on this colt but he showed me something in defeat last out in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap. He might not have won but he ran on well in the later stages of the race, despite clearly looking uncomfortable in his tracking position off the pace. The Vanderbilt was six furlongs, and now Catalina Red gets another furlong in the Forego — and the horse is 3-for-3 at this seven-furlong distance. I don’t think there’s any doubt that the pace will be honest. That just means that jockey Luis Saez will have to work out a trip for his horse, and it won’t be easy. I just think Catalina Red is headed back in the right direction, after taking a step back in the race following his massive effort at Churchill Downs this spring. As many of the others in this race begin to back up in the late stages of the race, look for Catalina Red to have plenty in the tank.

Strategy on $10 Budget

$1 exacta key box 1 over 7,8,9,11,12 ($10)

Strategy on $25 Budget

$1 exacta box 1,8,11,12 ($12)

$.50 trifecta 1,12 with 1,11,12 with 1,3,7,8,9,10,11,12 ($12)

Strategy on $50 Budget

$1 exacta box 1,8,11,12 ($12)

$.50 trifecta 1,12 with 1,8,11,12 with 1,3,7,8,9,10,11,12 ($18)

$10 win and place on #1 Catalina Red ($50)                                               

ROI Year to date: $5,075.20 wagered/$5,727.25 returned (+$652.05 YTD)

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