Dan’s Double: Debut Runner, Secretariat Stakes Play

Little Mike winning the Arlington Million in 2012. (Eclipse Sportswire)

Dan’s Double of the Week, featuring handicapping analysis from America’s Best Racing’s New York correspondent Dan Tordjman, is brought to you by Horseplayers.com, the official online qualifying site of the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC) and National Horseplayers Championship (NHC).

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When it comes to making money when handicapping races and betting on horse racing, it’s all about picking winners. Tordjman – DanonymousMan to those who follow him on Twitter – is one of the sharpest horseplayers around.

Each Week, Tordjman will provide readers with his two best bets of the weekend and strategies for how to bet them. Good luck!

Saturday, Aug. 10

Arlington International Racecourse, Race 2, 1:48 p.m. ET

#2 Schmoozin: There are plenty of great betting races on Arlington Million day but since we’re looking to find some hidden value, we start earlier in the card with a maiden race. There are a lot of positive signs around Schmoozin, who’s a son of Flatter. As a stallion, Flatter has produced an extremely high rate of winners (25%) from his 2-year-old horses in all-weather sprints. Trainer Neil Pessin doesn’t have a very large stable but he has had a decent amount of success with 2-year-old runners over the past few years. Nicely Done (#8) also has a solid win-early pedigree and is trained by James DiVito, who does well with his young runners.

Strategy on a $10 Budget 

$2 win, place, show on #2 Schmoozin ($6)

$2 exacta box: 2,8 ($4)

Strategy on a $25 Budget 

$4 win, place, show on #2 Schmoozin ($12)

$3 exacta box: 2,8 ($6)

$.50 trifecta 2,8 with 1,2,7,8 with 1,2,7,8 ($6)

Strategy on a $50 Budget 

$10 to win, $5 to place, show on #2 Schmoozin ($20)

$5 exacta box: 2,8 ($10)

$.50 trifecta 2,7,8 with 1,2,5,7,8 with 1,2,5,7,8 ($18)

$1 exacta 8 with 5,7 ($2)

Arlington International Racecourse, Race 10, $500,000 Secretariat Stakes, 6:38 p.m. ET 

#7 Valid Point: This horse has been absolutely dazzling in two starts and seems to have endless upside. If any trainer is going to move a horse out of allowance company directly into a Grade 1 (and win) it’s Chad Brown. On debut, Valid Point overcame a bit of trouble early to easily handle a large group of maidens at Gulfstream, a race from which several next-out winners emerged. Then, last out, in his allowance-level debut, Valid Point crushed a small field at Belmont. His 90 Beyer Speed Figure and 103 Equibase Speed Figure puts his just a few points behind his dangerous stablemate Fog of War. Interestingly, despite the more impressive resume on Fog of War — he beat War of Will in a mile turf race at Woodbine last fall — jockey Javier Castellano opts to ride Valid Point in this spot. That’s a positive sign. Don’t completely overlook the Aidan O’Brien runners in here. O’Brien has won this race twice and always seems to have at least one of his entrants hit the board.

Strategy on a $10 Budget 

$10 to win on #7 Valid Point ($10)

Strategy on a $25 Budget 

$10 to win on #7 Valid Point ($10)

$4 exacta 7 with 3,5,6 ($12)

$1 exacta 3,5,6 with 7 ($3)

Strategy on a $50 Budget 

$20 to win on #7 Valid Point ($20)

$5 exacta 7 with 3,5,6 ($15)

$2 exacta 3,5,6 with 7 ($6)

$.50 trifecta 6,7 with 3,6,7, with 2,3,5,6,7,8 ($8)

Last Week’s Earnings: $0

Year-to-Date Earnings: $3,720.66

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