Expert Picks - Mike Battaglia

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Let our experts help you handicap the day's races at Keeneland.

Please note that selections typically are available about 48 hours in advance of the race.

E.g., Monday, July 6, 2015

    Mike Battaglia

    Mike is Keeneland’s longtime odds maker and is recognized as being one of the best handicappers in America. In addition to his duties at Keeneland, he is a racing analyst for NBC’s Thoroughbred racing coverage.


    Friday, April 24, 2015

    1st Race: CHIEF’S REVENGE (#3) moves up in class after a third-place effort here earlier this meet. He could spring the upset with Florent Geroux picking up the mount. SCRUMPDILICIOUS (#4) is better on the grass but drops in class and anything close to his best makes him tough to beat. DEEP BOTTOM (#6) fits in here.

    2nd Race: GNARLY HARLY (#3) beat a couple of these same rivals last out and appears to be in a good spot to pick up the win for trainer Wesley Ward and jockey Rafael Hernandez. MR. CANADA (#6) drops in for a tag for the first time and looks like the main competition. TRIBAL MESSAGE (#8) also takes the class drops and is a contender.

    3rd Race: C'EST MOI (#1) ran well to finish a close third in a tough allowance race here two weeks ago she stretches out for this one but should get a good trip from the inside post and rates the slight edge in a well-matched field. WHIMSICALITY (#5) just missed in her turf debut at Gulfstream and had a solid work over this track. She will be hard to beat. DARING DUCHESS (#8) has won at this distance and can't be overlooked.

    4th Race: SECOND BASE (#6) moves up in class after a solid win at Gulfstream. Look for her to make it two in a row with Javier Castellano picking up the mount for trainer Mike Maker. ARTSY (#3) drops in class and has the speed to be dangerous. MAKENZIE’S MAGIC (#7) will be running late.

    5th Race: GREY WIZARD (#7) has been off since January but is in the capable hands of trainer Chad Brown, whose six wins this meet have all come on the turf course. MUHAAWER (#8) hooked tough fields in Florida and looks dangerous in this spot. TIZ TOWN (#2) rates a chance.

    6th Race: LEFLORE COUNTY (#1) finished behind HIDDEN CANDY (#3) at Oaklawn but that was just his third career start and he was gaining at the end. Give him the edge over that rival today. HARDESTY (#5) is a first timer who has been training steadily.

    7th Race: CHOCOLATIER (#7) makes her U.S. debut for Chad Brown off a series of solid works. She figures to be ready and looks best in a well-matched allowance race. EMPRESS MAKER (#6) broke her maiden over the Keeneland turf in October and comes off of a solid runner-up effort at Gulfstream. She should be tough to beat in here. AL'S GAL (#3) was claimed by trainer Mike Maker last out and could add value to the gimmicks despite the class hike.

    8th Race: SANDBAR (#2) has been running well since trainer Joe Sharp claimed him back in November. He posted a recent bullet work over this track and could spring the mild upset in a very tough race. EASTWOOD (#5) has been idle since August but is training well for Todd Pletcher and figures to be ready for a good effort. GOOD LORD (#1) is an 8-year-old veteran who is still capable of some big races.

    9th Race – Bewitch (G3): HELLENISTIC (#14) doesn't have the stakes experience of most of these runners but she is a lightly raced 4-year-old who has won 3 of 4 on the grass and appears to be on the upswing for trainer Chad Brown. Give her the slight edge in a wide-open renewal of the Bewitch. TABREED (#10) hasn't won a race in a while but is solid at the mile and a half and beat several of these same horses last out. John Velazquez picks up the mount and she can't be left out of the gimmicks. CAROLINE THOMAS (#6) and KITTEN'S POINT (#9) are both capable of winning with their best efforts.

    10th Race: CHAPPY (#2) drops back in for a tag after hooking much better in his last two races. He can win this one with his best performance. INCLUDE INDYCAT (#7) stopped badly last out but will be tough if he can rate off of the pace today. ZANDER ZONE (#3) is a definite threat.

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