Expert Picks - Katie Mikolay Gensler

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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., 2014-04-23

    Katie Mikolay Gensler

    Katie Mikolay Gensler's first exposure to racing came at a young age, attending Arlington Park with her family on weekends when she grew up in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, Illinois. She has been the racing analyst at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots in New Orleans, Louisiana for the last three years. In addition to hosting the daily Churchill Downs Simulcast Network production of live Fair Grounds racing, Mikolay co-hosts the pre-race Fair Grounds Today show. She also contributes to FairGroundsRaceCourse.com as both a handicapper and blogger during the live Thoroughbred meeting and has made special appearances on HRTV and NBC Sports. During the summers, she performs similar duties at Presque Isle Downs in Erie, Pennsylvania for the 100-day race meet for the last five years. As an advocate for fan education, Katie has teamed up with America's Best Racing to teach wagering and produce racing 101 videos to increase horse racing awareness. She has been married to Thoroughbred horse trainer, Hank Gensler, for three years.


    Friday, April 18, 2014

    Race 1:  OCEAN BERTIE (1A) can be tough at the distance and has decent form over synthetic footing.  Mare should be on or near the lead in this short field.  SCENARIO ANALYSIS (4) runs first off the claim in a tougher spot with blinkers on if she likes the poly.  STAR PASSAGE (6) has good works to be ready off the layoff and runs with blinkers off. 

    Picks 1A-4-6

     

    Race 2: DECAMP (5) should improve in his second career start and will stretch out to 9 ½ furlongs.  EVERYDAY (3) gave up the lead midstretch at shorter distances so unsure the added ground will help, but solid connections and faces a soft MSW field.  ARCH PEARL (4) has run well at longer distances, but good spot off a long break.

    Picks 5-3-4

     

    Race 3:  THUNDER STRIKE (2) has three wins on the grass across the pond.  He makes his U.S. debut for a solid barn and has been training consistently in the a.m.  CHART TROPPER (1) has dangerous early speed breaking from the rail and exits a victory over the turf at GP.  RY’S THE MAN (7) may get the perfect set-up for a good trip from off the pace. 

    Picks 2-1-7

     

    Race 4:  REMEMBERMEALWAYS (2) is a sharp sprinter that may want to run shorter, but barn prevails with horses first off the claim (34%).  ELECTRO PEG (4) may prefer the grass over the poly, but fits in class and versatile.  COURTLY FLYER (5) makes her second start over the track with a drop in class after she finished third in an open $32k.

    Picks 2-4-5

     

    Race 5:  WAR READY (6) hopes for a better trip second time over the track and runs for a lower maiden claiming tag.  NO FREE LUNCH (5) runs first time tag for a high percentage stable and should be tough sitting just off the pace.  PENNY’S DEPUTY (3) should be an early pace player with an interesting move up in class.

    Picks 6-5-3

     

    Race 6:  COZY NICOLE (2) ran well from the rail with a slow break.  Filly can make a move forward at second asking.  SO FESTIVE (10) posted a nice workout on 4/13 and barn does well with first time starters.  READY PLAYER ONE (4) is still a bit green, but she’s been given a brief freshening and two published works over the track with Leparoux aboard makes her a contender.

    Picks 2-10-4

     

    Race 7: RED VINE (8) is a strong closer that should improve in this spot today.  REI (4) gets back on the grass after he ran third behind a wire to wire winner in an off the turf event this meeting.  SONG TO YOU (10) could be the lone speed, but tough draw and first time grass.

    Picks 8-4-10

     

    Race 8:  AWESOME TOWN (2) raced evenly in her first off a long break and should improve in today’s race with Rosario picking up the mount.  SEANCHAI (4) can be tough from off the pace if she likes the surface switch from turf to poly.  PROPELLERONEWAY (5) ran well going long as a 3yo and could move forward in today’s race with blinkers on.

    Picks 2-4-5

     

    Race 9: The G3 Hilliard Lyons Doubledogdare Stakes – EMOLLIENT (10) is the one to beat in today’s feature.  She is undefeated over this surface and most likely needed the last race even though it was a graded stakes race.  She has a lot of class and regular rider ships in for the mount.  STRATHNAVER (11) competes for a hot barn and could be a major player if she’s ready off the layoff.  SISTERHOOD (8) ran well in this spot last year and should be a contender with Velasquez aboard.

    Picks 10-11-8

     

    Race 10: TRANSCEND (1) has several finishes in the money and faces a soft allowance field this time.  He should be tough sitting off the pace if he can handle the rail.  CASINO DAN (11), half-brother to HOY WISE DAN, runs well at shorter distances.  He comes off the bench and may need a race, but training well.  TWIGAZURI STRAIT (6) was beat by top choice, but was close third in a starter allowance for $59k two starts back.  Solid turf runner if the pace is right.

    Picks 1-11-6

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