Expert Picks

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Let our experts help you handicap the day's races at Keeneland. To see the analysis provided by each handicapper, choose a handicapper name on the left, then choose a date.

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

E.g., November 28

    Kim Nelson

    Kim has been involved with horses all her life. She has worked with pregnant mares, prepping yearlings, managed lay-up barns, exercise rider, assistant trainer and has trained a few of her own horses. She is also very involved in the placement of retired thoroughbreds once their racing careers are over. Kim worked as a handicapper for the Daily Racing form for 5 years before starting her work with Keeneland.

    Thursday, October 29, 2015

    Race 1

    #3 Lewis Cielo is making his 2nd start off brief layoff. Gelding has been successful over an off track. He fits with this level of company and jockey Murrill could set him up for the perfect trip. #1 Awol Adam has a tremendous closing stride with this level of company and he too can handle an off track. His Beyer numbers are consistent and he should be very competitive for the win here. #7 Winkatdawat is the 7-5 morning line favorite. He has early speed and is a consistent performer at this distance and on an off track.  He is capable of taking this field gate to wire if the track is playing in his favor.

    Top Pick is #3 with #1, #7 and #5 rounding out the exotics.

    Race 2

    #2 Old Mountain Lane has faced some tough company in his brief form.  Horses like It’s a Knockout and Union Jackson appear in his running lines. He is making a significant drop here looking for his first win. #6 Reverend Green draws Lanerie to the saddle and jock is definitely on top of his game right now. This Kenneally charge is making his 3rd off a brief layoff. He was the beaten favorite in his last but he lands in a good spot here and could throw in a strong challenge for the win. #7 Battleback John just missed over the Keeneland course last out going a route of ground. He should of gained confidence off that one and the back up to 7 furlongs could prove dangerous for his rivals.

    Top Pick #2 with #6, #7 and #4

    Race 3

    #2 Prospero is winning at 50% this year and has been quite popular at the claim box. His solid NY form and previous Parx form suggest he can get the win here. #1 Mal Guapo is the 8-5 morning line favorite and is looking for a hat trick here. Expect him to lead the way and may prove tough to catch. #5 Candy Gran was 2nd to Mal Guapo last out and looks good for part again here.

    Top Pick #2 with #1, #5 and #3

    Race 4

    #1 Union Jackson was so impressive in his maiden win. If he is on his game can’t see any of these catching him at the wire. #5 Pow Wow Pal brings strong Tomlinson numbers for both the distance and an off track. His recent form is strong enough to suggest he can land a share. #7 Ready Get Set has a couple of sharp works over the Keeneland surface.

    Would single Union Jackson in Pick 3’s, Pick 4’s, and Pick 6

    Race 5

    #6 Carina Mia debuted at Keeneland during the recent fall meet. She ran a very nice race, breaking well taking the lead from the 10 post and just tired in the lane to finish 2nd. Expect this nice filly to improve off that race and be very tough in here. #9 Cheryl D is a firster for the Rivelli barn. Barn is 26% with firsters and the precociously bred filly has a couple of really nice gate works to her credit. #7 Breaking Bread is another bringing a solid work tab for her debut effort. #4 J La Tache hasn’t missed a check in 3 previous starts. Might be a good Superfecta race.

    Top Pick #6 with

    #4 J La Tache, #7 Breaking Bread, #9 Cheryl D and #11 Crooked Stick

    Race 6

    #2 House of Sole hasn’t missed a check in 8 tries. She can be a bit camera shy placing 2nd 6 out of those 8 races but she does always bring a competitive effort and just missed last out over this course at this distance. Have to give her a slight edge. #7 Tippany, a $500K Keeneland September graduate, has a couple of wins under her belt. She backed out last time when facing stakes company but this level and distance should suit her. The entry includes #1 Elusive Fate and #1a Hone In. #1 Elusive Fate hasn’t seen the winners circle in a while but has the Beyer numbers to suggest she can be competitive with these.

    Top Pick is #2 with #7 and #1

    Race 7

    #12 Purely Boy is bred top and bottom for routes on the grass. A son of Dynaformer out of a Lemon Drop Kid mare the Maker charge has won his last 4 races and seldom misses a check. If he draws in off the also eligible would be top pick. #2 Any Given Royal ran 2nd over the Keeneland grass in his last effort going the flat mile. The added distance should improve his chances here. #4 Taghleeb adds the blinkers for this start. He is a consistent performer with similar company and his closing stride usually lands him a share. #5 Oil Strike comes with top connections and blue-blood pedigree.

    Taking #12 is he draws in, if not #2 would be top pick with #4 and #5

    Race 8

    This is anybody’s race. Short field going 7 furlongs with a fairly evenly matched bunch. Would probably try to go all here in vertical bets. Giving a slight edge to favorite #2 Falling Sky. He runs well with this type of company and his last 3 trips to the winners circle have been at this distance. Leparoux had a great Keeneland meet and he handles the reins on this guy. #5 Midnight Cello was no match for Tapiture and Viva Majorca in his last but neither was anyone else in that field. He is a recent Grade 3 winner though and he deserves a look in this field. #1 Den’s Legacy also exits the Grade 3 Ack Ack with Midnight Cello. He has faced tough competition his last 2 exiting the Grade 1 Forego 2 back. The move out of Graded company should boost his confidence.

    Top Pick #2 with #5 and #1

    Race 9

    #7 Come as You Are is the 8-5 morning line favorite. He didn’t take to the turf at Kentucky Downs in his 2nd career start after finishing a good 2nd in his debut effort. The winner of that debut race Watershed came back to win an allowance here at Keeneland very impressively. The slightest improvement off his first effort puts him in the winner’s circle here. #4 Catanova is making his 2nd off a brief freshening. Just missed in his last and if Come as You Are doesn’t live up to expectations this guy will be ready to take over. #8 Bow Tie Boss has shown enough talent in past form to suggest he lands a share of this one.

    Top Pick #7 with #4, #8 and #2


    Good Luck








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