Longshot of the Day

NYRA Bets handicapper Matthew DeSantis is bringing you a Longshot of the Day, every day! His selections will be 6/1 or higher on the morning line, and he will highlight why the horse has the potential to outrun their odds. How does this help you? Bigger win payouts and better value in vertical exotics bets!

SUNDAY, JUNE 23

Track: Belmont at the Big A

Race 2: $90K MSW going six furlongs on turf for 2YO fillies

Post Time: 1:34 PM ET

Horse: #2 The Sugars (8/1 morning line). Use as win bet at 6/1 or higher.

Unless there is a lurking monster, I tend to prefer using horses with some experience in two-year-old races than those making their debut. Getting a first try out of the way can oftentimes work out some issues and give a trainer some things to work on for their next effort. The Sugars is a prime example of a horse that has every opportunity to move forward on Friday as she gets on the turf for the first time. To start, she was intended to run on turf in debut, but the race was rained off the grass, which forced her to run over a muddy track. It is an easy enough race to draw a line through and yet it gave her some experience. She was slow out of the gate and was never really engaged with the field before dropping back to fourth. Trainer John Terranova got in a couple of additional workouts ahead of her second start and getting on the grass should make a big difference. Her sire, Collected, has turf pedigree underneath in his family. Meanwhile, her dam, Candy Store, was a Group 3 turf route winner in Italy and is by legendary turf sire Lope de Vega. Additionally, Candy Store’s only other foal (Vive Veuve) is also sired by Collected and is already a turf stakes winner and Grade 2-placed on the grass. The fact her full sister is such a strong turf runner give you confidence there will be a significant perk up on the grass. Certainly, #5 Good Long Cry (5/2) for George Weaver is a legitimate favorite with Irad Ortiz Jr. on the mount coming off a fifth-place finish in a debut turf stakes race at Gulfstream Park, but the horse is hardly a sure thing given that she faded at five furlongs in debut.

MONDAY, JUNE 24

Track: Parx Racing

Race 10: $100K Crowd Pleaser Stakes going 1 1/16 miles on turf for PA-bred 3YOs

Post Time: 4:47 PM ET

Horse: #1 Trevesso (8/1 morning line). Use as a win bet at 6/1 or higher.

The headlining race on Monday’s card at Parx is a fascinating one as there are some familiar names (Maximus Meridius) trying the grass for the first time, but I always love to use a horse second off a surface switch while either maintaining or stepping up in class. In a field of mostly dirt horses, Trevesso, the son of Kitten’s Joy stands out not only because of his pedigree, but also because he got a start over the turf at Monmouth Park earlier this month in the Jersey Derby where he finished fifth by 2 ½ lengths. He earned a 74 Beyer Speed Figure, which is the top turf figure in Monday’s field. The Jersey Derby was a solid field of runners as the winner, Twirling Point, was stakes placed coming into the race and runner-up Move to Gold won the 2023 Awad Stakes. It was an encouraging first effort on the grass for a horse clearly bred with the turf in mind as aside from the Kitten’s Joy influence up top you also have turf influence underneath with the second dam being a multiple time turf sprint winner for Steve Asmussen. From a race standpoint, the horse possesses modest speed, but should be able to secure a mid-pack trip on the rail while saving all the ground. There is plenty of speed in the race with several horses from the outside looking to save ground including a couple who are stretching out from sprints. Therefore, the pace should be honest and allow a horse to come from off the lead. Some of the dirt horses might be able to transition to turf, but I would rather take 8/1 odds on a horse that already made the transition, is bred for it, and is trained by someone like Cathal Lynch who knows turf racing about as well as anyone. Finally, I love the face this horse has shown improved conditioning on the turf and should be in great shape to handle the distance on Monday.

LONGSHOT OF THE DAY UPDATE

Finding potential value based on the morning line odds can be tricky since if you see something to like in a longshot, others likely do as well. Suddenly, a morning line longshot ends up being a short price favorite or second choice.

As a result, I will provide some context for my longshot selections moving forward where I give their morning line odds and the lowest odds I would be comfortable playing them as a win bet. Some people refer to these as “fair odds,” which are highly subjective, but it is helpful to have guardrails. Have a number in mind for every race at which a horse you like becomes unplayable if they end up taking too much money. The inverse can be true as well. There is a number at which a horse you might be against floats up and suddenly becomes more appealing. Credit to NYRA morning line maker, David Aragona and others for starting this trend, which is a helpful service for horseplayers.

Learn more about the art and science of betting the races to win with our Betting 101 Guide and Handicapping 101 Guide

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