October 5, 2001

Crunch Time Is Here
This is it, the final two weekend days of meaningful racing activity in preparation for the 2001 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships. Tomorrow brings the always-exciting Breeders' Cup Preview at Belmont Park, which carries even more import than usual since Belmont will also be the site of the championship events. But there's also huge action at Keeneland and Santa Anita. As always, we are pleased, excited and proud to bring you a capsule analysis of each of tomorrow's big races, eight in all.

We begin, naturally, where it'll all end three weeks from now, at beautiful Belmont Park on Saturday, Oct. 27. Tomorrow's program includes five top-class events, headed by, of course, the $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup, the last local prep for the Breeders' Cup Classic. More on that one a little later.

Frizette Stakes: This is the first of the big races on the card, a mile and a sixteenth for two-year-old fillies. Only five were entered, but two of them are pretty much the cream of the division. Those two are the scintillating Cashier's Dream and You. (Yeah, You!)

Like many juveniles, Cashier's Dream has done it strictly on the front end, and this race being her first route, she likely will clear again. But that doesn't mean she can't duel, so even if she feels a little pressure early, she can withstand it and still finish with courage. And she should get the route, especially around the one turn, no problem. It looks good for her.

You, on the other hand (I mean You, not you!), will probably have to develop a new dimension of patience this time. While she (or is it You) has been up toward the front every step of the way so far in her young career, it could very well be that the pace might get away from her in here. Frankel is a huge plus for her (er, You), but the pedigree could be a letdown.

The other three are hard to support, though Riskaverse, already victorious beyond seven furlongs, has the proper closing style to perhaps make things interesting, at a nice price, in the late stages.

Outlook: Cashier's Dream over You, with a flyer on Riskaverse to maybe play the interloper.

Champagne Stakes: Another five-horse prep, also for two-year-olds, this time male, and you can understand why: the ballyhooed Officer travels to New York to try to pull rank on his East Coast brethren. And the morning-linemaker didn't possess a strong enough imagination to go against the hype, setting the monster at 2-5.

Heavyweight Champ will try to go the distance, literally, for the first time, and while he's an improving sort, today could put an end to all that. Thunder Days could be the one to finish the best of the rest, and complete the exacta behind the new Baffert juggernaut.

Outlook: No resisting this Officer, though Thunder Days can continue his improvement via his established late-run.

Beldame Stakes: Eight go here, the presence of the unstoppable Flute notwithstanding. It's a mile and an eighth for fillies and mares.

Exogenous freaked out last time, adding the blinkers and staying close to a good pace while maintaining her customary late kick. A repeat of that makes her a strong contender. Serra Lake and Critical Eye represent rallying threats on their best, while Beautiful Pleasure and her understudy Spain share the role of Norma Desmond. Flute is Flute.

Outlook: Flute is fast, but not as fast as some would think, especially against these amazons. Search for value among Exogenous, Serra Lake and Critical Eye.

Kelso Handicap: A wide-open affair in which the top choice is a relatively high 5-2 on the morning line. There aren't the marquee Breeders' Cup Mile names in here, but that makes for a better gamble.

City Zip has been fast enough to duel with Squirtle Squirt in dirt sprints, so you know where he'll be positioned in this, his first turf try. However, his parentage screams everything except the grass. Kimberlite Pipe will want the lead, but City Zip obviously takes it out of his hooves. Sarafan, Tubrok and Blu Air Force all figure to be heavily engaged in the real running.

Outlook: Some beatable low prices on the morning line, with Sarafan, Tubrok and Blu Air Force representing great chances at terrific prices.

Jockey Club Gold Cup: The day's biggest event and perhaps the one with the most question marks: Can 'Albert hang on? Does A P Valentine belong here? Is Aptitude now a veritable win machine? This Barry Bonds character -- can he finish with 93 home runs by Sunday?

OK, maybe not that last one, but you get the idea. It's 'Albert's race to lose, and Aptitude will be eager to run him down at the end. And with that sneaky Nick Zito, it's hard to put that final nail in A P Valentine's coffin. You know he has every right to pop up at the end with the great John Velazquez on his back.

Outlook: The three A's on the race, with Albert the Great and Aptitude obviously dominating; however, A P Valentine might make a little run at the end, though his pedigree has proven him lacking at the classic distance time and again. At Keeneland, it's a pair of important races.

Phoenix Breeders' Cup Stakes: The sprinters get in a final tune-up in this one, headed by old-timer Bet on Sunshine and up-and-comer (and favorite of this e-newsletter) Snow Ridge.

Snow Ridge looks like he can stick it to this crew early and often, just like last time, and in combination with that notorious Keeneland speed bias (that they try to insist doesn't exist), he looks solid. Like the overhyped 'Sunshine, Robin de Nest figures to do some ground-gaining late.

Outlook: Snow Ridge will have to be dragged down from behind, and if it happens, it's going to be Robin de Nest, and not Bet on Sunshine, doing the dragging.

Lane's End Breeders' Futurity Stakes: Now here's a lineup: 12 two-year-olds go a mile and a sixteenth to see who can move on to the finals three weeks hence.

Metatron can control a good pace, or at least be in pouncing position throughout before unleashing an effective stretch-kick. Kamsack will draw heavy action for his second-place to Officer, but he doesn't look like he'll get as comfortable a trip as he's used to, and that's not to mention a pedigree that seems distance-challenged.

Outlook: Metatron, straight-up. And finally, Santa Anita plays hosts to what probably amounts to another coronation.

Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Handicap: It's been 18 months since Kona Gold didn't finish first, and his ability to create his ideal stalking trip time after time is uncanny. He'll sit just off Freespool again this time. Freespool will be cursing the final furlong, as will Lexicon. (Shoot, Lexicon might be cursing the first furlong too, after Freespool outguns him early.) Which leaves Swept Overboard and the dependably rallying Eddie D. to try to topple the legend.

Outlook: You can't bet Kona Gold (well, you can, but we don't recommend it), but you can always play against him, thinking that today will finally be the day. If so, Swept Overboard should be the one, taking full advantage of a bigger field, a better pace and a track he's always liked.

September Contest Ends; October 'Rollin' to the BC' Edition Begins
Congratulations to the final three winners in the September Double or Nothing Edition of the Big-Prize Handicapping Contest: Ray P., Paul D. and Andy P. Nice work, and thank you to all who participated.

This month, October, is Championship Month, and in honor of that, we've come up with the "Rollin' to the BC" Edition of the Big-Prize Handicapping Contest, and you can find the complete details at Rollin' to the BC. It should be a blast, as always!

C&X Late-Breaking News Section Up and Running; Cramer's Arc Analysis Up Saturday Night -- for Subscribers ONLY!
(Sections reprinted from earlier editions.)

It is here -- the C&X Report Late-Breaking News subsite of the Cynthia Publishing Company Web site.

Subscribers, we'll tell you the address and the procedure for establishing an identity and password. You'll find the instructions in your forthcoming September issue, along with excellent, exclusive features on the successful claiming-horse owner Richard Englander, longshot handicapper Kevin Gorg and, as promised, the research cheat sheet from including all the major C&X research from the past two years.

There's never been a better time get involved with racing's best hardcopy newsletter -- bar none.

Good reason to subscribe or resubscribe now: Cramer's analysis and personal betting line for Sunday's Arc de Triomphe will be posted on the Late-Breaking News subsite -- but only if you subscribe by 6 p.m. Saturday night. Don't miss out! And coming Oct. 27: Cramer's Complete BC analysis.

Year 2 of C&X Is History; Resubscribe Now, or Start Fresh for Year 3 in September
So you don't miss a single word of Cramer's wisdom during Year 3, you have to take action and either resubscribe or begin your subscription now. It's not too hard. Really. Just pick up your phone and dial (323) 876-7325 and have your credit card ready. Your subscription cost is $109 for 12 issues -- again less than the price of a couple of off-track Racing Forms each month. Or you can do it right here from your computer by getting on the Internet and going to Cynthia Publishing Company's Handicapping Store.

As always, thanks for reading, and see you next time.

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