Thursday, November 17, 2016

Assiniboia Downs The Insider E-Newsletter

Vol. 11 No. 41 (Issue #561)

By Ivan Bigg

Weekly Horseplayer Report and Fun Stuff

(If this column looks askew in your email, click here for an online version.)

Early morning workouts at Flemington race track in Australia. Woodbine hosts Australia racing nightly with 20-cent bet minimums.

Bullet briefs . . .

  • Will 36% Manitoba trainer bookend tonight's pick-4 at Remington?
  • Baby wars continue Saturday with the $1 million Delta Downs Jackpot
  • Will 2-year-old Gunnevera thrill us with another last-to-first move?
  • Woodbine hosts Australian racing which means 20-cent minimums
  • Reading an Australian program is as easy as 1-2-3
  • Australia racing offers serious players a betting edge

PLAYERS NOT READY TO WAVE THE WHITE FLAG: Players in the Race Book aren't quite ready to roll over and play dead. They’re seeing Al “Mr Parlay” Ilott cleaning up on show parlays Friday and Saturday nights and would like nothing more than to knock him off his pedestal. In an email with giant letters a player who calls himself the Mystic Writer, says: “Well, I guess I'll come out of show parlay retirement and take on that so-called CHAMP of parlays! HE'S GOOD....BUT HE'S NOT ME!”

Others in the Race Book Saturday night almost produced a biggie but not quite. Shawn Gorrie's parlay of $28.35 at Charles Town was highest--which the Downs will match. Just to remind everyone: on Friday and Saturday nights the Downs will match your $6 five-race show parlay winnings up to $100 and will reward you with a prime rib buffet for two, too, if your parlay is highest of the month. Ilott’s entries were “highest of the month” two months in a row and his place parlay during live racing will send him on a Mexican vacation in January.

QX104 � Today's Country

Official stations of horse racing.
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94.3 The Drive

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Want highlights for the next 10 days? Click calendar.
What tracks are running in November? Find out here.
What are today’s $$$ carryovers? See them here.
Want to follow sports in the Race Book? NFL-Jets

EVERY FRIDAY, SATURDAY & SUNDAY: Free VLT tournaments starting 8 p.m. Get into the draw for 10 chances to win $20 in free VLT spins. Top winner from each night participates in a month-end finale for more spins and $250 in prize money.

EVERY FRIDAY AND SATURDAY NIGHT: 5-Alive "Double Your Winnings" contest from 7 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. and $10 buy-in poker. Registration 8 p.m. Game starts at 8:30 p.m.

YUP, IT’S THAT TIME AGAIN -- FESTIVE FRIVOLITY: Get ready—and book quickly—for three festive-enhanced Thursday prime rib buffets in December:
• Dec. 8 and 15: Traditional Christmas-enhanced buffets
• Dec. 22: Hanukkah dishes are featured
All you can eat $26.95. Reserve at 204-885-3330 ext. 0. And why not also request tickets now for the New Year’s Eve gala on Dec. 31 hosted by Q94’s Alix Michaels and featuring NuFrequency Light and Sound at $49.95.

Now there are three $10 taste and value offerings: Pepperoni pizza (really, really delicious) with Caesar salad is the new feature Saturday all evening starting at 5 p.m. That’s added to the Ukrainian Platter on Friday and spaghetti and meatballs Sunday. All three could become your favourites.


This has the makings of a Saturday thriller

Last-to-first Gunnevera is likely favourite in the $1 million Delta Jackpot

Saratoga Special Stakes
Watch Gunnevera mow 'em down

It was one of the most thrilling 2-year-old races of the summer: Gunnevera, far back of the rest of the field in the 6 1/2f Saratoga Special Stakes, suddenly making up ground to catch the tiring three and then finding another gear to surge past the 2/5 favourite.

Is that the kind of exciting move we can expect from Gunnevera this Saturday in the $1 million Delta Downs Jackpot? Trained by Antonio Sano, the son of Dialed In is among 10 entered in this important Kentucky Derby prep that produced Preakness-winning Exaggerator last year. All are talented babies, with seven of them having won their last start.

Gunnevera is likely to be co-favoured with Bob’s Baffert’s Hot Sean. Both horses have a 97 Equibase speed figure.

Woodbine trainer Mark Casse sends two 8/1 colts: Thirstforlife and Our Stormin Norman.

This is the last leg of the $200,000 guaranteed pick-4 that also includes the $400,000 Delta Princess which features Golden Mischief, a daughter of Into Mischief. Recall that the Into Mischief colt, Goldencents—who had a Manitoba mother--won the Breeders’ Cup dirt Mile two years in a row.

First post of Delta’s exciting 11-race stakes-filled card is 1:45 p.m.

The field for the $1 million Delta Jackpot:

  1. Pat On the Back 5-3-1-0 Equibase speed 91
  2. Line Judge 4-3-1-0 Equibase speed 88
  3. Thirstforlife 5-2-0-2 Equibase speed 88
  4. Our Stormin Norman 5-1-1-1 Equibase speed 92
  5. Dangerfield 4-1-1-0 Equibase speed 93
  6. GUNNEVERA 5-2-1-0 Equibase speed 97
  7. Balandeen 5-2-1-0 Equibase speed 93
  8. HOT SEAN 3-2-1-0 Equibase speed 97
  9. J Boys Echo 2-1-1-0 Equibase speed 88
  10. Tip Tap Tapizar 5-2-2-1 Equibase speed 89



It's the racing capital of the world . . .

. . . with Woodbine-style wagering and programs as easy to read as 1-2-3

Australians love their races (Flemington Park)

Are you playing races from Australia? Did you know it’s the horse-wagering capital of the world? The facts speak for themselves: There are 360 registered thoroughbred tracks in a country with one-third fewer people than Canada.

Fortunately for us, Woodbine has chosen to host races from this racing-crazed place every night of the week and offers its highly popular 20-cent pick-3s, pick-4 and superfecta wagers.

The only thing that could leave you a bit baffled is the program since it’s not like the Daily Racing Form. But, never fear . . .


  1. COURSE: There are three levels of courses in Australia: M (metro); P (provincial) and C (country). An M track is equivalent to Santa Anita, P is similar to Fair Grounds, C is the course level of Penn National. Look for horses dropping to an easier course.
  2. CLASS: That tells you the purse values (e.g. $150K) the horse has raced for. Horses dropping down in purse value are generally solid contenders.
  3. FP (FINISH POSITION): That tells you where the horse finished in previous races, obviously a very important consideration.

(Also get free Sha Tin and Happy Valley past performances)

*      *       *

Why you have a betting edge

Pools are fattened with "dumb money"

You’re betting into pools being fattened by players throughout North America who may be betting the races as a sideline to their socializing activities. Many likely don’t even have a program which are different from North American ones.

Consider their bets pot-builders for shrewd players like YOU. What you are doing is called legalized pick-pocketing.

Another reason to enjoy Australia this time of the year is the escape from the weather. Winter in the Northern Hemisphere means summer Down Under. So you vicariously get to revel in short-sleeve weather while the snow swirls outside. When winter begins on Dec. 21, summer is beginning in Australia.

5f sprints. I look for horses that are dropping in class after showing speed in tougher races.



Rob Atras
36% wins; sends three tonight

WILL 36% MANITOBA TRAINER BOOKEND PICK-4 TONIGHT? Are you following trainer Robertino Diodoro’s horses at Remington Park in Oklahoma? Note that if you were doing so, you’d be cashing more than a third of your win bets and more than 50 per cent of your place bets. That’s because, behind the scenes is assistant trainer Rob Atras, the former ASD trainer who won the Manitoba Derby for Diodoro in August, and continues to rack up incredible stats wherever he trains. His win percentage at Remington is now a breathtaking 36 per cent, eight per cent more than his nearest rival. His winning stats are 28-10-5-0.


Race 6
(9:25 p.m.) #1 Pistone Steel (5/2) and #3 Space Mine (3/1). It’s a $50,000 allowance optional claimer. See program page here.
Race 9
(10:45 p.m.) #4 True Ten (8/1). It’s a $25,000 claimer. See program page here.

Special workshop on U.S. Thanksgiving

"I WON BIG" IS SHUT OUT; SPECIAL WORKSHOP ON U.S. TURKEY DAY: The “I won big” betting group suffered a rare shutout last Saturday, landing neither the pick-5 or pick-4 at Woodbine. That could be a consequence of Woodbine’s meet coming to a close in two weeks. Some trainers, trying to get in one last race before the meet ends, may be sending out horses not primed for their best effort. We’ll have to take this into consideration when playing races 2 to 7 again this Saturday. The workshop begins 10:30 a.m.

Note there will be a
special workshop next Thursday, U.S. Thanksgiving. Play will concentrate on the pick-5 and pick-4 in the first five races at Aqueduct which go off at the early post time of 10:50 a.m. The workshop will begin at 9:30 a.m. The first 25 at the track that day between 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. will get a FREE breakfast sandwich and there will be a $10 turkey dinner special available all day!

Chris Thorburn
700-game milestone tonight

THORBURN CELEBRATES 700TH GAME TONIGHT: Tonight’s Winnipeg Jets tilt against the Philadelphia Flyers which you can watch in the Race Book while playing Remington (see above) will mark a big milestone for right-winger and pugilist Chris Thorburn. It will be his 700th game. And 500 fights? The lovable bearded 33-year-old looks none the worse for wear and it comes two days after another milestone: scoring his 50th goal. Congrats, Chris! Gonna celebrate by sharing a knuckle sandwich with a Flyer?


HPIBET Marshall Posner

Tips ’n’ Tricks

with Marshall Posner

Q. How do I keep the tracks menu always open on my screen?

A. There are a couple of options to always ensure that the menu of available tracks along with upcoming post times is always visible on your screen (excluding tablets and/or smartphones). First, you can simply lock the tracks menu by clicking on the lock icon next to the date at the top of the screen (view image here). This will lock the entire menu along the left hand side of your screen and scale the race information along the right hand side (view image here). You will now be able to scroll independently on both the locked tracks menu screen and the race information screen. This will remain locked until you unlock it regardless of whether or not you’ve logged out of your HPIbet account and logged back in.

Another option is to turn the tracks menu into its own open browser window by clicking on the pop-out window icon along the top of the menu (view image here). This is only recommended if you have multiple screens attached to your desktop or laptop computer as you will have to toggle between the various open browser windows otherwise, which defeats the original purpose of always having the tracks menu visible.

Got a question for Marshall? Email

HISTORY ON THE HOOF: The best of Bob

The old Wheat City Stakes is now run as the Manitoba Mile. Today Bob remembers the only horse to win this race three times. Downs' patriarch Bert Blake called him the "French" horse. Hint: The horse still holds a track record at the Downs. Find out who he is here.

NEXT INSIDER: Next Wednesday afternoon to preview the next day’s U.S. Thanksgiving action

A perk on trips to the Downs could include dramatic sunsets like this one, recently photographed by Britny Robinson

Remember, you can go here every day for quick,
FREE past performances for Australian racing

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3975 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3K 2E9
Ph (204) 885.3330 • Fax (204) 831.5348

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