Thursday, December 8, 2016

Assiniboia Downs The Insider E-Newsletter

Vol. 11 No. 44 (Issue #564)

By Ivan Bigg

Weekly Horseplayer Report and Fun Stuff

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

If you can answer these six questions . . .

. . . you can skip next Wednesday's seminar

  1. Will a "hidden" turf sire lead to this?

    What’s the best angle for picking winners in turf races?
  2. Who were the top turf sires in 2016 and how can you capitalize in 2017?
  3. What’s a “hidden” turf sire?
  4. What trainers win the most dirt stakes races at Gulfstream?
  5. What top trainers at Santa Anita struggle with turf maidens?
  6. When should you play Gulfstream’s jackpot pick-6?

Congrats if those questions were a breeze. If they weren’t, but you would like them to be, then the handicapping seminar concentrating on Gulfstream and Santa Anita next Wednesday at 7 p.m. is a must. It’s hosted by Marshall Posner and Glen Sirkis of Fan Education Kiosk fame. Their objective is to produce better bettors. You pad your pockets, the economy grows, everyone is happy.

NOTE: The “hidden” turf sire is a unique development by Marshall that will give you an edge over other players. (Maybe it will win you the Player’s Choice tournament on Dec. 17.)


(Oh yes, the Downs will give you 2,500 Player Reward points plus deposit $10 FREE into your HPI account in the week following the seminar when you’ve bet a total of $50 during that week.)

Bullet briefs . . .

  • $227,000 pick-6 carryover this afternoon at Aqueduct
  • Festive-enhanced buffets begin tonight!
  • "I won big" group picks up almost $5,000 on Woodbine's closing weekend
  • $2 million Los Alamitos QH futurity goes Sunday night. Don't blink!
  • Final horseplayer tourney will feature a delicious festive perk! (Sign up!)
  • Who was one of the nicest horsemen to race at ASD? See Bob's blog
  • Psst! The Downs is open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! (Pass it on!)

BROCKHILL’S $20 IS HIGHEST PARLAY: Car salesman and sometime groom Dave Brockhill increased his $6 show parlay to $20.15 at Charles Town last Friday night which the Downs matched in the 5-Alive show parlay challenge. See how he did it here. With no racing on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 24 and 25, there are fewer days in which to score the highest parlay of the month. You not only get your winnings matched (up to $100) for the highest parlay of the night but you’ll win a prime rib buffet for two. Get busy!

QX104 � Today's Country

Official stations of horse racing.
Click to listen

94.3 The Drive

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Want highlights for the next 10 days? Click calendar.
What tracks are running in December? 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 at 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.

FESTIVE-ENHANCED PRIME RIB BUFFET BEGINS TONIGHT: Starting tonight, enjoy festive-enhanced certified Angus prime rib buffets on three Thursdays:

  • Matzo ball soup

    Tonight and next Thursday: buffet includes roast turkey, stuffing, turkey gravy, cranberry sauce, cabbage rolls, perogies and mashed potatoes.
  • Thursday, Dec. 22: Celebrating Hanukkah with these additions -- braised brisket, apricot chicken, potato latkes and matzo ball soup.

These are filling up quickly. For reservations, call 204-885-3330 ext. 0.

CELEBRATE XMAS AT THE DOWNS! OPEN DEC. 24 & 25: So, lucky you, Assiniboia Downs offers you another alternative for celebrating Christmas or getting a break from family functions or whatever: the Downs is open 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with:

Open 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. Dec. 24 & 25

  • 140 VLTs
  • Enter “Spin to Win” for Christmas cash
  • Turkey Dinner $12.95 (turkey, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, veggie, cranberry sauce, dinner roll and slice of pumpkin pie)
  • Complimentary festive beverages and snacks
  • Battery-booster help at the ready

Leading up to Christmas and until New Year's watch for festive treats such as hot apple cider, hot chocolate and snacks! How about ordering a shot of rum to add to your hot apple cider?

CELEBRATE NEW YEAR’S EVE WITH ALIX MICHAELS: The Downs is the place to ring in 2017 with a fabulous buffet featuring eight food stations, NuFrequency Light & Sound, prize draws and more, all hosted by 94.3 The Drive’s Alix Michaels. Phone for tickets ($49.95) at 204-885-3330 ext. 0.

"Better bettor" tracks declined in November

ASD players were better bettors at 15 tracks, down from 23

ASD wagering stats show you did really well playing Aqueduct, Hawthorne, Remington and Charles Town in November, as well as Northlands harness and Century Downs harness but the total number of tracks you were better bettors at—15 of them--was down from the usual 23 or so.

Which means the timing for a “be a better bettor” seminar (especially focusing on Gulfstream and Santa Anita) couldn’t be better. It’s next Wednesday, of course, at 7 p.m. In the meantime, why not re-evaluate your play to see if you’re really betting to your strengths. What tracks do you do best at? What condition of race do you have the most success at playing?

Your weakest tracks were Santa Anita (Breeders’ Cup), Laurel, Mountaineer and Woodbine/Mohawk.


"Big" group hits pick-5s as Woodbine ends

"I won big" wins almost $5,000 in weekend play

“I won big” participants can take a bow for adding to the provincial economy by being better bettors. In 14 workshops since mid-September, they rarely had an outright losing day and ended with a flourish, picking up $2,255 on Saturday and $2,727 on Sunday mainly in Woodbine pick-5 play.

A new participant in the group Sunday marvelled at the seeming ease in which his $20 investment was turned into $87. “So this is how it works,” he said with giddy astonishment.

Hopefully he and everyone else will continue to reap rewards as the group’s attention Saturday mornings turns to the Tampa Bay late pick-5 and pick-4. Why don’t you join in? 10:30 a.m. on the Clubhouse plaza. Each $20 investment gets topped up with a generous $5 from the Downs.

SPECIAL “I WON BIG” WORKSHOP WEDNESDAY 6 PM: A special “I won big” workshop will be held next Wednesday at 6 p.m., an hour before the Posner/Sirkis seminar begins at 7 p.m. (see top of column). We’ll play the pick-5 and/or the pick-4 on the last five races at Delta Downs. (Players will be emailed the races on Tuesday.) Remember to phone Samantha at 204-885-3330 ext. 0 to tell her you will be attending the 7 p.m. seminar after the “I won big” session. It should be a great night of handicapping, learning new stuff and maybe even fattening the wallet!

*       *       *

Final horseplayer tourney to include festive perk

A Christmas buffet will be served at Dec. 17 Player's Choice tournament

To be served during Dec. 17 tourney

A festive perk awaits players signing up for the final Player’s Choice tournament of the year Saturday, Dec. 17: a delicious Christmas buffet featuring what you see in the picture – roast turkey, stuffing, Swedish meatballs, mashed potatoes, gravy, veggies and cranberry sauce. Yes, I’m salivating as I write this.

So this is what you get for your $25 entry fee:
• A chance to share in $850 in prize money and trophies
• 5,000 Player Rewards points (worth $25)
• The festive feast pictured at right plus desserts

In other words, it’s almost a too-good-to-be-true collection of goodies. And, between mopping up your gravy with mashed potatoes and stuffing, what you do is bet $2 to win and place on 10 horses at the track(s) of your choice starting at noon Saturday, Dec. 17. Sign up in the Race Book or phone the mutuel office at 204-885-3330 ext. 225 anytime.

Rat Faced McDougall

YOU NAMED ME WHAT? Ratface Macdougall. On the face of it, this sounds like a rather crazy name for a 3-year-old Ontario-bred gelding (9-1-2-2). But if you’re into fly fishing, it’s probably not. Rat Faced McDougall happens to be the name of an effective fly used to catch trout. The fly initially was named Beaverkill Bastard (what?) but apparently was changed “on the fly” by a fisherman who wanted to be less offensive in describing that particular lure to a young lady.


BLUE GRASS, WOOD MEMORIAL DEMOTED TO GRADE 2: When was the last time the winner of the Wood Memorial or the Blue Grass won the Kentucky Derby? The fact that you may say “a long time ago” confirms that those two races don’t have the quality of the Santa Anita Derby, the Arkansas Derby or the Florida Derby so it comes as no surprise that those two races have been downgraded to Grade 2 status for next year by the American Graded Stakes Committee of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders’ Association.

Strike the Gold, 1991, was last Blue Grass winner to win Kentucky Derby

Here are the last five Kentucky Derby winners and the prep race from which they emerged:
• 2016 – Nyquist (Florida Derby)
• 2015 – American Pharoah (Arkansas Derby)
• 2014 – California Chrome (Santa Anita Derby)
• 2013 – Orb (Florida Derby)
• 2012 – I’ll Have Another (Santa Anita Derby)

And when was the last time a winner from a demoted stakes race won the Kentucky Derby? Fusaichi Pegasus (Wood Memorial) in 2000 and Strike the Gold (Blue Grass) in 1991. Obviously many years ago. Maybe Keeneland’s return to dirt may help it regain the status it once had as the winningest prep race for Kentucky Derby winners, 23, tied with the Champagne Stakes run at Belmont Park.

YEAR ONE OF WOODBINE'S TAPETA TRACK: IT WORKS! I thought I’d never say this about a synthetic surface but Woodbine’s new Tapeta track has worked as well as any dirt surface. It produced consistency in horse performances and therefore was a reliable betting track. Weekly handicapping by the “I won big” group proved it. The group ended its three months of moderately successful play with almost $5,000 in pick-5 winnings in the track’s two closing days.

JACKPOT HI-5 TURNS INTO A LEARNING EXPERIENCE; PAYS $39,500: Woodbine’s mandatory Jackpot Hi-5 payout Sunday, $39,500 for each 20-cent ticket, turned out to be winnable bet—if a player threw out the deep closers in the 14-horse field. Earlier races on the card—where speed dominated gate to wire—showed this to be a possible strategy. And it might have been the strategy of the “I won big” group but its bets were made before the race card even began. Next time it will be important to wait until just before the race. It was no great loss, though, as the group spent only about $60 on Jackpot wagers.

HPIBET Marshall Posner

Tips ’n’ Tricks

with Marshall Posner

Q. How do I change my contact information in HPIbet?

A. If you’ve recently gotten a new email address or changed your phone number, you can easily update this information on HPIbet. Once you’re logged in, just click on the View Profile link under the cameo picture along the top right of the page (view image here). Now click on the CONTACT tab and then click the blue EDIT button (view image here). You can now update your phone number and/or email address along with any new preferences you have for receiving administrative/marketing notices from HPIbet. Don’t forget to click the SAVE button before exiting the page.

Got a question for Marshall? Email

HISTORY ON THE HOOF: The best of Bob

Bob's blog this week pays tribute to a well-known and respected cattleman with a fondness for horses and the sport of horse racing. Hint: Sons Barry and Wayne are still in the business. Read it here.

Will a "hidden" turf sire horse win this race? Will you have it? Next Wednesday's seminar will put you in the know.

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