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About Steven Mulhall

Steven Mulhall has been a member since June 7th 2013, and has created 2 posts from scratch.

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Steven Mulhall's Bio

I am a world traveler who's been to 24 countries and around the world six times. I founded ExactaExpress.net after learning and following time-tested theories of racing and seeing the benefits of exotic wagering. I am currently in China where I take advantage of a 12-hour headstart on all racing information!

Steven Mulhall's Websites

This Author's Website is http://www.exactaexpress.net

Steven Mulhall's Recent Articles

American Pharoah Rules

American Pharoah Ends Triple Crown Drought

American PharoahSaturday’s running of the Belmont Stakes is one for the ages. After 37 years of near misses and disappointments thoroughbred racing has crowned its 12th Triple Crown winner in American Pharoah. He is truly a champion and left no doubt about it. He absolutely demolished his seven rivals with his smooth as glass strides, looking like he was running just above the ground and pulling away to win by 51/2 lengths. This win was most gratifying to this writer because so many folks had said that we would never see another Triple Crown winner unless the rules were changed. The owner of last year’s Derby and Preakness winner himself cried that he would never see a Triple Crown winner in his lifetime. Well someone should wake him up and send him the video of this year’s Belmont. You see it will always be possible for a horse to win the Triple Crown. You just have to have a horse talented enough to beat all comers. The sad fact was that last year’s Derby and Preakness winner just was not good enough to beat anyone who stood in his way. He wasn’t good enough to handle the vigorous path it would take to be a Triple Crown winner. Don’t get me wrong here, California Chrome was and is a great horse. American PharoahHe just was not a Super Horse. He did not earn the right to be placed in the company of the eleven others that proved that they were Super Horses. Yes the 37 year old drought is over and it is a great thing for all of horse racing. It may take another 37 years to see another one. Then again we may see one next year. It all depends on which horse is blessed with that special talent it will take to take it all the way. My hat is off to American Pharoah. He is a super three year old and deserves to be numbered among horse racing’s elite twelve.

 

 

 

Mike Jr’s 2015 Kentucky Derby Picks

2015 Kentucky Derby

KentuckyDerbyLogo2015_298Here we are again, folks! This is the most exciting Saturday of the year as we prepare for this year’s Kentucky Derby. This year’s field is nothing short of spectacular and is quite possibly one of the most talented line-ups we have seen in a while. You usually hear that every year from the television broadcasters, no matter what the field looks like, but this year it is absolutely true and should provide us with one heck of a Derby! As a matter of fact, I feel like this year’s Derby is going to shake out one of two ways. Either we are about to see a great payoff in this one… or we might just witness a Super horse in the making. Personally, I’m leaning towards the payoff, but either outcome is fine by me! Let’s get started.

American PharoahThe morning line favorite is American Pharoah at 5/2. I look for that price to change the closer we get to post time, as the public is truly enamored with this horse. Personally, I don’t believe he should have been the favorite, but I’ll get to that in a minute. That being said, there is no doubt that American Pharoah is one of the top contenders in this race. He is undefeated in his last 4 starts, including a runaway victory in the Arkansas Derby by 8 lengths.  Trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by last year’s Derby winner, Victor Espinoza, American Pharoah will be one to watch. He does have a few concerns here, though. For starters he has drawn the 18th post. Baffert can say what he wants, but this is not the ideal slot for him. Also, he is far from being the lone speed in this race. His biggest problem will be his stablemate coming out of the 8th slot.

DortmundDortmund is second on the morning line at 3 to 1 and in my opinion, should have been the morning line favorite. Another Baffert horse, Dortmund is undefeated in 6 career starts. What I like about Dortmund is that no matter what he has gone up against in those 6 starts, he has found a way to win and has shown some serious passion for winning. In the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Futurity, he came from a close third in the stretch to winning in a 3 way head bob. Again in the Grade 3 Robert B Lewis, he came from 2nd in the stretch to winning in a 2 way head bob. As a matter of fact, he has gained ground in every race he has been in and has shown that he can rate. Alydar & AffirmedAny other time, if the two top contenders in this race were just Dortmund and American Pharoah, I would give it a coin toss as to who would come out on top. I would be leaning towards Dortmund. But this isn’t going to be like any other Derby. So let me just put this out there now- if a Super horse emerges here, I would say it is one of these two, my loyalties swaying towards Dortmund. If that happens, we may see these two duke it out through the Triple Crown trail like Affirmed and Alydar did in ’78 (you know, back when I was 3, lol.) Needless to say, this would make for an exciting time in horse racing, so I’m certainly not opposed to seeing it unfold that way. But…

Firing LineThere is a ton of front end speed in this race and it is going to take a Super horse to win it on or near the lead. I look for the fractions to be much higher than they have been in year’s past and I believe that all that speed is going to take its toll.  Not only are American Pharoah and Dortmund going to be on or near the lead, there are 5 other potential horses that are going to do the same. Materiality sits in the 3 spot and is undefeated in 3 career starts, including a front end win in the Florida Derby. As long as he gets a clean break, he should be out front early. Remember I mentioned the two head bob wins of Dortmund’s? Those wins were over Firing Line, who shipped down to Sunland and ran away with a 14 length victory in the Sunland Derby. One thing that is interesting about Firing Line is that he won his maiden race in come from behind fashion. Carpe DiemKeep that in mind, because to win this one he may want to revert back to that form. If he does, he’ll be a serious threat. If not, he’ll be in the bundle of horses fighting for the front-end lead. Stanford missed the win in the Louisiana Derby by a neck and is another who’ll try and go to the lead early. Carpe Diem needs to get out front and quick, sitting in the 2 slot. He likes to be on the lead, as well and will either have to charge forward or get stuck in traffic. Right beside him in the dreaded one slot is Ocho Ocho Ocho, also a front runner who will desperately need to get out and going quick. All of these horses like to go out quick and that is going to make for one big suicide speed on the front end. Throw in other possible front runners like Upstart, Mr. Z and Tencendur, and we’re set up for the chance at a big payday as this multi-horse speed duel will inevitably burn out most are all of these contenders.

International StarWhich leads us to the cavalry charge of mid-pack to late running horses that should pick off the rest of this field (and pay nicely, I might add.) Normally, at this point in my article I give you my “value” and “longshot” plays. There is a ton of both in this field with this pace set-up! But I’ll do my best. For starters and just to put it out there in case you missed it, I will put a bet down on Firing Line, in hopes that he makes a late charge and doesn’t get tangled up in the speed duel or traffic. If there is true value in this field, my gut says it’s him. But I’m not sold on him making a late run, so I have to consider Frosted at 15 to 1 on the morning line. He actually has the top speed rating in this field and the best 1 1/8 time for his win in the Grade 1 Wood Memorial. I’m almost positive that Frosted is the horse dad will pick (this happened to me last year), so for my personal choice I’m going with International Star at 20 to 1 on the morning line. I’ve loved the horse since the Le Comte and I think he is ready to make that charge to victory here.

Danzig MoonFor longshots, I have to look at Danzig Moon at 30 to 1. Toss out his Tampa Bay Derby flop and focus on his 2nd place finish in the Blue Grass. He made some serious strides in that race and I look for him to perform well in the Derby. For my second longshot choice, I wanted to go with Far Right, but I just can’t handle him in the 20 slot. It might work to his advantage, especially with Mike Smith in the irons, but he’ll have to prove it to me. Instead, I’m going with El Kabeir at 30 to 1. What I like about El Kabeir is that he practically bounced in the Wood Memorial, even with his 3rd place finish.  Sometimes a bounce before a big race is a blessing. He didn’t wear himself out and pulled up enough to get the points he needed. I look for a big run from him in the Derby, especially with Calvin Borel onboard. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if he makes it to the rail for a ground saving trip. Good luck everybody and I sincerely hope that you have an exciting and profitable Kentucky Derby!

****Update- There is a chance that Stanford may not start Saturday. If so, Frammento will get in. If he does, he is definitely one to consider for your longshot/exotic wagers at a huge price.

 

 

Mike Sr’s 2015 Kentucky Derby Picks

Kentucky Derby 2015

American PharoahIt is time again to preview America’s premier thoroughbred horse race, the Kentucky Derby. This race is for three year olds going a distance of 1 ¼ miles for a purse of $2,000,000.  This race in my opinion will be the most interesting Run for the Roses in recent history. It will be very competitive and filled with intrigue from start to finish. I just love the first Saturday in May! Why will this race be so fascinating? First off, you have an unbeaten colt in here who is not the morning line favorite. Bob Bafferts’s Dortmund with Martin Garcia up will try to be the first unbeaten horse to win this race since his sire Big Brown did it in 2008. DortmundSecondly, you have another Baffert horse that is the morning line favorite, American Pharaoh with Victor Espinoza in the irons. Both these horses love to run on the lead and both can be rated also. Thirdly you have at least seven horses that have shown that they want to be in the first tier of horses when they leave the gate. It is going to be a cavalry charge from the get go. Also, no Derby in recent history has had so many quality horses go postward. I am telling you that this race will be a dandy. I would not be surprised to see a huge payoff in the superfecta or the trifecta. If the two favorites run completely out of the money it will possibly be sign up for taxes at the payoff windows. Seriously.

Carpe DiemSo here I go trying to handicap the biggest race in America. As I said before, the morning line favorite is Baffert’s American Pharaoh. I watched this horse demolish the field for the Arkansas Derby and it looked like he could have beaten anyone that day. He likes it on the lead, but can be rated if need be. I just don’t know how tough the field was that day. Far Right and Mr Z were both in that race, but were far behind the winner. And Pharaoh was just cruising and was never asked for anything. The second choice in the ML is Bob Baffert’s Dortmund with Martin Garcia in the saddle. MaterialityThis horse is undefeated in six starts and he too likes it on the front end, however he has been rated before and it seems as if he can do it any way he wants. He has beaten the likes of Firing Line, Mr Z and Bolo and it doesn’t matter how he does it, he just finds a way to win. Third choice of the morning line is Todd Pletcher’s Carpe Diem with John Velazquez up. Here is another who likes to run on or near the lead and Velazquez chose to ride this one over Materiality who is also a front runner and unbeaten in three starts. Carpe Diem won the Bluegrass Stakes and has only lost one time and that was to Texas Red who is not in the Derby. If he was, we could possibly be looking at a different favorite.

FrostedSo what do we do here? This is really a tough one to decipher. And I have not even talked about the likes of Frosted or International Star or El Kabeir. Perhaps I should have because Frosted and Star both come from off the pace and that may bode well for either of them and Kabeir has Calvin Borel aboard and he will make this race interesting, too. It all depends on who travels without any traffic problems. It is my humble opinion, and I am not sure at all about this, that Frosted will get there first with American Pharaoh second and International Star third. Happy Derby Pickin Guys and Gals!

 

 

2015 Arkansas Derby

Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn

American PharoahIt is time once again to preview one of my favorite races from one of my favorite tracks. Since I am a home grown Arkansas boy, I of course am referring to the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park.  This will be the last major points race for the Kenucky Derby Points System. This is a race for three year olds going a distance of  11/8 miles for a purse of  $1,000,000. The morning line favorite is  Bob Baffert’s American Pharoah with Victor Espinoza in the irons. Pharoah has 60 points and has assured himself of a place in the Kentucky Derby, but this is a tune up for him and I am sure Bob Baffert wants him peaking at the right time. His style of running is to get the lead and go from gate to wire with it. I am not so sure that that will be an easy thing to do in the Run for the Roses, but I am getting ahead of myself. In this race that might not be a difficult task for him. There are a couple of others who might want the lead here. Second choice in the ML is Ron Moquett’s Far Right with Mike Smith up. Far Right’s running style is far different from American Pharoah in that he likes to come from off the pace. That is what he will do here and Mike Smith knows just how to ride him because he has won the last two when piloting this three year old.

Far RightThird in the morning line is Todd Pletcher’s Madefromlucky with John Velazquez in the saddle. This one is more of a stalking type and I figure that is what he will do today. He will lay just off the shoulders of the front runners and try and win it from there. Good luck sir. This is the way I see it shaping up. American Pharoah will have some company on the front for a while but he will soon shake those off. By those I mean Mr.Z and Bridget’s Big Luvy. Far Right will make his run at him but will come up short finishing second and Madefromlucky will finish third. Happy Handicapping Guys and Gals!

 

 

2015 Lexington Stakes

Lexington Stakes at Keeneland

KeenelandLet us preview this year’s Lexington Stakes for three year olds going a distance of 1 1/16 miles for a purse of $250,000. This is the last of the Kentucky Derby Points races, giving 10 points to the winner. If you are unfamiliar with the points system, be sure and take a look at our break down of this year’s races and leaders- 2015 Kentucky Derby Points System. The morning line favorite is Bob Baffert’s Fame and Power with Irad Ortiz in the irons. This one just broke his maiden in wire to wire fashion. Not only did he lead at every call, he finished with a nice speed figure. However it looks like he will have company on the front end in this one. Second choice in the ML is Arnaud Delacour’s Divining Rod with Julien Leparoux up. This is one of those that looks like he will give F&P company on the front end. Divining Rod has 10 points for the Derby, so a win here would give him 20 and put him on the bubble to get in. He would also have to supplement to get in, as he was not nominated for the Triple Crown. He appears to like it on the pace, but this race may be different.

Divining RodThird choice in the morning line is Todd Pletcher’s Comfort with Javier Castellano in the saddle. This one has been laid off since early February and had been running at the Fair Grounds. He likes to do his running from off the pace and will have a pace to run at in this race. This race is full of horses that have just broke maiden and Derby want to be’s. It is really a hard one to handicap because you expect one to jump up and say “I’m a Derby contender” but you almost have to look at it as a non-winner of two race. Who is the best runner in this race? The race will have a pace on the front end that will set up for a come from behind charge. That being said, I believe that Divining Rod will win it by coming just off the pace with Comfort second and Fame and Power third. Happy Horse Picking Gals and Guys!