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Someone made a score when Arrogate ran his clunker; Betting trend shows what produced unusual payoffs

By Warren Eves

“Somebody made a score.”

One astute horse player made that statement after 1-to-20 favorite Arrogate ran a clunker finishing a badly beaten fourth in the San Diego Handicap Saturday at Del Mar.

“I wasn’t paying attention to betting trends in that race because I knew there was no way on earth I would be betting on–or against–Arrogate,” said the well known bettor who asked that his name not be used. “So I didn’t notice Accelerant’s 10-to-1 odds plunge to 7-to-1 in the last flash. As soon as the race was over, however, I did print out the wagering totals in the various pools for the race and the individual horses.”

Kudos to Del Mar for allowing show betting–something a lot of tracks wouldn’t have done.

Here’s the betting stats that created some humongous payoffs. Of the $839,451 bet in the place pool, 94.37%($792,216) was wagered on Arrogate who opened as the betting at 1-to-9.

In the show pool, Arrogate bettors accounted for 94.18% of the total $1,402,052 wagered.

The fact there was “only” $430,000 in the win pool attests to the presence of bridge-jumpers. Those are players who are trying to “steal” five-cents on the dollar by betting to place or to show.

When I watched Arrogate go into the first turn I did not like what I saw. The four-year-old was not moving with fluidity. Arrogate never got closer than 4-1/2 lengths. He was 15-1/4 lengths behind the winner Accelerate at the wire.

The payoffs were huge: Arrogate(7-to-1) paid $17.00 to win $32.60 to place and $22.00 to show. Donworth(24-to-1) paid $119.80 to place and $67.40 to show. Cat Burglar(18-to-1) paid $38.20 to show.

Was Arrogate just one more in a long list of horses suffering from the “Dubai bounce?” Many astute followers of the horse racing game will say yes.

Or….was one rumor that had been circulating true? Reportedly, and we have no proof of this, jockey Martin Garcia had difficulty getting Arrogate to work as planned one morning. Garcia has had a hugely successful, sometimes caustic, up and down relationship with trainer “Baffy.” There’s no way in hell Garcia will be commenting publicly on Arrogate’s workouts any time soon.

The Juddmonte Farms four-year-old was making his first start since his simply amazing last to first win in the Dubai World Cup last March.

“Baffy” shrugged off the dismal effort by Arrogate and claims Arrogate’s target is still the August 19 Pacific Classic and the Breeders Cup Classic on November 4.

We won’t be shocked if Arrogate is retired.

Notes scribbled across my official program—-The worst starter in today’s racing that I know of is at Penn National. This guy waits and waits and waits some more, even when he has small fields…………..Going into the San Diego Handicap everyone was conceding the race to Arrogate with the memory of his awesome last to first race last March 25 in the Dubai World Cup………..There are some saying Trevor Denman is a shell of himself in the announcer’s booth so far. He’s been miss-identifying horses or missing them completely the first three days. One of his biggest fans said: “Sadly, these long vacations between Del Mar meetings seem to be taking their roll on his sharpness.” One thing is for certain, his patented “off the lead” phrase has literally been copied by just about every newbie to the race calling game………….Mike Smith, who is always a class act, hopped a plane for Saratoga after the no-show effort of Arrogate. On the next racing day he was at the famed Saratoga Race Course to ride another “Baffy” trainee Abel Tasman in the $300,000 Coaching Club American Oaks. Smith’s riding prowess told him they were going too slow early. He moved early with the filly Abel Tasman and that was the key to the win. “We went from yesterday being a total shock–we don’t know, we’re just going to draw a line through it–but to come back….that’s what’s great about this sport” he told Erin Shea. “It felt like it was a 15-hour flight(to get from California to Saratoga) but man, it’s going to be sweet going home.”………….Oh yeah, in all the hubbub of the San Diego, guess who rode Accelerate? ┬áNone other than Victor Espinoza, who has done right well for himself the past two years.

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About The Author

Warren Eves
Warren Eves is a senior turf writer from the state of California who calls Pearl River, Louisiana his home. The one time editor of the Pasadena Independent Star News moved on to handle publicity for racetracks coast to coast. Eves gained his first exposure to the racetrack through a school buddy the late Art Lerille, Jr., who eventually became a trainer in California. Warren worked as farm manager for crack two-year-old trainer Ray Priddy, before holding on track jobs at the racetrack. He worked for Hall of Fame trainer M.E. "Buster" Millerick, Allen Drumheller, Jr., and Dick Moon. Eves has a well rounded background in all breeds. He developed Quarter Horse Report in 1979 with Ed Burgart, track announcer, at Los Alamitos Race Course. It was an innovative publication which revolutionized the industry with actual descriptions of the workouts. While handling publicity at Saratoga Raceway in upstate New York Eves was named employee of the year in 1970. He also handled publicity for Sunland Park, Centennial Park, Ascot Park, Thistledown, and two harness meetings in California. Eves then went into the 900-line business with his best plays and has compiled his own Kentucky Derby ratings for many years. In 1997 he began going back and forth to Las Vegas teaming up with Ralph Siraco to create the long runining radio show Raceday Las Vegas. Eves has produced and directed many horse racing shows on both radio and television. In 2010 he got a call from Mark Geiger. That's when he began writing www.pricehorsecentral.com. Eves, with a reputation of a trip handicapper, is known for his video tape scrutiny. He currently monitors horse racing in for a major horseplayer. While writing for Ridder Publication at the Pasadena Star News his investigative reporting was highly regarded by his peers. Often on the cutting edge, Eves has been given the green light to write about what issues he sees fit to cover. Have a question. His book "Hold All Tickets" is soon to be made available for those who come to this site. It's a factual account of actual events and happenings that took place in the 70s, 80s and 90s. If Warren doesn't know the answer to a question you may have, he'll tell you up front. Eves won't drop it there, however, he'll find someone who knows the answer and get back to you.

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