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Summer Front Live in Peter Pan

Posted by Pete Mitchell on 5/11/2012 5:05:55 PM

Who: Thoroughbreds ??? The Lumber Guy, Mark Valeski, Master Rick, Teeth of the Dog, Summer Front, Street Life
What: Horse Racing Betting Tips ??? The Peter Pan
Where: Belmont Park
When: Saturday, May 12th

There???s a Belmont Stakes hopeful or two in the Peter Pan field. With plenty of speed signed on, this race could set up nicely for a strong finisher like Summer Front. Let???s take a closer look at the major contenders.

First, let???s identify the speed. #1-Right to Vote, #2-The Lumber Guy and #4-Le Bernardin have all shown consistent early speed in sprints. Then you???ve got #6-Good Morning Diva, #9-Master Rick and #10-Teeth of the Dog, who have shown that they can attend the early pace going a distance of ground. Of the six horses mentioned above, The Lumber Guy merits respect by virtue of his front-running score in the Grade 2 Jerome, making him the field???s lone graded stakes winner. Master Rick seems like a new horse since Steve Asmussen took over the training chores, breaking his maiden on the lead and taking the Norther Spur next out in a pace-pressing effort. Like Master Rick, Teeth of the Dog broke his maiden in front-running fashion going two turns. Then he hit the board in the Grade 1 Wood Memorial at odds of 53-1, making his move from mid-pack. These three should be in the hunt at the top of the stretch.

Because of the aforementioned abundance of early speed in the Peter Pan, I would tend to look for a closer. The trick is finding the right closer. #3-Zetterholm has been beating up on NY-breds???this is a big step up in class. #7-Hakama appears to be stuck in the low 80???s on the Beyer scale???not good enough. #8-Big Screen turned in a breakthrough performance last out when a close second to Good Morning Diva in the Calder Derby, but the level of competition was suspect. He proved to be no match for El Padrino and Take Charge Indy in an entry-level allowance affair at Gulfstream Park in late January. #12-Street Life was a big finisher on the Aqueduct Inner Track, but couldn???t produce that same kick in the Wood.

That leaves us with morning-line favorite #5-Mark Valeski (5-2) and #11-Summer Front (8-1), who makes his dirt debut in the Peter Pan. Mark Valeski is a very nice horse, with a pair of game runner-up finishes in the major Kentucky Derby prep races at Fair Grounds. He gets in light (116 lbs.) and should enjoy a nice trip in the second flight under regular rider Rosie Napravnik. Mark Valeski turned in a sharp local breeze for the Peter Pan, and looms the horse to beat???but I can???t get excited about him at odds of around 2-1. I???ll bet on Summer Front to win at odds of 4-1 or better. He???s unbeaten (3-for-3) on grass, but it looks like trainer Christophe Clement believes that Summer Front can be a major player on dirt, and his swift workouts would seem to support that conviction. Surprisingly, Summer Front went off the favorite (2.30-1) in the Lexington off a 4-month break, and ran well to finish 2nd. This race should set up perfectly for his late-running style, and he???s likely to avoid traffic from Post 11. The Pick.

Those are my horse racing betting tips for this weekend. Best of luck and happy gambling! ????

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