Tips for betting on opening day

One fun thing about a new racetrack’s opening day is the fact that just about every race winner will own a track-record. After all, the first race winner will win in X time and if the second race winner goes but a fifth faster, the track speed record is broken. If the third race winner goes faster than both, the track record is broken again.

And so on and so forth.

The other great thing about opening day is the betting possibilities are munificent since, after all, it is a new racing surface and all of the horsemen and horses are becoming familiar with the joint.

As for the bettors, the same elements for pari-mutuel racing everywhere offer possibilities for profiting on a great sport. Oak Grove’s initial race meet, though it only lasts a few weekend to begin, makes the whole process seem new again, and the opening day program is perfect for introducing horses, horsemen and bettors to the facility.

What follows is a look at the opening day program, Oct. 18.

The first race of the first program at Oak Grove is a first for all involved. The six pacers in Race 1 have raced last at tracks in Indiana, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Virginia. So they are as unacquainted with one another as the bettors may be with them. Get used to this for the short meet.

Veteran driver/trainer Gerald Longo has brought some of his stock to the short meet and they could make a big difference in some of these races. Longo keeps his horses fit and is terrific at placing them in appropriate classes, stepping up or dropping down.

In Race 1 Longo drives and trains My Friskie Boy, who he brings in from Shenandoah Downs. Longo took the Ohio-bred over after the Running Aces meet in September and kept the aged Minnesota-bred pacer competitive at a level much like this opening day race.

In Race 2, Charmbo Blitz returns to the track after a good overnight performance at The Red Mile on Sept. 19. He as a co-favorite and showed a new face with early speed, finishing second. He had some tough trips in Lexington, as well as he won some events regardless of trouble. He could to off a good price here.

Longo has another sharp pacer in Race 2. Key Word is on a win streak and should be in the mix for the exacta, no less win the whole thing.

Briefly, here are our suggested contenders for the remainder of the card.

Race 3

Twice The Fool is a classy sophomore by champion Trixton, coming from a Grand Circuit event in Lexington. He should be the best.

Race 4

Mystical Storm’s Oct. 12 race is a toss out. He should race more like his Oct. 4 mile and pull off a good priced win.

Race 5

An outside contender, Lous Endeavor could spring a surprise win (not to us). He comes from the fiery surface of Springfield, Illinois where he finished third. Before that race he finished third in the Dygert Stakes at Hawthorne.

Race 6

He Rocks The Moon was flashing speed and confidence at The Red Mile and could take this field from start to finish.

Race 7

Ideal Gemini broke at Shenandoah last out while sweeping into a winning projectile. Before that he was racing successfully at Harrington among better stock.