• Rapid Redux Goes For 22

    POSTED Jan 4, 2012
    All eyes in the horse racing world will be on Rapid Redux today, as he attempts to win his 22nd consecutive race at Laurel Park in the sixth. The 6-year-old gelding has not lost since he finished eighth at Penn National on Nov. 18, 2010.

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    Will his luck end today? Well, as always, much depends on the early pace.

    In his entire 41-race career, Rapid Redux has triumphed just once after trailing at the half-mile call — that was in a 5 ½-furlong dash on May 29, 2010 and the son of Pleasantly Perfect was second by a mere head at the half that day.

    If Rapid Redux is to be beaten today, I expect it will be due to the efforts of trainer John Rigattieri, who has a strong entry in the form of Awesome Rhythm, who was a half-length short of ending Rapid Redux’s streak on Dec. 13, and Ninth Client, a hard-trying sort that has been competing in the allowance ranks.

    Here’s the key: In his last three races, Rapid Redux has averaged a moderate -5 early speed ration (ESR); Ninth Client recorded a -7 ESR in his latest start (the lower the figure, the relatively faster the pace). So, if Rigattieri sends Ninth Client, I think the race is wide open. If he doesn’t, or if Ninth Client is scratched — late scratches have been an unfortunate highlight of Rapid Redux’s recent starts — it’s likely coronation time.

    In any event, it’s almost always worth playing against confirmed frontrunners in negative show pools, which I’m sure Rapid Redux will generate.

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    COMMENTS: My Win Factor Report makes RAPID REDUX a Prime Overlay possibility at odds of 2-5 or greater, but I’d be inclined to seek value in the exotics (if the entry fails to finish second, I think the exacta payoffs will be decent even if Rapid Redux wins at 1-9). GRUNWALD, who rates second on my report, does have the right style to pick up the pieces late, although his late speed rations (LSRs) are weak.

    BET(S): SHOW on 1 & 4. Also consider exactas on 3-4 (at fair odds of 5-1 or greater) and 3-1/1A (at fair odds of 4-1 or greater).
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