Churchill Downs' 20-cent Single 6 Jackpot, which totaled $67,885 at the start of Friday's 10-race program, will be paid out on Saturday night. The mandatory Single 6 Jackpot payout – part of a spectacular evening of racing under the lights for “Downs After Dark” presented by Budweiser – will span Races 4-9 starting at 7:26 p.m. (all times Eastern).
Ed DeRosa of Brisnet.com offered his handicapping thoughts on Saturday's six-race sequence with the following:
Churchill Downs' 20-cent Pick 6 with a 15% takeout will have a mandatory payout on Saturday night, and the challenging sequence concludes with a trio of stakes in which the morning line favorites in all three look opposable.
The Ack Ack at a one-turn mile is the first stakes (and first leg of the late Pick 5) but fourth leg of the Pick 6. #4 Thirstforlife is the 3-1 morning line favorite and a vulnerable one at that. Obviously the last can be forgiven considering he lost the rider, but bottom line is he is only as fast as anyone else in the race.
#8 Timeline returns from a nearly 10-month layoff and looks dangerous first time for trainer Steve Asmussen if ready. #5 Mr Darcy is 10-1 morning line and likely worth that price off a 102 Brisnet Speed Rating going six furlongs last out, and he has a pair of wins at this one-mile distance. #6 Mr. Jagermeister is the speed of the field and riding a three-race win streak among six wins in his last eight starts. Mr Freeze prepped for this against Mr Darcy and couldn't hold off that foe in his first start in seven months but could benefit from the stretch out here. #3 C Z Rocket is another exiting a race with Mr Darcy and like Mr Freeze could improve second off the layoff.
USING: 3, 5, 6, 7, 8; VULNERABLE FAVORITE: 4
The Jefferson Cup is the penultimate leg of the Pick 6 and kicks off the late Pick 4. #6 Tracksmith is the 3-1 morning line favorite and another who has not shown enough talent relative to the field to merit backing at a short price. Interestingly enough, #5 Faraway Kitten—second choice on the morning line at 7-2—is even slower and thus worse value than the favorite.
Unfortunately, going for deeper prices just yields more questions than answers. #1 Scars Are Cool was fastest last out, but that was in getting drilled in the Travers, and this is his turf debut. #2 Spectacular Gem was disqualified after winning a mile stakes gate-to-wire last out, and nine furlongs appears a reach even as he could be lone speed under James Graham. #3 Corruze was the put-up winner in the aforementioned Spectacular Gem race and retained Lanerie. #4 Mick's Star has never been fast enough but has shown speed and keeps jockey Florent Geroux, who does have some pedigree (Point of Entry-Medaglia d'Oro) to work with. #7 Rijeka could enjoy the stretch out and is the logical closer here at a nice price (10-1 morning line). #8 Clint Maroon raced well in lone nine-furlong start, which could bode well for his stalk-and-pounce style.
USING: 1, 3, 4, 7, 8; VULNERABLE FAVORITES 4, 5
For the Lukas Classic—aka the payoff leg of the Single 6—I'm going with the opinion that the West Virginia Governor's Cup is a key race. The third-place finisher has already returned to win a big-money stakes (albeit on turf), and that bodes well for the gaudy 104 Speed Rating earned by winner Silver Dust (runner-up Kulkulkan received a 103). With #7 Pioneer Spirit and #4 Quip in the race, both Mountaineer horses should get to run their races.
Speaking of Quip, he is the 5-2 morning line favorite, and like the other favorites we have discussed he is only as fast as the other contenders in this field at best. Complement that with him taking a step backward last out, and he is not even usable here as the likely shortest price.
We will use the other three horses we have mentioned along with #10 Mocito Rojo, who won another Governor Cup last out—the one at Remington Park.
USING: 7, 8, 9, 10; VULNERABLE FAVORITES: 4, 6
Follow @EJXD2 on Twitter, and watch Churchill Downs today streaming live @TwinSpires for full discussion of Saturday night's card, including all of the mandatory payout Single 6
The Single 6 Jackpot challenges bettors to have a single winning wager with six winners placed at the required minimum bet value in order to take down the jackpot. If there are multiple winning tickets, 90 percent of the day's pool will be paid out while 10 percent will carry to the next live race day. If there are no tickets will all six winners, 100 percent of the pool will carry to the Single 6 Jackpot.
The entire Saturday night pool will be paid to the most winners of six races.
As part of Sunday's Closing-Day program, the Single 6 will still be offered and will feature a mandatory payout.
Free premium past performances courtesy of Brisnet.com: https://www.brisnet.com/product/product/fpp – Ed DeRosa/Brisnet.com
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