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Frank J. DeFrancis Memorial Dash Betting – Bern’s Identity Storms To Victory

Posted by on 11/13/2014 8:55:34 PM

The non-graded Frank J. DeFrancis Memorial Dash is one of the top sprint races in the United States, featuring a purse of $350,000. It is just six furlongs, but it will be packed with excitement as this field has some very good horses aged three years and up. It is named after the former CEO of Laurel Park, and he played a huge role in helping to grow Maryland horse racing.

One of Maryland’s own will be out for a famous win on Saturday, but in the end, a Kentucky-bred horse will make it to the winner’s circle as Bern’s Identity should race to the win.

What: Horse Betting

When: Saturday, November 15th, post time 3:55 PM ET

Where: Laurel Park, Laurel, MD

Pick: Bern’s Identity

Ben’s Cat might be the people’s favorite as he hails from Maryland and has raced 45 times, most recently in the non-graded Maryland Million Turf in October in which he finished second to Talk Show Man. This horse has been geared to sprint his entire career and at eight years old, this might be his last hurrah. This race will be run on dirt and Ben’s Cat is more of a turf horse, but he has won his last two dirt starts, most recently in April.

Bern Identity might be the actual favorite, however, and he had won three starts in a row before finishing third at the Grade-3 Phoenix last month. It has been a very good year for this four-year-old, who might have one more race left in 2014, especially if he gets to the finish line first on Saturday.

Dads Caps has finished second in his last two starts, most recently in the Grade-1 Vosburgh in September, and he won the Grade-1 Carter Handicap in April, so this four-year-old is solid in big races as well as on dirt. Keep an eye on this New York-bred horse.

Favorite Tale won the Grade-3 Gallant Bob in September, and he has finished in the top three in each of his last three starts, so this is a horse that seems to always be around at the end. You might be able to find some good value for this three-year-old gelding, and he is another one to keep an eye on.

Happy My Way finished back in sixth at the Vosburgh, but prior to that he has been on a roll, racking up three wins and a pair of runner-up results in 2014. He won the Grade-3 Maryland Sprint Handicap in May, then took three months and came back to finish second at the Grade-1 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap in August. The sixth looks more like the exception than the rule for this four-year-old.

Heaven’s Runway finished fourth at the Laurel Dash, and he has spent most of 2014 running in allowance races, winning one out of five. He will probably be down the ranks in terms of the odds, but this four-year-old finished second to Bern’s Identity at the non-graded My Frenchman in August.

La Verdad represents the fillies and is coming off a win at the non-graded Iroquois in October, which followed a second at the Grade-2 Gallant Bloom the prior month. It’ll be interesting to see how this four-year-old stacks up against the males, but she does have some speed to her.

Mico Margarita is looking for a bounce-back performance after a 12th-place finish at the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, and this is a much better horse than that race showed. He has two wins in 2014, both in non-graded races, and this four-year-old has a point to prove on Saturday.

Smash And Grab recently won an allowance race, but he did finish sixth in three starts out of four prior to that, and there is a third mixed in there as well. His lone wins have come in allowance or claiming races, so the odds probably won’t be great for this four-year-old gelding.

Zee Bros rounds out the field and while he won an allowance race last month, he has three finishes of seventh or eighth previous to that, and his last win came at the non-graded Chick Lang in May of 2013. Hopes shouldn’t be high for this four-year-old colt.

How It Will Play Out

Ben’s Cat should be the sentimental favorite for those in the know, but Bern’s Identity is the best horse in the field and he will prove it on Saturday.

Frank J. DeFrancis Memorial Dash Betting Pick: Bern’s Identity

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