By Joe Quillen
Wednesday 12/27/23 – Parx Philly Big 5 Mandatory Payout
Today, I thought I’d go with something different here with the final day of the calendar year for my home racetrack Parx Racing, I thought I would handicap the final five races of the card. Wednesday is a mandatory payout, with $431,537.37 having to be distributed.
For those that are unfamiliar with the Philly Big 5 wager, it is usually a pick-5 wager, meaning that a handicapper would win this bet by successfully picking winners in five consecutive races before the sequence begins. But what makes this a wager that usually has a large carryover after a few weeks or more is that this is a jackpot wager, meaning that you have to hold the only winning ticket to win the entire pot.
So if there are multiple winners or no winners having all five winners, the pot carries over. But today, it plays as a regular pick 5, where you just need to be one of the good (or lucky) handicappers who select all five winners. Let’s see if I can do that for you.
I will warn you that the weather is supposed to be rainy in Bensalem so I would prepare for a muddy to sloppy track. Unfortunately the last few times if I remember correctly, when Parx had a mandatory distribution of the Philly Big 5, the main track was muddy or sloppy.
Let’s begin with race 6 here. Most time is approximately 2:20 pm ET, so be ready to roll here, even If you are just in this for the other wagers in this race. Parx did not give an easy one to start out of the field holds, as thirteen maiden claimers will go seven furlongs here. The 7 Chasing Stardom (6/1 morning line) dueled the winner in his return to the races after a two-month break. Leading trainer Jamie Ness has two horse going here, the 9 Rollin Deep (5/1 ML) and the 10 Sunset Town (3/1 ML favorite) who should be right there.
Sometimes look at the jockey/trainer combinations as the Ness/Mychel Sanchez combo connects 33% of the time, while the Ness/Frankie Pennington combo hits 27% of the time. Also be wary of the 3 Commission Always (12/1 ML) and the 12 Runandscore (4/1 ML), with the latter running well two back at Keeneland. I am picking the 9 to win here ($10 win) and I will have the 7, 9 and 10 in my pick five.
Race 7 is a six-and-a-half-furlong sprint with twelve fillies and mares with a $10,000 tag. I’m going to the outside here with the 12 Starlite Warrior (5/1 ML). He won two back at this tag and tired last out after getting claimed. He got claimed again after that last race and is back at the 10k claim level.
He should be on the lead here. I’m also looking at the 1 Lord Uhtred (8/1 ML) who was a QPW winner on December 5. I’m also putting the 5 Mischievous Jones (10/1 ML) on my ticket as well. He’s been close at this tag level and closer, and also has three off track wins to his resume. I’m taking the 12 to win ($10) and I’ll throw the 1 and 5 on the pick five ticket.
Race 8 is the Miss Behaviour, which is a two year old stakes race for Pennsylvania bred fillies going a mile and 70 yards. This is all about the 4 Aoife’s Magic (9/5 ML). She’s won all three races going no longer than six and a half furlongs, but she’s already won twice on the off going including a PA bred stakes win on a very sloppy track on PA Derby Day. If anyone beats her, it may be the 3 Maria Says So (12/1 ML) who finished third going two turns two back and won on the slop last out. But I’m singling the 4 here with a $10 win wager as well.
Race 9 is the juvenile boys’ version of the eighth race which is The Wait For It Stakes also going a mile and 70 yards. There’s 11 horses entered for this final PA bred juvenile stakes race of the calendar year. One thing I will warn you with this race is always respect an invader, which can be defined as a horse whose connections don’t normally run here but are looking to win a race, especially a big one like this is.
I could just lie and say play the 2 Neon Deion (8/1 ML) because of the name since he’s obviously named for Deion Sanders. But I see much more than that. I see a top trainer in the Midwest Larry Rivelli training this horse specifically for this race. He ran well last out at Horseshoe Indianapolis in the slop and has been training up to this race on the synthetic track at Turfway Park. Don’t Ignore this horse.
The 7 Noice of Action (5/2 ML favorite) should bounce back after a third place finish last time in the PA Nursery. He should be right behind the leaders as they make the turn for home. I’m throwing the 7 with my pick the 2 ($10 win wager) in the ninth.
The finale is an overflow field of 15 horses entered for this 7 furlong race. One horse will have to be scratched, and considering the weather that is in the forecast, we may see more. But either way, I hope that you are alive to the final leg, even if I am not. This is an interesting race to get yourself ready to cash those tickets!
If the 15 Goodluckchuck (4/1 ML) draws in, this is the horse I play. He shortened up to a one-turn seven furlong event after running a three-turn mile and a sixteenth race last out at Charles Town in West Virginia. If he draws in and then gets to the front, it will be all over.
The 4 Healy’s Hope (8/1 ML) comes in after a two month break knocking on the door to a victory. He ran well two back in the slop at this distance and should like the off going. I’ll throw in the 6 Rack Gun (8/1 ML) as well here, especially if the 15 does not draw in. My $10 win wager is on the 15 (4 if the 15 is scratched) and I’m putting the 4, 6, and 15 in the final leg of my pick 5.
Good luck to everyone, and below is my pick 5 ticket which costs $27 if all the horses I highlighted run.
Race 6: 7,9,10
Race 7: 1,5,12
Race 8: 4
Race 9: 2,7
Race 10: 4,6,15