Capital OTB handicapper John DaSilva knows a thing or two about horses. In fact, he gave the cold triple for the 2014 Belmont Stakes in June – on Ferrall on the Bench, in fact – calling the win by Tonalist and ending California Chrome’s run at a Triple Crown.
“That is my job – to make everybody happy one way or the other,” DaSilva said on Ferrall on the Bench. “And I was very happy that you gave me the opportunity to bring me out there and do it. Without you, I don’t know where I’d be right now.”
DaSilva dropped by the Bench on Thursday to preview the Breeders Cup this weekend, including Jim Rome’s horse, Shared Belief, who has 9-5 odds entering the Classic.
“Right now, according to the polls (that have) been taken of all the media, he is the No.1-rated horse in North America,” DaSilva said. “He is a top-breeded three-year-old. He’s undefeated. He’s the defending two-year old champion. He didn’t run in the Breeders cup, but he had just started his career. After his first career start, that’s when Jim Rome bought the horse.”
Shared Belief had some foot issues earlier this year, but he’ll be 100 percent this weekend.
“Everyone loves him,” DaSilva said. “The only problem with Shared Belief is that he’s a gelding, which means he’s not going to be like most other horses and go to the farm and have fun with the mares. The good news for racing is as long as he’s healthy, we’re going to see him on the race track for a long time.”
Shared Belief should get some stiff competition from several horses, including Toast of New York. The two horses square off at the Pacific Classic, with Shared Belief winning and Toast of New York taking runner-up.
“Toast of New York is a horse that won the $2-million Dubai Derby earlier this year, but he was running in America on dirt for the first time,” DaSilva said. “Shared Belief, once he got his mind on running, he just went out there, took the lead and never looked back.”
DaSilva also shared his picks for many of the races:
He’s going with No. 11 Imperia in the Juvenile Turf race, with No. 14 Danny boy to finish second and No. 7 War Envoy to finish third.
He’s going with No. 9 Tapiture in the Dirt Mile, with No. 1 Goldencents to finish second and No. 7 Bronzo to finish third.
He’s going with No. 4 Lady Eli in Juvenile Fillies Turf, with No. 5 Isabella Sings to finish second and No. 14 Qualify to finish third.
And, in the final Friday race, he’s going with No. 11 Close Hatches in the Longiness Distaff, with No. 10 Untapable to finish second and No. 2 Tiz Midnight to finish third.