Michael Beychok, the 2012 National Handicapping Championship and 2012 Eclipse Award winner for best handicapper, brings 35 years of experience to The Advocate. Beychok — also the senior partner of Ourso Beychok Inc., a national political consulting firm based in Louisiana — runs his own handicapping website, BeychokRacing.com. Follow him on Twitter: @BeychokRacing.

First race

2. Classic London: Has had a few good outs but hasn’t finished the job.

6. Royals Nightmare: Has the speed to get first run on competitors.

second race

1. Chapter and Verse: Looks very solid in this spot from the rail.

7. Agave Cat: Third-place run in last with a real chance to upset top choice Sunday.

third race

5. Conquest Tiz One: Stakes placed in last looks to have talent advantage over this crew.

9. Flashy Lynn: Trouble in last but has to step up to beat top choice.

fourth race

8. Vadoma: Going to take a flyer on this in form horse who might prefer turf.

1/1A. Girardoni/ Clearly Cheating: Either of the Roussel trainees look good enough to win but prefer Girardoni.

OFF TURF SELECTIONS — 8-2

fifth race

4. Mageez: A bit more distance might be the trick for this bridesmaid in last two.

7. Ekati Warrior: Cannot ignore last big run and win at Delta — talent is clear.

sixth race

4. War Point: New to the hot Stidham barn and needs a bit of improvement.

8. Call Me West: Roussel barn has been hard luck so far but will heat up.

OFF TURF SELECTIONS — 1-2

seventh race

9. Basket of Dreams: Terrific run first out and improvement is possible.

3. Delusional KK: First or second in past six starts — certainly has a chance here.

eighth race

10. Promise Me Freedom: Drops down to sellers might be the ticket.

7. To Your Health: Another stranger to claimers has run well since turf switch.

OFF TURF SELECTIONS — 6-5

  • inth race

1. Bisque: Going to give this one another shot at the level after last disappointing run.

11. Paper Maker: Good efforts in past two over the track make him a contender.

Around the Track

Some different names are atop both the trainer and jockey standings at the end of the first month of racing. Standing alone on the trainer standings is Michael Stidham with 15 wins. He is followed by Joe Sharp, Karl Broberg and Bret Calhoun — all with 10 or more wins. Perennial leader Tom Amoss isn’t far behind with nine wins and will certainly make a run at yet another title. On the jockey side, Colby Hernandez has taken a nice lead over rivals Richard Eramia and Florent Geroux, but this is a very competitive jockey colony and expect a battle to the finish.

Best Bet

Our Best Bet today will be in Race 9, No. 1 Bisque .This horse didn’t really run a lick in last but gets a good draw. If he can rebound, he will pay nicely for the win. Good luck, and may they all come home safely.