Results, Friday, Santa Anita Race 3 — lost $700

Troy Taylor won Friday's third with 8/1 shot Coparcenary

In my race preview, I had many questions about favorite #11 Warren’s Performer and second-choice #7 Golden Nip. I came to the conclusion that neither one represented a good bet at low odds and that two second-timers in the race that were both coming off long layoffs — #5 Dani’s Sis and #6 Coparcenary — were horses that could win at a decent price.

Dani’s Sis is trained by Mike Puype, who is good with horses making their second lifetime starts and even better when they are coming off long layoffs. Dani’s Sis was making her first start in 10 months.

Coparcenary was being saddled by one of the leading horsemen at Hastings Park in Vancouver B.C., Troy Taylor. Taylor hit with 55 of 222 starters in 2011 — or 25 percent — so he is without a doubt a competent horseman. But since I had no statistics on how Taylor does with inexperienced horses coming off layoffs, and Puype is one of the best with this second-time starter move in Southern California, I opted to wager $500 on Dani’s Sis.

I should have known Taylor had a betting coup in the works with Coparcenary because virtually the same thing happened on January 15, 2009. On that day at Santa Anita, another Canadian invader, Mark Casse — who took  the Sovereign Award as Canada’s top trainer three times — also won with a horse who hadn’t raced in many months and was making just its second lifetime start. One other glaring similarity should have made Coparcenary, an 8-to-1 shot, an obvious play: both Taylor and Casse brought their own jockeys in from the Great White North — with Taylor using Mario Gutierrez and Casse legging up Patrick Husbands.

At the very least, I should have split the betting money between Dani’s Sis and Coparcenary. But, overall, second-timers in these cheap maiden races for older horses are not good bets. I typically need strong evidence that the trainer profitably uses this move. So, I played it safe and went with the Puype horse.

As the gates opened, Dani’s Sis broke slowly to be three lengths behind the leaders. At the quarter mile mark, jockey Freddie Lenclud used Dani’s Sis a bit to get into fourth place, just two lengths from front runner #1 Our New Dancer.

Meanwhile, Coparcenary broke alertly to be running with the first flight without rider Gutierrez even asking the filly for speed. Coparcenary settled into fifth place at the quarter mile, but was only three lengths from the front. Midway on the turn, Coparcenary came up the rail and was on even terms with Dani’s Sis. Lenclud was working hard on Dani’s Sis, but not getting much response.

At the top of the lane, Warren’s Performer overtook 50-to-1 shot Our New Dancer, but then Coparcenary came on in the middle of the track to mow them both down. Meanwhile, Dani’s Sis found enough energy to get by the tiring Our New Dancer for third place.

In all, I ended up losing $700 on the blog as I called an audible with 20 minutes to post and noted that I was preparing to put $200 on Golden Nip at 3/1 or more in the hopes she could match the 72 Beyer she ran four races back in November 2010. Golden Nip finished seventh.

To watch a replay of this race go to

1 1 Our New Dancer (CA) Maldonado E Dunham D 53.80 4
2 2 Silver Luna (KY) Vergara D Knapp S 12.10 5
4 3 Warrens Matchmaker (CA) Steiner J Van Berg J 54.00 9
5 4 Dani’s Sis (KY) Lenclud F Puype M 4.00 3
6 5 Coparcenary (BC) Gutierrez M Taylor T 8.90 1
7 6 Golden Nip (CA) Nakatani C Miller P 3.20 7
8 7 Key Allegro (KY) Bejarano R Periban J 8.70 8
9 8 Tusun (CA) Stra K Locke T 88.40 10
10 9 Babeneau (KY) Talamo J Ellis R 10.00 5
11 10 Warren’s Performer (CA) Santiago Reyes C Gutierrez J 2.00 2
SCR Annie Lou (KY)    
Pgm Win Place Show
6 $19.80 $8.40 $5.80
11 $3.40 $3.20
5 $4.20
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $40.00 (6-11)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $90.30 (5-5-6)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $2492.20 (6-11-5-1)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $156.40 (6-11-5)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $74.20 (5-6)
Fractional Times
21.95, 44.95, 1:10.72, 1:17.70

Friday, Santa Anita Race 3, Post Time — 2:02 pm

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $20,000, 6-1/2 furlongs, 4-yo’s and up, f

Possible overlays                  Morning line

#5 Dani’s Sis                                   5/1

#6 Coparcenary                           6/1

#7 Golden Nip                               3/1

#10 Babeneau                               6/1

#11 Warren’s Performer           5/2

In this 10-horse field of maiden claimers, few of these runners have approached the 66 median winning Beyer Speed Figure for this class.

One filly that has arguably exceeded the speed number, though, is #11 Warren’s Performer who had a troubled trip in a turf  route on Sept. 7. In that race, which was Warren’s Performer’s last start, she was three paths wide on the first turn and four wide on the second. She pulled jockey Chantal Sutherland along early and seemed hard to handle throughout. After being bumped in the stretch, Sutherland looked like she breezed this filly through most of the stretch. Yet with all of the trouble, Warren’s Performer still earned a 61 Beyer, which I upgraded to a 68. 

The one drawback for Warren’s Performer is that her trainer, Jorge Gutierrez, is much better when running a horse for the second time after a long layoff, not the first. The same can be said for Ron Ellis, who trains #10 Babeneau, a filly that hasn’t run since last April.

One of the more experienced contenders in the race is #7 Golden Nip, who will be making her seventh start. If this five-year-old can run back to the 72 Beyer figure she ran on Nov. 4, 2010 she’d be difficult to beat. But this horse seems like another one with major problems. After she ran the 72, Golden Nip was laid off for 11 months. In her three races back, she has yet to finish within five lengths of the winner.

Two of those races, however, were against higher class horses. And after Golden Nip flopped when running a 39 Beyer last November, the owners changed trainers. She is now in the Peter Miller barn after being taken from Vladimir Cerin.

With no strong runners to choose from, I am considering a couple of second-time starters that may run well at good prices. Mike Puype won last Sunday’s nightcap when Rass Stone went wire-to-wire and paid $13.20 while was making his second lifetime start. Puype does well with this training angle and when a second timer is coming off a long layoff, Puype’s numbers are even better. In here, #5 Dani’s Sis ran an unremarkable debut on April 24 and hasn’t run since. In her first start, Dani’s Sis was bet down to 5/1 in an eight-horse field. She has a couple of fast workouts and is scheduled to be ridden by Freddie Lenclud, a native of France, who has been riding in the Midwest.

Breaking right beside Dani’s Sis will be #6 Coparcenary. This filly last ran on May 6 at Hastings Race Course in Vancouver, BC and she is trained by one of the leading horsemen at that track, Troy Taylor. I don’t know much about Taylor, but Coparcenary has a weak-looking past performance line in her only lifetime race, and the barn could cash a nice bet if they have this horse ready to win off the layoff. But I am reluctant to wager on this animal because I don’t have any information that says Taylor is good in this situation.

My Betting Strategy: I will bet $500 to win on #5 Dani’s Sis from 3/1 to 7/1, but reduce the bet to $100 if she goes off at any other odds. At 1:43 pm, I see that with 20 minutes to post Golden Nip and Warren’s Performer are both more than 3/1. Therefore, I will bet $200 to win on whoever goes off the longer of the two, just as long as they are 3/1 or more.

Results, Sunday, Santa Anita Race 9 — lost $150

Trainer Mike Puype hit with $13.20 second-timer Rass Stone on Sunday

With the three lowest-priced horses in this 7-furlong sprint looking rather ordinary, this appeared to be a good spot to dig deeper for a good price. In my race preview, I planned to go against 5-to-2 favorite Sabe, 7-to-2 shot Hava Cigar and Officer Bavetta, who, at 5-to-1, had the best last race Beyer Speed Figure. Although these runners looked competitive, none of the three appeared likely to run the 68 median winning speed figure for this class level.

However, one of my four wagering prospects was #14 Rass Stone, who thoroughly dominated this field of 3-year-olds by going straight to the lead on the backstretch then never looking back. This gelding’s trainer, Mike Puype, does well with second-time starters and Rass Stone showed good early speed on Dec. 10, which was his only lifetime start. Early speed is nowhere near as valuable in longer sprints as it is in shorter ones, but in weak races it’s worth a shot at the right price.

My only problem with Rass Stone was that I needed odds of at least 6-to-1, and not more than 19-to-1, for a bet. He was 8-to-1 on the morning line, however the public knocked him to 5.60-to-1, which was just a shade under my minimum betting number.  After the race, I broke down Puype’s maiden claiming second time starters and found that the best odds range for this angle is between 3-to-1 and 7-to-1. In this medium-priced range, Puype won 6-of-16 times for a return of $2.25 for every $1 wagered. At all other odds, Puype’s horses were still profitable — mainly because of a 12-to-1 shot he struck with on March 11, 2011 — but his net winnings with this group of second timers were only about half as much as those in the medium-priced range.

So, in hindsight rather than wagering $100 at 6/1 to 19/1, the proper betting strategy would have been to put down $150 at 3/1 to 7/1, and just $50 at 8/1 or higher. Hey, I’ll get ’em next time.

The other three angle horses I was looking at — #4 Push Button Magic, #7 On a Burner and #12 Thunder of India — didn’t move a muscle and all finished toward the rear of the pack. Both Push Button Magic and Thunder of India were cold on the board, going off at greater than 20-to-1. So, I didn’t touch them.

But my $150 bet on On a Burner did kick in. This gelding was also a second-time starter and he showed a decent late move in his last. He was adding blinkers, but they obviously didn’t do the trick as he finished ninth at 12-to-1. His trainer Kristen Mulhall did have a nice day, incidentally, as she won two maiden races earlier in the card.

To watch a replay of this race, go to

1 1 A. P. Corsair (KY) Flores D Drysdale N 22.90 5
2 2 Officer Bavetta (CA) Blanc B Stein R 5.10 3
3 3 War Wizard (KY) Cedeno A Lucarelli F 35.50 7
4 4 Push Button Magic (KY) Quinonez A Ellis R 29.30 6
5 5 Buds Pal (KY) Krigger K Armstrong J 29.70 11
6 6 Sabe (FL) Espinoza V Machowsky M 2.80 8
7 7 On a Burner (KY) Delgadillo A Mulhall K 12.30 9
8 8 Tizpat (CA) Talamo J Fanning J 15.50 4
9 9 Adam N Ryan (CA) Vergara D Becerra R 18.20 13
10 10 Deal’ Em (CA) Atkinson P Collins D 52.40 14
11 11 Prometheus Bull (MD) Flores E Palma H 51.20 12
12 12 Thunder of India (KY) Pedroza M Carava J 41.20 10
13 13 Hava Cigar (MD) Rosario J O’Neill D 3.40 2
14 14 Rass Stone (KY) Sutherland C Puype M 5.60 1
Pgm Win Place Show
14 $13.20 $6.80 $4.60
13 $5.00 $3.40
2 $4.00
Exotic Payoffs
$0.50 Pick 4 paid $411.25 (10-3-1-14)
$1.00 Exacta paid $23.10 (14-13)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $177.20 (3-1-14)
$1.00 Place Pick All paid $8616.70 (9 OF 9)
$1.00 Super High Five paid $8755.30 (14-13-2-8-1)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $994.40 (14-13-2-8)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $128.90 (14-13-2)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $60.00 (1-14)
$2.00 Pick 6 paid $567.40 (5-6-10-3-1-14)
$2.00 Pick 6 paid $56721.80 (5-6-10-3-1-14)
Fractional Times
22.24, 44.89, 1:10.24, 1:24.28

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 9 — 4:38 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $30,000, 3-yo’s, 7 furlongs
Possible overlays                            Morning line
#2 Officer Bavetta                                    9/2
#4 Push Button Magic                             8/1
#6 Sabe                                                          4/1
#7 On a Burner                                           8/1
#12 Thunder of India                              15/1
#13 Hava Cigar                                           9/2
#14 Rass Stone                                           8/1
Based on the median Beyer Speed Figure of 68 needed to win a race at this class, we are looking at a weak group of 14 newly-turned 3-year-olds.
Sure, #2 Officer Bavetta ran a 64 in his last race, on Dec. 1, but he hugged the Hollywood rail the whole way and generally got a great trip. Today, he may get blocked in this large field or jockey Brice Blanc might need to go wide on the turn.  Although today’s distance of 7 furlongs is a forgiving one — with it’s long straightaways on the front and back stretches — a 14-horse field of relatively young horses is a recipe for chaos.
Besides, the types of horses I usually like in these races have a bit more seasoning than Officer Bavetta, who will be making just his fourth lifetime start. They look more like #6 Sabe, who was running with better company in four sprints in the second half of 2011. In his last start, Sabe was subsequently dropped into a $30,000 route. Sabe, who is trained by Michael Machowsky, showed decent early speed while earning Beyer Speed Figures of 61 and 59 in races on Sept. 2 and Oct. 6 respectively.
Yes, Sabe’s last two Beyers were in the 40’s, but his second race back was in the mud on Nov. 6 where he blasted from the gate, setting the pace with a scorching first quarter mile in 21-3/5th seconds and a half mile in 44-3/5ths. After that early gas, I can see why he had nothing left. 
Sabe’s last race was a route, which likely built his stamina for today. In each of Sabe’s last two races he wore blinkers. And today, the blinkers come off.
However, the truth of the matter is that Sabe looks just OK and he could easily be beaten.
Trainer Doug O’Neill claimed #13 Hava Cigar out of his Nov. 10 race, but that horse doesn’t look like anything special either, although he’s also been running against better.
With no standouts in the lineup, I will choose from four lightly-raced horses with good trainers who will pay well if they win. First off, #4 Push Button Magic is making his debut for trainer Ron Ellis. On the downside, this Kentucky bred is a late foal with all slow workouts. But Ellis does well with first-time starters that are at least 3-years-old. In fact, my records show that he won with nine of 28 at less than 20/1, or 32 percent, and every $1 wagered returned $2.68.
Kristin Mulhall trains #7 On a Burner who trailed for most of the race on Dec. 10, but then made a nice little stretch move from the eighth pole to the wire. Many maiden claiming second timers who add blinkers do well and On a Burner is adding the hood today.
Breaking from the outside in a large field carries its own set of risks. Jockeys need to tactically use their horse’s speed to stay out of trouble and avoid going too wide.  Second-time starters #12 Thunder of India and #14 Rass Stone will need good rides in order to win. Jack Carava, who will saddle Thunder of India, doesn’t train many young horses, but he gets them to win early. Although Thunder of India showed absolutely nothing in his first race, he might not have liked the muddy track on Nov. 6.  On that day, Thunder of India — who was purchased as a yearling for $42,000 — was bet to 9-to-1, so somebody liked something about him.
Finally, #14 Rass Stone showed good early speed when he debuted on Dec. 10 and trainer Mike Puype is good with second timers. Also, Rass Stone has been working out fast.
My Betting Strategy:  Because this race is so wide open, I am not going to wager much, yet I’m hoping one of my horses wins at a big price. At odds of 7/2 to 19/1, I will bet $200 to win on #4 Push Button Magic; at 5/1 to 19/1, I’ll put $150 to win on #7 On a Burner; at 10/1 to 19/1, I’ll take $50 on #12 Thunder of India; and finally, at 6/1 to 19/1, I’ll wager $100 on #14 Rass Stone.

Results, Hollywood Park Saturday Race 2 — lost $150

Jockey Agapito Delgadillo and trainer Marty Jones got #2 Kami D B C into the winner's circle

Jockey Agapito Delgadillo and trainer Marty Jones got #2 Kami D B C into the winner's circle

When I took a look at this race, two horses coming off of recent layoffs seemed to have strong chances.

Trainer Mike Puype was bringing back #11 Mar Fina from a one-year vacation, which Puype routinely does both skillfully and profitably. But the morning line on Mar Fina was 7-to-2 and when I looked at the tote board it became clear that Mar Fina probably was not going to run well, as she was an ice cold 9-to-1 going into the gate.

The other filly racing back off a year-long break was #12 Veranda Cafe. Horses running in their second lifetime starts after long stretches away from the races are usually excellent bets — as long as they are at least 2-to-1 and no more than 9-to-1. The price on Veranda Cafe, however, was crushed to 3-to-2 by the betting public, so I could not wager on her either.

That left me with a $150 bet on #3 Sister Lucy who was coming out of two quarter horse races at Los Alamitos. Also, she ran a winning Beyer Speed Figure for this class when she finished third on Oct. 19 in a maiden special weight race.

In the race, Sister Lucy shot to the lead on the backstretch and Veranda Cafe rode her flank while pressing the pace less than a length away.

At the eighth pole, Veranda Cafe took the lead and was three-lengths clear of Kami D B C with a sixteenth of a mile to run. But Veranda Cafe tired badly and faded so fast that she not only lost the race, but she didn’t even hit the board.

Winning was Kami D B C, who was making her twelfth start, but ten of those were in maiden special weight races.

To watch a replay of this race, go to

1 1 Rio Revelde (CA) Rodriguez N Rodriguez S 188.00 12
2 2 Kami D B C (CA) Delgadillo A Jones M 2.70 1
3 3 Sister Lucy (CA) Sorenson D Breuer D 9.40 4
4 4 Lola Rastaquaire (CA) Couton J Dupuis J 150.60 7
5 5 Annie’s Loaded (CA) Espinoza V Walsh K 13.50 8
6 6 Girl of Mine (CA) Valdez F Knapp S 38.40 2
7 7 Nantucket Mist (KY) Quinonez A Sadler J 16.10 6
8 8 Irish Cowgal (CA) Garcia M O’Callaghan C 94.80 11
9 9 Terra Bella (CA) Flores D Rickerd P 51.40 9
10 10 Aldora (KY) Pedroza M Pender M 6.00 3
11 11 Mar Fina (KY) Talamo J Puype M 9.30 10
12 12 Veranda Cafe (KY) Rosario J Miller P 1.50 5
SCR Sure Nice (CA) Delgadillo A Dunham D
SCR Patiently (KY) Sorenson D Gonzalez S
SCR Bombing Two (CA) Scott J DeLima J
SCR A Beauty in Black (CA) Baze M Semkin S
Pgm Win Place Show
2 $7.40 $4.40 $3.20
6 $24.60 $11.60
10 $4.60
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $86.90 (2-6)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $2716.80 (2-6-10-3)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $657.90 (2-6-10)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $13.40 (4-2)
$2.00 Quinella paid $87.80 (2-6)

Saturday, Hollywood Park Race 2 — 1:30 pm

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $25,000, 5-1/2 furlongs, 3 yo & up, F

Possible overlays                      Morning line

#3 Sister Lucy                                   12/1
#11 Mar Fina                                     7/2
#12 Veranda Cafe                              3/1

Without a doubt, the filly with the best early speed is #3 Sister Lucy. In fact, her last two races were 870 yard quarter horse dashes at Los Alamitos.  And she has already run well enough to win at this level. On Oct. 19, Sister Lucy ran a 70 Beyer Speed Figure in a maiden special weight event, which is significant because the median winning Beyer Speed Figure for this class is a 67.

Two fillies coming off recent layoffs — #11 Mar Fina and #12 Veranda Cafe — also have some things to like. Coincidentally, both horses lost to monsters in their previous races, which were both in June 2008. Mar Fina ran into Rachel Alexandra when she broke her maiden and Veranda Cafe was defeated by Evita Argentina.

Trainer Mike Puype, who saddles Mar Fina, has recently excelled at bringing back second and third time starters from long vacations.

And horses who look like Veranda Cafe are excellent wagers when they are bet down a bit.

I will bet $250 to win on #11 Mar Fina at odds of 2/1 to 5/1. But if Mar Fina doesn’t fall into that range, or if #12 Veranda Cafe is a higher price than Mar Fina, then I will bet the $250 on Veranda Cafe instead as long as she is 2/1 to 7/2.

Also, I want $150 to win on #3 Sister Lucy at 9/2 or more.

Saturday, Hollywood Park Race 10 — 5:30 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $25,000, 6 furlongs, 3 yo & up, F

Possible overlays                 Morning line

#3 Atta Lora                           6/1
#6 Meat Sauce                       5/1
#12 Parker’s Stormgirl          7/2
#14 Sure Nice                        6/1
#15 Miss Reyna                      20/1

I see a few good wagering possibilities in this 16-horse field, but none is more potentially powerful than #6 Meat Sauce.

This filly is coming off an eight-month layoff, but has a couple of quick workouts for trainer Ted West. She showed some early foot in September at Fairplex and races at this 6-furlong distance are usually won by horses on or near the lead.

Another speedster coming off a long layoff is #14 Sure Nice. She was loose on the lead versus eight rivals last September and lost by 3/4 of a length. But her trainer, Daniel Dunham, hasn’t won a race all year and her jockey Agapito Delgadillo is not a marquee name either. The truth is, that if her connections were anymore low-profile they’d be in the witness protection program.

Longshot #15 Miss Reyna also hasn’t run since September and is probably a better bet to finish last than first.  But when her owner Tricar Stables wins, their horses usually pay boxcar prices.

I’m giving a shot to two second-time starters. Both #3 Atta Lora and #12 Parker’s Stormgirl could win if they run a couple of lengths faster than they did in their debuts. Mike Puype, who is the trainer of Parker’s Stormgirl, has won with 10 of his last 40 second-time starters and anybody who bet them all would have pocketed a 40 percent gain. Statistics show that Puype is also a profitable bet in maiden claiming races and when using jockey Joe Talamo.

In the end, I will put $400 to win on #6 Meat Sauce but only at odds of 2/1 to 7/2. Also, I’ll take $150 to win on #12 Parker’s Stormgirl at 5/2 to 7/1, but if she doesn’t fall into the range then I’ll replace her with $150 to win on #3 Atta Lora at 5/2 to 7/1. Also, I want $100 on #14 Sure Nice at 5/1 and up and $50 on #15 Miss Reyna at any price.

If #6 Meat Sauce goes off at 4/1 or more than I’ll reduce my bet on her to $250 while keeping everything else intact.

© Copyright Maiden King, 2009. Written exclusively for Not to be duplicated or reprinted.

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 7 — 3:36 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Special Weight, 6 furlongs, Cal-Bred fillies

Possible overlays                     Morning line

#5 Irridescent Red                        8/1
#6 Humane                                 12/1
#7 Asanti                                    6/1
#11 Past Curfew                           8/1

Of these 11 fillies, four are first-time starters and six are second timers.

I think I’ll have a better shot with the second timers in here than the debuters. On the rail, #1 Irish Pepper will likely be overbet with Garrett Gomez riding. However, #5 Irridescent Red showed good speed in her last and #7 Asanti ran a decent Beyer, is working out well and has the potential to be a strong bet.

Also, trainer Mike Puype, who saddles #11 Past Curfew,  has been winning with second-time starters coming off layoffs during this meet. According to the DRF stats, Puype has six wins in 20 starts with this type of layoff, and is hitting at 24 percent with his second timers.

I will bet $150 on both #5 Irridescent Red at 3/1 and up and #7 Asanti at 9/2 to 15/1. But if Asanti is 2/1 to 4/1, then I’ll bump my bet to $250. Also, I will take $150 to win on #11 Past Curfew at 3/1 or higher.

Monday, Santa Anita Race 4 — 2:03 p.m. post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $25,000, 7 furlongs, 4 yo’s and up

Possible overlays                         Morning line

#1 Larrylarrylarry                             9/2
#10 Six Pack Man                            7/2

Many of these horses ran together in a 6-1/2 furlong race on Dec. 26. Although, #5 Whizer finished better than #10 Six Pack Man, I like the latter horse more because trainer Mike Puype is doing well this meet with horses returning from recent long layoffs.

On the rail, #1 Larrylarrylarry is another who could get the job done at the right price.

I will bet $400 on #10 Six Pack Man at 2/1 to 7/2, but only $200 if he drifts up to 4/1 or higher. Also, I want $300 to win on #1 Larrylarrylarry at 2/1 or

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