Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar opinions for Friday, Nov. 8 (Bing Crosby Season opener)

Note: Jockey Abel Cedillo is suspended Friday and Saturday. Flavien Prat will be suspended Saturday, Sunday and next Thursday. The main track should be tighter than in the summer so I’m thinking speed might do better. Rally wide was the way to go so definitely monitor this. The inside posts didn’t do well on the main track last meet. We’ll see this month.

FIRST RACE: 1. Summer Fire, 2. Debt Monger, 3. Squared Straight. LONG SHOT: Very Irish.
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SECOND RACE: 1. Wildman Jack, 2. Truck Salesman, 3. General Interest. LONG SHOT: Big Runnuer.
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THIRD RACE: 1. Ernie Banks, 2. Impression, 3. Fire When Ready. LONG SHOT: Kenzou’s Rhythm.
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FOURTH RACE: 1. Ladies Luv Munny, 2. Golden Melodie, 3. It’s a Riddle. LONG SHOT: Unusual Secret.
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FIFTH RACE: 1. Volubile, 2. Hootie, 3. Storm the Bastille. LONG SHOT: Tiz a Slayer.
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SIXTH RACE: 1. ADORABLY SWEET (best bet), 2. Too Hot for Curlin, 3. Into Rissa. LONG SHOT: Twirling Diamond.
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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Poster Girl, 2. Excellent Sunset, 3. La Sardane. LONG SHOT: Lostintranzlation.
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EIGHTH RACE: 1. Tiki Bar Logic, 2. Tiz Toffee, 3. Meso. LONG SHOT: Bunny Yogurt.

Good luck.

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Breeders' Cup, Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Saturday, Nov. 2 (Breeders’ Cup Day II)

Note: The main track on Friday favored speed. You needed to be forwardly placed to win, like I thought. That doesn’t mean closers can’t finish out exactas, trifectas and superfectas but it’s tough on win end. I told you Flavien Prat would nail a big one and I think he will again today as he has a mount in all nine BC races.

FIRST RACE: 1. #5 Apache Princess, 2. #8 Girls Know Best, 3. #9 Escapade, 4. #4 Just Grazed Me. LONG SHOT: #7 Gypsy Blu.

SECOND RACE: 1. #2 Extra Hope, 2. #4 Flagstaff, 3. #3 Roadster. LONG SHOT: #1 Horse Greedy.

THIRD RACE: 1. #6 Jais’s Solitude, 2. #3 Nolde, 3. #8 Neptune’s Storm, 4. #11 Henley’s Joy. LONG SHOT: #2 Hackberry.

FOURTH RACE (Filly and Mare Sprint): 1. #7 Selcourt, 2. #9 Spiced Perfection, 3. #1 Covfefe, 4. #6 Bellafina. LONG SHOT: #8 Dawn the Destroyer.

FIFTH RACE (Turf Sprint): 1. #11 Om, 2. #4 Shekky Shebaz, 3. #12 Belvoir Bay, 4. #10 Eddie Haskell. LONG SHOT: #5 Stubbins.

SIXTH RACE (Dirt Mile): 1. #3 Spun to Run, 2. #5 Omaha Beach, 3. #2 Improbable, 4. #8 Blue Chipper. LONG SHOT: #1 Giant Expectations.

SEVENTH RACE (Filly and Mare Turf): 1. #10 Mrs. Sippy, 2. #2 Sistercharlie, 3. #1 Iridessa, 4. #8 Castle Lady. LONG SHOT: #7 Vasilika.

EIGHTH RACE (Sprint): 1. #6 Shancelot (BEST BET), 2. #7 Whitmore, 3. #4 Mitole, 4. #1 Catalina Cruiser. LONG SHOT: #2 Hog Creek Hustle.

NINTH RACE (Mile): 1. #10 Without Parole, 2. #6 Got Stormy, 3. #11 Uni, 4. #12 Lord Glitters. LONG SHOT: #14 Bowies Hero.

10TH RACE (Distaff): 1. #4 Midnight Bisou, 2. #2 Ollie’s Candy, 3. #11 Blue Prize, 4. #9 Serengeti Empress. LONG SHOT: #6 Wow Cat.

11TH RACE (Turf): 1. #10 Old Persian, 2. #5 Anthony Van Dyck, 3. #9 Bricks and Mortar, 4. #4 Mount Everest. LONG SHOT: #3 United.

12TH RACE (Classic): 1. #7 Higher Power, 2. #4 War of Will, 3. #9 Mongolian Groom,, 4. #8 McKenzie. LONG SHOT: #6 Elate.

Good luck.

FRIDAY’S RESULTS

Top choice winners: 1 (Rayana $9.60, second race)

Second choice winners: 2 (Itsinthepost $8.80, first; Tap Back $30, fourth)

Third choice winners: 3 (Four Wheel Drive $5, fifth; British Idiom $7.40, seventh; Threefiveindia $8.20, 10th)

Fourth choice winners: 1 (Storm the Court $93.80, ninth)

Long shot winners: 0

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Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Saturday, Oct. 26 (Races 1-5)

Note: Had family emergency so didn’t get to handicap all of the races.

FIRST RACE: 1. Meistermind, 2. Platinum Equity, 3. Implicitly. LONG SHOT: For Him.

SECOND RACE: 1. Moana Luna, 2. Zorich, 3. Malibu Magic. LONG SHOT: Starship Chewy.

THIRD RACE: 1. M Is for Magic, 2. A G Indy, 3. Undisturbed. LONG SHOT: Christmas Diamond.

This maiden turf race is very wide open and contention runs deep. It wouldn’t surprise if a plus $20 horse won the race, but we’ll stick with M IS FOR MAGIC and jockey Flavien Prat. This filly was wide in her debut and she wants to run long. Prat is 20% with trainer Neil Drysdale. Nothing wrong with A G INDY’s turf debut and tough ride back. I left out 5-2 morning-line favorite CONVINCINGLY because I don’t like the post draw (No. 9) and the change to apprentice Velez.

FOURTH RACE: 1. Thunder Code, 2. Friar’s Road, 3. Dvine Armor. LONG SHOT: Ra’ad.

THUNDER CODE is the only horse to have run before in this maiden race and he come out of a race over the track where the third-place finisher came back to win so it could be a key race. Lots of high-priced babies in here and this could end up being a key race. I left out Bob Baffert’s 2-year-old million-dollar baby THOUSAND WORDS even though Prat is on. The dam is 0-for-2 with foals and I see sprinter on bottom side but just can’t take 2-1. I’m probably all wrong.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Canadian Game, 2. Blue Skye Jade, 3. Colosi. LONG SHOT: Big Sky Logan.

Good luck.

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Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Saturday, Oct. 12

FIRST RACE: 1. Coilette, 2. Marrazano, 3. Square Peggy. LONG SHOT: Time for Kisses.

SECOND RACE: 1. Twirling Tiger, 2. Top of the Game, 3. Sunset Seven. LONG SHOT: Smokin B.

THIRD RACE: 1. Muskoka, 2. Fay Dan, 3. Go for a Ride. LONG SHOT: Camps Bay.

FOURTH RACE: 1. Miss Lady Ann, 2. Claudelle, 3. Jaccat. LONG SHOT: Diamond of Value.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Majestic Gigi, 2. Miss Kitness, 3. Roadrunner’s Honor. LONG SHOT: Crazy Speighty.

This is a tough maiden race and a win by almost any 2-year-old would surprise me. This might end up being a key race so keep track.

SIXTH RACE: 1. Overjoyed, 2. Gingham, 3. Matera, 4. Rare Find. LONG SHOT: Dolci.

Like the fifth race, this is a tough MSW race for 2-year-olds and they are fillies here going two turns. To me jockey Mike Smith and his agent hold the key to this race. Smith rode all three of the fillies in our top three, but he opts for OVERJOYED, trained by Neil Drysdale over GINGHAM (Bob Baffert) and MATERA (Dan Ward/Jerry Hollendorfer). OVERJOYED debuted on the turf the last day at Del Mar and took money at the windows. She broke poorly but came running in the stretch and has the best late pace rating from Brisnet. Baffert puts apprentice J.C. Diaz Jr. abaord GINGHAM from the rail so that means to me Baffert wants the filly sent out of there. MATERA cost $1.4 million at auction and will be trying two turns for the first time. She’s bed by Tapit so distance should be no problem. DOLCI gets hot-riding Abel Cedillo for the Mike McCarthy barn, which has to break out of its slump sooner or later. Finally, RARE FIND comes from the team of jockey Flavien Prat and trainer Richard Mandella. The filly may be ready to go in her debut.

SEVENTH RACE: 1. Just Grazed Me, 2. S Y Sky, 3. Don’t Sell. LONG SHOT: Gypsy Blu.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. Shear Class, 2. Unicorn, 3. Cover Version. LONG SHOT: Surreptitious.

NINTH RACE: 1. Moody Jim (best bet), 2. Wound Tight, 3. M Town Gem. LONG SHOT: North County Guy.

God luck.

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Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Friday, Oct. 4

Note: Jockey Flavien Prat is off his mounts due to a sinus infection.

FIRST RACE: 1. Papa Turf, 2. Captain N. Barron, 3. Market Sentiment. LONG SHOT: Royal Seeker.

SECOND RACE: 1. Buckstopper Kit, 2. Winning Element, 3. Caymans Cobra. LONG SHOT: Lifeline.

THIRD RACE: 1. K P Cats Wild, 2. Perfect Rush, 3. Going to Vegas. LONG SHOT: Lizzario.

FOURTH RACE: 1. Cyrielle, 2. Swirling, 3. G Q Covergirl. LONG SHOT: Mongolian Window.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Sugar Classic, 2. The Easy Way, 3. Sharpshootingeorge. LONG SHOT: Brazilian Summer.

SIXTH RACE: 1. Vibrance, 2. Courteous, 3. Raymundos Secret. LONG SHOT: All Star Cast.

SEVENTH RACE: 1. Kenzou’s Rhythm, 2. Platinum Equity, 3. Dukes Up. LONG SHOT: Implicity.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. War Chest (best bet), 2. Combat Zone, 3. Nevermissabeat. LONG SHOT: Big Sky Logan.

Good luck.

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar opinions for Wednesday, Aug. 27

Give it to Prat

The jockey’s title was sewn up two weeks ago by Flavien Prat.
Heading into the final six days of racing as track announcer Trevor Denman would say, “They would need to sprout wings” to catch Prat at this point. After a 7 for 25 week, Prat has 34 victories and Drayden Van Dyke (4 for 19 last week) is in second with 24.
Abel Cedillo is proving his move from Northern California was worth it. Cedillo, following a 5 for 31 week, is in third place with 21 wins. He is also starting to get rides in the Peter Miller barn, which is a good thing.
Journeyman Rafael Bejarano is limping to the finish line following an 0 for 21 week while apprentice Jorge Velez Jr. is come off his best week of the meet with a 4 for 20 effort.

WEDNESDAY’S PICKS

FIRST RACE: 1. Of Good Report, 2. Tikkun Olam, 3. Juggles. LONG SHOT: Grab the Munny.
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SECOND RACE: 1. Buttie, 2. Road Test, 3. Tiz Toffee. LONG SHOT: Check Six.
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THIRD RACE: 1. UNAPOLOGETIC (best bet), 2. Morse Code, 3. Big Buzz. LONG SHOT: Mongolian Empire.
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FOURTH RACE: 1. Arouse N Go, 2. Smiling Excess, 3. Calese. LONG SHOT: It’s a Riddle.
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FIFTH RACE: 1. Queen of the Track, 2. Jaccat, 3. Point Hope. LONG SHOT: Coilette.
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SIXTH RACE: 1. Express Train, 2. Dean Martini, 3. Shooters Shoot. LONG SHOT: Include the Tax.
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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Bulletproof One, 2. Smiling Shirlee, 3. Been Studying Her. LONG SHOT: Vegan.
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EIGHTH RACE: 1. Trapani, 2. Darpa, 3. Tandalicious. LONG SHOT: La Dolfina.

Good luck.

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar opinions for Tuesday, Aug. 20

In the saddle

Victor Espinoza led all jockeys last week with six wins. He was followed by Joe Talamo and Rafael Bejarano, who had five wins each.
Flavien Prat still leads the standings with 27 winners and an argument could be made for the fact that he had the best week despite a 2 for 22 effort. Prat won the $1 million Pacific Classic aboard Higher Power for John Sadler.
Drayden Van Dyke (3 for 22) is still second in the standings but only one win ahead of Bejarano, 20-19.
Abel Cedillo was 4 for 13 during Week 5 on the dirt and is now the leading rider on the main track with 14 victories. Ruben Fuentes is second with 13 and Prat is third with 12.
Prat had a brutal week on the grass with an 0 for 12 effort, but he shouldn’t feel bad as New York jockey John Velazquez came in over the weekend to pilfer three victories on the turf. Plus, Saratoga-based jockey Florent Geroux added another turf victory in addition to a win he scored on main track. So that was five total wins for the out-of-towners.
Fuentes scored his first win on the green but he is still only 1 for 42 on the surface. Martin Garcia is 1 for 27, Norberto Arroyo Jr. is 1 or 29, Jorge Velez 1 for 23 and Aaron Gryder 1 for 22 on the grass while Tiago Periera is 0 for 32. Ouch.

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar opinions for Wednesday, Aug. 14

Prat on fire

Jockey Flavien Prat pretty much wrapped up the riding title with an eight-win week from 26 mounts during Week 4. His five-win day on Saturday was a thing of beauty and all jockeys should watch replays of his winners to see how he put his his horses in position to reach the winner’s circle.
Prat now leads Drayden Van Dyke, 25-17, after Van Dyke suffered an 0 for 17 week. It wasn’t that Van Dyke was riding poorly because he had four seconds and four thirds. It was just a case of not getting the breaks.
Rafael Bejarano also had a tough five days with just one winner from 16 mounts.
Ruben Fuentes had a solid 25-3-4-3 week as did Abel Cedillo (15-3-0-3), who missed Sunday’s card to ride at Emerald Downs.
Fuentes remains the top rider on the main track with 12 victories followed by Prat and Cedillo, who each have 10 wins each.
The turf course is being dominated by four jockeys: Prat (15 wins), Van Dyke (10), Bejarano (eight) and Joe Talamo (six). They have a total of 39 victories. The rest of the riding colony has 22 wins on the grass.

WEDNESDAY’S PICKS

FIRST RACE: 1. Shootin Money, 2. Heraclitus, 3. Deckology. LONG SHOT: Four O’Five.
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SECOND RACE: 1. Vidalia, 2. Adulting, 3. Chirp. LONG SHOT: Shesaidshesperfect.
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THIRD RACE: 1. Bellerin, 2. Sheer Flattery, 3. Dukes Up. LONG SHOT: Start a Runnin.
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FOURTH RACE: 1. Flying to the Line, 2. Equal Measure, 3. Red Bunting. LONG SHOT: Breezy Bee.
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FIFTH RACE: 1. Anniversary Sale, 2. Atomic Candy, 3. Afternoon Heat. LONG SHOT: Calder Vale.
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SIXTH RACE: 1. TRAVIEZA (best bet), 2. Gypsy Blu, 3. Just Grazed Me. LONG SHOT: Storming Lady.
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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Papa Turf, 2. An Ocala Ten, 3. Westmont. LONG SHOT: Nova.

Good luck.

SUNDAY’S RESULTS

Top choice winners: 2 (Drink $11.20, second race; Inspiressa $4, fourth)

Second choice winners: 1 (Indy Jones $6.60, fifth)

Third choice winners: 1 (Overdue $5, third)

Long shot winners: 1 (Carnivorous $13.40, sixth)

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar opinions for Thursday, Aug. 8

After going 2 for 8 on last week, Flavien Prat has made the race for the jockey title interesting again entering Wednesday action.
Prat was tied at the top with Drayden Van Dyke as both riders have 17 winners entering Week 4.
In all fairness to Prat, he missed three racing days last week, two by suspension and one while riding Bellafina in the Test at Saratoga. He was in the money with all eight of his mounts.
Van Dyke made up ground by going 5 for 21 on the week and that wasn’t even the most wins for the five days of racing.
Rafael Bejarano and Abel Cedillo both had six victories and also had a hand in Doug O’Neill’s big week.
Journeyman Ruben Fuentes rebounded from a winless Week 2 to score four wins from 19 mounts.
Aaron Gryder (1 for 33) and apprentice J.C. Diaz Jr (1-33) are struggling as is Alonzo Quinonez (0 for 14).
Fuentes took over on the top while riding on the main track as he has nine victories, but he is 0 for 26 on the grass and should be avoided.
Prat and Van Dyke lead the colony with 10 grass victories each.
Victor Espinoza (1-22), Norberto Arroyo (1-29), Martin Garcia (1-16), Tiago Pereira (0-19), apprentice Jorge Velez (0-18) and Gryder (0-16) have been less than stellar on the turf course.

FIRST RACE: 1. Miss Megan, 2. Remember to Smile, 3. Takethediamondlane. LONG SHOT: Jan Jan Can.
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SECOND RACE: 1. Moonshone Annie, 2. Tig Tog, 3. Playa Chica. LONG SHOT: Divine Dharma.
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THIRD RACE: 1. Best Two Minutes, 2. Weast Hill, 3. Fast Cotton. LONG SHOT: Monydontspenitself.
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FOURTH RACE: 1. MASTER RYAN (best bet), 2. Fredikstad, 3. Cunning Munnings. LONG SHOT: Tribals Last Reign.
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FIFTH RACE: 1. Aced, 2. Emtech, 3. Vintage Hollywood. LONG SHOT: Sea’s Journey.
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SIXTH RACE: 1. Zestful, 2. Builder, 3. Play Hard to Get. LONG SHOT: Zeke.
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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Solar Nova, 2. Senora Power, 3. Lady Sunset. LONG SHOT: Kuda Huraa.

Good luck.

Good luck.

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar opinion for Tuesday, July 30

In the saddle

In the Del Mar jockey’s race, Flavien Prat is still on top with 17 wins, including five from 17 mounts during Week 2. However, Prat is is the middle of serving a three-day suspension. He was limited to just one ride in a stakes race on Sunday and will be off all of his mounts Wednesday and Thursday.
Drayden Van Dyke closed the gap on Prat with a seven-win week from 21 mounts. He is three behind Prat with 12 wins and look for him to be live the next two days as Van Dyke will be riding for barns that might normally choose Prat, especially in turf races.
Rafael Bejarano had a strong second week with five wins in 21 tries and is now third in the standings with seven wins.
Kent Desormeaux, Joe Talamo and Martin Garcia all had three wins on the week to secure spots in the top 10.
On the other end, Rueben Fuentes went from having five victories in Week 1 to none in 22 mounts during Week 2. Also, Fuentes is 0 for 19 on the Del Mar grass course so far.
Abel Cedillo also had a tough second week with no wins in 19 mounts. He did have two seconds and five thirds. Cedillo is just 1 for 24 on the dirt.

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