Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Friday, Dec. 28

FIRST RACE: 1. Shining Through (best bet), 2. Mystical Moon, 3. Magnificent McCool. LONG SHOT: Seven Oxen.

SECOND RACE: 1. Frozen Money, 2. Sooner Better, 3. Knight’s Cross. LONG SHOT: Rockandahardplace.

THIRD RACE: 1. Older Brother, 2. Don’t Stalk Me, 3. Quad. LONG SHOT: Our Tiger’s Boy.

FOURTH RACE: 1. To the Morning, 2. Objective, 3. Shut It Up. LONG SHOT: Rather Nosy.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Peachy, 2. One Upper, 3. Desired Edge. LONG SHOT: Copper Cowgirl.

SIXTH RACE: 1. Starting Bloc, 2. Ya Gotta Wanna, 3. Kazan. LONG SHOT: Arms Runner.

SEVENTH RACE: 1. Zippy Groom, 2. Short of Ez, 3. Aristocratic. LONG SHOT: Seau.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. Bob and Jackie, 2. Flying Scotsman, 3. Rijeka. LONG SHOT: More Ice.

NINTH RACE: 1. Dukes Up, 2. Trapalanda, 3. Kenzou’s Rhythm. LONG SHOT: Gio’s Calling.

Good luck.


Top choice winners: 3 (Twentytwentyvision $8.60, first race; I Am the Danger $5.80, third; Gift Box $15, eighth, cold $1 exacta $23.50, cold $1 trifecta $56.20)

Second choice winners: 2 (Amandine $5.60, fourth; River Boyne $2.80, seventh)

Third choice winners: 1 (McKinzie $4.40, ninth)

Long shot winners: 0

Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Wednesday, Dec. 26 (Opening day)

Preview: Remember jockey Joel Rosario is coming West to ride until the spring so look for him to get plenty of live mounts. Also, a lot of out-of-town jockeys are in Arcadia today for the stakes-filled card. These guys can ride and you will get some great prices on great jockeys. If you like one of them, bet them. I’m not sure how the turf course will play after rain on Tuesday night so make sure you check changes.

FIRST RACE: 1. Twentytwentyvision, 2. Orchestral, 3. Taelyns Prince. LONG SHOT: Comes the Dream.

SECOND RACE: 1. Naughty Sophie, 2. Chatty, 3. Come On Kat. LONG SHOT: Easter Dream.

THIRD RACE: 1. I Am the Danger, 2. According to Buddy, 3. Shane Zain. LONG SHOT: Lil Milo.

FOURTH RACE: 1. Ms Bad Behavior, 2. Amandine, 3. Love and Peace. LONG SHOT: X S Gold.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Jumpin Thru Hoops, 2. Scalper, 3. All Good. LONG SHOT: Mo Mississippi.

SIXTH RACE (Grade I La Brea): 1. Emboldened, 2. Dream Tree, 3. Happy Like a Fool. LONG SHOT: Hot Autumn.
DREAM TREE is the rightful 8-5 morning-line favorite and is the most likely winner of this race for trainer Bob Baffert, but I have to go with the “other Baffert.” EMBOLDENED has never been worse than third over this track and has been training well for her comeback. I’m a big believer that horses either like or hate 7-furlong races and both of these Bafferts have won in their only tries at this elongated sprint distance.

SEVENTH RACE (Grade II Mathis Brothers Mile) 1. Choo Choo, 2. River Boyne, 3. Sejo. LONG SHOT: Desert Stone.
Again RIVER BOYNE is the deserving 8-5 morning-line favorite and will be tough to beat as jockey Flavien Prat stays on the 3-year-old rather than ride my choice, CHOO CHOO. This son of English Channel just missed at Del Mar and Joel Rosario takes over. SEJO is an import from France and gets Irad Ortiz Jr. in the saddle for trainer John Sadler, who got shut out at Del Mar.

EIGHTH RACE (Grade II San Antonio): 1. Gift Box, 2. Battle of Midway, 3. Dabster. LONG SHOT: Tatter to Riches.
The older horses finally take to the track and the thought is that BATTLE OF MIDWAY will be singled in a lot of wagers. Not here. GIFT BOX has been purchased privately by Hronis Racing LLC for Sadler. The 5-year-old comes out of the Chad Brown barn and has a couple of great works over the track. He has never been worse than second in three tries at the distance and that man Rosario rides back. One to watch is TATTER TO RICHES for trainer Jeff Mullins. The 3-year-old will be facing older and Mullins puts blinkers on. Plus Gift Box is coming out of a key race that has produced two winners already.

NINTH RACE (Grade I Malibu): 1. Ax Man (best bet), 2. Seven Trumpets, 3. McKinzie. LONG SHOT: Copper Bullet.
The big race of the day and it drew a field of 16 (only 14 can run). Baffert has five 3-year-olds in this race and at least one (or more) will scratch. AX MAN has been seen since July, but has been gelded since that race. He has been training lights out and Baffert’s layoff stats are huge. SEVEN TRUMPETS ships in from the East Coast for trainer Dale Romans. Throw out that eighth in the Breeders’ Cup Mile. He’s back with has own age group and finished second at this distance in the Jerkens at Saratoga.

10TH RACE: 1. Souter, 2. Avalance, 3. Cupid’s Claws. LONG SHOT: Trojan Spirit.

Good luck.

Del Mar, Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita update

Just a personal note. As some know and others don’t, I have been battling an illness for months and started treatments during Del Mar. I completed those treatments 10 days ago, but I have been left very tired while working my regular job through the process. I just don’t have the energy to handicap on a daily basis. I hope to be ready for the Breeders’ Cup, which is in less than 2 weeks, and then be ready to go full bore for the fall Del Mar meet. Thanks for your understanding. See you soon.

Del Mar, Horse racing, Los Alamitos, Santa Anita

Del Mar wrap-up

NOTE: I will be taking Los Alamitos off and get back at it with start of Santa Anita, although I might stick to weekends, due to some medical issues.
Thanks for reading.


Top choice winners: 3 (Tiger Mom $7.60, second race; Summering $2.60, fourth; Miss Sunset $3.20, fifth)

Second choice winners: 4 (Jump the Tracks $6, third; Secreto Primero $5, sixth; Rayana $8, eighth; Game Winner $5.20, ninth)

Third choice winners: 1 (Feeling Strong $5, first)

Long shot winners: 0

Good luck.

Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Friday, May 25

FIRST RACE: 1. Foxy Fresh, 2. Southern Treasure, 3. Parasail. LONG SHOT: Tuscany Beauty.

SECOND RACE: 1. Mischievious Lass, 2. Topaz Time, 3. No Money Honey. LONG SHOT: Grecian Fort.

THIRD RACE: 1. Adens Dream, 2. Anatolian Heat, 3. Cistron. LONG SHOT: Sycamore Lane.

FOURTH RACE: 1. Mercer Island, 2. Eagle Screams, 3. Just Kidding. LONG SHOT: Sanavi.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Christy Jackson, 2. Twirling Apples, 3. Diva La Mousse. LONG SHOT: Operandi.

SIXTH RACE: 1. Bad Boy Leroy, 2. Surfside Sunset, 3. Don’t Stalk Me. LONG SHOT: Fender Bender.

SEVENTH RACE: 1. Gone to Bali, 2. A Little Bit Me, 3. Nine Point Nine. LONG SHOT: Painting Corners.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. Lucky Sun, 2. Jerry’s Thunder, 3. Downside Up. LONG SHOT: Johnny Ray.


Top choice winners: 5 (Shanghai Fantasy $4, first race; Hard Arch $5.40, third; Smiling Angelo $4, fourth; Upo $7.60, fifth; Sorry Erik $4.60, seventh)

Second choice winners: 0

Third choice winners: 1 (True Valor $4.60, second)

Long shot winners: 1 (Miracle March $6, sixth)

Good luck.

Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Thursday, May 24 (UPDATED)

(FIRST RACE: 1. Shanghai Fantasy, 2. Irish Terrier, 3. Baby Frankie. LONG SHOT: Zip’s Secret.

SECOND RACE: 1. Rocket Fuel, 2. Matriculate, 3. True Valor. LONG SHOT: Van Lingle Mungo.

THIRD RACE: 1. Hard Arch, 2. Vegas Itch, 3. Chiksika. LONG SHOT: Supreme Giant.

FOURTH RACE: 1. Trickonomics, 2. Smiling Angelo, 3. Morgan S. LONG SHOT: Brickhouse.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Upo, 2. Conquest Smartee, 3. Harliss. LONG SHOT: Ivy Mike.

SIXTH RACE: 1. Wise Curlin, 2. Moonman, 3. Shackalov. LONG SHOT: Informality (SCRATCHED). NEW LONG SHOT: Taco Tuesday.

SEVENTH RACE: 1. Sorry Erik, 2. Magic Mark, 3. Little Scotty (SCRATCHED). LONG SHOT: Clear the Mine (SCRATCHED). NEW PICKS: 1. Sorry Erik, 2. Magic Mark, 3. Home Run Kitten. LONG SHOT: Ferguson.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. Silver Fury, 2. Camps Bay, 3. Big Bad Gary. LONG SHOT: Chaaa.



Top choice winners: 0

Second choice winners: 2 (Blaze’n Prospector $4.40, third race; Cool Green $9.40, sixth)

Third choice winners: 0

Long shot winners: 2 (Gryffindor $31.40, fifth; Life of Illusions $11.80, eighth)

Horse racing, Pimlico, Preakness Stakes, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Saturday, May 19 (Plus Preakness)

Preview: Isn’t 12 races overkill in Arcadia? Of course, not as bad as 14 at Pimlico. Really?

FIRST RACE: 1. Red Livy, 2. Giant Mongolian, 3. Girl Downstairs. LONG SHOT: Lori’s Attitude.

SECOND RACE: 1. Carnivorous, 2. Takahiro’s Dream, 3. Luck’s Royal Flush. LONG SHOT: Takeo Squared.

THIRD RACE: 1. Catfish Hunter, 2. Insubordination, 3. Two Hail Marys. LONG SHOT: Polity.

FOURTH RACE: 1. California Breeze, 2. Brandon’s Law, 3. Fluorescent. LONG SHOT: Conformation.

FIFTH RACE: 1. Oh Scatty Oh, 2. Trap Queen, 3. Myrcella. LONG SHOT: Majestic Diva.

SIXTH RACE: 1. Catalina Cruiser, 2. Best Two Minutes, 3. Tony Blackjack. LONG SHOT: Fast Munny.

SEVENTH RACE: 1. Rumpus Cat, 2. Jimmy Chila, 3. Littlebitamedal. LONG SHOT: Facts Matter.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. Kochees, 2. Ketos, 3. Eighty Three. LONG SHOT: Burn Me Twice.

NINTH RACE: 1. Cheekaboo, 2. Cordality, 3. Moonless Sky. LONG SHOT: Desert Steel.

10TH RACE: 1. North County Guy, 2. Nova, 3. Bless His Heart. LONG SHOT: Poise to Strike.

11TH RACE: 1. Swayze, 2. Ike Walker, Sheer Flettery. LONG SHOT: Two Thirty Five.

12TH RACE: 1. Crown the Kitten, 2. Ky. Colonel, 3. Secreto Primero. LONG SHOT: Bourbon Soul.

Preakness Stakes

1. Good Magic, 2. Justify, 3. Lone Sailor, 4. Quip. LONG SHOT: Bravazo.
There is no doubt the Pimlico surface will have some water in it. The track has been a quagmire all week and although the rain is suppose to let up early today, it will be wet. Good Magic and Justify have proven they can handle that. Justify is 1-2 on the morning-line and it’s justified, but watch Good Magic’s Kentucky Derby again. He loomed up and made it a race. I think he can turn the tables. Lone Sailor had a troubled Derby as did Bravazo. Quip skipped the Derby because he has the same owners as Justify. He’s got some talent and will be a decent price.


Top choice winners: 4 (Fool’s Paradise $6, second race; Tough It Out $7, fifth; Explorer $5.40, sixth; Popular Kid $9.40, seventh)

Second choice winners: 4 (Beautiful Becca $6.40, first; G Q Covergirl $4.60, third; Broome $3.20, fourth; Winning Element $4.80, eighth)

Third choice winners: 0

Long shot winners: 0

Good luck.