Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita opinions for Saturday, Jan. 21

Preview: The rain is supposed to relent for a day, but I’m sure there will still be moisture in it today so tread lightly. The rain is due back on Sunday and they could only get enough horses for eight races. What happened to our drought? The first half of the card today isn’t very attractive.

Race 6 – SA
#7 Wonderful Lie (4-1) ****
Our Eyes: Won over a good track at Del Mar, so any wetness today should just be fine. Has some late kick and a 7-1-4-1 record over the track.
Jeff’s Playbook: 4 units to win, 5 units to place and 6 units to show.

Race 7 – SA
#4 Battle of Midway (3-1) ****
Our Eyes: There are a pair if Bob Baffert horses in this maiden race, but I’m going with trainer Jerry Hollendorfer with this first-time starter by Smart Strike, a sire that hits at 14% first time out.
Jeff’s Playbook: 4 units to win, 5 units to place and 6 units to show.

Race 8 – SA
#11 Twirling Tiger (12-1) ***
Our Eyes: This gelding is coming out of a key race that has produced two winners already. He should like a wet track and has good speed.
Jeff’s Playbook: 3 units to win, 5 units to place and 6 units to show.

Good luck.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

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Del Mar, Gulfstream Park West, Horse racing

Del Mar selections for Sunday, Nov. 8 (Plus Gulfstream Park West)

FIRST RACE: 1. It Is Living Water, 2. Crucero, 3. China Girl Love. LONG SHOT: Image of Joplin.

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SECOND RACE: 1. Moonie (7-2), 2. Lucy De, 3. Slew’s Charm. LONG SHOT: Heres Geegees Girl.

This filly threw in a clunker last time but she’s back on a surface which she finished second on at this level during the summer. Trainer Edward Freeman is 36% with beaten favorites and he puts his main man Mario Gutierrez up.

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THIRD RACE: 1. Exactamente, 2. Knightwithputnam, 3. Tanager. LONG SHOT: Chalking It Up.
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FOURTH RACE: 1. Great Lou, 2. Wake Up Nick, 3. Mr. Jay D. LONG SHOT: Fooled Again.
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FIFTH RACE: 1. Heavenly Haze, 2. Formally Wild, 3. I’m Zonin. LONG SHOT: Slight Edge.
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SIXTH RACE: 1. #4 ARABIAN LEOPARD (8-1) BEST BET, 2. Tusk, 3. Osceola Pond. LONG SHOT: Papa Gulf.

This 2-year-old cost $575K at auction and has proven a bust on turf so Bob Baffert moves him to the turf. His sire, Scat Daddy, is 16% first time turf and Baffert is 33% with horses making their second appearance going around two turns.

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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Power Jam, 2. Logan’s Moon, 3. Oligarch. LONG SHOT: Golden Atlantic.
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EIGHTH RACE: 1. #6 Yana (8-1), 2. My Monet, 3. Wild in the Saddle. LONG SHOT: Kiss At Midnight.

Trainer Bill Spawr is 35% on the cut back back a route to a sprint. This filly just missed going 7 furlongs earlier this year so the distance shouldn’t be an issue and she had a good work over the track.

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NINTH RACE: 1. Archaeo, 2. Tristan’s Trilogy, 3. Trust Your Gut. LONG SHOT: Silent Lovies.

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Gulfstream Park West  

Race 3: #3 Thinking of Mom (turf only) (6-1)

Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. has two entries in the race and we’ll go with the longer price. This filly is coming out of a key Monmouth Park race that has produced three next out winners. Plesa is 21% with horses coming off a 46-90-day layoff.

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Race 8: #3 Zo Zo Striking (10-1)

Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. wins at 20% rate with first-timer starters. Smart Strike is a good first out sire and speed jockey Paco Lopez jumps on. 

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

Saturday’s top choice winners: 2 (Glory $5.40, sixth race; All Run $3.60, seventh)

Saturday’s second choice winners: 0

Saturday’s third choice winners: 1 (Esposito $8.20, first)

Saturday’s long shot winners: 1 (Tough But Nice $13.80, third)

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar selections for Saturday, July 18

FIRST RACE: 1. Tiz Jolie, 2. Papa Kade, Afleet in Time. LONG SHOT: Dynamite Ride.

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SECOND RACE: 1. Life Is a Joy, 2.Eldorado Prado, 3. I Don’t Care Who.LONG SHOT: Macho Sox.

Trainer Ron Ellis is 42% second off the claim. This gelding has been off for a little while but there is a good work showing readiness.

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THIRD RACE: 1. Rockin Bayou, 2. Toews On Ice, 3. Kelly With a Twist. LONG SHOT: Dare to Believe.
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FOURTH RACE: 1. Finnegans Wake, 2. Midnight Storm, 3. Power Ped. LONG SHOT: Twentytwentyvision.
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FIFTH RACE: 1. Sweet Mz. Poppet, 2. Quality Chimes, 3. Sailor’s Cry. LONG SHOT: Kenny’s Girl.
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SIXTH RACE: 1. FRAT BOY (best bet), 2. Highway Boss, 3. Borealis Breeze. LONG shot: Cougar Country.

Trainer AC Avila can be a crafty one. This 3-year-old gelding was claimed in Kentucky and tries for the “Ship N Win” money here. Avila is 4-for-8 first off the claim and 53% off a layoff of 61-180 days.

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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Irish, 2. Iron Rob, 3.  Go Long. LONG SHOT: Knust.
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EIGHTH RACE: 1. Istanford, 2. Personal Diary, 3. She’s Flush. LONG SHOT:  Gas Total.
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NINTH RACE: 1. Yana, 2. Stealth Drone, 3. Pattitude. LONG SHOT: Dr. Fager’s Gal.
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10th RACE: 1. Ground Rules, 2. The Gomper, 3. Bluegrass Bronco. LONG SHOT: Chiropractor.

This 3-year-old scratched out of the Oceanside Stakes on opening day for this spot. First time turf and the sire Smart Strike is 12% first time on turf.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

Friday’s top choice winners: 1 (Getoffmyback $4, fourth race)

Friday’s second choice winners: 3 (Proud Captive $7.60, third; Baruta $7.20, sixth; Zipessa $6.40, seventh)

Friday’s third choice winners: 1 (Xoxo $9.80, fifth)

Friday’s long shot winners: 1 (D. Shifflett $9.20, first)

 

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Del Mar, Horse racing

Del Mar selections for Thursday, July 16 (opening day)

Merry Christmas, it’s opening day at Del Mar.

Remember there is a new dirt main track. The Polytrack is gone forever. Look for speed to do well on the new dirt track because that’s the way it was in years past. According to reports, the track has been a little deep in the first week, but look for it to tighten up as the meet goes on.

Some trainers have raved about the look and deepness of the turf course, which is in its second season following replacement. Yes, the turf course was shut down last summer twice due to a rash of fatalities. I think Del Mar management did what it had to do to quell the situation, but two facts remain clear: the jockeys and trainers both said there was nothing wrong with the grass. In my book, if the jockeys are willing to ride on it and the trainers are willing to send their horses out, run them.

Ok, rant is over. Time to pick some winners, hopefully. Tread lightly here at the beginning of the meet, especially on the dirt. Look for form reversals and horses that like the seaside environment.

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Race 1: #5 Secretsatmidnight (7-2)  SCRATCHED

Trainer Bob Baffert must be trying to clear out a stall as he drops this 5-year-old into a claimer for the first time, a move he wins 37% of the time. This son of Midnight Lute has been facing better and will likely be forwardly placed by jockey Martin Garcia.

FIRST RACE: 1. All Squared Away, 2. Dress Code, 3. The Mad Hungarian. LONG SHOT: Olympic Blue.

As you can tell I lost my top choice when the scratches were announced Wednesday morning so we’ll go another direction and hope for the best.

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SECOND RACE: 1. No Tricks for Jack, 2. Prettyhotprincess, 3. Peppy Bolly. LONG SHOT: Adriatic Skye.

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THIRD RACE: 1. Restrike, 2. Pippappy, 3. Ink Well. LONG SHOT: Celtic Ray.

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FOURTH RACE: 1. Toowindytohaulrox, 2. Wanstead Gardens, 3. Cyrus Alxander. LONG SHOT: Infinite Magic.

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FIFTH RACE 1. MILES SISTER (best bet), 2. Late ‘n Left, 3. Plane Lucky. LONG SHOT: Alicanto.

This filly showed no speed in her debut but came running down the stretch to finish third. Trainer Cliff Sise is 22% with second-time starters and 29% with 2-year-olds. She should improvement second time out.

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SIXTH RACE: 1. Nextdoorneighbor, 2. Basmati, 3. Planet Sunshine. LONG SHOT: Gnarly Dude.

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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Gangnam Guy, 2. Fight Thru, 3. Derby Glass. LONG SHOT: The Gold Monkey.

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Race 8: #8 Ground Rules (12-1) SCRATCHED

This 3-year-old colt tries winners and turf for the first time for trainer Cliff Sise. The sire Smart Strike is 12% first time with turfers and jockey Kent Desormeaux should have him in the right spot for the upset. Exacta box 8-10-11.

EIGHTH RACE: 1. Papacoolpapacool, 2. Soul Driver, 3. Forest Blue. LONG SHOT: Thanksgiving Day.

As you can see I lost my top horse when the scratches came out. Also for those that don’t know I am friends with Jeffrey Bloom, who owns Soul Driver. I have no inside information other than Soul Driver won his last race. I picked Papacoolpapacool because he beat Soul Driver two races back and jockey Gary Stevens elects to ride Papa instead of Soul Driver.

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NINTH RACE: 1. Sweet Promises, 2. Never Ends, 3. Gloryzapper. LONG SHOT: Dreamologist.

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10TH RACE: 1. Suances Dream, 2. Benba, 3. Synnin. LONG SHOT: Volkonsky.

 

Trainer John Martin ships down from Northern California and he’s 34% with shippers like Suances Dream. Martin is 29% with grass horses and jockey Martin Garcia takes the mount. Benba is coming out of a key race and Synnin has won over this turf course twice.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

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Horse racing, Tampa Bay Downs

Tampa Bay Downs opinions for Sunday, Feb. 15

Race 2: #1 Hone In (3-1)

This filly just missed first time over the track and now trainer Victoria Oliver cuts her back to 7 furlongs. The daughter of Smart Strike is coming out of a key race that has produced three winners.

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Race 9: #7 Pontos (5-2)

This 4-year-old gelding has been away since October, but takes a class drop running here for trainer Efren Loza Jr. Leading jockey Antonio Gallardo takes the mount and he is 36% with Loza.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

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Horse racing, Santa Anita

Santa Anita picks for Monday, May 26

Remember first post is 1:30 p.m. today.

FIRST RACE: 1. Lost Bus, 2. Desert Steel, 3. Saturday Yodeler. LONG SHOT: Global Hart.

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SECOND RACE: 1. Wild Dude, 2. Cyclometer, 3. Wine Police. LONG SHOT: Color of Courage.

Another four-horse stakes race as Super Ninety-Nine scratched out.

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THIRD RACE: 1. This One’s for Mel, 2. Candy’s Sunrise, 3. Koast. LONG SHOT: Nobel Metal.

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FOURTH RACE: 1. Forest Romance, 2. Celestial Image, 3. Time for a J. LONG SHOT: Shop Forever.

Trainer Bobby Wayne Grayson has been known to get a first-timer ready to score at nice odds in the past. Grayson owns and trains FOREST ROMANCE, a son of Forest Danger, who has been training with purpose at Fairplex Park. Mario Gutierrez takes the mount.

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FIFTH RACE: 1. Mel’s Game, 2. Deraptor, 3. Bobby Z Man. LONG SHOT: Poshsky.

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SIXTH RACE: 1. Stormin Lute, 2. Goyan, 3. Mavericks Gun. LONG SHOT: I Buy Gold.

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SEVENTH RACE: 1. Emotional Kitten, 2. Stormy Lucy, 3. Customer Base. LONG SHOT: Miss Serendipity.

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EIGHTH RACE: 1. Benicia Gem, 2. Discatsonthesquare, 3. Say’s Who. LONG SHOT: Bonus Spin.

BENICIA GEM, a daughter of McCann’s Mojave, comes out of a key maiden race from Jan. 25. She had all kinds of trouble in the race, but took some money in that debut. She has been training well for Jeff Mullins and jockey Tyler Baze takes the mount. Mullins also trains first-time starter BONUS SPIN.

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NINTH RACE: 1. Pouncerounddaclock (best bet), 2. Quick Navigator, 3. Bird In Love. LONG SHOT: Smart Typical.

POUNCEROUNDDACLOCK, a daughter of Smart Strike, makes her career debut down the hill for trainer John Sadler, who is 26% with first-time starters. She had a big work back in April and Sadler is due to get hot. Plus jockey Rosie Napravnik takes the mount.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

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Sunday’s first choice winners: 2 (Como Mi Padre $5.60, third race; Betty Bing Bing $6, sixth)

Sunday’s second choice winners: 1 (Taelyns Prince $10.20, fifth)

Sunday’s third choice winners: 4 (No Contingency $6.80, first; Shapely $3.60, fourth; Sky High Gal $12.60, seventh; Moulin de Mougin $8.20, ninth)

Sunday’s long shot winners: 1 (Image of Joplin $41.40, eighth)

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Bonus picks for Gulfstream Park’s Rainbow 6 jackpot (doesn’t matter now after the bet was hit on Sunday, but I did the work already)

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Race 6: #11 Distinctive Lady (3-1)

Finished second against the boys last time out at Tampa Bay Downs and now returns to face fillies and mares. Has tactical speed and distance should hit her right between the eyes. Trainer Reid Nagle is 29% with MSW.

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Race 10: #12 Kimberly Is That U (6-1)

Just gave an even effort in first time going around two turns and still finished third. Takes a drop in class and with an outside post should be closing on the turn for home after saving ground early.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

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Hollywood Park, Horse racing

Hollywood Park picks for Friday, November 15

Just a reminder jockey Agapito Delgadillo is serving a suspension so he won’t be around this weekend so don’t worry about horses he is replaced on.

Trainers are still looking to replace Julian Leparoux, who has moved back to the Kentucky circuit. Check what jockeys are getting calls in his spot for Mike Mitchell (Leparoux’s father-in-law) and Jerry Hollendorfer.

FIRST RACE: 1. Do Some Magic, 2. San Onofre, 3. Dreamnofatticus. LONG SHOT: High On Final.

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SECOND RACE: 1. Visions of Candy, 2. Kevin’s Kool Kat, 3. U R My Candy Gir. LONG SHOT: Lethal Miss.

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THIRD RACE: 1. Boyett, 2. Sinfully, 3. Persuasive Paul. LONG SHOT: This One’s for Mel.

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FOURTH RACE: 1. Still Unbroken, 2. Infosec, 3. Tax Enough. LONG SHOT: Papa Smitty.

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FIFTH RACE: 1. Dolphins Shorts, 2. Tiz Anna, 3. Flashy Dame. LONG SHOT: Holiday N Newport.

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SIXTH RACE: 1. STREAMING (Best bet), 2. Artemis, 3. Abide in Me. LONG SHOT: Red Barris.

This is the time of the year that trainer Bob Baffert starts sending out his late-blooming 2-year-olds and that’s what we have here in STREAMING. This daughter of Smart Strike has been training in typical Baffert style: fast. The barn’s main ride, Martin Garcia, rides and this one looks ready to go.

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SEVENTH RACE: 1. A Toast to You, 2. Camp Victory, 3. Gonna Fly Now. LONG SHOT: Silver Dragon.

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EIGHTH RACE: 1. Bertran Hill, 2. Sandys Diamond, 3. Dugan Bill. LONG SHOT: Decarchy’s Trieste.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter

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