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First time starter out of the barn of Doug O’Neill ran a much better than looked third, just missing the place by a half-length at 24/1. He broke slow and was bumped. Jockey Mario Gutierrez sent him down on the inside once in stride to chase the pace. He had no shot at every running down the lone speed, but kept to his task splitting rivals down the lane to be a very game third. $$$


Was coming off a solid second in his last start at Santa Anita back on Nov. 3. He took plenty of action in this race but really never got into it and finished far back in a non-effort. He will appreciate the return to the Santa Anita dirt plus get a new barn and jock off the claim. We see a big wake up next time out.


First time starter for trainer Jack Carava looked good on the track and we used her at 20-1 in our exotics. She broke slow as most of these first time starters have a habit of doing, sat down on the inside and then came out for room in the stretch. She ran on with good interest getting the hang of things late. We look for her to come back with a big effort.


Was one of two Bob Baffert starters in this straight maiden race. The winner, Baffert’s other starter, went off at 3/2 while Yard Line was let go at 10/1. We opted for Yard Line, who hopped to be away very slow and then moved up on the inside to stalk the pace. He bid along the rail leaving the turn in the stretch and continued willingly to the end. Just could not run down his stablemate Chitu, who took them wire to wire but was a very game second. Will be hard to beat next time out, but we will not get that 10-1.


Just loved this maiden out of the barn of Richard Mandella in this 1 1/16 race that was scheduled to be run on the grass but it rained a little. In So Cal if it just looks like rain they take the races off the grass. I guess they never heard of a soft or yielding turf course or are the saving the turf course for next year. Just kidding. Number Five really never got into the race until it was too late but will be ready to roll next time out at Santa Anita going long on the grass. $$$$$


Ran her race but had no shot at the runaway lone speed. She finished second almost nine lengths clear of the third place finisher. This filly can run and is a must use next time out in the top two spots on your tickets.

Richard Saber, a former director of race and sports at the famed Stardust book, is GamingToday’s horse racing and sports handicapper.  Follow Richard on Twitter @SabesBet. Contact Richard at [email protected].

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