Baffert looks to have the first leg of the players pick five surrounded as he sends out No. 3 Fascinating who ran good here last year as a 2yo, she comes off a race in which she lost as a .50 cent chalk. No. 5 Go Get Em Babe is the other Baffert and she exits our HTW list after stumbling at the start in her last race losing all chance. 3-5
No. 1 Sunset Skies ran a good second one this poly track back in August, she gets Maldo back. No. 5 Seeking Shamrocks won here back in August and is trained by the hot Mike Puype. 1-5
2yo $50k maiden claimers go a flat mile. No. 5 Chester B ran big in his first start at Santa Anita, if able to move forward off of that race and handle the poly he will be a big player in here. No. 9 Jimbaran Bay gets off the grass and gets Gary Stevens riding for Vann Belvoir second off the claim, bet him to cash. 5-9
Exacta box 5-9 and win and place 9
Straight maidens going a mile on the grass and we will take our shot in this race and single No. 9 Dylan Ward a 3yo colt who makes his way here from Keeneland via Gulfstream and Woodbine, he lands Bejarano for this and looks very sneaky. 9
No. 1 Finallygotabentley gets the big drop in class by a trainer who hits at .50 % with this move. No. 6 Tribal Dude won his last race at this level at this track with these connections. 1-6
Players pick five
Maiden 2yo fillies in a race that you need to do some board watching, since we can’t we will side with No. 8 Miss Centerfold off of her big debut at Santa Anita with the hops she can transfer that race to the poly and we like Elvis riding for Hollendorfer. 8
No. 2 Toledo Eddie gets back to going long on the grass and may have a pace advantage over these. No. 5 Mal Verde exits our HTW list off a troubled race in which he won despite the trouble. No. 9 Presenceofagenius runs them all alike and just need the right pace to get home on top, he looks one two in here. 2-5-9
Win and place 9
In sticking with the Hollywood theme of the meet we have the Grade III $100k Bob Hope. No. 4 Prime Engine comes in from Emerald Downs where he won for fun in both of his starts, he lands in the barn of Jerry Hollendorfer and attracts big race Mike Smith to ride. No. 6 Alright Alright exits our HTW list off a huge win first out of the box, he could be this good. 4-6
We will go three deep in the last leg of the late pick four using No. 4 Hadfunlastnight who one here one race back, he gets his second start off the Hollendorfer claim. No. 9 Fighting On also won here back in August, he never runs a bad race. No. 10 Passing Game is a synthetic track specialist and is the stablemate of Hadfunlastnight. 4-9-10
9th 4-9-10 (note play the late double if not alive in the pick four).
No. 1 Can Can Babe and No. 3 Tip Top Lady exit the same race and look one two in here.
No. 3 Blue Blizzard is in top form and gets the high profile connections of Andy Mathis and R. Baze and a bullet work. No. 6 Stay Positive ran a nice second last out and now gets the bug boy Sullivan. No. 8 Missy Marini is the speed. 3**-6-8
No. 6 Miss Forty Niner is in from Santa Anita where she debuted down the hill splitting her field, she finds a good spot for the win. No. 7 Ladette will be the main danger off her nice debut here just missing late. 6-7
No. 1 Red Globe gets back to a better level and gets the R Baze riding for Monty Meier, he has found a good spot to notch win number two. 1
No. 3 Toomuchisnotenough gets a big jock switch in this her second off the layoff. No. 4 Two Pump will be running right with her from the bell. 3-4
2yo $20k maiden claimers go a mile on the grass. No. 3 It Behooves Me just did fail here last out in his first try on this circuit, he gets Hernandez today and he is a solid turf jock. No. 5 Schooner was right behind Behooves Me last our and ran good in his one turn race one race back. No. 7 Flash of Lightning has some big longshot appeal. 3-5-7
Exacta box 3-5-7 and win and place 3
THE $50K OAKLAND STAKES
No. 2 Ain’t No Other owns 4 wins from his 7 starts here. No. 5 Life Is a Joy is a perfect 2-for-2 on this course. No. 7 Outside Nashville has been facing better. 2-5-7
No. 9 Himalaya Star gets the big drop in class and a nice jock switch, we like his chances in this spot at what will be a fair price. 9
Maiden fillies and mares run for a price of $8k and this is a very bad field which leads up to first time starter No. 6 Makena Girl who is out of the dam Take the Picture who has dropped 3 winners from 3 starters. If she don’t fire the best of the ones that have run are No. 4 Lady Swann who lost by a nostril in her last race here and No. 10 Key to the Gold who is in from Santa Anita and lands in a top barn and gets a top jock. 4-6-10
CHECK FOR LATE SCRATCHES AND CHECK THAT THE SADDLE CLOTH NUMBERS MATCH OUR SELECTION NUMBERS.
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].