It was almost a clean sweep except for the seventh race at Santa Anita, a race that Angus appeared to have won when opening up in the stretch, only to be run down late at the wire – and it cost us a nice pick three!
Friday March 14
I feel lucky today so I will bet the early double, Pick 3 and Pick 4. In the first, I like No.1, Can’t Stop Slew, who gets Gryder in the irons and post position No. 1 in this 1 1/8 route. He should get a great trip on the lead and if Gryder can milk his speed he will be tough to catch in the lane. No.3, Plan For Fun, is very consistent, likes this oval and has done very well on the synthetic and is also a recent Jeff Mullins claim. No.6, Mananan McLir, just beat Slew in his last and will be the one to fear in the stretch. My choices, Nos. 1-3-6, will be used in the double, Pick 3, Pick 4 and exacta (box).
I am going to spread it out in this wide open $25,000 6½ furlong dirt sprint as it looks like any of five can win it. No. 2, Stormin Jack, is lightly raced, has speed and broke his maiden on this surface. No. 4, Daytona, could be dangerous on the drop. No. 5, Stealth Missile, has the very dangerous connections of trainer Puype and super owner Bone. No. 6, Tox Dee Bee, just missed in his last on Feb. 20 and will be charging late. No. 7, Brave Sun, rounds out the competition with the big drop in class and Gomez in the saddle. We’ll use this contingent, 2-4-5-6-7, use in the Pick 3, Pick 4 and daily doubles.
No. 8, Improving Gal, looks like a complete standout in this $40,000 Cal Bred maiden claimer. If she repeats her last effort she will not lose – our only concern is the bounce but she has had a nice six-week rest and two workouts. She will be our Pick 4 single. No. 3, Keepsake Copy, is a first-time starter out of a dangerous barn and she has Rosario in the irons and could fire first-time out. No. 4, Paloma’s Flight, gets Solis and will be making that wide closing move for which Alex become famous. No. 6, Backstroke, gets stretched out in distance and also will be coming late. Let’s single No. 8 and use 3-4-6-8 in the Pick 3.
In this mile turf race No. 8, Wild and Ready, has the appearance of a horse sitting on a big try, especially since Gomez shows up to ride for Peter Miller. Let’s take a shot and use him as a single in the Pick 4. Here’s a recap of our bets:
Pick 4 Double Pick 3
Race 1: 1-3-6 1-3-6 1-3-6
Race 2: 2-4-5-6-7 2-4-5-6-7 2-4-5-6-7
Race 3: 8 3-4-6-8
Race 4: 8
We have straight Maidens going 6 furlongs on the dirt and No. 4, Just Julian, coming off a monster try at Hollywood. We’ll see if he can duplicate that effort at Santa Anita. If he can, he wins, if not the race could be up for grabs. At 5-1 in the morning line I will just make a win bet as I believe he wins or runs out.
It’s the start of the late Pick 3 and I will use four horses in this opening leg. No. 3, Sunday Dress, has become a monster for Mike Mitchell. No. 5, Valley Storm is coming off the layoff for Carla Gaines, who is very dangerous with layoff stock. No. 7, Tutta Bella, finds Gomez up as he gets off Sunday Dress in favor of this one. No. 10, Britney Heat (Puype/Bone) was scratched for this spot, gets a great post and Valdivia Jr. is more than capable of finding the wire. Our selections: 3-5-7-10.
I have been waiting for No. 7, Mostacolli Mort, since his last race, which he may have won except for being trapped on the rail the entire length of the stretch. No. 4, Stella Mark, will fight it out with No. 1 Bullsbay up front, and Mort will be flying late and run them down. We’ll use Mostacolli Mort as a single.
No.1, Yvett’s Pride, only needs to improve off his last to win, but he needs to clear his inside post. No. 4, Excessive Dreamer, drops back to a $40,000 Cal Bred maiden claimer, where he ran his best. No. 8, Star Nicholas, is a 5-year-old but gets the first time drop into a maiden claimer and this will be his best shot at the winner’s circle. Our picks: 1-4-8.
Race 6: 3-5-7-10
Race 7: 7
Race 8: 1-4-8
We will play a pick three and a rolling daily double from races four through six. In this race we will use two plays – the Steven Miyadi entry of 1 and 1a, and No. 4, Kissin the Cobra, who just blitzed them in the slop on this track and appears to have found a good spot to get another win.
This could be another two-horse race with No. 7, Idaho Joe, who surfaced here on Feb. 24 while last seen at Del Mar last summer. Back then, he was bet down as the odds-on favorite but caught a sloppy track which may not have been to his liking. He will be short-priced again, but No. 3, High Lode, ran big in his first try on this track and was red tagged by top trainer Bill Morey, who also retained part ownership. Our picks: 3-7.
I made this a three horse race starting with No. 2, Bullysima, fresh off a win at this distance on this track Feb. 24. No. 5, Reel Event, is also fresh off a win in the slop but has been very consistent on any surface and distance that suits her. No. 7, Judy’s House, looks like the speed in the stretch out by trainer Sherman and jockey Baze strings along for the ride. Our picks: 2-5-7.
Pick 3 Daily Double
Race 4: 1-4 1-4
Race 5: 3-7 3-7
Race 6: 2-5-7
There is an interesting 3 yo colt running in this race No. 5, Riley Tucker, who trainer Bill Mott says he will try him in the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park on Feb 18. In that race his first start in 2008, he did make a little late run to split the field. He finds a much easier spot here and his morning line of 3-1 with Leparoux up looks like a gift; in fact 2-1 would be a bargain. I will try and hit the trifecta in this race keying him on top. Try 5 with 2-6-7 with all and make an exacta wheel 5 with all.