Horse Game Is Heating Up Coast To Coast. Horseracing Plays For Gulfstream and Santa Anita. (Laurel Cancelled)

Sports and Bets — March 7, 2015 at 9:05 am by

It’s a big day for the ponies as it’s officially Kentucky Derby prep season.  That means that tracks all over the country ramp up their cards as warmer weather tries to break old man winter and as the newest crop of three-year-olds tries to prove its mettle.  Who will be in the hunt for the triple crown officially gets determined over the next two months.  Every horseplayer in America is paying attention.

We are no exception and today there are a few cards ripe with stakes races and wagering opportunities.  Usually I like to focus on one track when I plan out my wagering day with a few big races from elsewhere thrown in.  But today we’ll be all over the place taking in the big races of the day.  Oddly enough, we may not wager on the two of the biggest Derby Preps of the day.  The Gotham is simply a race I don’t want to wager on and at the Tampa Bay Derby I love the heavy 8-5 favorite, #3 Carpe Diem.  If Carpe Diem runs well in the Tampa sun, he’ll be my early Kentucky Derby lean.

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So for a little value I’ll be looking elsewhere to make my dough.  We’ll give you picks for a few races at Gulfstream and Santa Anita.  Some will be longshot specials, so remember, take these for what you will.  Good luck and may you get good head bobs.

Laurel Park

I’ll start this by saying I love Laurel.  Their races are cancelled today because of awful weather.  I still can’t figure out why they run live all winter.  To me, it just isn’t the right business model.  Laurel’s cool simulcast areas are open for business.

Gulfstream Park

Race 4-  AOC 62.5K-   This AOC on the turf is extremely competitive.  Which is good for wagering.  You could make an argument for several in here and nobody would be mad at ya, but I’ll take the #5 Sycamore Lane. At 4-1 he’s a good play and I’m hoping he doesn’t get hammered at the windows.  Finished a strong third behind Pleuven  in last and that guy won a real tough $100,000K AOC here yesterday.  Has rival from last to deal with in #4 Inchcape to his inside, but if Lane can stay off that runner’s pace, he’ll get first run at ’em in the lane.  If he plays the stalker role- he’s got a good shot against these.  Back up with exactas with 2,4,10.

Race 5 – OC 62K-   This long distance grass affair also has several wagering options.  #9 Calvados is stretching back out after a fourth off the bench in last.  Love the works for this and he’s got plenty of experience at the longer run.  Hasn’t won going this far, but Beyers fit a he’s been damn close at longer.  His trip was rough last time and hopefully Saez can guide him better in this.  Rolling off the turn from a stalking position.  hammer if he gets to 5-1 or better.  Hook up with 5 and 10 in exacta play.

Race 6 – The Swale GII-  Daredevil is obviously the one to beat in this 7 furlong Derby “prep”.  Throw out the Breeder’s Cup, it was a hard luck race for this talented colt. (Any horse that can pop a 107 Beyer in his second lifetime race has talent.) But regardless of all that we are trying to beat him with a bomb here.  Daredevil hasn’t raced in months, he’s on the rail with speed to his outside and anyway his price makes him unplayable in single race win betting.  We’ll take a stab with a bomb, #6 Senor Grits.   He’s never raced a bad race and he might benefit from a hot pace with Bluegrass Singer and XY Jet and maybe, Daredevil going out early.  He’s 15-1 and that adds to the appeal.  Ian Wilkes is a sneaky good trainer too.  Risky business.

Race 10- Gulfstream Park Handicap-  #6 Valid.  I love this horse like a fat kid loves cake.  He always runs hard and he hasn’t been out of the cash since he finished fifth at Pimlico in the Pimlico Special last May.  Form is on point and he dueled here at Gulfstream and still won exactly a month ago.  He can go or rate and I think he’ll rate off of the uber-talented Private Zone before trying to tackle him in the lane.  You’ll get a price too with all the big names in here.  Hammer up and down in exactas with 1,2 and 5.  One mile dash, babes.

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Santa Anita

Race 10- Kilroe Mile- This Grade 1 turf monster has some big guns entered.  Holy Lute will try to steal it alone on the lead, Summer Front is coming off a great fourth in the Breeder’s Cup and several others rate a long look.  We’ll go with the #10 Ring Weekend.  This guy scratched after a crappy post draw in Florida a few weeks back and he gets an outside post here too.  But Motion’s charge is entering his four year old season and I think he will take a big step forward here against a lot of accomplished horses.   Ring had a long 2014 campaign and he’s freshened and he’ll get a nice stalking perch on Holy Lute.  Mile is a distance that suits him and Motion and his ponies fire will off the bench.  He’s 8-1, so back him up in exactas with 2,4,8,11 and in trifectas too.  Bombs away…….

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cover: kentuckyderby.com

 

 

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