Friday’s card features the most even split of dirt and turf races we’ve seen so far this meet with the first four races of the day on the main track followed by the entire late pick five taking place on the grass.
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- Race 1: 9-1-5-4
- Race 2: 4-3-9-6
- Race 3: 7-5-1-6
- Race 4: 6-1-7-9
- Race 5: 4-8-2-1
- Race 6: 8-4-5-6
- Race 7: 2-5-3-1
- Race 8: 1-3-9-6
- Race 9: 9-10-11-1
Colonial Downs Race 4: Fulmineo (#6)
Linzer (#1) is likely to be heavily favored in this spot as is customary whenever the name Godolphin is listed in the past performances as the owner. He ran fine in his debut, but given how alertly he broke, I wonder if he was cranked up for that start and might not take a significant step forward in his second go-around. My top pick was beaten a long way by Linzer in their respective debuts, but I think Fulmineo (#6) is more likely to improve leaps and bounds at second asking and therefore able to turn the tables on his more fancied rival. Watching that race from Delaware back, he appears to be a bigger type of colt so the extra 1.5 furlongs should work to his advantage. His stride makes me think that turf wouldn’t be the worst idea down the road, but I’ll give him one chance given the expected difference in price versus the favorite. I’m hoping Imperiality (#4) takes the kind of money that’s projected by his 3-1 ML price. Sure, he has a ton of speed, but I can’t imagine this extra furlong will work and I think this group is much tougher than the one he met a couple weeks ago. Money in Motion (#7) is an interesting first-time starter as this Munnings gelding has a few nice looking works on his page for owner/breeder Live Oak Plantation. The problem is that the Trombetta barn is not known for winning on debut with juveniles on the turf with a record of 12/120 (10%, $1.13 ROI) over the last five years.
Colonial Downs Race 8: Zipadoo (#1)
Queen’s Garden (#6) is the morning line favorite on the basis of her third-place finish here in the meet’s opening race. This filly obviously took a step forward in her first start at three, but I wonder if that running line is a bit better than it looks due to the abysmal performance put forth by the 2-5 favorite in that race. Creatively (Ire) (#9) might take some play as this filly is a full sister to G3W Zoffarelli and goes out for Nacho Correas off the trainer switch. She was in a pretty good barn before this with Michael McCarthy out west and he obviously didn’t think much of her shipping her to Golden Gate for a softer spot where she couldn’t even hit the board. I’d be somewhat interested in I’m Glad (Ire) (#3), but would need her to float up a bit from that 6-1 morning line. She had run some decent races at two and three for her prior connections and her start last week looks like merely a prep as Keri Brion stretches her back out off the run last week. However, I think all these fillies are running for second as I view Zipadoo (#1) as a very likely winner and anything above 7-5 would be worth playing. This well-bred filly out of G2W Sarach ran exceptionally well on debut showing good speed and was only defeated a short margin by eventual G3W Safeen. It was 6 1/4 lengths back to third that day showing that those two were head and shoulders better than their rivals earning a speed figure as a 2YO that would be competitive here. Her next raced was washed off plus a long layoff ensued, so I’m willing to draw a line through that. She’s been training up to this like clockwork and Motion’s barn has phenomenal numbers bringing back runners like this from a break. Over the past five year, this barn is 10/39 (26%, $3.25 ROI) with horses off 180+ layoffs in maiden races going long on the grass.
Colonial Downs Race 9: Bali Rolling Tide (#9)
As is the case so often at Colonial Downs, the finale is a chaotic scramble. Often in races with so much uncertainty, the betting public defaults to the favorite and Jeby (#13) seems like one that is ripe to be overbet. He was an absolute no-show as the 7-5 favorite in a weak $25k event two weeks ago and now drops even further down the class ladder to this $16k event. The Kelsey Danner barn has heat up recently but that’s been primarily with her juveniles, so I have no issue taking a shot against this runner. Bourbon Strait (#1) and Schmear (#11) both exit the nightcap from August 10th. Schmear was part of a pressured pace before tiring, though the other pacesetter went on for a close second. If he can get back to his effort two back, he’ll be a threat and I like the slight cutback in distance. Bourbon Strait is a bit tougher of a call since he was the beneficiary of the race flow, but he does now go second off the bench for Archibald Kingsley Jr. Those two are options, but I found the race their coming out of a bit weaker than the one my top two picks exit. Bali Rolling Tide (#9) and Malibu Rumble (#10) come out of the nightcap from August 5th and despite the former being 58-1 and the latter being 7-5, I thought they ran similar efforts. I have no issue saying Malibu Rumble is a more likely winner than Bali Rolling Tide, but can’t resist taking the one who will likely be 5x the price. Bali Rolling Tide was right up on a pressured pace battle last time whereas Malibu Rumble was able to stalk the pace and I’m hoping they’ll leave him alone on the front end this afternoon.
Top Pick: 164-46-30-28 (28%, $1.53); Featured Horses: 70-12-13-12 (17%, $0.90)
Percent of Races Won By: A’s: 48%; B’s: 24%; C’s: 24%; X’s: 6%