Fair Grounds Racing Preview – 2/19/21 – By Eric Solomon

The main track is fast, but all four races have been transferred to the main track again today. I have updated the post to account for scratches and surfaces changes. Unfortunately, my best ideas for value bets on the card were in the turf races. There are nine races on the card today as the weather gets a little warmer each day.

Race 1:

Many of these $5,000 beaten claimers are familiar with each other. The new face to the group on the drop in class is As Fast As You Can (8) who is coming off four straight turf races. She’s had much more success on the dirt in her career and was a winner in her last race on dirt at this level. Margie’s Money (7) was well backed, but run a clunker last time out for her first start for her new barn. She’s rebounded nicely in the past off of her dull efforts, and she may offer more value than she did last time out. Money In the Stars (4) was third best last out after taking a solid bump at the beginning, and then getting uncomfortable while racing in tight corners at the top of the stretch. She’s very logical, as her last three efforts put her right there with this level. Sworn Silence (5) makes her first start off the Asmussen re-claim, but she hasn’t won in a while and she feels more like an underneath exotics threat than a true win candidate.

A B C X
4,7,8 5 1,2,3,6

 

Race 2:

I didn’t have many that I was crazy about when this race was on the turf, and honestly the dirt form is even more difficult to discern. With only five in here, the all button might be your friend here, as I think you could make five arguments about why a horse will win and five arguments why they won’t. I liked Simply Beguiled  (4) on grass after she improved in her second try off an okay dirt debut. She makes sense while dropping in class, so I will move her to my top play in a race where I don’t have much of an opinion. Media Mendacity (6) might rival first time starter Galileas Promise (8) for longest shot on the board, as her trainer hasn’t trained a winner in over a year. However, he effort at 6 Furlongs on the main track two back at Keeneland was solid, and her pedigree sure favors two turns. She might be on to upgrade, especially if her price stays around that 8-1 morning line.

A B C X
4 2,6,9 8

 

Race 3:

Despite the N2X condition (allowing for three year olds to run in this race regardless of how many wins they have), all 8 runners qualify under the N2L condition. Hamazing Wisdom (6) is my lukewarm choice in here, despite in his first two starts at the meet. However, his first race was off the layoff, against better, and his last was on the turf, also against better. He drops back to a sprint, and to a level where I think he can take a step forward. Day Trip (2) is the horse that I’ve been stuck on in this race. I don’t like when trainers throw the kitchen sink at a horse, meaning that they make multiple changes for one race, especially when the last race wasn’t a total disaster. On the other hand, turf to dirt, blinkers off, and route to sprint moves for Joe Sharp are all angles that are significantly above his overall win percentage. The horse’s lone dirt sprint, was a maiden breaking win at Tampa, so can he run on the main track. I ended up using him as an A, because his average effort is likely good enough to beat this group. Money Biz (3) makes his third start off the layoff and third overall start on dirt. He showed some good early foot last time out before fading to 4th late. He runs for good connections and I think he has another forward move. Breakin Daylight (8) is another one that I really don’t know what to do with here. I thought he was worth a look at this level last out, and he was closer to the leaders in a slow race for the conditions. He too is third off the layoff, so I am wondering if he also has a forward move in here.

A B C X
2,6 3 8 1,4,5,7

 

Race 4:

There are some ugly form lines in this state bred maiden special heat, and definitely one of the softer races for the condition and moving on to the main track doesn’t do much. I was all about trying to beat Glory To Me (7) who has two decent efforts at Delta, if this race was on the grass. However, she’s got a nice progress of dirt races, and has gone two turns before at Delta. It’s tough to identify anyone as a single here, but she definitely makes sense.  Explosively Hot (3) ran a strong race under these conditions two back on to be second. She regressed a bit on turf last out, but she makes sense back on dirt here. Lively Lea (11) ran a big race off the shelf, made the lead and was just headed late, beaten less than a length by Darling Joanna last out. She showed some dirt ability earlier in her career, and if she duplicate that effort, she’ll be tough here.

A B C X
3,7 11 1,4,5,6,8,9,

10

 

Race 5:

There’s not a lot of creativity here for me in this spot. The two favorites seem like they have an advantage over many of these. I think Easy To Miss (3) is the one I want on top, as his two races around two turns are his two best. He drew even with Makin’ Tracks, who is a better horse, last out only to have that one pull away in the final 1/16. There doesn’t seem to be anyone that good in here, and I think the rider upgrade to Colby Hernandez is another plus. Gold Account (5) is the morning line favorite, and a definite threat in here. He chased Dreamin’ of Karats around the track in his last dirt start, after that one just threw down the gauntlet at the start and never looked back. My only hesitation with this one is that this will be the first time he’s actually entered in a race meant for the main track. The other two starts came in off the turf races, so I’m not sure about the depth that he’s faced in those races, despite racing for a higher claiming tag. A longshot toss in might be O’Connor (2), who debuted in the aforementioned Dreamin’ of Karats route race two back. The trouble line said clipped heels, but I don’t think it was enough trouble to think that it changed the outcome of the race. He moved to turf for his second start and now drops in class and comes back to dirt. I did like how he ran on at the end in his debut, and Beschizza taking the mount is also a positive sign.

A B C X
3 5 2 1,4,6,7,8

 

Race 6:

Luck of the Draw (8) ran a strong race last out to clear the N1X condition on the main track. He hasn’t been the most consistent type, but trying the N2X level with off the turf horses may be a good way to handle the rise in class, without facing horses that are considerably better Cabo’s Rumor (12) drew in this race as a main track only entrant two starts ago, and got up to win. He was claimed by Amoss, who tried him in stakes company at Delta last out. That didn’t go that well, so he’s back at this level where he’s proven today. Stuck In Vegas (5) has some back class and was claimed by Asmussen at this level last out. He could take a move forward, moving to a higher percentage barn. His turf form is a little better than his dirt form, but I think he’s still playable. One other longshot in here that will likely be double digit odds, but might be worth including is Palvera (3). He has exclusively been a one turn horse in 17 tries, and now goes to two turns for the first time. He draws inside, and has early speed to his outside, which isn’t ideal. However, at long odds, he might be worth including on some tickets.

A B C X
8,12 3,5 1,6,7,9,10

 

Race 7:

I think Man In The Moon (4) is very logical in here coming back to the main track. He debuted on dirt against a very strong maiden field at Churchill, which consisted of Swill, Santa Cruiser, and Big Lake. He was dull in his second try, and then moved to the Al Stall barn. He tried turf at two turns twice, and progressed well in those starts, despite failing as the favorite. I think the move back to dirt will be a plus, as Stall has won 32% of the time with this angle over the last year. Sovereign Change (2) debuted with maiden special weight company in an off the turf spot, and he looked like he needed that race. He drops in class for his second start and should take a step forward. Haleys Sailor (5) was near the front in his last two sprinting, before fading late. I assume he’ll be offensive minded for his first route, and try to take them gate to wire. He may benefit from going slower in the opening stages of the race.

A B C X
4 2 5 1,3,6,7

 

Race 8:

One thing to note about today’s feature, which is a state bred N3X allowance, is that everyone in this race is still eligible for the N2X condition, and several are still eligible for the N1X condition. I was really high on Keys To The Palace (11) on the turf at a price here, but that might be a name to tuck away for next time. He’s not impossible on the dirt, but I prefer others. Zelig (9) is coming off a dull effort last out, but has a string of good races prior to that. This might wind up being class relief for him. Guitar Slim (10) has two wins in a row on the main track and moves up in class again. He’s second off the layoff, and a logical contender now that this race has been taken off the grass. Rose’s Galaxy (3) was claimed for 15K from a state bred claiming race last time. He moves up in class, but has some back class that may prevail for his new connections. Silver Galaxy (4)  hasn’t had the same level of success here as he did this summer at Louisiana Downs, but I’m willing to give him another shot at a decent price. I’m not sure if you’ll get 8-1 from the original morning line, but I think 5-1 or better Is fair.

A B C X
9,10 3,4 2,3,6,7,9,

10

 

Race 9:

I tried to be a little more conservative earlier in the sequence, knowing that I’d want a little more coverage in the nightcap. Faith’s Raceday (9) is the logical play here, dropping in for a tag for the first time after running steady, but not spectacular efforts with maiden allowance fields. His usual effort would likely be good enough here, but he has failed to deliver at short odds in the past. Many of these lower level state bred races have not held true to form, so I want some price coverage here, and I landed on two others that I think could be live at large odds. Mister Don (2) makes his second career start after starting slow with lesser horses, but rallying well in the later stages to get into 4th. It was probably a good educational race for him, and I can see him rolling late and passing tired horses with a better start today. War Player (7) drops in class and could be the best of the early speed here. He came back off a layoff against a strong maiden special weight field at Delta, which produced two next out winners. He dueled himself into submission that day at a tricky two turn, 6 and 1/2 furlong distance. He cuts back to 6 Furlongs here and one turn, and should be a little more fit for this start. Thunk (3) might be another horse to include, as he’s one that has had many chances, and has yet to deliver. However, most of his races were against better foes, and his last start at this level was a close up second place.

A B C X
2,7,9 3 1,4,5,6,8,10

 

 

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