I don’t think this sequence is very deep as the shorter priced horses look to have the edge in most of the races, so I want to get super skinny and hope to hit it a few times.
Leg 1, SA Race 8: 4
I don’t have a knock on either favorite and there’s really not much else to work with here so it’s probably one or the other. Slight preference to #4 Teddy’s Barino (9/5) on the recency edge and better post. I’m a big fan of this Cal-bred, she shows up every time, she’s effective on both surfaces, and she can win at a variety of distances. She’s coming off a nice victory in a funky allowance race-the pace was glacial and she basically just outsprinted everyone once they decided to pick up the pace in the last few furlongs. There were a couple of nice fillies that finished behind her that day including the Baffert trained runner-up who returned to win. Being drawn outside of her main rival should allow her to dictate the pace today so let’s hope she can beat the favorite. Again, no real knocks on #1 Eda, but with her back class and being a Baffert trainee, she’s almost certain to take more money. Maybe I’m getting too cute but with this sequence looking rather chalky, I think there’s more value in taking a stand against her.
Leg 2, GG Race 8: 2
I want to take another stand in here with #2 Black Caspian (3-1). I have no idea what happened last time, but I’m willing to just toss it out. He had a fast workout in preparation for today’s bounceback race, similar to the work he put in before his victory two back. It’s encouraging that there’s no major drop in class and he should really appreciate getting back to the turf course that he’s had success over. I’ve always thought the Golden Gate turf favors horses that are close to the pace and Caspian has excellent tactical speed that should allow him to get first run on the closers.
Leg 3, SA Race 9: 5,6,10
Lots to like about the #6 Battle Call (4-1). He was last seen over a year ago facing much tougher animals at Oaklawn and he wasn’t disgraced in any of those starts. He returns a new gelding and shows up on the turf for John Sadler. The pedigree suggests the surface switch isn’t a problem and Sadler has picked a really soft spot for his return. The work tab looks good and it’s interesting that Ellingwood shows up to ride this one as she and Sadler win together at a very high percentage. An interesting mid-price option is the #10 Snap Daddy (6-1). He’s a colt that I’ve backed his last two starts and he’s run okay both times, especially two back when he showed newfound tactical speed but was in an uncomfortable spot for the majority of the race. He switches surfaces today, and while I’m not certain he’ll like it based on his pedigree, Eurton does have excellent stats with this move so maybe the surface chance will wake him up. This will be the Santa Anita debut for International rider Antonio Fresu, who won the 2021 Golden Shaheen aboard Zenden. And finally something went wrong in the last couple starts for the #5 Heartbreak Kid (6-1), but his races three and four back over the turf were pretty encouraging. He’s had some time off since something clearly went amiss last December and the work tab looks pretty consistent for his return. He adds Lasix and gets some class relief today for a solid jockey/trainer duo.
Leg 4, GG Race 9: 8
I couldn’t get past #8 Asano’s Back (3/2). He had been running well against starter foes until his last start where he dropped down to face restricted claimers. He was heavily bet that day and finished second beaten a nose for the money. He really didn’t have any major excuses that day but he returns at the same level for new trainer Jonathan Wong who obviously does really well here. He has the tactical speed to stay close and should get the in-the-clear stalking trip that is so effective over this surface and he doesn’t have to beat much in here.
SA 1: 4
SA 2: 5,6,10
GG 2: 8
$10 Pick 4= $30 total
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