Maiden Focus for Gulfstream/Tampa Bay (Sunday, February 21)

0-for-1 on Saturday, with I AM THE LAW sweeping to the lead in mid-stretch @ 7/1 odds, but tiring late to finish third. Tough beat.

Gulfstream – Race 4

#3 SALIT (3/1 ml)

I had mild interest in this McPeek trainee first time out, as she had worked a few times with SWEET PENELOPE, a longshot firster that I had bet earlier on the card (ran 5th @ 26/1 odds). By comparison, SALIT seemed to be taking an inordinate amount of toteboard action, going off at a well-supported 4/1 (bet down from a 12/1 morning line) in the large 12-horse field. She then ran to her backing, finishing a fast-closing third on the outside. I believe SALIT has more speed than shown, as she broke a step slowly and then was checked pretty hard just after leaving the gate, dropping back to last of the big field early. She’s worked fine on dirt, and should show improved speed in a race that doesn’t appear to have very much of it.  Expecting a good run.

Tampa Bay Downs – Race 7

#7 NEWSWORTHY (8/1 ml)

4yo Tapit colt for Bill Mott has run once before (last May), but is really more like a first-time starter, as he swerved outward badly from the outside post and was eased early. Much more notable is his recent activity, as he appeared to work a couple of times with the older stakes filly NEW YORK GIRL, who came out of those drills to run second by a length behind COUNTERPARTY RISK in the G3 Endeavour Stakes on the Sam Davis undercard. Following that, NEWSWORTHY appears to have worked with BROTHER IN ARMS, who was last seen running second by a half-length in a 1 1/8-mile turf race @ Tampa on New Year’s Day.  Figures to run well here at a good price, while most of the money flows in on the Chad Brown entrant KURAMATA (5/2 ml), who comes in off a half-dozen drills with HOMETOWN (last seen running second @ Saratoga last summer while in the Brisset barn).

ThoroBredPicks record:
Win record: 26-for-95 (27% winners)
Total mutuels: $220.90 ($8.50 average win price)

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