We’re down to single digits in terms of racing days remaining at Oaklawn Park for the 2022-2023 meet. Including today, there are only nine days left. Today’s Friday program is headlined by an optional claiming/conditioned allowance race for fillies and mares sprinting six furlongs in the 8th race of the afternoon. There are some light showers forecasted for the morning, but the skies should clear around post time. This nine race card kicks off at 12:38 (CT) today.
I’ll be covering this exciting meet on the ITM Blog, along with posting some updates and thoughts from time to time on Twitter @EricSolomon718. Feel free to reach out!
|Race||Top Pick||A||B||C||Exotics Menu|
|2||3||3||4,5||2||DBL, PK3, PK4|
|5||7||7,10||2,4||DBL, PK3, PK5|
|6||6||6||1,5||DBL, PK3, PK4|
Race 2, #3 Be Bo (12-1 ML): I see this Mor Spirit filly as an interesting player in this $12,500 maiden claiming race. She’s cutting back in distance after a failed effort with state bred $20K maiden claimers in the slop at two turns last month. She’s been beaten by double lengths in all three starts, but those were better fields. Her speed figures are comparable to some of the shorter prices here though. What really interests me though is that she’s caught sloppy tracks in all three starts, and her Tomlinson figures are very low. That tells me that she’s a horse that hasn’t come close to running her best race yet. She won’t have to improve much to beat this group. There are some light showers in the forecast, but as long as the track is not too wet, I’d be willing to take my chances with her.
Race 6, #6 Driven One (8-1 ML): Not all starter allowance races are created equal, so sometimes it’s hard to judge the level of competition in each race. I think Polterer (#4), who was an easy winner at this level last month, faced a much softer field that what he’s up against today. So taking 2-1 on him is not for me. I’d need to get closer to 5-1 to be able to use that one. Conversely, I think Driven One (#6) is coming out of a much tougher race in February, where the top two finishers came back to win. Icarus beat Barber Road last month, and that won just came back to be an allowance winner against a nice bunch at Keeneland. Saqeel, who was second, came back to win in starter allowance company as well. He’s in a good race/bad race pattern in his form cycle, so he could be sitting on a better effort. I think the pace scenario is favorable for him as well.
Race 7, #9 Ratified (7-2 ML): Boogie Woogie Gal (#6) is the heavy morning line favorite off a strong debut effort, but at short odds, I’m concerned about Joe Sharp’s recent struggles with horses dropping from maiden special weight company to maiden claiming. I just think if she was the horse that thought she was going to be, she’d be given a shot with open maiden special weight company, especially at this point in the meet once some of the better horses have shipped to Kentucky. I prefer Ratified (#9), who is the second choice, cutting back from a route to a sprint for Ron Moquett. With his regular rider, Rafael Bejarano, riding at Keeneland, Moquett turns to Marcelino Pedroza, who has struggled a bit so far at this meet. I do think the cutback in distance will help her gain the needed three lengths that she’ll need to make up today to defeat the favorite.
Race 8: #4 Dealing Justice (10-1 ML): I think Riley Mott has a chance to repeat with this five year old daughter of Commissioner in the featured race today. She was very good in the spring of 2022 before going off form a bit in her three races in the summer and fall on the NYRA circuit. SHe’s come here and run two very strong efforts, while changing tactics to a horse that sits off the pace a bit. I think she’ll get another decent pace to close in to.I see her as a horse that could move forward once again in her third race of this current form cycle.