Analysis & Selections By: Dean Keppler @Keppskorner
BEST BET: 5-Yellow Brick (Race 5)
Race #1: 6-Boss Lady was an impressive blowout Maiden winner at 20/1 on March 19 for trainer Jeff Mullins and now stretches out for first start against winners. This filly should be closer to the pace today and can repeat on the class hike. 1-Big Hopes rallied for the show spot in last despite a slow start and is likely to move forward in second grass attempt. 5-Kleen Karma goes two sprints to a route and gets some class relief. She should be able to handle sprinting over the main turf course.
Race #2: 1-Issa Court has speed and the rail draw today while stretching out to her preferred mile trip. This 5-year-old mare makes her 3rd start of the form cycle and drops in for a $20,000 tag. Vazquez had four wins on the Saturday afternoon card. 3-Beachgrass stretches back out after a non-threatening wide trip and can improve for the Desormeaux brothers. 2-Lucy L steps up off recent win against cheaper with improving Beyer figures and gets in light again.
Race #3: 2-Last Call London is by multiple Grade 1 winner Stay Thirsty who gets a modest 10% with his debuting juvenile prodigy but this colt has been working sharply at San Luis Rey for conditioner Peter Miller. Hernandez sees fit to take the riding assignment and scored with barn’s Seismic Spirit (Ire) ($10.80) on Saturday. 5-Thirsty Gambler is another Stay Thirsty offspring who debuts for trainer Keith Craigmyle who has had good success from limited starts with debut runners. This barn is 3 for 7 (43%) with a $2.26 ROI. 6-Going Mobile is one of two Steve Knapp-trained colts lined up in here. This juvenile has some sharp a.m. works, and this barn has a pair of debut winners this current year.
Race #4: 4-Marinas Tina (Ire) unleashed a strong rally from far back to earn the show spot against several of these on April 2 and looms a big threat right back making second start off the mini-freshening for D’Amato. 5-Creatively (Ire) adds Lasix and makes her first start stateside off a 6-month layoff with Hernandez climbing aboard. Her stablemate 1-Sareeha (Ire) has finished second 7 times in 9 starts while setting ablaze a ton of mutuel support ($$) along the way. Perhaps Hall of Fame rider Kent Desormeaux can finally get this filly into the winner’s circle.
Race #5: 5-Yellow Brick has hit the board in all 4 career starts for trainer Richard Mandella earning Beyer par or better for this class level in last two starts. He was off a step slow on March 11 but should be on or close to the pace here this afternoon with a cleaner break. This 3-year-old colt by Quality Road is overdue for graduation. 1-Texthelegend returns as a first-time gelding for Baffert and moves inside to the rail where he projects to be favorably placed throughout with Hernandez. 6-El Perfecto stretches out today and goes 2nd time blinkers for Team Desormeaux. The colt can improve here at a big number.
Race #6: Recent synthetic Maiden winner 1-Exit Soul looks like the dominating speed in here and could potentially carve out moderate fractions in this turf marathon and go gate-to-wire. Her stablemate is stakes winner 3-Duvet Day (Ire) who is proven at this distance but rallies from far back and will need some substantial pace to run into and clear sailing. 5-Queen Ofthe Temple has locked horns trading finishes with Duvet Day (Ire) and this mare rarely misfires. She usually, however, settles for underneath rewards and 12 furlongs is perhaps pushing her distance limitations.
Race #7: The lightly raced and costly ($1.75 million) 2-Ultimate Gamble cruised to a sharp Maiden victory on the stretch-out with the addition of Lasix and takes the next logical step forward for trainer Mark Glatt. 3-Katonah comes off a career best Beyer (90) at this level in most recent start and has trained well since that runner-up finish for Team O’Neill. 1-Zimba Warrior moves inside and is reunited with his winning rider today.
Race #8: 1-Macadamia (Brz) came up only a half-length short in the Grade 2 Buena Vista when finishing in front of recent graded stakes winner Closing Remarks and projects to sit another favorable ground-saving journey from the rail. A well-timed ride puts her in the winner’s circle. Her stablemate is the field’s lone U.S. Grade 1 winner 3-Rhea Moon (Ire) who has been freshened for D’Amato off three consecutive scores and usually fires off the bench. 7-Quattroelle (Ire) has gotten the best of both Macadamia (Brz) and Closing Remarks with back-to-back graded stakes wins at this mile trip. This mare must negotiate the outside draw today and is perhaps a tad vulnerable.
Race #9: If the projected swift early pace comes to fruition things could set-up nicely for 5-El Diablo Rojo who can sit and finish strongly for trainer Milton Pineda. This 6-year-old gelding has done most of his damage under the lights at Los Al but has also proven he can handle the afternoon dynamics over this course. 1-Super Chief by multiple Garde 1 winner Awesome Again has not been seen since impressive debut score back in May of last year but recent “best of 75” 4-furlong drill in :46.2 indicates he’s ready to roll off the layoff. 2-My Man Bags steps up off a career best Beyer and sharp looking wire-to-wire score. 3-Moose Mitchell is back running on the main track this afternoon and when last seen on dirt won two straight at Del Mar last August and September.
Race #10: 3-Free and Humble adds Lasix and removes the blinkers today and ran well in lone grass start last July. This lucrative jockey/trainer combo usually does well with these type of runners coming off extended breaks. 5-Foolish was trounced in “off the turf” mile main track start on St. Patrick’s Day but prior grass efforts two and three-back sprinting fit well here. A rebound effort is likely this afternoon. 4-Jensco is by multiple Grade 1 winner Gormley who won his debut going 6 ½ furlongs on the main track and recent a.m. drills have been sharp for trainer John Sheriffs.