Del Mar 8.12.16

Tomorrow is Donuts day at Del Mar. Free and open to the public to watch morning workouts and a Q&A with racing personalities while enjoying some donuts. In the previous edition of Donut day, jockey Victor Espinoza, Art Sherman and the connections of California Chrome were the featured guests. This edition will feature Jill Baffert (Bob Baffert's wife and race horse Owner), Kaleem Shah (Owner of the talented Dortmund) and Jay Slender (gate starter).

Friday's picks:

Race 1:  5-2-8

#5 Correlation has performed well in two of her starts against much tougher competition. The drop in class and return to a sprint looks like a good spot for her to get the win.

Race 2:  4-5-3

#4 Ciao Bella Rosa finished a good third in her debut a couple of weeks ago. The filly that won that day could turn out to be a very good runner. Any improvement from this filly should make her tough to beat here.

Race 3:  8-4-3

#8 Broadway Nika has two wins over this track and is coming into this race off a small break. His last win was with this jockey off a short break.

Race 4:  10-1-8

#10 Alexita didn't get the best of trips last time but still managed to finish a decent third against a bit of higher level competition. A clean start from the outside should have her in great position throughout.

Race 5:  6-5-7

#6 Point Streak looks to have some good works to prepare for her debut. Although the barn is not known for turf runners, I think this filly has some talent.

Race 6:  2-7-5

#2 Spitfire made a nice improvement in his second start to break his maiden when switching to the dirt. That win was visually impressive given that the track was very speed friendly and closers were not making much of an impact. This guy closed from last to win by over four lengths.

Race 7:  7-6-2

#7 Rocket Heat loves this turf course and has plenty of early speed to try to make them catch him.

Race 8:  7-9-3

#7 If Ur Not Early has some win-early pedigree and lands a field that doesn't have any standouts. He doesn't need to be a star to make some noise here.


Del Mar 8.11.16

We are just nine days away from the GI TVG Pacific Classic. California Chrome worked well at Los Al and Beholder is now 'probable' for the Pacific Classic after also working well at Del Mar. Can't wait.

Thursday's picks:

Race 1:  4-3-1

#4 Super Touch has been given some time off since late June when running non-threatening eight in a field of nine against straight maidens. I like the drop in class and the return to a sprint.

Race 2:  7-1-6

#7 Armored Car returns to the claiming ranks and has speed figures at this distance that fit well against this group.

Race 3:  5-9-7

#5 Margie's Minute can win on the lead or off the pace and that is a very good thing in a spot like this. I like that Rafael Bejarano takes the call for this barn.

Race 4:  1-4-8

#1 Toy's Party makes his debut in a field that really hasn't shown much.  The three local workouts should have him used to his surroundings and this jockey/trainer combination have won plenty of races up north.

Race 5:  8-6-4

#8 Back to Bako has run well at time and i think he will sit a good trip stalking the pace. This jockey has ridden him well in previous mounts.

Race 6: 4-6-5

#4 Her Royalness has some good works and attracts the services of jockey Mike Smith for a trainer that know how to get them ready to fire first time out.

Race 7:  4-5-1

#4 Moonie ran too good to lose last time. Should be close to the pace in a great spot around the turn. A repeat effort should get her to the winner's circle.

Race 8:  4-2-8

#4 Clickjab takes a big class drop and has a series of works over this surface. This jockey rode him well two and three races ago. This is his spot to break his maiden.


Del Mar 8.10.16

The Del Mar summer season is just about at the half-way point and there's less than two weeks until the GI $1 Million TVG Pacific Classic. Let's hope Beholder is still being pointed towards a match up with California Chrome and Dortmund.

Today's picks:

Race 1: 4-6-5

#4 PayThe Fine looked like he was going to add them all through the rail when he ran out of room and had to take up. Today might be his day.

Race 2:  1-4-6

#1 The Cat's Leavin is a five year old debut winner and she looked good in that race. I like her local workouts and she should be firing from the start from that inside post position.

Race 3:  4-1-3

#4 Ky Colonel didn't show much in his debut but this barn is much better with horses with racing experience. I think we'll see a much improved effort today.

Race 4: 4-2-7

#4 Basinca ran too good to lose last time when losing by nose over this track at this same level when she was over seven lengths clear of the third place finisher. The shorter distance should help.

Race 5:  7-9-6

#7 Too Much Drama was a solid second in her first try at a mile and now gets the services of Rafael Bejarano. I think she's going to be sitting in a great spot turning for home.

Race 6:  1-4-3

#1 Lucky Whalen comes out of a debut race where she faces some talented runners. He didn't show much in that debut but that experience should have him ready for a better effort today.

Race 7:  4-3-1

#4 Songforjohnmichael has been facing stakes company going two turns and today he gets back to the allowance optional claiming level at a sprint distance. His race four starts back was visually impressive.

Race 8:  2-10-11

#2 Starlite Style should have won her last race when finishing a fast closing second. She should be able to save some ground from the inside post to set up her closing kick.


Remington Park Mega-Card

A terrific betting program marks the closing of the 2016 American Quarter Horse season at Remington Park. Twelve races are on tap featuring the Grade I $1,083,420 Heritage Place Futurity among seven other stakes with over $ 2 million in purses. It is one of my favorite cards of the year and I recommend you go experience it live if you can. I was in attendance last year and it really is a tremendous Quarter Horse card.


Race 1:  4-7-8

#4 Jb Nino was a solid fourth beaten by half a length for the win last time out in the trials. This trainer is having a great year and I think this horse has room to improve.

Race 2:  3-8-10

#3 One Dashing Man was in too tough of a field last time out in the derby trials. A repeat effort of his race two starts ago should put him in the mix.

Race 3:  6-10-2

#6 Apollitical Man has been a much improved horse in his two starts this year for this barn who is winning at over 45% for the year. His win two starts ago at this distance was visually impressive.

Race 4: 8-2-3

#8 Trick Man didn't get away to the best of starts last time but if you look at his race two starts ago, he looks like a contender. I hope we get something close to the 10-1 morning line odds.

Race 5:  2-10-3   The GIII $50,000 Easy Jet Stakes

#2 High Speed Kitty looked like a filly that will enjoy the longer distances when she won her debut over a month ago.

Race 6:  2-1-6   The $100,000 Heritage Place Juvenile

#2 Painted Clouds did everything right in his debut and put up a solid final time. I think this runner can turn into a serious race horse.

Race 7:  10-9-5   The GI $239,400 Speedhorse Graham Paint and Appaloosa Futurity

#10 Ivorian is 2-for-2 and drew a great post tonight. It's tough to go against a filly that broke a track record in her debut.

Race 8:  10-7-4   The GII $100,000 Junos Request

#10 Sudden Separation is a Grade I winner that is 3-for-3 at this distance. This outside post should give her a clear run on the outside.

Race 9:  10-3-5   The GI $1,083,420 Heritage Place Futurity

#10 Dupont didn't get away to the best of starts and finished a good second over a length clear of the third place finisher. A clean start will make him tough.

Race 10: 3-9-4   The GII $369,550 Heritage Place Derby

#3 Satcha Wagoner earned a very good speed figure in her first start for this barn when second in the trials. This jockey knows her well and she might be getting better than ever.

Race 11:  3-5-7   The GI $250,000 Remington Park Invitational Championship

#3 Bodacious Eagle had a tough trip last time out in a race to ignore. He's a much better horse than that last race indicates and I like the workout in preparation for this race. I hope we get something close to that 8-1 morning line.

Race 12:  2-4-6   The GII $50,000 Remington Park Distance Championship

#2 Mixed Fantasy had a wide post last time out in a race to ignore. He's got a much better post today and his early speed will be his main weapon with the short run into the first turn.