Gomez wins three on Wednesday, but falls short of earnings crown


Gomez, who won with nine of his last 18 mounts, tears up cerimonial check after missing earnings record

Jockey Garrett Gomez won three races on Wednesday at Santa Anita, but fell $10,609 short of Jerry Bailey’s single year earnings record of $23,354,960 set in 2003.

Gomez won aboard Warren’s Appeal in the third race, Twin Turbo in the fifth and Kyniska in the sixth, but could only muster a third place finish from Baroness Thatcher in the $70,000 featured seventh race.

Still, Gomez made an unbelievable run at the record as he won with nine of his last 18 mounts dating back to Friday. He almost certainly would have passed Bailey, had it had not been for a freak occurrence on Saturday.

During Saturday’s Eddie Logan Stakes, Gomez was riding Back At You, who had a clear lead in the stretch. But the lightly-raced 2-year-old tried to jump the inner rail as he approached a large shadow of the grandstand that darkened the turf course. Both Gomez and the horse crashed to the ground, but neither was seriously injured. According to Bloodhorse.com, Gomez, went to the hospital where he required cosmetic dental surgery to repair several broken front teeth. He also cut his knee and one of his hands was swollen.

The fall required Gomez to take off his mounts Sunday and three of the horses that he was scheduled to ride ended up winning, including 7-to-5 favorite Proudinsky in the $150,000 San Gabriel Handicap. In total, the mounts Gomez was scheduled for Sunday earned $141,000 for their owners which would have shot Gomez purse earnings ahead of Bailey’s and broken the record.

Coming into Wednesday, Gomez, who had earned $23,275,879 in purses for his owners, needed to win $79,081 more to eclipse Bailey’s total, but ended up with only $68,472.

Wednesday, Santa Anita Race 4 — 2:34 p.m. post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $32,000, 5 1/2 furlongs, 2-year-olds

Possible overlays                             Morning lines

#2 Jet Set Lass                                           20/1
#4 Susananda                                             9/2
#6 Betterthanfiction                                 15/1
#8 Hypnotizing                                         10/1
#10 Bajan Kitty                                           5/1
#11 Gone Punk                                           12/1

This 10-horse field looks wide open and a decent price is likely, as several first-time starters are entered and the favorite looks vulnerable. I will bet more than one horse in here trying to beat #5 Strapless, #9 Suarez and #4 Susananda, if she’s bet too low.   

It appears that #9 Suarez, who is 7/2 on the morning line, will get lots of betting action because she led for most of her last two races and she’s showing the best two Beyer Speed Figures in the race. However, this late in the year, 2-year-old fillies typically win these types of races with Beyer numbers in the high 60s and low 70s and Saurez’  best is only a 61.

Furthermore, if she gets the lead by the quarter pole, Suarez will have to work hard, as #2 Jet Set Lass and #10 Bajan Kitty figure to be gunning too. Also, one of the first timers is very likely to have early foot.  

Of the debut runners, #11 Gone Punk is the best bet and two others — #4 Susananda and #8 Hypnotizing — have some things to like.  The owners of #4 Susananda, Chandler & Graham, have had six debuting runners in my records over the last two years. They won at 11/1 odds on Dec. 17, 2006 and at 7/2 on Feb. 14, 2007.  However, recently trainer Matlow has been winning second time out.

Trainer Craig Lewis, who is saddling Hypnotizing, has won with 2 of his last 9 Larry The Legend-sired debuters and he struck at odds of 12/1 and 13/1. Both won in January 2007, so maybe it’s getting to be that time of year for Lewis. 

Both #2 Jet Set Lass and #6 Betterthanfiction look like automatic throw outs in the Daily Racing Form, but Jet Set Lass flashed good speed to the quarter pole last time and that’s important in a 5-1/2 furlong race. Betterthanfiction broke slowly in her two races, but last time she made up seven lengths very quickly on the backstretch. She then accelerated four wide on the turn while coming within a few lengths of #9 Suarez before quitting in the stretch. Both of these fillies figure to be monster prices.

Trainer Michael Machowsky is excellent when bringing horses off long layoffs. He missed last time with #10 Bajan Kitty, but is adding blinkers and dropping her in class today, so this one looks live if the odds are right. 

At the betting window, I want $200 to win on #11 Gone Punk if post time odds are 7/2 to 19/1 and I’ll bet $200 on #10 Bajan Kitty but only if she’s 2/1 to 7/2.

Also, I’ll put $150 on both #8 Hypnotizing at 7/2 to 15/1, and #4 Susananda at 7/1 to 20/1. Additionally, I’ll take $50 on both #2 Jet Set Lass and #6 Betterthanfiction at 10/1 or more.

Gomez’ chances to dethrone Bailey crashed with horse


Suffered broken teeth, scrapes and bruises

Garrett Gomez made his name by finishing first.

And to a competitive jockey like him, it had to be frustrating to watch three of the horses he was slated to ride on Sunday win their races at Santa Anita while he recuperated from being thrown from his mount in Saturday’s Eddie Logan Stakes.

Gomez lost a few teeth when Back At You tried to jump the stretch rail while leading Santa Anita’s seventh race Saturday, causing both man and horse to crash to the ground. But no doubt Gomez’ biggest loss during this freak occurrence was the opportunity to break Jerry Bailey’s earnings mark of $23,354,960 set in 2003, which Gomez would have almost certainly done on Sunday.

But now, even though Gomez is back riding again, it seems his chances of eclipsing Bailey crashed when Back At You went down.

However, champions don’t quit and, although time is running out, Gomez seems determined to set the record for earnings in one year. 

As of Tuesday, Gomez’ 2008 mounts have earned $23,275,879 for their owners, which puts him just $79,081 shy of Bailey’s total. Gomez’s amount would have topped Bailey’s total Sunday if he was the one riding Proudinsky in the $150,000 San Gabriel Handicap as scheduled, instead of Rafael Bejarano. Proudinsky, a German-bred, was the 7/5 favorite in the 1-1/8 turf race and he defeated six other rivals by 3/4 of a length, earning $90,000 for owner Johanna Louise Glen-Teven.

Also, two horses that Gomez was named to ride on Sunday also won the two races that preceded the San Gabriel Handicap: In the sixth race, Wild Diplomat, ridden by fill-in jockey Joe Talamo, won $22,200 for owners E. Smith & Sterling Stable, and in the seventh Unusual Spirit’s victory by rider Mike Smith was worth $28,800 to owner-trainer Jerry Fanning.

It’s safe to assume that there was no possible way Gomez could strap his body to the back of a horse on Sunday. Because if Gomez, who won two races Monday, rode those three winning horses on Sunday then he would have shot by Bailey with 2008 purse earnings of $23,416,879 — or $61,919 more than Bailey’s 2003 money won.

During Saturday’s Eddie Logan Stakes, Back At You had a clear lead in the stretch, but the lightly-raced 2-year-old tried to jump the inner rail as he approached a large shadow of the grandstand that darkened the turf course. According to Bloodhorse.com, Gomez, who was taken to the hospital, broke several front teeth, cut his knee and one of his hands was swollen. Gomez had cosmetic dental surgery and took off his mounts Sunday, but on Monday he was back in the saddle, winning the third race on Suit Yourself and the fifth on Trainspotting.

As for the fallen horse, Back At You didn’t suffer much major damage. Trainer Eddie Truman told Daily Racing Form that Back At You’s wounded leg was stitched up and the trainer could find no other injuries. Truman speculated that his horse was confused by the shadows from the grandstand covering the front stretch of the turf course after racing in bright sunshine on the backstretch and far turn.

Back At You will resume training in less than a month after resting for a couple of weeks, Truman said. 

Santa Anita Park next races on Wednesday, which is the last day of the year. Gomez, who still has an outside shot of beating Bailey, is named to ride four horses in races with purses totaling $185,000. The winning owner earns 60 percent of the purse.

To set the record, Gomez will need to win both the $56,000 sixth race on #2 Kynishka at 3/1, and the seventh on #8 Baroness Thatcher, a 4/1 shot, in the $70,000 Kalookan Queen Handicap — which carries $21,000 in added money.

If he loses either one, then Gomez finishes second in this race for the record — albeit to Jerry Bailey, one of the all-time greats.

Santa Anita carded no maiden sprints today

finish-line-at-santa-anita-park-by-rhetoricruSanta Anita is running nine races today beginning at 12:30 pm, but none of them are maiden sprints. So, I’m waiting it out and looking forward to Wednesday when the fourth is a maiden claimer with a field of 12 two-year-olds going 5 1/2 furlongs.

Results Santa Anita Sunday Race 9 — lost $400

ahhhhhh-by-rock-and-racehorses3The winner, #6 Dolly Daggers, just outclassed them in here. It was her 18th start, but 12 of them were in Europe and the five previous in the United States were at much higher levels. She paid a decent price at 3/1, but I instead went with a group of second-time starters that looked like they had potential to fire big. I bet $200 on #4 Sally Says So, and $100 on both #9 Coconut Telegraph and #11 No Guessing. Trained by Mike Mitchell, who is winning at 24 percent for 2008, Coconut Telegraph had a clear lead for much of the race at 5/1 before succumbing in midstretch.

To watch a replay of this race go to www.calracing.com

1 1 Thoughtthatcounts (KY) Baze M Semkin S 30.40 10
2 2 She’s a Single (CA) Talamo J Bernstein D 29.10 7
3 3 Saint’s Crown (KY) Court J Carava J 4.60 4
4 4 Sally Says So (CA) Gryder A Lewis C 8.70 8
5 5 La Balota (CA) Scott J Saavedra A 98.50 13
6 6 Dolly Daggers (NZ) Potts C Knapp S 3.30 1
7 7 Lacey Leilah (CA) Sutherland C Gaines C 15.10 3
8 8 Makor’s Girl (WA) Rodriguez A Ho H 54.60 9
9 9 Coconut Telegraph (CA) Pedroza M Mitchell M 5.50 6
10 10 Good Girl Chelsie (CA) Quinonez A Stute G 100.80 11
11 11 No Guessing (KY) Rosario J Walsh K 3.80 2
12 12 Ms Paint It Black (CA) Couton J Shidaker D 117.30 12
13 13 Saugatuck River (KY) Puglisi I Hofmans D 6.10 5
Pgm Win Place Show
6 $8.60 $4.60 $3.60
11 $4.20 $3.80
7 $7.60
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $20.50 (6-11)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $88.80 (1-2-6)
$1.00 Pick 4 paid $860.10 (5-1-2/3/8-6)
$1.00 Place Pick All paid $2846.50 (9 OF 9)
$1.00 Super High Five paid $3446.10 (6-11-7-3-13)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $290.00 (6-11-7)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $21.80 (2-6)
$2.00 Pick 6 paid $898.20 (6-3-5-1-2/3/8-6)

Results Santa Anita Sunday Race 5 — lost $250


Bob Baffert had #7 Deep Pockets ready off the long layoff

The horse I bet, #7 Deep Pockets at 7/2, broke alertly and jockey Cory Nakatani chased #2 No Prodical all the way around, finally winning a photo for place at the wire. Trainer Bob Baffert was bringing Deep Pockets off an eight-month layoff, an although his horse won the battle with No Prodigal, Baffert lost the war because a first-time starter named Deputy Flyer blew by both of them in deep stretch.

To watch a replay of this race go to www.calracing.com


1 1 Fractious Child (CA) Potts C Mullins J 40.80 10
2 2 No Prodigal (CA) Flores D Yakteen T 5.50 3
3 3 Deputy Flyer (CA) Valdivia, Jr. J Ellis R 7.40 1
4 4 Spirit of Cochise (CA) Talamo J Harty E 23.30 7
5 5 Kettle Call (CA) Rosario J Gaines C 15.50 8
6 6 Kaptain Kordough (CA) Garcia M Garcia O 5.40 6
7 7 Deep Pockets (CA) Nakatani C Baffert B 3.60 2
9 8 Leavin in a Limo (CA) Gryder A Koriner B 24.40 9
10 9 Cole Rocks (CA) Espinoza V Zucker H 41.90 11
11 10 Raise the River (CA) Bejarano R Gaines C 2.50 5
12 11 Buck’s Bro (CA) Quinonez A Sherlock G 12.90 4
SCR Arrogant Carson (CA)    
Pgm Win Place Show
3 $16.80 $7.60 $6.20
7 $5.80 $3.60
2 $4.80
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $59.30 (3-7)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $89.80 (4-6-3)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $2811.30 (3-7-2-12)

Results Santa Anita Sunday Race 2 — lost $550

imgres1Was betting against 3/5 shot Prince Andrew, hoping that one of these high-priced maiden claimers was a maiden special weight runner in disguise. And #7 Dubai Rainbow almost got to the wire first at 6/1, but the winner ran him down in the stretch.

In the end, I backed #1 Undeniable Truth at 7/1 for $250, #3 Hasty Trend at 14/1 for $200 and I put #100 on #7 Dubai Rainbow.

To watch a reply of this race, go to www.calracing.com

1 1 Undeniable Truth (KY) Smith M Ellis R 7.10 3
2 2 Crazy Wager (CA) Baze M Becerra R 15.80 8
3 3 Hasty Trend (FL) Arambula P Mullins J 14.40 6
4 4 Dapper Gene (KY) Sutherland C Velasquez D 47.10 4
5 5 Waves of Honour (KY) Talamo J Biancone P 26.00 7
7 6 Dubai Rainbow (FL) Valdivia, Jr. J Ellis R 6.40 2
8 7 Too Much Heat (CA) Nakatani C Abrams B 4.60 5
9 8 Princeandrew (KY) Flores D Baffert B 0.70 1
SCR More Than Class (FL) Gryder A Dollase C
Pgm Win Place Show
9 $3.40 $2.40 $2.10
7 $4.40 $2.80
1 $3.00
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $5.60 (9-7)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $183.40 (9-7-1-4)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $18.40 (9-7-1)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $6.60 (2-9)

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 9 — 4:30 pm post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Claiming 25K, 6 furlongs, 3yo’s and up

Possible overlays                             Morning line

# 4 Sally Says So                                       6/1
#7 Lacey Leilah                                        15/1
#8 Makor’s Girl                                          20/1
#9 Coconut Telegraph                             10/1
#11 No Guessing                                       5/1

Coming off the long layoff, #4 Sally Says So could be the surprise in this race. And what’s this, a Mike Mitchell trained second-timer named Coconut Telegraph at 10/1? I’ve got to take a long look at that one. And finally, #11 No Guessing is trained by Kathy Walsh, who won a race on Saturday with horse making its second start who was adding blinkers, just like this one. 

In the betting, I want $200 to win on #4 Sally Say So between 2/1 and 9/1, and $100 on any of these horses whose post time odds are less than 10/1 #7 Lacey Leilah, #8 Makor’s Girl, #9 Coconut Telegraph and  #11 No Guessing.

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 5 — 2:30 pm post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Special Weight, 6 furlongs, 3 yos and up

Possible overlays                         Morning line

#7 Deep Pockets                                 6/1

I think trainer Bob Baffert will get the job done off the eight month layoff. I will bet $250 on #7 Deep Pockets if he goes off at 2/1 to 9/2 and $100 on him if he is 5/1 or higher.

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 2 — 1:00 post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Claiming 100k, 6 furlongs, 2 yo’s

Possible overlays                        Morning line

#1 Undeniable Truth                       6/1
#2 Crazy Wager                             5/1
#3 Hasty Trend                              8/1
#4 Dapper Gene                             20/1
#7 Dubai Rainbow                           4/1
#8 Too Much Heat                          5/1

Although #9 Prince Andrew ran an 83 Beyer Speed Figure in his last race, which is good enough to win this, I will try to beat him because he’s 7/5 on the morning line and might go off at even money. In these high priced maiden claiming races, some trainers sneak in a horse with the talent to win a maiden special weight event, so I’m looking for a ringer.

Second-time starters #1 Undeniable Truth and #2 Crazy Wager may have what it takes, and a positive clue will be if they are bet below 10/1. Both #3 Hasty Trend and #8 Too Much Heat could be good enough, too. On his best day, #7 Dubai Rainbow could get the lead and not look back.

My main strategy is to wager against #9 Prince Andrew. I will bet $250 on #1 Undeniable Truth and $100 on #2 Crazy Wager if their odds are 3/1 to 9/1. Also, I’ll wager $200 on #3 Hasty Trend at greater than 7/2, $100 on #4 Dapper Gene at less than 20/1, $100 on Dubai Rainbow at 5/1 or better and $150 on #8 Too Much Heat, if he’s between 10/1 and 19/1.

Results Santa Anita Saturday Race 9 – lost $600

ahhhhhh-by-rock-and-racehorses3I had a three-headed monster running for me here with #6 Joe Carl, #8 Day with Desi and #9 Silent Trick with post-time odds that put them all in play. But my runners came up empty as second-timer #3 Devil Cat M D pressed the pace and drew away in the stretch. The winner was was bet to 7/2 for this one, and the low price came even though when Devil Cat M D ran the first time he earned just a 48 Beyer Speed Figure. On that day, jockey Mike Smith kept him at least 10 lengths back throughout, but obviously Devil Cat M D was a better horse than that. And, after the form darkening debut, the money run came when trainer Kathy Walsh added blinkers and dropped her horse from maiden special weight to maiden claiming. 

To watch a replay of this race go to www.calracing.com

1 1 Always Trying (CA) Sutherland C Velasquez D 33.20 8
2 2 Dial Four Peace (FL) Bejarano R O’Neill D 1.10 4
3 3 Devil Cat M D (KY) Smith M Walsh K 3.70 1
4 4 Vague Notion (MD) Solis A Lewis L 19.50 3
5 5 Ma I’m Home (KY) Quinonez A Gonzalez J 16.20 6
6 6 Joe Carl (KY) Garcia M Cerin V 12.10 2
7 7 Rockin the City (CA) Stra K Byrd A 18.70 7
8 8 Day With Desi (KY) Baze M Eurton P 5.70 5
9 9 Silent Trick (KY) Talamo J Biancone P 11.20 9
10 10 My Ticket to Ride (CA) Couton J Shidaker D 54.10 10
Pgm Win Place Show
3 $9.40 $4.80 $4.00
6 $10.00 $5.60
4 $8.60
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $43.10 (3-6)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $70.00 (7-4-3)
$1.00 Pick 4 paid $1448.30 (5-7-1/4/8/9-3)

Results Santa Anita Saturday Race 6 — won $3,440

imgres This race, which was comprised of mostly first and second time starters, is a nightmare for somebody whose only resource is the Daily Racing Form. But I’ve cashed many big tickets in races like this and Saturday was no different. The winner, #5 Naughty Nine, shot right from the gate and led the whole way. At 17/1, his odds fell perfectly between 10/1 and 19/1 range that I was looking for, so my $200 wager was in play. However, the post time odds on the other horses I was watching, #3 Student Prince and #10 Rochelle’s Jimmy,  were out of the betting zone so I didn’t touch them.

To watch a replay of this race go to www.calracing.com

1 1 Turbo Energy (CA) Sutherland C Barocio L 5.10 2
2 2 Warren’s Peanut (CA) Sorenson D Sise, Jr. C 26.20 6
3 3 Student Prince (CA) Quinonez A Truman E 41.70 4
4 4 You Wood (KY) Rosario J Cerin V 4.30 5
5 5 Naughty Nine (CA) Garcia M Dominguez C 17.20 1
6 6 Belongs to Gotham (CA) Gomez G Kitchingman A 2.70 3
7 7 Fusaichi Dancer (CA) Delgadillo A Palma H 20.90 7
8 8 Khurt Harry (CA) Espinoza V Abrams B 7.90 9
9 9 Mark Bertrando (CA) Enriquez I Dunham D 35.50 8
10 10 Rochelle’s Jimmy (CA) Nakatani C Bacorn H 2.70 10
Pgm Win Place Show
5 $36.40 $14.80 $7.20
1 $6.80 $4.40
6 $3.40
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $151.30 (5-1)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $773.80 (9-3-5)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $18507.00 (5-1-6-3)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $779.60 (5-1-6)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $56.20 (3-5)

Results Santa Anita Saturday Race 3 — Even

ahhhhhh-by-rock-and-racehorses3 I was set to bet $300 on #3 Eagle Strike, but he was scratched. Anyway, I was right about two things in this race: that 2/1-shot Cajun Gent and the 5/1 runner Star Time would be bet to low odds, and that they couldn’t compete in maiden special weight races. The winner #7 Temple City paid a paltry $4.40, which illustrates why it’s tough to make a buck in these races for classy older maidens.

To watch a replay of this race go to www.calracing.com

1 1 Wharf Cat (KY) Flores D Marlow M 13.20 4
2 2 Cajun Gent (KY) Rosario J Sise, Jr. C 2.10 5
4 3 Star Time (KY) Velazquez J Baffert B 5.60 3
5 4 King of California (KY) Valdivia, Jr. J Ellis R 4.00 2
7 5 Temple City (KY) Bejarano R Gaines C 1.20 1
SCR Witness Protection (KY) Garcia M Frankel R
SCR Eagle Strike (KY) Gomez G Frankel R
Pgm Win Place Show
7 $4.40 $3.20 $2.60
5 $4.40 $3.40
4 $3.00
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $7.90 (7-5)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $65.50 (2-2-7)
$1.00 Trifecta paid $28.00 (7-5-4)
$2.00 Daily Double paid $34.40 (2-7)

Saturday, Santa Anita Race 9 — 4:30 pm post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Claiming 32K, 5.5 furlongs, 2 yo’s

Possible overlays                 Morning line

#2 Dial Four Peace                        8/5

#6 Joe Carl                                       12/1

#8 Day with Desi                             8/1

#9 Silent Trick                                 12/1

The two established speed horses are #2 Dial Four Peace and #8 Day with Desi, while first-time starters with potential include #6 Joe Carl and #9 Silent Trick.

Day with Desi is adding blinkers and might show more courage this time, but the odds on #2 Dial Four Peace are almost certainly to be too low to bet. 

I will put $200 on #8 Day with Desi at 5/1 or more and the same amount on both #6 Joe Carl and #9 Silent Trick as long as their post time odds fall into the 10/1 to 19/1 range.

Saturday, Santa Anita Race 6 — 3 p.m. post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Claiming $32K, 5.5 furlongs, 2 yo’s.

Possible overlays                  Morning line

#3 Student Prince                        15/1

#5 Naughty Nine                          6/1

#10 Rochelle’s Jimmy                5/2

This race has a 10-horse field that includes six first-time starters and two second-timers that were both beaten by 10 lengths in their debuts. The speed is #10 Rochelle’s Jimmy, who has gotten loose on the lead in his last two races, which were against fields of 12 and 14 horses.

I will bet $200 on first time starters #3 Student Prince and #5 Naughty Nine, only if they go off at post time odds of 10/1 to 19/1. Also, if Rochelle’s Jimmy is 3/1 or more, I want $300 to win on him, too.

Saturday, Santa Anita Race 3 — 1:30 pm post time


Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Special Weight, 6.5 furlongs, 3-yo’s and up

Possible overlays                          Morning line

#3 Eagle Strike                                    4/1


Not really a huge fan of these MSW races for older horses because I can’t seem to dig out any profitable angles from them. However, I continue to keep records on them and therefore I can see that some of the horses who figure to be bet have run weak Beyer Speed Figures.  For example, the adjusted median Beyer for this type of race is a 93 and the 5/2 morning line favorite #2 Cajun Gent has never run better than an 82 in his four races. Also, #4 Star Time (4/1 ML) is another who looks like he’ll be dropping into maiden claiming in 2009, as he hasn’t broken an 85 Beyer in his last six races.  

Jockey Garrett Gomez is scheduled to ride #3 Eagle Strike and he and trainer Bobby Frankel are 12 of 28, or 43 percent, when they’ve teamed up at Santa Anita. Eagle Strike is coming off a 15-month layoff, but he ran a 77 Beyer at Belmont Park in Sept. 2007, finishing just a half a length behind Da’Tara, who went on to win the Belmont Stakes.

My thinking is that if Eagle Strike can run a 77 as a 2-year-old then 15 months later it’s not unreasonable to think he can run in the low 90s. Finally, Frankel is 28 percent off a layoff of more than six months.

Also, two Kentucky-bred first time starters, #5 King of California and #7 Temple City, may run huge races.

But I’m sticking with #3 Eagle Strike and will wager $300 to win on him at odds of 3/1 or more.

Results Santa Anita Friday Race 9 — lost $250

jockey-paddock-area-by-aceoutwide1201Wagered $250 on the Clifford Sise-trainee Kinky Rule, who was #9, and he led for most of the race, but weakened in the stretch. The winner, #5 Squire Trelawny was one of a group of four contenders that I had my eye on, but he was over bet, I believe, at 3/1. 

To watch a replay of this race, go to www.calracing.com

2 1 Quiet Revolution (ON) Vergara O Reviriego J 36.90 7
3 2 Cubs Molina (CA) Molina L Molina M 53.50 6
4 3 Court Rule (CA) Potts C Stein R 68.70 11
5 4 Squire Trelawny (CA) Bejarano R Periban J 3.40 1
6 5 Midnight Corredor (KY) Rosario J Hess, Jr. R 4.90 10
7 6 Warren’s Cat Time (CA) Pedroza M Gutierrez J 34.70 9
8 7 Mystification (CA) Talamo J Lewis L 10.40 2
9 8 Kinky Rule (CA) Nakatani C Sise, Jr. C 2.00 4
10 9 Cally I Yie Yie (CA) Stra K Rafaeli U 122.70 12
12 10 Delicato (KY) Baze M Fanning J 8.60 8
13 11 Six Pack Man (KY) Solis A Puype M 5.10 5
14 12 Whizer (CA) Linares M Bradvica L 73.30 3
SCR Mort Robbins (CA)    
SCR Cee’s the Answer (CA)    
Pgm Win Place Show
5 $8.80 $4.40 $3.60
8 $8.40 $6.00
14 $18.20
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $36.70 (5-8)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $100.80 (12-3-5)
$1.00 Pick 4 paid $772.90 (12-1/4/10/12/13-3-5)

Results Santa Anita Friday Race 3 — lost $750

jockey-paddock-area-by-aceoutwide120Ended up betting $300 to win on #2 Unionize, who finished second at 15/1 and $450 on #4 Infernal at 3/1. These horses were beaten by Point Encounter, a low-odds first time starter, which I consider one of the worst long-term bets in maiden racing.  Point Encounter made his backers look like geniuses today, though.

To watch a replay of this race, go to www.calracing.com

1 1 Valkyrie Missile (KY) Nakatani C Puype M 22.00 3
2 2 Unionize (KY) Flores D Sise, Jr. C 15.90 2
3 3 Surprise Minister (KY) Court J Green J 11.00 5
4 4 Infernal (KY) Baze M Dollase C 3.10 4
5 5 Mi Forest Amor (KY) Potts C Capestro P 37.50 8
6 6 Point Encounter (KY) Smith M Gaines C 1.30 1
8 7 Pemba At U. T. K. (CA) Rodriguez A Ho H 96.30 7
9 8 Tevez the Tiger (KY) Bejarano R Harty E 2.40 6
SCR Pauper’s Prize (FL) Gomez G Cerin V
Pgm Win Place Show
6 $4.60 $4.00 $3.20
2 $10.80 $6.40
1 $5.80
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $20.80 (6-2)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $168.00 (3-3-6)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $565.80 (6-2-1-4)

Friday, Santa Anita Race 9 — 4:24 pm post time

                               Maiden Claiming $25,000, 6.5 furlongs, 3yo and up

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Possible overlays                             Morning line

# 5 Squire Trelawny                             6/1
#8 Mystification                                   10/1
#9 Kinky Rule                                        2/1
#12 Delicato                                       8/1
#13 Six Pack Man                                 6/1

None of these horses recently have come close to the 78 Beyer Speed Figure needed to win a race like this, and most of these runners have lots of starts without a win.

I can’t see any great-looking angles to play either, but it’s worth noting that trainer Clifford Sise has excelled in races like these over the last few years. However the one he trains, #9 Kinky Rule, has morning line odds of just 2/1. Also, trainer Mike Puype has won 12 of 33 recent races off of a 61-to-180 day layoff, according to the Daily Racing Form. Puype’s horse #13 Six Pack Man is 6/1 on the morning line and is working out well, according to clocker Andy Harrington of the National Turf Clocker Report.

Finally, #12 Delicato ran much better than looked in July when he was slammed at the start, rallied four wide and then was breezed by the jockey in the final 25o yards — all while still running a 70 Beyer Speed Figure. He’s dropping in class today and Delicato’s trainer Jerry Fanning switches to Michael Baze from Joe Talamo. 

Talamo rides #8 Mystification, (10/1 ML) who comes from behind and could get there too if he improves and everything breaks right. The leading rider Rafael Bejarano rides #5 Squire Trelawny who can win if he gets a good trip and nobody else runs at least a 78 Beyer.

I will bet $250 on #9 Kinky Rule at 2/1 or more. But if Kinky Rule goes off at lower than 2/1, then instead I will bet $150 on the following horses as long as they are 9/2 or better: #5 Squire Trelawny, #12 Delicato and #13 Six Pack Man. If I can’t get 2/1 on #9, then I’ll also put $100 on Mystification at 8/1 or better.

Friday, Santa Anita Race 3 — 1:05 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Special Weight, 6.5 furlongs, 2-yo colts

Possible Overlays                                  Morning Line

#1 Valkyrie Missile                                  12/1
#2 Unionize                                           8/1
#4 Infernal                                            7/2
#7 Pauper’s Prize                                    6/1

The average winning Beyer Speed Figure in this type of race is 85 and #4 Infernal ran an 82 in his Nov. 15 debut while three-wide on the turn. He’s 7/2 on the morning line, which is much better than the 2/1 line on #9 Tevez the Tiger, who will probably be over bet with a $450,000 sale price showing and Bejarano riding. 

Breaking from the inside are two first-time starters who could be decent bets at the right prices. #1 Valkyrie Missile is working out well and #2 Unionize has solid connections. Jockey Garrett Gomez will be aboard #7 Pauper’s Prize, and he has won on a large percentage of 2-yo MSW first time starters.

I will bet $300 on both #1 Valkyrie Missile and #2 Unionize only if their post time odds are between 10/1 and 19/1.  If #2 Unionize goes off at 6/1 to 9/1, I will reduce my bet to $150. Also, I want $450 to win on #4 Infernal at 5/2 or better, and $150 to win on #7 Pauper’s Prize at 3/1 or more.

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