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.

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