Sunday, Del Mar Race 6 — 4:30 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $25,000, 6 furlongs, 3 yo’s and up

Possible overlays                    Morning line

#2 Al N Con                                  5/1
#4 Morton Owen                            5/2
#6 Smokenomore                           12/1
#12 Lunar Humor                            3/1

Mike Mitchell leads over #4 Morton Owen. While it’s true that this gelding has had six chances to break his maiden and couldn’t get the job done. And that he was bet below 4-to-1 in his last four starts.

It is also true that this 3-year-old is coming off of a four-month freshening and is dropping in class to his lowest lifetime level. Furthermore, the 74 Beyer Speed Figure Morton Owen ran in February equates to an 83 after adding on six points for growth in his 3-year-old season and three more points for a wide trip.

If Morton Owen can run in the neighborhood of an 83 Beyer then he’ll be very tough considering that the median winning Beyer Speed Figure is just a 74.

Another who I give a chance to is #2 Al N Con. He’s also running in a $25,000 maiden claimer for the first time. On July 29, he tired after a speed duel in a maiden claiming $35,000 sprint to earn a 71 Beyer. With softer early fractions, Al N Con may be able to run a 77.

Lastly, Jack Carava, the trainer of #12 Lunar Humor, changes jockeys from Michael Baze to Garrett Gomez. Looking at the July 24 race replay, it appears that Lunar Humor breezed in the stretch. In the past, Lunar Humor has earned low-to-mid 70s Beyer figures, which may be enough to win if Morton Owen and Al N Con aren’t at their best.

I will bet $400 to win on #4 Morton Owen at 8/5 to 9/1 and $100 on #2 Al N Con at 9/2 and above. If Morton Owen’s odds are out of the zone, then I will substitute $200 to win on #12 Lunar Humor at 2/1 and up.

Thursday, Del Mar Race 8 — 5:30 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $40,000, 5-1/2 furlongs, 2 year olds

Possible overlays             Morning line

#8 Danceuponthestars           7/2
#10 Towser                          9/5

This field of 12 is full of very bad horses that can be easily eliminated. The median winning Beyer Speed Figure is 67, but nine of the 10 experienced runners entered in here have yet to crack 40. Furthermore, the odds on seven of them have been less than 20-to-1 only twice in 17 races with the average odds of these 17 races being 53-to-1.

Single digit speed figures and Beyer donuts populate the racing form page. I guess that’s why the morning line maker hung odds of 7-to-2 on #8 Danceuponthestars, a first time starter who has been training slowly at Golden Gate Fields.

Realistically, I can see only three horses winning this race: #8 Danceuponthestars, #10 Towser and #11 Ministerfrommiami. Any other horse would be a complete shocker.

Owned and trained by Ed Moger, Danceuponthestars is switching circuits and jockey Mike Smith has won five times and placed five times in 19 chances with 2-year-old first time starters. Although most of them were in the maiden special weight ranks.

Towser showed a good burst of speed on June 12 and trainer Mike Harrington upgrades the jockey from Felipe Valdez to Michael Baze. Towser should be near the early lead, but his odds may be no better than even money.

Finally, John Sadler sends out #11 Ministerfrommiami who ran in spurts in his July 3 debut. This gelding is running in his second lifetime race, but I like Danceuponthestars better.

At 5/2 or more, I will bet $200 on #8 Danceuponthestars and at 2/1 or better I’ll put $200 on Towser.

Thursday, Santa Anita Race 3 — 2:03 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $32,000, 6-1/2 furlongs, 3-year-olds

Possible overlays                         Morning line

#1 Mr Holmes                                       5/2
#2 Marcade                                         9/2
#3 Zephaniah                                      12/1
#9 Mustang Aleyna                             12/1

Breaking from the rail, #1 Mr. Holmes looks strong today. On Dec. 14, this colt ran a credible fourth behind The Pamplemousse, who won the San Rafael Stakes impressively on Jan. 17. In Mr. Holmes’ last on Jan. 1, it seems like jockey Michael Baze was not trying too hard, as he merely breezed Mr. Holmes throughout the length of the stretch. Finally, trainer Jeff Mullins won with 10 of his last 43, producing $1.72 for every $1 bet, when going from a route to a sprint.

Trainer John Sadler appears to have #2 Marcade ready to run. Jockey Mike Smith rides many of owner Jerome Moss’ first time starters, but he hasn’t had much success with them.

Jerry Hollendorfer claimed #3 Zephaniah for $40,000 from trainer Ed Moger on Aug. 21, then Moger claimed him right back on Sept. 25 for the same price.  On Oct. 17, Zephaniah raced well enough to beat a weak field at this level, so he’s also a threat today.

Finally, #9 Mustang Aleyna could surprise at a big price as this gelding is coming off a long layoff and could be a live longshot. Although, his workouts are slow.

I will bet $300 on #1 Mr. Holmes at 2/1 or more, and $200 on #2 Marcade between 10/1 to 19/1. Also, I’ll take $100 on both #3 Zephaniah and #9 Mustang Aleyna at odds of 5/1 and up.

Thursday, Santa Anita Race 6 — 3:36 p.m. post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden special weight, 6 furlongs, 4 yo’s and up, f & m

Possible overlays                                   Morning line

#2 Sweetpea                                               5/1
#7 Dish the Dirt                                            6/1
#9 Lavender Touch                                     5/2

Racing for the second time off a long layoff, #7 Dish the Dirt ran well enough to win at this level when she finished second in her debut. In that race, which was in December 2007, Dish the Dirt ran an 85 Beyer Speed Figure, which exceeds the median of 80 that usually wins at this class level. 

On Dec. 5, #9 Lavender Touch broke about five lengths behind the field, but jockey Michael Baze had a handful of horse all the way up the backstretch. Baze finally let Lavender Touch run in the stretch of this turf sprint and she finished well to be third, running a 74 Beyer. 

The Jay Robbins-trained #2 Sweet Pea was also making her debut in that same race. But it didn’t look like jockey David Flores was asking for much of an effort as she seemed to be breezing most of the way. Today, Garrett Gomez rides.

I will bet $200 on both #7 Dish the Dirt at 7/2 or more and #9 Lavender Touch at 2/1 or better.

If Lavender Touch dips to 9/5 or below, then I will bet $100 on #2 Sweetpea at 3/1 to 6/1 only.

Results, Saturday Santa Anita Race 9 — won $900

imgres9When the gate sprang open on Dec. 13, debuter Sleep Tight had a problem and broke slowly to lose several lengths. She didn’t quit, though, making a nice run through the lane to dead-heat for second. 

Today, she was stretching out from 6 furlongs to 7 and once I saw her break well, I knew I was in good shape. 

The race set up with #8 Silent Smoke, an 11-to-1 shot, setting the pace while being followed by favorite #10 Sunny Peace and #2 Sleep Tight.  But at the top of the stretch, Sleep Tight had nowhere to run, as she was being blocked by the pace setters who ran side-by-side.

Finally, jockey Michael Baze angled her out for room and Sleep Tight ran like she was shot out of a cannon. The race was never in doubt late, as she won by 2-1/2 lengths to #11 Tiz Salsa, who closed well.

I wagered $300 on Sleep Tight, who closed at 3/1 odds.

To watch a replay of this race, go to

1 1 Wicked Sin (FL) Gryder A Koriner B 10.70 5
2 2 Sleep Tight (FL) Baze M Mitchell M 3.00 1
3 3 Warrensgoodwarrior (CA) Arambula P Gutierrez J 40.30 4
4 4 Savoir Farrah (KY) Garcia M Glatt M 73.00 9
5 5 Madraar Miss (CA) Sorenson D Meredith D 89.10 10
6 6 Lil Legal Linda (CA) Rosario J O’Neill D 4.20 6
7 7 Paddlin Mud (CA) Russell C Nunez J 44.40 11
8 8 Silent Smoke (CA) Talamo J Bernstein D 11.90 8
9 9 Dixie Dot Chance (CA) Blanc B Mendoza J 97.40 7
10 10 Sunny Peace (GB) Solis A Gallagher P 2.50 3
11 11 Tiz Salsa (PA) Bejarano R Hollendorfer J 3.50 2
Pgm Win Place Show
2 $8.00 $4.60 $3.00
11 $5.00 $3.20
10 $3.00
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $17.30 (2-11)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $119.10 (2-2-2)
$1.00 Pick 4 paid $1352.60 (10-2-2/10-2)
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