The selections contained within are geared to rolling exotic players. The basic strategy is to isolate those horses that should be included in rolling daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and pick-6.
It is recommended that Jeff’s selections be used to augment the reader’s own personal handicapping, though excellent results can be achieved by applying the exact rolling exotic strategy specified by Jeff’s analysis. Jeff’s recommended plays are intended for players with a moderate budget; however, the reader is encouraged to adjust Jeff’s wagering strategy to fit their preferred investment level.
Unless otherwise noted, all horses listed in the analysis should be used in rolling exotic play. Usually there will no more than three horses listed; occasionally, Jeff will go 4-deep in his rolling exotic play and on a very rare occasion he will recommend a “buy the race” strategy.
The selections are available every racing day after 9 a.m. (PST). For updates, please follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.
Top selection indicated in bold-face.
A=Highest degree of confidence.
C=Least preferred, or pass.
X=likely winner but odds will be too short to play.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
RACE 1: Post 2:00 PT. Grade: B+
Single: 3-Summer Buddha
Forecast: Summer Buddha (5-1) is worth a gamble in his first try around two turns. He sprints like he’ll route, his pedigree suggests he will, and the race should have enough speed to set things up for a closer. He produced a forward move in the speed figure department vs. much tougher starter allowance foes following his maiden claiming win and though well-beaten galloped out strongly like the added distance will be to his benefit.
RACE 2: Post 2:33 PT. Grade: B
Use: 1-Pedro Cerrano; 6-Bronzino
Forecast: Pedro Cerrano (2-1) is waiver protected is his first start since November and has proven winning form over the Del Mar main track. If he returns as well as he left – and his solid work tab at San Luis Rey Downs indicates that he has – he’ll be tough to beat for a barn that excels with comebackers. Bronzino (6-1) only has sprinted once in his career – he was unplaced in a Hillside turf dash last October – but at this level from his cozy outside post in a field without much speed he should have every chance to be or near a comfortable early pace. The fact that he was re-claimed by Doug O’Neill is another positive.
RACE 3: Post 3:03 PT. Grade: B
Use: 3-Popular Kid; 4-Over Par; 6-Alsatian
Forecast: Let’s take a shot in the straight pool with Popular Kid, (8-1) a first-time gelding in his second-off-a-claim for the Desormeaux brothers. A healthy series of recent workouts and a return to two-turns could make a huge difference in a race that appears fairly wide open. Both Over Par (5/2) and Alsatian (3-1) have prior wins over the Del Mar lawn and are good form.
RACE 4: Post: 3:33 PT. Grade: B
Use: 6-Literary Critic; 8-Classy Tune
Forecast: Classy Tune (9/5) looks logical following a narrow defeat in her comeback last month in a race that earned a strong speed figure. She should appreciate this slightly shorter trip and will have every chance to control the race from her outside draw. Literary Critic (10-1) lands hot bug boy Roman for her debut and hails from a barn that boasts a good record with first-timers. Her work tab indicates some talent, and at the price she’s worth tossing in.
RACE 5: Post 4:03 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 3-Varanasi; 8 Just a Smidge
Forecast: The play here is against the ML favorite Tyfosha (5/2) despite her runner-up effort to subsequent Landaluce winner Surrender Now in her debut last month. That race might have flattered her just a bit and we suspect she has less potential than at least a couple of others in the field. Just a Smidge (3-1) has trained like a rocket ship for Baffert and is primed for a huge effort based on recent works. Varanasi (7/2) has done everything like a high quality prospect for Mandella, though at this five furlong trip ‘Smidge might deserve a slight nod due to her perceived edge in early speed.
RACE 6: Post 4:33 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 3-Family Meeting; 7-Moonless Sky
Forecast: This is a grass grab bag with a number of legitimate chances and requires a spread in rolling exotic play. Moonless Sky (4-1) has won four straight (one by disqualification) and her numbers continue to rise with every race. She’ll probably need a career top to keep her streak alive but could easily be up to it in what will be just her ninth career start. Family Meeting (7/2) missed as the favorite in a Florida-bred stakes last month but a false pace might render that result unreliable. She won her only prior start over the Del Mar turf course and may be the most dangerous of the closers.
RACE 7: Post 5:03 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 1-Miner’s Light; 5-Gato Del Oro; 7-Absolutely Stylish; 9-Giant Expectations
Forecast: In one of the stronger first-level allowance races we’ve seen in quite a while, Gato Del Oro (3-1) gets top billing after a thoroughly impressive maiden win last month over seven furlongs. He didn’t break well, rushed up under pressure to establish the running and then fought off heavily-favored Omega Moon to earn a big figure. On pedigree, he should be able to handle a mile and more. Absolutely Stylish (5/2) also won like a good prospect when graduating over subsequent winner Honor and Courage (pair well-clear) at this distance in April. He’s trained smartly since and on pure numbers already is fast enough to win at this level. If you can afford to go a bit deeper, closers such as Miner’s Light (8-1, note his runner-up effort to Exaggerator over this track as a 2-year-old) and Giant Expectations (7/2, back from New York where he easily handled state-bred foes twice) also deserve inclusion in rolling exotic play.
RACE 8: Post 5:33 PT. Grade: A-
Single: 1-Arms Runner
Forecast: Arms Runner (3-1) is undefeated in two starts and was highly impressive in both victories while earning much better than par speed figures for the level. The extra distance shouldn’t be an issue at all for a colt that looks primed for another major forward move, especially from his good inside draw. Though he’s not the morning line favorite, we strongly suspect he will be at post time.
RACE 9: Post 6:03 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 9-Streak of Luck; 4-Spiced Perfection; 10-Yolanda’s Stone; 11-Felony One
Forecast: Four of the 14 original entrants appear in a similar event on Thursday, so we know Felony One (4-1) managed to draw into the race from the also-eligible and the Joseph Brook-trained filly should be tough after finishing third to speedy Song From Above while three clear of the rest in the Juan T. Gonzalez Memorial Stakes at Pleasanton 18 days ago. Streak of Light (5-1) exits a hot race, showed a bit of late interest, and probably will improve with experience. Yolanda’s Stone (8-1) has low percentage connections but a good series of workouts at San Luis Rey Downs and attracts Roman for her debut. Spiced Perfection (7/2) has the benefit of two prior runs and improving numbers and may be the most likely to at least hit the board.
RACE 10: Post 6:33 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 4-Private Prospect; 6-Belisarius; 7-Shackleford Banks
Forecast: The nightcap is a real mess with any number of chances. Private Prospect (3-1) was a winner two back at Oaklawn Park in a race that charts well here and not much better will be needed. You know it’s a “go” with all that ship-and-win money being offered to invaders in their first local start. Belisarius (8-1) is a class dropper in his third start off a layoff for Miller. He’s never raced on dirt, but he’s never run this cheap, either, so we’ll toss him. Shackleford Banks (6-1) has won 13 races during his career, and this is the first time he’s being risked for a tag since he was claimed at this level 11 months ago. He should be running on late under Bejarano.