FIRST RACE (12:30 PT) – GRADE: B+
Single: 5-Audacious Angel
Closing day begins with a maiden sprint for sophomore fillies that originally was card for the downhill turf course but now will be run on the main track. #5 Audacious Angel switches to Bejarano, and looks capable of producing the last run. She’s solid in the speed figure department and continues to train like a filly with some upside. Let’s make her a straight play and rolling exotic single.
SECOND RACE (1:00 PT) – GRADE: B+
Single: 1-Conquest So True
#1 Conquest So True seems to be improving and if she can avoid trouble from the rail the Vladimir Cerin-trained filly should be capable of handling this modest starter’s allowance assignment. She gets a break in the weights with the switch to bug boy Lopez and looks quick enough to be on or near the lead throughout in a race without much zip. Her speed figures are strong and make her a logical rolling exotic single and a straight play at or near her morning line of 2-1.
THIRD RACE (1:31 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 1-Airfoil; 2-No Contingency; 8-Saint of Saints
#1 Airfoil returns to his claim level and should be capable of returning to winning form in this extended sprint for $25,000 sellers. A repeat of his race before last dominates this field, and Prat stays aboard. The rail is of some concern, but a good recent six furlong drill should have him right on edge. #2 No Contingency has been claimed in three straight races and rejoins the Robertino Diodoro barn while being bumped up a notch following a solid runner-up try in a fast $20,000 seller last month. In the money in 14 of 19 career starts over the Santa Anita main track, the veteran gelding has plenty of zip and should be prominent throughout. We’ll also toss in the come-backing #8 Saint of Saints, away since August but training like he’s fit and ready for Phil D’Amato, who has superb stats with layoff runners. The son of Saint Anddan is tough at any distance when he’s feeling good and Baze should have him in an ideal pace-prompting spot. We’ll use all three in our rolling exotics while slightly preferring Airfoil n top.
FOURTH RACE (2:03 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 1-Smoove It; 7-Dreamologist
The Las Cienegas Stakes is carded for fillies and mares has been switched to the main track. #1 Smoove It was very impressive winning the Irish O’Brien Stakes last month down the hill; however, she’s totally unproven on dirt though she certainly trains well over it. #7 Dreamologist has proven to be capable on dirt and must be given a chance to make amends after getting tagged right on the wire in an overnight stakes on turf last month. She’s probably the more reliable of the two under these conditions.
FIFTH RACE (2:33 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 6-Hoosier Road; 9-Angels Journey
Maiden $30,000 claimers sprint six and one-half furlongs in a wide-open affair that requires a bit of a spread. #6 Hoosier Road has the route-to-sprint angle we like and should improve under these conditions, especially with the switch to Bejarano. #9 Angels Journey is a first-timer with an okay work tab and seems worth tossing in as a price. Let’s see if we can get by using just these two.
SIXTH RACE (3:05 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 1-Mr. Opportunist; 3-He’s a Tiger; 5-Gramsson
High-priced ($75,000) claiming 3-year-olds sprint seven furlongs in the first leg of the Pick-6 sequence. #1 Mr. Opportunist was impressive winning his debut by more than 11 lengths but then flopped when stretch-out over a distance of ground vs. starter’s allowance foes. He can return to his best form today, though his rail post position is less than ideal at this trip. #3 He’s a Tiger has plenty of zip and should stick a whole lot better after being overmatched in the San Pedro Stakes last month. #5 Gramsson earned a pretty nice speed figure when graduating in his second career start, switches to Bejarano, and looks like a solid contender right back.
SEVENTH RACE (3:35 PT) – GRADE: B
Use: 3-Enola Gay; 5-Mai Tai; 8-Correlation
We’ll triple the seventh race, an extended main track sprint for maiden special weight fillies and mares. #8 Correlation closed a gap in her debut to be a better-than-looked fourth, retains Prat, and gets an extra half-furlong to work with. The daughter of Forestry seems likely to produce a major forward move. #5 Mai Tai has done some good work in the morning for Hess, who employ main man Desormeaux. The daughter of Heatseeker has the look of a live first-time starter. #3 Enola Gay is another newcomer worth a close look. The daughter of Grazen has showed plenty of ability in her a.m. preps for D’Amato and should come out firing. We’ll use all three in our rolling exotics while slightly preferring Enola Gay on top.
EIGHTH RACE (4:05 PT) – GRADE: C+
Use: 1-A Red Tie Day; 3-Energia Fribby; 6-Generosidade; 8-Quick Casablanca
The San Juan Capistrano is carded as the eighth race and has several possibilities. We really liked the way #1 A Red Tie Day won from an allowance field at 10 furlongs over this course last month and while he’s unproven at a marathon trip the Richard Baltas-trained veteran just might enjoy the journey. A winner of three of four career starts over the Santa Anita lawn, the son of Indygo Shiner has started only 12 times, so he may have a bit more upside the others. There’s some value here at 6-1 on the morning line. The first three finishers in the San Luis Rey – #6 Generosidade, #8 Quick Casablanca, and #3 Energia Fribby – all return and they’re tough to separate. Over a course that was quite soft yesterday due the recent rains, this Grade 3 event could be won by just about anyone, so use as many as you can afford to.
NINTH RACE (4:35 PT) – GRADE: C+
Use: 4-Shh She’s Ours; 7-Discatsonthesquare
With the scratching of #3 Calm the Sea – originally a top pick and rolling exotic single for us – we’ll now go two-deep using #4 Shh She’s Ours and #7 Discatsonthesquare, but not with a great deal of confidence. The former earned a big figure when beating soft starter’s allowance foes last month and if she can repeat that type of effort today she could easily score right back. The latter has hit the board in eight of 10 career starts and have every chance from an outside stalking position.
TENTH RACE (5:05 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 2-Where’s Bubba; 3-Rolo Tamaci; 11-Boompa
Restricted $12,500 claimers sprint six and one-half furlongs in a fairly wide open affair. #2 Where’s Bubba has rising numbers for good trainer Bill Spawr and should be primed for another major effort. He’ll be on or near the lead throughout. #3 Rolo Tamaci just missed in a similar non-winners of two dash last month and with any kind of forward move he’ll be in the battle throughout again. Bejarano stays aboard. #11 Boompa seems to be training quite well for his first start since October for Puype; the once well-regarded son of Include should fire a big shot fresh and is drawn comfortably outside. Let’s use all three in our rolling exotics and then have an extra ticket or two on top keying Boompa.
ELEVENTH RACE (5:35 PT) – GRADE: B+
Single: 6-Watch Me Now
The finale is an abbreviated sprint for maiden $50,000 claiming state-bred fillies and mares. #6 Watch Me Now was pitched a bit too high vs. maiden special weight foes last time out but a repeat of her before last against this level of competition should be sufficient to earn her a diploma. In a below par field for the level, she’s a straight play and rolling exotic single.