Jeff Siegel’s Santa Anita analysis offers race-by-race wagering strategies 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 and analysis 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.
A horse’s final (closing) odds are irrelevant to Jeff’s rolling exotic wagering strategies; In fact, the morning line often provides a better indication as to how strongly a horse may be played in the rolling exotics pools than a horse’s actual closing odds. Jeff’s top selection always appears in bold-faced type.
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.
A=Highest degree of confidence. B=Solid Play. C=Least preferred, or pass. Top selection indicated in bold-face
FIRST RACE (1:30 PT) – GRADE: B+
Use: 1-Seaside Glory; 5-Tandora
The Friday opener drew a field of five maiden fillies and mares sprinting six furlongs on the main track. #1 Seaside Glory showed some ability last year in a two-race juvenile campaign but according to her recent workouts has returned a much better and stronger type this year. The Jerry Hollendorfer-trained daughter of Speightstown worked six furlongs from the gate in a sizzling 1:11 flat just five days ago to signal her readiness. First-time starter #5 Tandora also has looked quite good in her a.m. preparation; the Candy Ride filly has done everything asked for trainer Phil D’Amato, gets Tyler Baze, and lands the cozy outside post. Both should be included in rolling exotic play with slight preference on top going to Seaside Glory.
SECOND RACE (2:03 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 5-Chief Hosa; 6-California Diamond; 7-Harvest Storm
We’ll spread in the second race, a five furlong maiden special weight sprint for state-bred juveniles. #6 California Diamond looked good in a recent 47 1/5 seconds gate drill for trainer John Brocklebank and should come out firing. #5 Chief Hosa is bred for much speed (Tribal Rule) and should be plenty fit following a long, steady series of drills for trainer Adam Kitchingman at San Luis Rey Downs. #7 Harvest Storm, an okay runner-up in his debut here last month, should produce a forward move with that race under his belt and is worth including as well.
THIRD RACE (2:36 PT) – GRADE: B
Use: 5-Jakaby Jade; 6-Majestic Heat; 7-Jade Princess
The third race kicks off the Pick-6 and is a grass grab bag for second-level allowance fillies and mares at a flat mile. #5 Jakaby Jade launches a comeback for trainer Doug O’Neil and has trained like she’s fit and ready. The English-bred filly won a stakes in her U.S. debut last September so you know she can fire fresh. We’ll put her on top. #6 Majestic Heat, away since last October but also training smartly in recent weeks for Richard Mandella, was a winner of her debut so the layoff shouldn’t be an issue and she lands top turf rider Flavien Prat. The daughter of Unusual Heat can really turn it on late when she’s on her game. #7 Jade Princess is trying turf for the first time and could easily move up considerably with the surface switch based on pedigree alone (Tapit). In a race that should produce soft early fractions, she might be dangerous if she inherits the role as the controlling speed.
FOURTH RACE (3:09 PT) – GRADE: C+
Use: 1-Look Quickly; 4-Desert Thief; 5-Pica
Fillies and mares entered to be claimed for $40,000 face off in the fourth race at the abbreviated sprint distance of five furlongs. #4 Desert Thief remains above her claim level after facing tougher allowance rivals in her last five starts; she should appreciate the class relief and the switch to Rafael Bejarano, so we’ll expect her to produce her best race since a sharp score over this track back in January. #1 Look Quickly is an interesting Northern California invader with speed figures that fit, but at this shortened trip she’d better come out running from the rail to secure a favorable spot. A genuine and consistent type with an effective stalking style, the Billy Morey-trained mare is a “must use” in rolling exotic play. #5 Pica returns to the main track and can improve her recent efforts. First or second in four of seven career starts on this main track, the Eddie Truman-trained mare has enough zip to be within striking range throughout. Let’s try to survive using just these three with preference on top to Desert Thief.
FIFTH RACE (3:42 PT) – GRADE: B+
Single: 2-Brookes All Mine
The fifth race is a starter’s allowance turf miler for fillies and mares. #2 Brookes All Mine was visually quite impressive winning her comeback in just her second career start last month in a downhill turf sprint; the daughter of It’s No Joke had plenty left in the tank, galloped out well, and should have no difficulties handling today’s extra distance. Bejarano stays aboard and probably will have this Ray Bell-trained sophomore filly on or near the lead from the get-go. There’s plenty of value here at her morning line of 3-1 if you can get it (and you should); she’s also worth strong consideration as a single in rolling exotic play.
SIXTH RACE (4:14 PT) – GRADE: C+
Use: 1-Electrifying; 4-Iancol
#4 Iancol just failed against a similar restricted (nw-3) $16,000 field but may deserve a chance to make amends in today’s sixth race for new trainer Steve Knapp. The switch to Bejarano is a positive and in a modest field this son of Badge of Silver has several back numbers that are better than par for this level. It’s hard to back any horse that just failed at 40 cents on the dollar, so we certainly won’t single him but still include him in rolling exotic play. #1 Electrifying drops below his claim level and clearly has problems, but he’s another that can win with anything close to his “A” game. Good Bay Area jockey Abel Cedillo takes the call and from the rail this son of Dunkirk should secure a comfortable ground-saving, pace-stalking trip. These are the two we’ll be using in our rolling exotics but without a great deal of confidence, so feel free to spread the race if you can afford to.
SEVENTH RACE (4:45 PT) – GRADE: B-
Use: 7-Summer Lady; 8-French Alps
State-bred fillies and mares meet over a mile on turf in the featured seventh race, we’ll go two-deep and hope that’s enough. #7 Summer Lady won a useful starter’s allowance race over this course and distance last month while earning a career top speed figure; she should be quick enough to once again be the controlling speed and if she clears without too much pressure she should be tough to run down again. Prat knows her well and stays aboard. Bay area invader #8 French Alps looks comparatively cheap on paper but she actually has speed numbers that fit combined with a remarkable winning spirit (16 wins from 31 career starts). The Bob Hess-trained mare should draft into a comfortable stalking position and have every chance to pounce and win.
EIGHTH RACE (5:09 PT) – GRADE: C+
Use: 6-Watch Me Now; 13-Marriedtoaminister
The finale is a weak bottom-rung maiden claiming sprint for fillies and mares. There’s not a whole lot to work with here, so let’s double the race in rolling exotic play without otherwise getting too involved. #13 Marriedtoaminister should enjoy an in-the-clear trip from her outside post, retains Bejarano, has figures that fit, and probably wins this race with a repeat of her race before last. #6 Watch Me Now has been a disappointment but she’s a first-off-the-claim for trainer Doug O’Neill (20% with this angle) and makes a pivotal jockey switch to Pratt. If she’s ever going to produce a forward move, it will be today.