Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis & Wagering Strategies for Friday, May 17, 2019

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, readers are 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 four-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.  

B=Solid Play.  

C=Least preferred, or pass.  

X=likely winner but odds are not likely to offer wagering value.


Friday, May 17, 2019


RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: C+

Use: 2-Field Bet; 3-Equal Measure; 8-Runaway Luck

Forecast: The Friday opener is a treacherous high-priced maiden claiming turf miler for fillies and mares.  We’ll go three deep and hope that’s enough.  Equal Measure earned a career-top figure when a distant third in a fast, highly-rated starter’s allowance affair and today returns to the maiden ranks for much easier pickings.  She has hit the board in five of six career outings and remains above her claim level in a sign of confidence by Hess.  Roman got to know her last time out and should have her prominent throughout.  Runaway Luck is drawn farther out than we’d prefer and stretches out after just one sprint prep (two would have been better) but the daughter of Street Boss finished a game third in an abbreviated turf sprint vs. straight maidens and has every right to improve with experience.  Field Bet, from the red hot O’Neill barn, might prefer a shorter trip but switches to Prat, is drawn comfortably inside, and sports a bullet workout since raced.  Use her on at least a ticket or two.   


​​RACE 2: Post 1:28 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 3-Spokane Eagle; 4-Matriculate

Forecast: Spokane Eagle moves to the O’Neill barn and returns from the Bay Area after a couple of sub-standard efforts vs. tougher foes on the Golden Gate synthetic track.  He was quite sharp earlier this year before tailing off; perhaps at this level the veteran son of Speightstown can bounce back.  Blinkers come off today and his best races have come sans the hood.  Matriculate seeks his third straight win while moving up two levels on the class scale.  His current form must be respected, so we’ll include him as protection in case ‘Eagle fails to fire.


​​RACE 3: Post 2:00 PT. Grade: C+

Use: 3-Cal’s Gem; 7-Shady Empire; 8-Pour On the Cole

Forecast: ​ Maiden state-bred 2-year-olds sprint four and one-half furlongs in the third; all are first time starters, so we must handicap this race using a fair amount of guesswork.  Shady Empire has been much the best in team drills for Bonde and hasn’t been asked for anything close to his best, but the workout times are slow, so he’s a hard one to gauge.  We’ll put him on top by default.  Cal’s Gem has a bullet gate drill on his resume and must be considered a contender, his paltry $1,700 yearling purchase notwithstanding.  Pour On the Cole is a first-timer from the Mike McCarthy barn and lands Prat.  He hasn’t shown a whole lot in the morning but really hasn’t been asked much, either.  In a wide open affair, we’ll toss him in.


​​​RACE 4: Post 2:30 PT. Grade: C

Use: 3-Osteria; 6-Hansen Tale Blues; 7-Sweetener

Forecast: Hansen Tale Blues finished second in a modest heat in her comeback and probably will produce a forward move with that effort behind her.  She could run a bit in her younger days, so in a weak maiden claiming sprint for fillies and mares she may be as good as any. Sweetener is fast enough on pure numbers to win and will appreciate this turn back from seven furlongs to six.  Osteria finally makes it to the post at age four and her workouts at San Luis Rey Downs aren’t half bad.  She’s a fresh face worth including.  Tread lightly here.


​​RACE 5: Post 3:04 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 1-Morgan S.; 4-Prodigal Son; 6-Teacher’s Treasure

Forecast: Prodigal Son exits a stakes race and should find this entry-level allowance field within his range.  The son of Square Eddie has the pedigree to enjoy turf and this five furlong trip should agree with him, as well.  At 9/2 on the morning line, the O’Neill-trained sophomore should fire a big shot.  Teacher’s Treasure has rising speed figures, removes blinkers, returns to grass, and may be the best of the speed types.  He’s the likely choice, one to beat, and Prat stays aboard for Truman.  Morgan S., away since last July, won his debut so you know he can fire fresh, and the Hendricks-trained gelding has trained well enough to be plenty fit off the bench.  If he breaks running from the rail and can secure a good trip, he could easily outrun his morning line of 10-1.


​​RACE 6: Post 3:40 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 1-Fast Cotton; 6-Union Rebel

Forecast:Fast Cotton is racing in good form and should have enough gate zip to use his rail draw to good advantage.  Low profile connections and his record over the Santa Anita main track (winless in six starts) should insure a square price.  Union Rebel crushed a restricted (nw-2) $12,500 field last month with a career top number; a repeat of that effort today makes him strictly the one to beat.  Both should be included in rolling exotic play.


RACE 7: Post 4:15 PT. Grade: B

Use: 4-Holly Hundy; 5-Velvet Queen

Forecast: Holly Hundy is progressing nicely for Cerin and may be capable of scoring right back after graduating over this course and distance in game style last month.  She’s quick, but doesn’t need the lead to win, so Desormeaux can improvise depending upon the race flow.  Velvet Queen was a beaten favorite in a Hillside Course affair in January and makes her first start since for Baltas.  Her San Luis Rey Downs workouts are solid, so we’re expecting the daughter of Animal Kingdom to bring her best stuff this time.  We’ll give ‘Hundy a slight edge on top but include both in rolling exotic play.


​​RACE 8: Post 4:50 PT. Grade: C+

Use: 4-Charlotte Louise; 8-A Dime for Me; 9-Sure Angel

Forecast: The nightcap is a $50,000 maiden-claiming sprint for fillies and mares that appears fairly wide open.  Use as many as you can afford to.  A Dime for Me switches to the Glatt barn and may be set to graduate after finishing in the money in three of her first four career starts.  Pedroza should have her on or near the lead throughout.  Charlotte Louise was a non-threatening fifth in her debut after sluggish start in a similar affair but likely will improve in her second outing for a barn that has good stats with that angle.  Sure Angel goes from the rail to the outside for her second career start and shortens up a furlong for Mullins.  Gryder stays aboard the daughter of Elusive Warning, who may offer a bit of value at 10-1 on the morning line.

Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis & Wagering Strategies for Friday, May 17, 2019

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