Jeff Siegel’s Blog:  Santa Anita Analysis & Wagering Strategies for Friday, Feb. 22, 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, February 22, 2019


RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: X

Single: 3-Stormy Liberal

Forecast: Stormy Liberal is Dubai-bound at the end of March and needed a race to tick him over.  This is it, an open allowance race over five furlongs on turf that is his for the asking.  He’s an obvious no-value rolling exotic single in a race we’ll otherwise pass.


​​RACE 2: Post 1:30 PT. Grade: B+

Use: 5-Lady Ninja

Forecast: The second race, a six-furlong sprint for $40,000 claiming fillies and mares, attracted just five starters with Lady Ninja landing the cozy outside post that will allow her to dictate her own trip.  She’s the second choice on the morning line at 2-1 behind Li’l Grazen but gets the edge on top due to her affection for the local main track (she’s 3-for-6), her tactical speed, and a decided edge on recent speed figures.  She’s also being reunited with “win rider” Prat.  We’ll make her a straight play and rolling exotic single.


​​RACE 3: Post 2:03 PT. Grade: B

Use: 1-Two Fifty Coup; 4-Cooney

Forecast:Two Fifty Coup drops again seeking his proper level, and if he can leave cleanly from the rail the O’Neill-trained sprinter should be able to control this race from gate to wire.  Cooney is a Bay Area shipper from the Morey barn showing up in a claimer for the first time since he broke his maiden for $25,000 last August at Santa Rosa.  He’ll likely inherit a good stalking spot and then have every chance from the quarter pole home.  We’ll use both in our rolling exotics while preferring Two Fifty Coup on top.


​​​RACE 4: Post 2:34 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 3-Lovely Raquel; 4-Tiz Toffee

Forecast: Lovely Raquel has been away since August but returns in the proper spot with a work tab that should have her plenty fit.  A repeat of her race-before-last, an easy maiden-claiming win, makes her the one to beat today.  Delgadillo, her “win rider,” stays aboard for a barn that is quite capable with layoff runners.  Tiz Toffee beat Lovely Raquel when they faced each other last summer and is the likely favorite, but she’s failed as the choice in four of her last eight starts, so she’s not entirely one to trust.  We’ll include both in our rolling exotics.


​​RACE 5: Post 3:07 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 1-Spy Ring; 5-Batiquitos; 7-Animosity

Forecast: We’ll handicap this race under the assumption that it will remain on the Hillside course.  Spy Ring gets the worst of the draw but with good racing luck seems capable of producing the last run.  She ran into severe traffic in her most recent start and wound up a close third vs. similar company; hopefully she’ll have no obstacles to deal with in the final furlong today.  Animosity won over this course and distance in her debut here last year but hasn’t sprinted since.  Freshened since late December and turning back in trip, the daughter of Animal Kingdom switches to Rosario and should regain her best form.  This drop into a conditioned allowance affair following five consecutive stakes appearances surely will help her chances as well.  Batiquitos has a prior win down the hill on her resume and numbers that fit.  She has a good stalking style and Pedroza knows her well, so the Spawr-trained mare can be included at least as a back-up or a saver.


​​RACE 6: Post 3:40 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 2-Samandah; 4-Tick Tock

Forecast: ​We’ll double the sixth race, a maiden-claiming main track miler for sophomore fillies.  Samandah shows up in a seller for the first time and will greatly appreciate the softer company.  She’s also picking up Rosario and projects to enjoy a comfortable pace-pressing trip in a below par race for the level.  Tick Tock was a beaten favorite recently in a sloppy track affair at this level but sports the classic two-sprints-and-a-stretch-out pattern and should be prominent throughout.  If she’s ever going to be successful around two turns, it will be in her first attempt.


RACE 7: Post 4:13 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 1-Ostini; 2-Cool Green; 3-Jet Set Ruler

Forecast:  Entry-level state-bred turf milers occupy the featured seventh race slot, a spread affair with the main contention drawn inside.  Cool Green has three career victories, all of which were accomplished over the Santa Anita lawn, so on the basis of the horse-for-course angle we’ll put the veteran gelding on top for the Desormeaux brothers.  The son of Global Hunter is a one-paced grinder but against this group can win with his best effort.  Jet Set Ruler is lightly-raced with perhaps a bit more upside than the others in this field, so we’ll definitely include the son of Tribal Rule in our rolling exotics.  His speed figures have risen in each of his five career starts, and with another forward move today the Baltas-trained colt will be right there.  Ostini just broke his maiden over this course and distance last month and similar tactics from his good rail draw most likely will be employed again.  He’s another with rising numbers and will be dangerous if unpoliced on the front end.


​​RACE 8: Post 4:43 PT. Grade: B+

Single: 2-Ferguson

Forecast: Ferguson has much in his favor in the nightcap, a restricted (nw-3) $35,000 claiming main track mile affair for older horses.  Freshened since November but training well enough to be fit for a winning effort, the Jones-trained five-year-old has numbers that are more than good enough to beat this field and a race-flow scenario that should compliment his pace-pressing style.  This is a much softer group then he’s accustomed to seeing and we’re expecting the son of Haynesfield to take full advantage of the opportunity.  We’ll make him a straight play and rolling exotic single.


RACE 9 Post 5:11 PT. Grade: C+

Use: 3-George Hyphen; 5-Dignitaire; 8-Hot American

Forecast: The finale is a messy affair for restricted (nw-2) $25,000 claimers.  We’ll go three deep but not with a high degree of confidence.  Georgie Hyphen exits an infinitely tougher race sprinting down the hill and was outrun throughout, but this softer bunch plus the added distance should be to his liking.  We’ll find out today what he’s worth.  Dignitaire has numbers that fit from Golden Gate Fields and is another likely to improve with this class drop.  Hot American has a prior win over this course and distance, removes blinkers (love that angle) and should be a late threat.





Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis & Wagering Strategies for Friday, Feb. 22, 2019

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