Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis & Wagering Strategies for Saturday, Jan. 12, 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.


Saturday, January 12, 2019


RACE 1: Post 12:30 PT. Grade:

Use: 7-Easy Grader; 8-The Craic

Forecast: Today’s opener has been transferred to the main track due to overnight rain, so there could be some late scratches.  Easy Grader finished a troubled fourth in her comeback at Del Mar in an allowance/optional claimer and today drops into the straight $40,000 claiming ranks.  She broke her maiden over the Santa Anita dirt strip way back in 2015, so we’ll assume she’ll stay in the field.  She can win if she produces a forward move, as expected.  The Craic is another with a prior win on dirt (Oaklawn Park last year).  The Cerin-trained mare may be the quickest of the quick and could take some catching if not pressured by Operandi (if that one stays in). Tread lightly here.


​​RACE 2: Post 1:03 PT. Grade: C

Use: 1-Macwinnon; 5-Savagery

Forecast: There’s little to work with in this five-runner allowance/optional claiming sprint for 3-year-olds and is another race that might be best left alone.  Savagery returns in a week and shortens to a sprint after fading badly in the Sham Stakes over a mile.  Clearly most effective at this shorter trip, he’ll have the option of popping and going or stalking and pouncing.  Macwinnon isn’t nearly as fast on pure numbers as Savagery but has won his last pair in good style while facing lesser company.  If Savagery doesn’t fire, the O’Neill-trained gelding could win again.


​​RACE 3: Post 1:32 PT. Grade: C+

Use: 1-Vander Kelen; 5-Union Leader; 7-Grazeninamerica

Forecast: ​Older maiden $30,000 claimers compete over seven furlongs in a wide-open third race that requires a spread.  We’ll go three-deep in our rolling exotics without having a real strong conviction.  Vander Kelen exits a tougher straight maiden affair, adds blinkers, retains Baze, and is a fit on figures.  If he produces any kind of forward move he’ll be dangerous, rail and all.  Union Leader was sluggish early in all of his Bay Area outings but should appreciate this trip and could be a late threat in a soft field.  Toss him in.  Grazeninamerica passed tired horses in weak maiden $20,000 affair at this extended sprint distance in his debut at Del Mar, switches to Talamo, and should show enough improvement to warrant a chance.


​​​RACE 4: Post 2:02 PT. Grade: B+

Single: 6-Marine Layer

Forecast: Marine Layer has trained like a much better filly than she was last summer when she finished second twice as a heavy favorite, most recently when she stumbled badly at the start.  The Proctor-trained filly returns in a maiden special weight sprint that has been transferred to the main track.  Assuming she stays in, we like her on top in what appears to be a moderate race and will make the daughter of Into Mischief a straight play and rolling exotic single at anywhere near her morning line of 5/2.


​​RACE 5: Post 2:32 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 2-Banze No Oeste; 7-Go Ghetto

Forecast: Banze No Oeste looked pretty good beating $8,000 foes on opening day and despite being raised to the $12,500 level really isn’t facing too much tougher right back.  He switches to Prat and should draft into a comfortable pace-stalking position and then have every chance.  Go Ghetto remains above his claim level for Hess and has a win at Del Mar two runs back that charts well with these.  The veteran Bernardini gelding has won here in the past and certainly should be better than his poor recent run sprinting at Los Alamitos when facing starter’s allowance foes.  Let’s try top get by using just these two in rolling exotic play.


​​RACE 6: Post 3:04 PT. Grade: B

Use: 4-Belvoir Bay; 9-Painting Corners

Forecast: ​Belvoir Bay is a course specialist (five wins in eight starts) and should fire a big shot fresh in her first outing since October.  She likes to stalk and pounce and Prat has won on her in the past.  Her work tab indicates she should be fit and ready.  Miller’s other starter, Painting Corners, is another that has had plenty of success over the downhill course, is comfortably drawn outside, and should be part of the pace throughout.  Selcourt is entered back tomorrow, so we’ll assume she’ll scratch.


RACE 7: Post 3:34 PT. Grade: C+

Use: 5-Isee It in Hiseyes; 7-Honeymoonz Over; 10-Schulace; 11-Impetu

Forecast: This restricted (nw-2) $12,500 main track claimer for older horses looks messy, so we’ll spread the race in our rolling exotics.  Impetu nosedives in class, lands the comfortable outside post, and should draft into an ideal pace-stalking position.  This will be his first start on dirt, so anything goes, but if he can duplicate his turf form against this modest group he’ll be the one to beat.  Isee it in Hisyes drops to a realistic level, fits on figures, and should be prominent throughout and have every chance.  A bullet workout since raced is a good sign, so at 8-1 on the morning he might offer a bit of value.  Honeymoonz Over has hit the board in all five of his Santa Anita main track outings and should be in the thick of things again today.  He’s just 1-for-16 with nine seconds and third, so he’ll likely land in the frame, but the evidence suggests he lacks a winning punch.  Schulace ran well at this level over this track three runs back but failed vs. tougher in his last pair.  The son of Champ Pegasus broke his maiden here when he was a two-year-old, as good a reason as any to include him at 10-1 on the morning line.


​​RACE 8: Post 4:04 PT. Grade: B

Use: 6-Escape Clause; 7-K P Wildcat

Forecast: Escape Clause has won 18 of 27 career races and returns to dirt after performing well in three local turf outings since being vanned down from Western Canada.  She’s also perfect in one start over a wet track if the rains produce an “off” condition.  She can very tough to beat when she makes the lead but can settle in the second flight and then pounce if the race flow dictates.  There’s value here at her morning line of 5/2.  K P Wildcat in a solid New Mexico invader who also sports an admirable lifetime record of 13 wins from 21 starts.  This is a much stronger field than she’s used to seeing and her numbers don’t quite stack up, but we can her use as a backup on a ticket or two.


​​RACE 9: Post 4:34 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 7-R Cha Cha; 9-Placido; 11-Incensed

Forecast: ​ Here’s another race that was originally carded for the Hillside course but will be switched to the main track.   Incensed and R Cha Cha finished one-two in an off-the-turf wet-fast track race at Del Mar in late November and they meet again with little to choose between them.  Placido looked good winning a restricted $16,000 claimer at Del Mar in early December and goes for new connections on the raise today with a strong look right back.  We’ll put the lightly-raced son of Shackleford on top while using all three in rolling exotic play.



Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis & Wagering Strategies for Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019

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