Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis/Wagering Strategies for Thursday, October 4, 2018

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.


Thursday, October 4, 2018


RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: B-

Use: 2-Award It; 8-Beautiful Becca; 9-Peach Cove

Forecast: Three of the four career wins by Peach Cove have been accomplished over this course and the New Zealand-trained mare returns to her winning level in the $20,000 claiming turf miler for fillies and mares.  The extreme outside post is no bargain but she’s good enough to win on her best day.  Beautiful Becca beat Peach Cove when they last hooked up over this course and distance last spring.  She’s dropping to her lowest level ever, sports a sharp recent five-furlong drill at San Luis Rey Downs and projects to be forwardly placed throughout.  Award It is another with a good record over the local lawn, has a good inside draw, and looks capable of at least outrunning her 12-1 morning line odds.  She’s probably worth tossing in somewhere.


​​RACE 2: Post 1:30 PT. Grade: B+

Single:  1-Pitino

Forecast: The second race for older maidens over a mile on the main track drew just five runners, so should either pass the race or isolate a single.  Pitino has the pedigree to handle the extra ground and the switch to dirt shouldn’t be an issue, so let’s go with this lightly-raced son of Union Rags.  Off a nine-month layoff, the O’Neill-trained colt ran reasonably well in is comeback and finishing second across the wire in a five-furlong turf dash at Del Mar in late August and has every right to produce a significant forward move with that tightener under his belt.  If he breaks well from the rail – he didn’t in that turf sprint and cost himself a good early position – he could find himself on or near the lead throughout.  At 5/2 on the morning line he’s a straight play and rolling exotic single.


​​RACE 3: Post 2:01 PT. Grade: X

Single: 3-Mucho Unusual

Forecast:Mucho Unusual is listed at 6/5 on the morning line and looks even shorter than that on paper in this maiden special weight extended sprint for juvenile fillies.  The Tim Yakteen-trained filly ran extremely well in her debut when second in the Generous Portion Stakes at Del Mar in late August, has trained steadily since, and beats this field with anything close to that effort today.  We’ll make her a no-value rolling exotic single but otherwise pass the race.


​​​RACE 4: Post: 2:33 PT. Grade: X

Single: 7-Belle Monte

Forecast:  Belle Monte broke her maiden by a pole vs. maiden $20,000 foes two races back in August (and earned a giant speed figure in doing so) and then was protected in a starter’s allowance race at Los Alamitos three weeks later but faltered to finish fourth as the odds-on favorite.  On the heels of that disappointing effort, she plummets in class down the $12,500 level, so it’s anybody’s guess as to her current condition.  If she has one good one left she’ll handle this group, but at 6/5 on the morning line she clearly will offer no wagering value.  You can use as a rolling exotic single and hold your breath or simply pass the race.


​RACE 5: Post 3:05 PT. Grade: B

Single:  12-Thanks

Forecast: Thanks drops sharply into the maiden claiming ranks, turns back to a sprint, returns to dirt, and adds blinkers.  The daughter of Haynesfield ran well in her only career sprint (her debut at Keeneland) and a repeat of that effort clearly makes her the one to beat in this very modest affair.  She lands the comfortable outside post and should have every chance to inherit an ideal stalking trip.  At 3-1 on the morning she’s a straight play and rolling exotic single.


​​​​RACE 6: Post 3:38 PT. Grade: B+

Single: 1-Gato Del Oro

Forecast: Gato Del Oro returned off a nine-month layoff to turn in an excellent runner-up effort in a hot sprint at Del Mar in August, and that race should have him primed for a major effort when stretching out to his preferred distance from the good inside post.  The Baltas-trained colt looks very much like the controlling speed, though his record suggests he doesn’t need the lead to win.  At 9/5 on the morning line, he’s the logical top pick and we’ll use him in the straight pool at or near that price along with being a rolling exotic single.


​​​RACE 7: Post 4:08 PT.  Grade: B

Use: 4-Rinse and Repeat; 5-Worthy Turk; 8-Starting Bloc

Forecast: This is a stronger than par race for the level and has several legitimate contenders.  We’ll try to survive and advance using just three.  Starting Bloc beat high-priced maiden claimers in good style two races back and then flew home but too late when fifth, beaten two lengths, in a mini-marathon when facing tougher first-level allowance foes in late August.  This is a drop in class, for sure, and if the lightly-raced More Than Ready colt continues to improve, he can spring a surprise at 6-1 on the morning.  Bejarano knows him well and stays aboard.  Worthy Turk broke his maiden when facing winners in a similar spot at Del Mar while taking advantage of a rail-skimming trip two races.  Last time, against the same group, he was forced to take the overland route yet ran just as well if not better when finishing a close second while earning a career top speed figure.  With another forward move today, he’ll be hard to beat.  Rinse and Repeat tries grass for the first time and if he can duplicate his dirt numbers he’ll be a strong factor throughout.  The son of Square Eddie should draft into a good stalking position and then have every chance.


​​​​​RACE 8: Post 4:38 PT.  Grade: B+

Single: 3-Victor’s Show

Forecast:  After a poor run going long on grass vs. straight maidens in his debut, Victor’s Show dropped to this level at Los Alamitos and ran very well to be second while five lengths clear of the rest.  He’s likely to continue to improve with experience, but against this group even nothing more than a repeat of most recent outing should be good enough.  At 8-1 on the morning line, the Harty-trained four-year-old offer strong value both in the straight pool and in rolling exotic play.

Jeff Siegel’s Blog: Santa Anita Analysis/Wagering Strategies for Thursday, October 4, 2018

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