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, the reader is 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 4-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.
C=Least preferred, or pass.
X=likely winner but odds will be too short to play.
Sunday, January 1, 2017
RACE 1: Post 12:30 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 2-She Has Charm; 6-Rust
As this is written the track condition for Sunday is uncertain. We’ll proceed under the assumption that the races will remain on turf. The opener, a maiden claiming sprint for older fillies and mares, should boil down to Rust and She Has Charm, and we’ll include both in our rolling exotics. Rust lands the cozy outside post while dropping to her lowest level following a more than seven month layoff for red hot Peter Miller, whose stats with layoff runners is outstanding. He sends them fit, spots them right, and looks to have this daughter of Kantharos ready to graduate following a solid, healthy work pattern at San Luis Rey Downs. We’ll prefer her on top but also use She Has Charm, a first-time-in-a-claimer play making a major jockey switch to Flavien Prat. The Peter Eurton-trained filly should be doing her best work late.
RACE 2: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 1-Sweet Charity; 2-Untouchable U
Sweet Charity was scratched yesterday for this soft spot and the French-bred filly has worked like she’s fit and ready for her U.S. debut in her first outing since September. Her European form improved considerably in the fall – she won a good listed stakes at Chantilly in her most recent start – and she could easily out class this field for trainer John Sadler. Untouchable U is strictly the one to beat; the lightly-raced mare should be the controlling speed and if not pressured early could take this field a very long way. On pure numbers she’s an absolute fit in this league despite the class hike. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics and then press a bit with Sweet Charity on top.
RACE 3: Post 1:30 PT. Grade: B
Use: 1-Too Fast to Pass; 3-Glacken Too; 6-Wildfire Kid
A strong, competitive group of older $32,000 claimers makes third race a challenging affair. Glacken Too, now in the Jerry Hollendorfer barn and being raised two notches on the class scale in his first start since being claimed in late November, has trained sharply in the interim and seeks his fourth win from his last six outings. He’s always liked this track, retains Martin Pedroza, and should be a strong pace factor once again. Wildfire Kid, first off the claim for Miller (33% with a flat-bet profit with this angle), handled a $25,000 field at Los Alamitos a couple of weeks ago and is being wheeled back quickly. He’ll need to improve a bit to win on the raise but the way this barn has been going lately you have to anticipate he will. Too Fast to Pass is an old pro in the Jeff Mullins barn with good recent form at the level and should at least hit the board. A bullet recent five furlong workout over the training track certainly catches the eye.
RACE 4: Post: 2:00 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 5-Bolitar; 7-Last One Standing; 8-Basinca
The fourth race kicks off the Pick-6; it’s a difficult extended sprint restricted to 4-year-olds in for a $25,000 tag. Basinca and Bolitar give trainer Doug O’Neill two bullets fire and both must be considered contenders with their best effort. The former has the benefit of the outside draw and is reunited with Rafael Bejarano, who has won on him in the past, while the latter is lightly raced (just eight starts) and returns to his favorite track. We’ll also toss in Last One Standing, who might get brave as the projected controlling speed.
RACE 5: Post 2:30 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 4-Fancy Shoes; 8-Poshky
We’ll try to get by in the fifth race using just two in this $50,000 claiming miler for older horses. Poshky just won at this level on turf at Del Mar in late November and has trained well since at Los Alamitos. The veteran gelding can be effective on dirt as well (though he’s winless in five starts at Santa Anita) and should fire a similar shot today with Arroyo staying aboard. Fancy Shoes has been away almost a year but returns at a higher level than when he left in a sign of confidence by trainer Dan Hendricks, who’s always been excellent with layoff runners. The works indicate fitness and this Brother Derek gelding just might be a better type this time around. At 10-1 on the morning line he’s worth including.
RACE 6: Post 3:00 PT. Grade: none
This race has been taken off the turf, so there’s a possibility of some late scratches. Most of the main contenders are turf specialists, so this now becomes an inscrutable affair that is best left alone. Rolling exotic players should use as many as they can afford to.
RACE 7: Post 3:30 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 8-Squared Squared; 10-Pundy; 11-Hard Arch
The seventh race is a high priced maiden claiming sprint for newly-turned 3-year-olds. Hard Arch has worked like a much better type of late for Vladimir Cerin and it’s interesting that although he could only finish third when entered $40,000 in his California bow in October, he shows up for $75,000 today in what we’ll take as a sign of confidence from his connections. Pundy is a first-timer from the Miller barn showing a decent series of workouts at San Luis Rey Downs and looks like a live item, while Squared Squared was a beaten choice in his debut when never a threat at Del Mar but was claimed by John Sadler, who most likely would have brought him back in a cheaper race if he didn’t like the merchandise. The son of Bellamy Road continues to impress in the a.m. and could easily be much better than shown. We’ll prefer Hard Arch on top but use all three in our rolling exotics.
RACE 8: Post 4:00 PT. Grade: X
Single: 4-Midnight Storm
With the anticipated scratching of Arrogate, this year’s edition of the San Pasqual Stakes is left to the controlling speed, Midnight Storm, fresh from a runaway win in the Native Diver Stakes at Del Mar in late November and likely to do the same today. He’ll be way too short to play in what now will be a four runner field, so we’ll be content to use him as a no-value rolling exotic single.
RACE 9: Post 4:30 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 5-Stone Hands; 11-Ice Kat
The finale is a nine furlong maiden turf event for a newly-turned 3-year-olds. Stone Hands was no factor sprinting at Los Alamitos in hot sprint as the favorite last month but we’re expecting a considerable amount of improvement today in his first try two-turning and with the change to grass. The son of Tapizar should stretch out beautifully, and at 12-1 on the morning line offers extreme value, but must contend with the logical top pick, Ice Kat, second in his last pair with speed figures that are solid for the level. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics and then press in the straight pool with Stone Hands on top.
Sunday, January 1, 2017
RACE 1: Post 12:00 ET. Grade: B+
Single: 1-Summer Whites
RACE 2: Post 12:30 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 2-Gold Shark; 4-High Security; 9-Blue Humor
RACE 3: Post 1:00 ET. Grade: C+
Use: 5-Miss Kitka; 8-Lady Greatness
RACE 4: Post: 1:30 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 5-Shaft of Light; 6-Delta Bluesman
RACE 5: Post 2:00 ET. Grade: B
Single: 9-Ravelo’s Boy
RACE 6: Post 2:30 ET. Grade: B
Use: 1-Tapit Together; 2-Blenheim Palace; 6-Glory to Kitten
RACE 7: Post 3:01 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 1-Dreaming of Neno; 6-J B Quick
RACE 8: Post 3:32 ET. Grade: B
Single: 11-Final Encore
RACE 9: Post 4:03 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 5-My Sister Caro; 8-Forest Funds; 10-Spectacular Me
RACE 10: Post: 4:34 ET. Grade: B+
Use: 5-Lipstick City; 8-Tamit
RACE 11: Post: 5:05 ET. Grade: B+
Single: 9-Main Street Movie