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.
Thursday, May 4, 2017
RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: B
Use: 1-Anita Partner; 2-Scattagirl
The Thursday opener is a contentious downhill turf sprint for fillies and mares. We’ll try to get by using just two. Anita Partner has crossed the wire first in each of her last three starts (she was disqualified two races back and placed second) and based on her sharp recent form and rising speed figures the Jeff Mullins-trained mare rates a slight edge on top despite the one-level raise on the allowance ladder. She’s not quick early but can turn it on late, and in a small field she should have every chance to reproduce her effective closing kick. A nice recent breeze over the Santa Anita indicates she remains right on edge (see workout). Scattagirl missed by a neck when dropped back to a sprint in a similar spot over this course and distance in mid-March and has trained well since. A repeat of that effort today makes her dangerous right back.
RACE 2: Post 1:30 PT. Grade: B
Use: 5-Show It N Moe It; 6-Ismelucky; 8-Whata Flirt
The first juvenile race of the season brings together state-bred maiden fillies at four and one-half furlongs. Whata Flirt, a daughter of Crown of Thorns, brought $95,000 as a yearling last fall at Barretts and is a three-quarter sister to multiple stakes winner Sweet Repent. She has trained like a filly with plenty of zip (see workout) and looks capable of overcoming her outside draw for a trainer who excels with debut runners. Ismelucky is the first foal from a very fast stakes-winning race mare (Ismene) and has done some solid work in the a.m. for Jeff Bonde, who generally sends ‘em fit and ready. Show It N Moe It is another with a solid series of drills and looked decent when besting a workmate in a recent drill (see workout). She’s probably worth tossing in on a ticket or two.
RACE 3: Post 2:00 PT. Grade: X
Single: 2-Settle Down Eileen
The Pick-6 begins with a six-runner maiden $75,000 claiming extended sprint for fillies and mares. The first-timers don’t really inspire, so Settle Down Eileen seems like a logical top pick, though at 8/5 on the morning line she doesn’t offer much in the way of wagering value. In her first start in almost six months and in her first since joining the Bill Spawr barn the daughter of First Samurai performed solidly to finish second at a slightly higher level while more than four clear of the rest. She really won’t have to improve much to beat this field, so we’ll make her a rolling exotic single but otherwise pass the race.
RACE 4: Post: 2:30 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 4-Broadway Nika; 4-Templar
Broadway Nika was worn down late by old pro Nextdoorneighbor in a seven-eighths affair last month and had to settle for second while more than three clear of the others. Today the veteran gelding shortens to five and one-half furlongs and doesn’t have ‘Neighbor to worry about, so we’ll put him on top despite his low profile connections while hoping he can secure a soft, pace-stalking trip behind the speedy Templar. The latter looks clearly the quickest of the quick and will take them as far as he can. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics while giving Broadway Nika the edge on top.
RACE 5: Post 3:00 PT. Grade: B
Use: 3-Will Tell; 7-Exotic Ghost
We’re thinking Will Tell is going to like the turf and the Vladimir Cerin-trained gelding exits a tougher race (runner-up B Squared came back to win a stakes up north last weekend). He’s back with Rafael Bejarano (who won on him two races back) and should draft into an ideal pace-stalking position. Exotic Ghost has the fastest recent speed figure and has the route-to-sprint angle we like, so the son of Thorn Song seems strictly the one to beat. An easy five furlong breeze last week (see workout) indicates he remains on edge. Let’s use both in our rolling exotics and then have a few extra tickets keying Will Tell on top.
RACE 6: Post 3:30 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 5-Sheza Firstsamurai; 7-Passion for Papa; 8-Dressed in Prada
Maiden $30,000 claiming 3-year-old fillies sprint six and one-half furlongs in the sixth race, an open affair requiring a spread. Passion for Papa missed by a head vs. similar about a month ago in her second career start while improving her Beyer speed figure by 18 points, and was more than four lengths clear of the rest after being worn down close home. If she can produce another forward move she’ll be tough to beat. Dressed in Prada has been burning up the track at San Luis Rey Downs while preparing for her debut for trainer Janet Armstrong, but since she shows up in a moderate claimer we’ll assume she’s not any world beater. However, she won’t have to be. Sheza Firstsamurai has finished in the money in three of her five career starts and should break through eventually, though her failure as the favorite in her last pair (most recently at 3/5) makes her hard to trust. We’ll toss her in on a ticket or two but that’s it.
RACE 7: Post 4:00 PT. Grade: X
Single: 2-S Y Sky
S Y Sky won the Evening Jewel Stakes in her racing debut by more than five widening lengths last month and the two behind her came back to frank the form last weekend at Golden Gate Fields (third place finisher Miss Sunset won the Campanile Stakes and runner-up Relish was second). Today the daughter of Grenzen shows up in a non-winners of two while stretching out to a mile; she clearly out-classes her rivals but must prove she can handle the extra ground. She’s maintained her sharpness in the morning (see workout) while giving every indication that two-turns will be well within her range. At anything close to her morning line of 9/5 she’s a straight play and rolling exotic single, but she seems likely to go considerably lower.
RACE 8: Post 4:00 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 5-Gotnoquit; 8-Cleanup Hitter; 9-Kona Dreams
The finale is a slalom event for maiden $75,000 claimers. Gotnoquit, a first-time gelding and freshened since December, returns for trainer Mike Puype in a claimer for the first time and has been breezing and looking quite good in recent drills (see workout). He was a better-than-looked third behind Collected in his only prior try down the hillside course back in the fall of 2015 in a race that charts rather well against this group. He’s clearly our top pick. Kona Dreams drops out of straight maiden company for the first time; the blinkers come off, Bejarano jumps on and the son of Midshipman has several back speed figures good enough to act at this level. Cleanup Hitter, away since January of 2016, goes for a barn that does well with layoff runners and is making first start as a gelding. The son of Big Brown has been given a solid foundation of drills by trainer Bob Hess, Jr., and could easily be much better than his form shows. At 8-1 on the morning line he’s worth using.
Thursday, May 4, 2017
RACE 1: Post 1:30 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 4-Midnight Candy; 6-Northern Screamer
RACE 2: Post 2:01 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 5-Kohlhase; 8-Sammy Wonder Stone
RACE 3: Post 2:32 ET. Grade: B
Use: 4-Night Prowler; 6-Conquest Typhoon
RACE 4: Post: 3:04 ET. Grade: B
Use: 1a-Dovecote; 2-Inflexibility
RACE 5: Post 3:36 ET. Grade: B+
RACE 6: Post 4:09 ET. Grade: C+
Use: 3-Driven by Speed; 6-Hope’s Roar
RACE 7: Post 4:41 ET. Grade: B
Use: 2-Glory to Kitten; 5-Taralena
RACE 8: Post 5:13 ET. Grade: B
Use: 4-Drover Crazy; 6-Gypsum Johnny
RACE 9: Post 5:45 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 1-Paz the Wine; 4-Pure Gemmz; 10-Samodiva