“What You Need to Know” – Santa Anita
By Jeff Siegel, 1stbet.com Handicapper & Analyst
Specifically designed for the rolling exotic player, Jeff Siegel’s Daily Santa Anita Handicapping Analysis, Wagering Strategies, Workout Commentary, and True Odds Calculations (“TOC”) identify those horses that should be included in daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and the pick-6.
The “TOC” quantifies the findings of a personal thoroughbred analytics program that contains in its database the results of every race contested at Santa Anita since 2004. More than 75 critical factors in the fields of class, distance, surface, age, and sex have created 227 algorithms that are highly specific to the race being handicapped. The result is a probability line that reflects each contender’s true odds based on a pure 100-point takeout.
The “TOC” applies its mathematical formula only to non-maiden races and displays a maximum of four runners considered the most likely contenders to win. Also listed is the specific algorithm’s sample size plus the top-rated horse’s win percentage and return on investment (ROI). It is suggested that the player utilize the program’s findings to compare each contender’s “true odds” with the morning line and/or actual wagering odds to identify potential overlays and underlays.
Also-eligible runners are not included in any of the calculations until verified as actual starters. When possible, adjustments to the “TOC” will be updated after late scratches.
For additional commentary, follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.
Grade A=Highest degree of confidence
Grade B=Solid Play.
Grade C=Least preferred or pass
Grade X=probable winner but likely at odds too short to play
RACE 1: Post: 1:00 PT Grade: B
Forecast: Let’s take a shot with the second-time starter Precedent in this extended turf sprint for older maiden $50,000 claimers. In his debut, the son of Into Mischief broke slowly and was allowed to lag, took hold while strictly on his own entering the lane and rallied to finish respectable seventh, beaten less than four lengths, before galloping out in front. He gets an extra half-furlong to work with today, breezed five furlongs in :58 4/5 at San Luis Rey Downs since raced, retains J. Bravo, and is guaranteed a ground-saving trip from his rail post position. With plenty of room to improve, the P. Capestro owned and training sophomore seems likely to produce a significant forward move, so at 6-1 on the morning line he offers good gambling value in the win pool and in the various rolling exotics.
RACE 2: Post: 1:33 PT Grade: B+
Single: 1-Fury Kap
Forecast: Fury Kap (TOC=3/5; ML=3-1) finished a distant third in a much tougher open $32,000 claiming sprint last month but even in defeat earned a pretty good speed figure, one that if repeated today should be more than good enough to handle this restricted (nw-2) $20,000 field. Assuming he breaks cleanly from the rail, the J. Sadler-trained gelding projects to have a strong pace presence, and in a race lacking in effective closers he seems like a fairly solid top pick. A winner over this track and distance two runs back, the son of Fury Kapcori switches to the barn’s “go-to” rider J. Hernandez and shows a bullet workout at Los Alamitos (4f, :47 flat, fastest of 17) since raced, so at 3-1 on the morning line let’s make him a win play and rolling exotic single.
RACE 3: Post: 2:07 PT Grade: B
Use (in order of preference): 1-Ian Glass; 7-Southern Horse
Forecast: Stablemates Ian Glass (TOC=7/2; ML=3-1) and Southern Horse (TOC=5/2; ML=7/2) are the ones to beat in this six furlong turf sprint for older $32,000 claimers. ‘Glass moves up a level after a clever score vs. $25,000 foes over this course and distance in mid-February and is a four-time winner (from seven starts) over the Santa Anita lawn. The J. Sadler-trained gelding employs an effective pace-stalking style and projects to enjoy an ideal ground-saving trip from his rail post position. Southern Horse may be the most dangerous of the closing types. A strong runner-up over the flat course in a $40,000 seller two races back, the Argentine-bred veteran failed to land a blow when overmatched vs. allowance rivals in a downhill affair last time out but should be capable of bouncing back at this level, especially in a field with plenty of speed types signed on. Both should be included in rolling exotic play with a very slight edge on top to Ian Glass.
RACE 4: Post: 2:43 PT Grade: B-
Use (in order of preference: 1-Justhappenlikethat; 4-Mo Connelly
Forecast: Bay Area invader Justhappenlikethat stretches out for the first time, lands the rail, and should have every chance to continue her improving pattern in this bottom-rung maiden $20,000 claimer over a mile for older fillies and mares. It’s possible she’s just a late-running sprinter but her pedigree suggests she should be able to get the trip, her numbers continue to rise with each start, and with the switch to good bug boy D. Herrera she’ll enjoy a considerable weight break, so let’s make the daughter of Stanford our top pick at 2-1 on the morning line. The actual morning line favorite at 9/5 is Mo Connelly and is a “must use” as well, even though, as a beaten favorite in her last pair, she may not be one to trust. In the frame in four of five career starts and more than four lengths clear of the rest when second in a similar event over this track and distance, the daughter of Mineshaft could find herself as the controlling speed, although sprinter-stretching-out Admiral Aeschbach may have something to say about that.
RACE 5: Post: 3:15 PT Grade: B
Use (in order of preference): 4-Ben’s a Goalie; 2-Maxim Moment
Forecast: Ben’s a Goalie snatched defeat from the jaws of victory when leading the way into the lane by four lengths before losing his concentration, drifting out, and getting tagged close home in a main track maiden $50,000 sprint a year ago January. Claimed by trainer J. Sadler, he finally makes it back to the races at the same level (a good sign), and gets Lasix, blinkers, and the barn’s “go-to” rider J. Hernandez, so if he takes to the grass (as most Grazen’s do) he may be able to control this race from gate to wire. A bullet five furlong workout (1:01 1/5, fastest of 14) leads one to believe he’s fit off the bench. Maxim Moment managed to hit the board just once in six starts in the Midwest prior to joining the P. D’Amato barn, but in his first start since last June the son of Hard Spun could easily be much improved. Based strictly on speed figures he’s the one to beat and the works look solid, hence his morning line favorite’s role at 9/5. We’ll give Ben’s a Goalie the edge on top but include both in rolling exotic play.
Maxim Moment (March 7, Santa Anita, 5f, 1:01.3hg). Grade: B
In blinkers, breezing every step of the way while much best over Lady Maryann (5f, 1:02.2hg) for P. D’Amato, splits of :24.3, :36.1, :48.1 and 1:01.3, looking decent off a long layoff. Has a right to be a better type now that last year for new connections. Seems better than a typical older maiden claimer.
RACE 6: Post: 3:45 PT Grade: C+
Use (in order of preference): 4-Back On the Street; 5-Shout It Out
Forecast: We’ll double the sixth race using the two J. Wong entrants in this restricted (nw-2) $12,500 claiming sprint for fillies and mares. Back On the Street (TOC=9/5; ML=5/2) seems properly-spotted, assuming the big class drop is nothing more than an attempt to locate her proper level. The daughter of Malibu Moon lacks tactical speed but at this extended sprint distance she should be able to settle early and finish up late in a race in which the speed types look suspect. The recent workouts tell us she’s doing well and capable of producing the last run. Stable mate Shout It Out (TOC=4-1; ML=3-1) may not be one to trust – she has one victory and 10 seconds and thirds – but her recent speed figures over the all-weather surface at Golden Gate Fields match up favorably with this group and she did run well when third over the conventional dirt track at Pleasanton last summer. She gets a break in the weights with the switch to bug boy D. Herrera and should have every chance from a comfortable pace-stalking position.
RACE 7: Post: 4:15 PT Grade: B
Use (in order of preference): 2-Self Isolation; 2-Vivacious Vanessa
Forecast: Self Isolation (TOC=5-1; ML=5/2) crushed a maiden field with a huge speed figure in late February but did so as an uncontested front-runner, so the race (and number) may have flattered her. However, based on the projected pace flow of this state-bred first-level allowance turf miler, the daughter of Square Eddie should have every chance to secure a similar trip, and if she does, the D. O’Neill-trained filly may be capable of a repeat victory. A healthy recent work tab at San Luis Rey Downs indicates she’s maintained her edge. Vivacious Vanessa (TOC=9/5; ML=7/2) prefers patient tactics and may need some help up front to have her best chance, but if the early fractions are legit she can be expected to make some serious noise in the final furlong. Her numbers have risen in each of her four career starts and with another forward move today the G. Mandella-trained daughter of Not This Time will be right there.
Vivacious Vanessa (March 18, Santa Anita, 6f, 1:13h). Grade: B
Inside Q B One (6f, 1:13.3h) and was slightly best to the wire before continuing out to the seven furlong pole, easy early, mild coaxing late, splits of :23.2, :47.4 and 1:00.3 for the final five-eighths on our watches. Solid drill, has state-bred allowance conditions and can handle any surface.
View Workout Video
RACE 8: Post: 4:45 PT Grade: C+
Use (in order of preference): 3-Pray for My Owner; 1-All Dialed In; 5-Rose Maddox
Forecast: Pray for My Owner (TOC=6-1; ML=2-1) holds a distinct edge in the speed figure department in this state-bred first-level allowance dirt sprint but she’s been away since last June, so her current condition is a question. It would seem that the daughter of Temple City has been given a sufficient foundation by trainer M. Glatt (powerful stats with layoff runners) so we’ll put her on top even there are others in the field that should press her early. In case there’s a pace meltdown (and there could be), we’ll also include a couple of closing types on our ticket. All Dialed In (3-1; ML=5/2) has numbers that are steadily rising, so she should make her presence felt late, while Rose Maddox (TOC=6-1; ML=5-1) has been in the frame in all three of her one-turn races and is another that would appreciate faster-than-par early fractions. Tread lightly here.
Pray for My Owner (March 27, Santa Anita, 4f, :49hg). Grade: B
Solo gate drill by come-backing filly in M. Glatt barn, never asked at any stage, splits of :36.3 and :49 flat, looking good despite slow final time. Coming back quite well, been away since last June but should fire a big shot fresh.
View Workout Video
RACE 9: Post: 5:15 PT Grade: C+
Use (in order of preference): 9-Aventapp; 1-Miss Mensa
Forecast: The finale is a grass grab bag sprint for maiden $50,000 older fillies and mares. Anything goes. Aventapp was six lengths clear of the others when a runner-up in a slightly stronger event over this course and distance last month and not much more will be needed to earn her diploma. We’re not crazy about the outside draw – especially with the rail out 30 feet – but if the M. Glatt-trained filly can drop over and get some cover, she could be along in time. Miss Mensa has trained okay for her debut – she doesn’t show any fancy times on her work tab but hasn’t been asked much – and with Lemon Drop Kitten on the bottom side of her pedigree she should have no trouble with the surface. The M. Glatt barn hits at 20 percent with a significant ROI, so she could easily turn up a live item at 8-1 on the morning line. These are the two we’ll be using in our rolling exotics but if you feel the need to spread deeper, go right ahead.
Miss Mensa (March 14, Santa Anita, 5f, 1:02.3hg). Grade: B-
Even but a tad the best in team gate drill with Don’t Talk (same time) for M. Glatt, splits of :24.4, :36.4, :49.1 and 1:02.3, never really asked much, not too bad for a maiden claiming type. Might be worth a look in a soft spot.
View Workout Video