“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+
Use (in order of preference): 5-Rhea Moon; 1-Kirstenbosch
Forecast: Rhea Moon was unlucky when second after a troubled trip over a mile in her U.S. debut last month and with that outing behind her she should be primed for a major performance in this nine furlong turf maiden special weight affair for fillies and mares. The P. D’Amato-trained Irish-bred shows three solid works since raced, switches to J. Hernandez, and seems likely to go shorter than her morning line of 8/5. We’ll also include on a back-up ticket the second-time starting Kirstenbosch, a willing runner-up in a highly-rated dirt sprint after breaking slowly and then finishing with interest while apparently wanting more ground. This step-up to a mile and one-eighth while switching to grass with just one race of experience is problematic, but the daughter of Midnight Lute looks like a decent sort of prospect.
Rhea Moon (April 2, Santa Anita, 5f, 1:00.3h TT). Grade: B+
Broke off a length behindRjeka (5f, 1:00.4h TT) and finished head-and-head at the wire, both breezing throughout and looking sharp, splits of :25 flat, :36 4/5, and 1:01 flat on our watches, a bit slower than given but nice, nonetheless. Was unlucky when second in her U.S. debut but based on this drill seems likely to produce a significant forward move.
View Workout Video
RACE 2: Post: 1:33 PT Grade: B
Use (in order of preference): 5-Midnight Jamboree; 2-Dream Princess
Forecast: This five-runner allowance optional claiming main track miler should boil down to two main contenders. Midnight Jamboree (TOC=4/5; ML=7/5 exits a series of starter’s allowance races, and after a smart score over this track and distance last time out the W. Spawr-trained mare should be quite capable of repeating in this slightly tougher affair. She has a good stalking style and projects to draft into a nice in-the-clear early position and then have every chance from there. Dream Princess (TOC=3-1; ML=8/5 is the one to fear most. It may (or may not) be significant that J. Juan Hernandez jumps off Midnight Jamboree to ride this J. Sadler-trained filly, who demolished a starter optional field in late January and remains protected following a 10 week respite. She’s slightly slower on figures than our top pick but with just six starts certainly has room for further improvement.
RACE 3: Post: 2:07 PT Grade: C+
Use (in order of preference): 1-Smiling Goodbye; 2-Thirsty Always
Forecast: Thirsty Always (TOC=4/5; ML=3-1) drops into a claimer for the first time, and if he has one good one left this multiple stakes-winning son of Stary Thirsty should have no trouble handling this $25,000 field. However, those front wraps probably aren’t for looks, and the barn is 1-for-40 this year, so tread lightly if you decide to back him. Smiling Goodbye (TOC=5-1; ML=3-1) would appear to be a viable alternative, if for no other reason than he’s had just two starts and has considerable room for improvement. A desperate (by a nose) maiden-claiming winner last month, the son of Smiling Tiger raised his Beyer speed figure by 10 points following his first start, so at this abbreviated sprint distance and with another forward move, the D. Pederson-trained sophomore should be a strong pace factor from his inside draw every step of the way. We’ll try to get by using just these two in rolling exotic play.
RACE 4: Post: 2:37 PT Grade: B+
Single: 5-Carroll Girl
Forecast: We were a bit disappointed with the fifth place finish by Carroll Girl in a similar maiden turf affair last time out but she was beaten less than a length, gets blinkers today, stretches out to nine furlongs, and faces six rivals, none of whom have ever shown any desire to be on or near the lead. This R. Baltas-trained filly projects to be the controlling speed and given that type of trip the daughter of First Samurai should be capable of making the lead and never looking back. She is 3-1 on the morning line, so let’s take a stand and make her a win play and rolling exotic single.
RACE 5: Post: 3:09 PT Grade: B
Use (in order of preference): 2-Big Hand; 6-Magnificent Ride
Forecast: Big Hand makes his debut in a below standard state-bred maiden sprint and won’t have to be a world beater to win at first asking in this extended sprint trip for older horses. The T. Yakteen-trained colt has plenty of size and substance – typical of a son of Mr. Big – and while he may not be especially quick he should have enough speed to be within range throughout. In a race in which none of the others have ever earned a speed figure that his par for this level, let’s go with the newcomer on top. Magnificent Ride shows rising speed figures in each of his three starts and with another forward move should be the most dangerous of the known element. The H. Palma-trained gelding lands the cozy outside post position and projects to enjoy an ideal stalking trip.
Big Hand (Santa Anita, March 17, 5f, 1:01.2hg). Grade: B-
Good-sized colt was much best in gate drill with Ticklish (5f, 1:03.1hg), mild coaxing only with steady splits of :24.2, :36.1, :48.3 and 1:01.2, a little awkward changing leads but turning in a decent drill while gearing up for his debut. Cal-bred colt has some talent and should be live at first asking in a moderate affair.
View Workout Video
RACE 6: Post: 3:42 PT Grade: B-
Use (in order of preference): 4-Gritty Girl; 5-Dancing Dana
Forecast: Gritty Girl (TOC=3-1; ML=3-1) looks very much like the controlling speed in this extended turf sprint over the flat course for starter optional claiming fillies and mares, and while she may be suspect over this trip – her only win came at five furlongs- the daughter of Street Boss may be able to relax early and then hold on late. At 3-1 on the morning line, we’ll give her top billing while also including Dancing Dana (TOC=5/2; ML=4-1) . The C. Lewis-trained filly has been away since last July but the work tab should have her fit enough and the daughter of Clubhouse Ride has speed figures from last year that make her a major player.
Gritty Girl (April 1, Santa Anita, 4f, :48.2h TT). Grade: B
In blinkers, light late coaxing in solo half mile training track drill for J. Mullins, final three furlongs on our watches in :11.2 and :34.4. Has all of her speed and appears in good shape.
View Workout Video
RACE 7: Post: 4:15 PT Grade:
Use (in order of preference): 1-Papale; 7-Mogolian Ford
Forecast: Papale (TOC=2-1; ML=3-1) and Mongolian Ford (TOC=7/5; ML=5/2) finished one-two in an expensive ($100,000) maiden claimer here almost a year ago and they meet again in this starter ($50,000) main track miler. Papale has been off the track since that win but was given a solid foundation of workouts at San Luis Rey Downs prior to joining M. Glatt’s main track and should be able to pick up where he left off. The barn has strong stats with the layoff angle (22% with a significant ROI), and from his rail post position the son of Frosted is guaranteed a ground-saving trip, second flight trip. The number he earned in his maiden victory is more than good enough to beat this field. Mongolian Ford, first or second in his last three starts, also has recent speed figures that can, so if he can navigate a decent trip from his outside post position, the son of Shackleford should be in the hunt once again. The others in the field are just too slow on figures to trust, so let’s sink or swim using just two, with the main push going to Papale.
Papale (April 1, Santa Anita, 5f, 1:00hg). Grade: B-
Second best by a length inside Hero Status (5f, :59.4hg) in gate drill for M. Glatt but wasn’t really asked much and did okay on the comeback trail, splits of :24.2, :35.4, :47.4 and 1:00.1 on our watches. Possibly a work away from behind dead fit but has run well (and won) off a layoff in the past.
View Workout Video
RACE 8: Post: 4:49 PT Grade: B
Use (in order of preference): 6-Conundrum; 2-Besame Mucho
Forecast: Bottom-rung maiden claimers sprint six and one-half furlongs in the nightcap in a race that appears to have two main contenders. Conundrum was claimed back for $20,000 last time out by trainer E. Moger, Jr. and appears to have found a proper winning spot. In the money in four of five career outings, the son of Super Saver has back numbers that exceed par for this level and a closing style that should work quite well at this extended sprint trip. We’re expecting him to be along in time. Besame Mucho