Jeff Siegel’s Blog: What You Need to Know for Santa Anita – Friday, June 14, 2024

Jeff Siegel’s Santa Anita “What You Need to Know
Friday, June 14, 2024

Specifically designed for the rolling exotic player, Jeff Siegel’s “What You Need to Know” isolates those horses that should be included in daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and the pick-6.

The selections are posted at 6:00 a.m. and updated later in the morning to reflect late scratches and changes (approximately 10:30 a.m.). For additional commentary, follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.

Grade Descriptions: 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.

View Jeff Siegel’s Prime Plays Video

RACE 1: Post: 1:00 PT Grade: C+
Main Ticket: 6-Safa; 2-Vronsky Feint; 1-Grazen in the Sun.
Backups/savers: 5-Raising Silver.

Forecast: Safa was a respectable runner-up in the Melair Stakes and today returns to the first allowance ranks facing a field that should be within her range. Though winless on turf, she’s hit the board in all four starts on grass and at this extended sprint distance the G. Stute-trained mare projects to settle in the second flight outside and then have her chance to seal the from the quarter pole home. She’s a bit of a one-paced grinder, which explains her overall record of one win and seven seconds, but the route-to-sprint angle ensures she’s dead fit. Vronsky Feint and Grazen in the Sun meet again after finishing one-two over this course and distance last month in a race that earned a solid speed figure. They are both entered for the $20,000 tag, which allows them to be in the race and compete for the lucrative $52,000 purse.

RACE 2: Post: 1:33 PT Grade: B+
Main Ticket: 4-Desert Rhapsody
Backups/savers: 5-Hymnal.

Forecast: Desert Rhapsody stretches out for the first time in this five runner main track maiden affair for fillies and mares and based if nothing than her pedigree the daughter of Cairo Prince should improve significantly over a distance of ground. Her sprint speed figures show a gradually improving pattern, and in a race without a whole lot of early speed signed on the D. O’Neill-trained filly seems likely to inherit the role as the controlling speed.

RACE 3: Post: 2:07 PT Grade: C+
Main Ticket: Pinehurst; 2-Magic Account; 1-Eastbound.
Backups/savers: 8-Sanger.

Forecast: Pinehurst didn’t get the best of runs in his first start facing winners following a reasonably decent bottom-rung maiden claiming score, so we’ll give him another chance in this modest restricted (nw-2) $25,000 claiming grass dash. Only slight improvement will be required. Magic Account pulverized maiden claimers on the main track last month with a career top speed figure and if he can transfer that form to turf he’ll be a major player and maybe the one to beat. Eastbound has a race two runs back at this level that puts him in the hunt and if the pace types do each other in he’ll be the one to fear most in the closing stages.

RACE 4: Post: 2:39 PT Grade: B+
Main Ticket: Jackstown
Backups/Savers: none.

Forecast: Jackstown broke his maiden at first asking at Del Mar two years ago like a very nice prospect but then disappeared. He returns for B. Baffert in a five runner allowance race with a quick series of morning trials that indicate that despite the long layoff he’s lost none of his speed. If he returns as well as he left the son of Speightstown will be hard to beat, but likely at a very short price.

RACE 5: Post: 3:10 PT Grade: B+
Main Ticket: Nesso’s Lasthurrah
Backups/savers: 4-Lemon Sushi.

Forecast: Nesso’s Lasthurrah is a genuine and consistent sprinter with good form on both dirt and turf. This grass dash for starter allowance runners is a step up class for horses eligible to the non-winners of three condition, but based on speed figures he is within his capabilities and that’s not factoring in another likely forward move. The J. Mullins barn has been red hot in recent weeks, especially with E. Maldonado in the saddle, so let’s make this sophomore son of Sharp Azteca a win gamble and main push in the various rolling exotics.

RACE 6: Post: 3:42 PT Grade: X
Main Ticket: Midland Money
Backups/savers: none.

Forecast: Midland Money has trained like a rocket ship, initially at the OBS March Sale, where he drilled a furlong in :09 4/5 (and then brought $650,000 through the ring), and then after joining the B. Baffert barn, where he has consistently impressed with a series of sharp workouts. He’ll be a very short price and logical rolling exotic single.

RACE 7: Post: 4:14 PT Grade: B+
Main Ticket: Moment’s Pleasure
Backups/savers: Illhaveanotherkiss

Forecast: Moment’s Pleasure earned by far a career top number when a strong second in the Fran’s Valentine Stakes over this course and distance last month in just her fifth career start, and if she doesn’t go backwards today the daughter of Clubhouse Ride should be able to handle this first level allowance state-bred affair. She has a good stalking style, switches to top rider J. Hernandez, and seems pretty solid overall.

RACE 8: Post: 4:46 PT Grade: B-
Main ticket: 7-Flatterwithjewels
Backups/savers: 4-Sweet Hello.

Forecast: Flatterwithjewels has hit the board in each of her last eight starts and her consistency should be rewarded in this lackluster $12,500 claiming miler for fillies and mares. She’ll likely fold over into an ideal second flight, stalking trip and then have dead aim on the faint-hearted front-running types from the top of the lane to the wire. She’s listed at 9/5 on the morning lune but we suspect she’ll go lower.

RACE 9: Post: 5:14 PT Grade: B
Main ticket: 5-Runninwiththeboz 2-Vitalera (Chi)
Backups/savers: none.

Forecast: Runninwiththeboyz returns following a seven month vacation with workouts that suggest she is fit and ready and perhaps better than ever in this second level allowance Hillside affair for fillies and mares. When last seen last fall the daughter of Liam’s Map had lost her edge but the layoff appears to have perked her up and there is no ignoring her form over the local lawn (four wins in five starts) that make her the obvious top pick, one to beat, and a good gamble at her 2-1 morning line, if you can get it. Vitalera earned a career top number when winning at 29-1 over this tricky course and distance last month and may be capable of moving up a notch on the class ladder and being competitive with her effective pace stalking/pressing style. Toss her in somewhere, just in case.

Jeff Siegel’s Blog: What You Need to Know for Santa Anita – Friday, June 14, 2024

Jeff Siegel's Blog |