Jeff Siegel’s Blog: “What You Need to Know” for Santa Anita – Friday, May 12, 2023

May 12, 2023

“What You Need to Know” – Santa Anita
by Jeff Siegel, Handicapper & Analyst

Specifically designed for the rolling exotic player, Jeff Siegel’s Daily Santa Anita Handicapping Analysis, Wagering Strategies, and Workout Commentary identify those horses that should be included in daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and the pick-6.
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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

RACE 1: Post: 1:00 PT Grade: B
Main ticket: (in order of preference): 1-Advenuresome; 4-Rippin’ Ruis
Backups/savers: none.

Forecast: The Friday opener is a straight maiden turf miler for older horses that didn’t come up particularly strong. Adventuresome, with just one troubled start on his resume, may have potential the others don’t, so let’s go with the Peter Miller-trained gelding on top. After flashing early speed but then losing his action while green and falling back on the turn, the son of Arrogate found his best stride late, closed a gap without being knocked about, and then galloped out in front in his sprint debut last month. With that bit of experience behind him, the stretch out in trip, and the advantageous rail post position, he should produce a significant forward move while offering excellent wagering value at 6-1 on the morning line. Rippin Ruis represents stranger danger from Australia in his U.S. debut and should be competitive on this circuit. He’s a Mick Ruis homebred and a first-time Lasix user with a healthy work pattern and he won’t have be a world beater to win or at least outrun his 8-1 morning line. These are the two we’ll be including in our rolling exotics with preference on top to Adventuresome.


RACE 2: Post: 1:32 PT Grade: X
Main ticket: (in order of preference): 3-Established
Backups/savers: none.

Forecast: Established, claimed for $16,000 when a sharp second in mid-February while more than five lengths clear of the others, returns three months later on the one-level drop for new trainer Mark Glatt, certainly not a healthy pattern and therefore suspect despite looking much the best of this group off his raw form. If he has at least one good one left, he’ll handle this assignment, but at 6/5 on the morning he won’t be offering any wagering value even if he does win. The barn has just average states (12%) with the first-off-the-claim angle, giving further pause to taking the short price. In the absence of a viable and attractive alternative, we’ll put him on top in a race that is probably is best left alone.


RACE 3: Post: 2:04 PT Grade: B-
Main ticket (in order of preference): 5-She’s My Niece; 1-Midnight Love; 2-Spot D’ Oro
Backups/savers: none.

Forecast: There’s very little to work with in this five-runner baby race. She’s My Niece has displayed some ability in the morning and looks like a live item from her comfortable outside draw for a barn whose maidens often run better than the work. She’s had three successive half mile gate drills, so we know the daughter of Hard Spun is more than fit enough for this abbreviated dash. Midnight Love, one of two in the field from the Hector Palma barn, is a daughter of Midnight Lute with a good series of morning preps, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see how perform well for an outfit that is quite capable of winning with a first timer. Ditto for stablemate Spot D’Oro, who has done enough in the morning to indicate at least some ability. These are the three we’ll have on our ticket in a race that should be handled with care.


RACE 4: Post: 2:36 PT Grade: B
Main ticket (in order of preference): 1-Weegee
Backups/Savers: 4-Rip City

Forecast: Weegee appears well-spotted in this $25,000 claiming grass miler while dropping a notch below his claim level for the first time in six starts. Reunited with “win rider” Hector Berrios, the Jeff Mullins-trained gelding is assured a ground-saving trip from his good rail post position, and with a prior win over this course last fall and recent speed figures that are stronger than par for this level the son of Gio Ponti seems the solid choice at 2-1 on the morning line. Past classer Rip City has lost a step or two at age six but at this level he has to be taken seriously. Unplaced in his last four starts, the son of City Zip may get his confidence back against this group and is worth including on your ticket, at least as a backup.


RACE 5: Post: 3:08 PT Grade: X
Main ticket (in order of preference): 5-Rosy Edge
Backups/savers: none

Forecast: Here’s another five runner affair, this one for bottom-rung maiden $20,000 claiming fillies and mares routing on the main track. Rosy Edge has little to beat and is sure to go favored, probably even lower than her morning line of 6/5. Claimed for this price by trainer Leonard Powell when second while nearly four lengths clear of the rest in a similar affair in late March, the daughter of First Samurai removes blinkers and projects to settle in the second flight and then kick on with it from the quarter pole home. At 6/5 on the morning line, she can be used as a short-priced rolling exotic single but probably not much else.


RACE 6: Post: 3:40 PT Grade: B-
Main ticket (in order of preference): 7-Ghostly Act; 4-Montana
Backups/savers: none

Forecast: Ghostly Act is listed at 4-1 on the morning line in this state-bred maiden turf miler, and although he’ll be at some disadvantage leaving from the outside draw with the rail out 30 feet the son of Acclamation may offer some wagering value at or near that price. A vastly improved runner-up at a big price (30-1) in his first try on grass last month, the Debbie Winick-trained Harris Farm homebred can build on that performance while stretching out again and projecting to enjoy a good stalking trip. Montana is an eight race maiden and not one to trust, but he’s a fit on figures while stretching out, and if he’s ever going to handle a route of ground it likely will be in his first attempt. His one prior turf outing wasn’t much but he may be a sharper type now. We’ll try to survive and advance using just these two in our rolling exotics.


RACE 7: Post: 4:12 PT Grade: B+
Main ticket (in order of preference): Getthemoney
Backups/savers: 1-Blessed Touch

Forecast: Getthemoney lost all chance at the start with a poor break in her recent comeback but did well to pick up the pieces and finish third in a fast, highly quality, stakes-level allowance affair over this track and distance in late March. She’s trained very well since, so if the daughter of Midnight Lute makes no mistakes she should be capable of regaining her winning form with anything close to her very impressive maiden romp last summer at Del Mar. Blessed Touch is the one to fear most. Back sprinting after finishing a respectable third in the Santa Ysabel Stakes behind unbeaten Faiza last time out, she’s been freshened for more than two months but has been working steadily in the interim and finished a solid third at this level sprinting over the local main track two runs back. We’ll prefer Getthemoney on top but use both in our rolling exotics.


RACE 8: Post: 4:44 PT Grade: B-
Main ticket (in order of preference): 3-Ava’s Storm
Backups/savers: 4-Mygalsdawnnlori

Forecast: Ava’s Storm was a good runner-up at this level over this course in her debut in February and returns for trainer John Sadler in a winnable spot. She’s a quick sort that must negotiate an extra half furlong today, but if she can clear without pressure the daughter of Midnight Storm projects to parlay a trip as the controlling speed to maiden $50,000 claiming victory at a reasonable 5/2 on the morning line. Her main challenge should come from Mygalsdawnnlori, second under these conditions last month in an improved effort in her first start for a tag. She’s not quite where she needs to be on pure numbers compared to our top pick but with another forward move should she be capable of making a run for it.

Jeff Siegel’s Blog: “What You Need to Know” for Santa Anita – Friday, May 12, 2023

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