Below is the Pick 5 ticket for Woodbine Mile Day at Woodbine Racetrack on September 16th. As always, the ticket is $20 or less.
Steip Amach (#3, 5-2) may be the class of this field after running third in consecutive Group 1's in France. It is important to note that her only win this year was over a left-handed turf course. The only negative is this filly's 2 for 21 lifetime record.
Dacita (#2, 2-1) is a deserving favorite after back-to-back wins in the New York and the Diana. The Chad Brown mare is in peak form and has improved with the addition of blinkers. She simply needs to repeat her last to be tough in here.
Rainha Da Bateria (#5, 3-1) is the 'other' Chad Brown in this race, but she is no slouch herself. She was just a head behind Dacita in the Diana last time and has been victimized by outside posts in her last two starts. With a good post and an improving pattern, she would certainly not be a surprise in this spot.
Butler's Pick (#2, 7-2) is strictly the horse to beat following a strong second place effort in his debut. He drops in class off that good effort and runs for a 27% second time out trainer. The only question is why he is in for a tag in this maiden optional claimer after a good debut?
Just Reno (#6, 8-1) may be the right alternative for those who find Butler's Pick slightly suspicious. His synthetic sprints have all been good efforts and his last start may have been his best race yet as he ran third from the rail against open straight maidens. He takes a big, but sensible drop in class in this race.
Majeed (#3, 15-1) clearly did not care for Dubai, but if you throw those races out, you are left with consistent form at top European tracks. Trainer David Simcock has excelled in the past with European shippers and this gelding offers excellent value against a field that features many runners who may be over the hill.
World Approval (#6, 2-1) was in razor sharp form before running a disappointing seventh in the Arlington Million. He has accomplished much more in 2016 than any of his opponents have and his win two starts back in the United Nations is likely good enough to win the Northern Dancer. He must prove he can go the mile and a half distance of this race.
Danish Dynaformer (#8, 6-1) returns to his favorite course and appears to be rounding back into top form. He beat World Approval in the Arlington Million and is two for two at Woodbine over firm ground. There is a possibility of rain on Saturday, which would hurt this colt's chances, but watch out for this Roger Attfield trainee on firm ground.
Big Blue Kitten (#2, 4-1) would have been a heavy favorite in this race last year, but this eight-year-old appears to have lost a step after two subpar showings to start the year. He is worth inclusion only because he has been freshened by one of the best in the business in Chad Brown and if he is going to turn his form around, it will be in this race.
Csonka (#7, 6-1) has only won 3 of 32 lifetime, but could be a brand new horse in this race. The gelding was claimed in his last race by a 31% trainer off of a 3% trainer. Norman McKnight is 24% first off of the claim and he immediately adds blinkers to his recent acquisition. Csonka worked a sizzling 4 furlongs in 46 flat with the blinkers last week and looks fully cranked to fire.
Milwaukee Mist (#3, 4-1) also switched barns recently and his first start in Roger Attfield's care resulted in a powerful win on the turf. This gelding may be better on the turf, but if he transfers his form to the synthetic, then he will be a handful in this spot.
Mutakayyef (#2, 7-2) is an emerging force on the turf and this could be the last time to get a decent price on him. He was a consistent, but unspectacular horse last year before being gelded. Since returning as a gelding in 2016, he has rattled off two impressive wins at top notch European tracks and ran a valiant third to the top rated turf horse in the world, Postponed, in his last start. Mutakayyef might have actually been best in that race as Postponed badly interfered with him, cutting the gelding off on the rail while full of run. Tepin is fantastic, but this is her first start since returning from Europe and this is a prep for her ultimate goal, the Breeders' Cup. It is the right time to try to beat her with an up-and-coming star and singling Mutakayyef will lead to a fruitful Pick 5 payoff.
$0.20 Pick 5 Ticket: 2,3,5 / 2,6 / 2,3,6,8 / 3,7 / 2 = $9.60
I recommend betting a $0.40 Pick 5, which would cost $19.20.