by Jeremy Plonk
March 17, 2023
Saturday’s Pick 6 at Charles Town features a mandatory payout and a carryover expected to top $150,000 if the sequence is not hit by a single ticket Friday. It’s a $1 minimum base play. First post is 7 pm ET with the Pick 6 starting in Race 4 at approximately 8:25 pm ET.
Charles Town | Race 4 | claiming
Last-out maiden breaker #6 Awesome Moon goes for a hot trainer and jockey over the past month and is a candidate to win right back. Class-dropping #1 I Shallbe Released shortens the trip from 6-1/2 furlongs to 4-1/2 furlongs and that’s not always met with success, especially if she doesn’t break sharp from the rail. But in these 2, you get easily the 2-best statistical jockeys at Charles Town’s dash distance in Marshall Mendez and Arnaldo Bocachica. Seven straight superfecta finishes for career 1-for-32 nibbler / class dropper #5 Real Appeal makes him a contender, but adding 33% cost to the ticket including him with that lifetime ledger is a tough pill to swallow. The gutsy move here may be to single #6 Awesome Moon.
Charles Town | Race 5 | allowance
The 1-1/16 miles distance is a total X-factor in this race. None of the contenders has won at the trip and 7 of the 8 entrants has between 0 and 2 lifetime attempts this far. Maryland raider #6 Rock Rose exits a Laurel sprint win and should be winging on the lead. Pedigree-wise, he should be able to extend his speed against this class of competition. #8 Elianagrace was a solid third of 8 at 45-1 odds at this class and distance in January. That effort might be good enough here if Rock Rose backs up. 14-time winner #7 Dat Dares Gold fits with these and comes off a solid local win from a tough post. Distance will be the question for the 9-year-old by sprinter Bustin Stones. #1 Likely Choice made a solid-enough first impression locally since coming to the barn of Ronney Brown. The filly who beat her last time came right back to win another allowance. You can make a single-or-spread option here because beyond #6 Rock Rose, the rest need a net to be covered.
Charles Town | Race 6 | allowance
In a 6-1/2 furlong race absolutely loaded with early speed and several 4-1/2 furlong dash types, #7 Penguin Parade should get a fantastic set-up to try and finish the deal late. From the always-reputed combination of jockey Arnaldo Bocachica and trainer Jeff Runco, this one has had a couple of runner-up finishes at tonight’s non-winners of 4 lifetime condition. Among the front-runners, most interesting is #3 Remys Showtime for a hot recent barn and fresh off the claim, as well as #8 Spanglish, who has some pace versatility and would be best to sit and wait here. #2 One Night Mike is well-drawn and best at this distance.
Charles Town | Race 7 | allowance
The jockey-trainer combo of Gustavo Larrosa and Kristy Petty are 5-for-12 over the past 15 months and #5 Neverpopthecork looks interesting here after running 3 straight times ahead of his conditions. He drops in vs. likewise non-winners of 2 lifetime foes after needlessly battling non-winners of 3 lifetime in December, January and February. Last-out winners #2 Grumpy’s Buddy and #7 Hazednconfused look best of the rest, but neither jumps off the page. #1 Marched could utilize rail speed. A single would not be inappropriate.
Charles Town | Race 8 | allowance
Absolutely looks like a two-horse affair with #7 Barber’s Point exiting a fantastic debut win by 8 lengths in a strong time and #5 Nearest N Dearest being a shrewd claim off her Santa Anita maiden breaker in late January. Anything beyond these would be a big surprise. A strong opinion on one or the other cuts the price of the ticket in half and is almost always the best way to approach.
Charles Town | Race 9 | claiming
#2 Mae Sai Princess fits the conditions of this race strongly with a victory August 13 and butting up closest to the September 18 victory cut-off to be eligible. Disregard her last when becoming unglued in the starting gate (should have been scratched). She has a longshot look in here, but the one to beat obviously will be #5 Tequila Fog for the 33% jockey-trainer combo of Arnaldo Bocachica and Anthony Farrior. But off since May, it’s a massive class drop from $25,000 to $5,000 as one red flag and a gap in the workout tab off the entire month of February as a second. If the wheels come off the favorite, anything goes and it’s a price bonanza.
The boldest approach – and one that matches my opinions best with a chance at a big payoff – would be …
Pick 6: 6 with 6,8,7,1 with 7,3,8,2 with 5 with 7 with ALL = $160 for $1
The more conservative approach and cheaper ticket would be …
Pick 6: 6,1 with 6 with 7,3,8,2 with 5,2,7,1 with 7 with 2,5 = $64