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Frank Carulli: Colonial Downs Pick 3 | Friday, July 12, 2024

by Frank Carulli

July 10, 2024

Colonial Downs, the first pari-mutuel track in Virginia, will begin its 27th season this week. The combination of big fields, turf races galore and top trainers and jockeys from around the country paved the way for a record-breaking year in 2023. Nine turf races are scheduled on the Friday, July 12 card, but two dirt races will get the action started with $1 Pick 3 wagering available. Here's a closer look:

CNL 1st race (4:30 p.m. EST) -- WILEY WIZARD slowed down after a :36-1/5 debut bullet workout at Keeneland June 1. He had a useful :48-4/5 breeze from the gate last Saturday and could be ready to upgrade the barn’s 1-for-30 record the last three years with first-time maiden claimers, 13 of whom were dismissed at 6-1 odds or less. MISTER WOODFORD gave way chasing an even-money first-time starter at Churchill Downs after posing no threat in a Keeneland sprint that produced a stakes-placed and two Maiden Special Weight runners-up. He also wears blinkers for the first time. GREY SHADOW takes a magnified drop from MSW company, considering his first two starts produced next-out MSW winners and his most recent race on a sloppy track produced the top speed figure in this field and was dominated by a pair of sub 2-to-1 favorites.
CNL 2nd race (5:00 p.m. EST) -- STYLE AND PROFILE pressed the pace in the 3-path, was no match for the 3-to-5 winner but battled gamely to the wire and got caught by the second favorite for the place spot. She gets class relief for the track’s all-time leading trainer Ferris Allen III. LOKI’S LIGHTNING has speed and the rail and should carry it better on the class drop and the cutback from a pair of two-turn MSW sprints at Charles Town.

CNL 3rd race (5:30 p.m. EST) -- NOBLE GENTLEMAN returns to the turf an improved horse -- if his form on Turfway Park’s synthetic track is an indicator. He broke his maiden at this distance with a 71 Beyer, rallied for third in a $30,000/nw2 long sprint with first-time Lasix, then dueled on the lead and tired in a productive starter allowance dominated by closers. FIRST SLEW returns to his maiden-breaking surface and distance. He finished in a dead heat for the win but finished 5-1/2 lengths in front of Fire Baron, who recently ran third in a $40,000 turf maiden claimer at Saratoga. ELUSIVE broke his maiden on the Colonial Downs lawn for $25,000 last fall, taking the measure of Dr. Hyde, a recent $20,000/nw2 runner-up at Laurel Park. He then earned his top speed figure when third in a starter allowance. He finished last in two starts since then but remains a wake-up candidate at a big price with McCarthy aboard. The ‘For Sale’ sign goes up on QUOKKA, who won a $90,000 Maiden Special Weight grass route at Aqueduct the first time he raced on turf, but he pulled up and was eased last out in an allowance at Indiana Downs against a mid-70 Beyer type winner and a last place finisher who came back with an allowance victory. With rain in the Friday forecast, add numbers 5 and 8 to the ticket if this race is switched to the main track.

Suggested $1 Pick 3 Ticket
CNL 1st Race: 1, 2, 4
CNL 2nd Race: 1, 7
CNL 3rd Race: 1, 2, 4, 6 [If off the turf: 1, 4, 5, 8]
Cost for $1 ticket: $24