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Friday, January 17: Santa Anita Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

January 17, 2020

Specifically designed for the rolling exotic player, Jeff Siegel’s “Daily Analysis and Wagering Strategies” isolates those horses that should be included in daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and the pick-6.

It is recommended that Jeff’s selections be used to augment the reader’s own personal handicapping, though excellent results can be achieved by applying the rolling exotic strategy specified by Jeff’s analysis. Jeff’s recommended plays are intended for players with a moderate budget; however, readers are encouraged to adjust Jeff’s wagering strategy to fit their preferred investment level.

Handicappers also are encouraged to access Jeff’s Daily Santa Anita Workout Analysis (see below), an exclusive report containing commentary, fractional times, grades, and a link to the video of the actual workout by each race’s key contenders.

Grade A=Highest degree of confidence.
Grade B=Solid Play.
Grade C=Least preferred, or pass.
Grade X=probable winner but odds are not likely to offer wagering value.

The selections are available every racing day after morning scratches. For updates, please follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.

Today’s Day MakersView Video

Today’s Workout AnalysisView PDF File

RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 4-Shanghai Barbie; 5-Flying Blue

Forecast: Shanghai Barbie seems as good as any in this modest restricted (nw-2) $12,500 claiming miler for fillies and mares. In the money in three of her last four starts and with two solid races over the Santa Anita main track on her resume, the N. Drysdale-trained filly has a good stalking style and should have every chance to wear down the suspect leaders. She shows a healthy series of recent workouts and appears primed for a top effort. Flying Blue graduated gate to wire in her most recent outing but the win was accomplished over the Los Alamitos main track and form from there doesn’t always translate to Santa Anita. Also, she got away with a very slow pace on the front end and today’s race shape most likely will relegate her to a stalker’s position. We’ll use her on a ticket or two in rolling exotic play but that’s about it.

RACE 2: Post 1:30 PT. Grade: C
Use: 3-Info’s Treasure; 4-Manresa

Forecast: Manresa may have upside the others don’t – she has only two career starts – and stretches out to a mile distance that probably is her preferred trip. She likes to settle and produce a late run and in a small field shouldn’t have any traffic worries. Info’s Treasure has been sprinting of late with okay numbers but she’s yet to hit the board at this distance with five prior chances, so the evidence suggests she’s most comfortable as a late-running sprinter. We’ll include her as a back-up in our rolling exotic play due to the switch to bug boy Velez and the weight break it creates, plus recent numbers that make her competitive. Tread lightly here.

RACE 3: Post 2:00 PT. Grade: B+
Single: 7-Sky Jumper

Forecast: Sky Jumper finally makes it to the post at age four and has trained well enough to win at first asking for a barn that hits with a superlative 30% with debut runners. A $200,000 OBS April sale purchase in 2018 when he previewed in 10 1/5 seconds, the B. Baffert-trained son of Jump Start has done everything asked in the a.m., and in a race that didn’t come up especially deep he appears capable of scoring at first asking. At 5/2 on the morning line we’ll make him a a straight play and rolling exotic single.

RACE 4: Post 2:30 PT. Grade: X
Single: 1-It’s a Riddle

Forecast: It’s a Riddle finds an easy spot to her earn diploma in this maiden $30,000 claiming sprint for sophomore fillies. In the frame and in four of five starts with speed figures that while not great still make her a standout compared to her four rivals, the daughter of Merit Man looks quick enough to make the running from the rail and never look back. At 4/5 on the morning line she’ll be too short to play in the straight pool but we can use her as a no-value rolling exotic single.

RACE 5: Post 3:00 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 5-Brickyard Ride; 7-Fly the Sky

Forecast: The form is this starter optional claiming turf miler looks a little dicey, so if you find the need to spread, go right ahead. We’ll try to survive and advance using just two. Brickyard Ride graduated on the front end sprinting in a maiden $50,000 sprint during the fall meeting and returns protected while stretching out to a mile and trying grass. Two consecutive recent bullet workouts should have the C. Lewis-trained colt ready for a top effort, so with a pedigree to get the trip and with bug boy J. Velez riding him back the son of Clubhouse Ride surely will employ gate-to-wire tactics. Fly the Sky has two sharp races over this course and distance on his resume, switches to good grass rider I. Rispoli, and projects to inherit a good stalking trip. He does, however, picks up weight and has speed figures that are average at best, but on pure form seems like the one to beat.

RACE 6: Post 3:30 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 2-Desert Smoke; 6-Razzle

Forecast: Golden Gate Fields invader Desert Smoke has the route-to-sprint angle that we like and returns to her winning level for the first time since last summer for high percentage connections. The veteran mare has numbers that fit and is versatile style that can adapt to any pace scenario. These are her friends. Razzle lands the cozy outside post in this extended sprint for $12,500 claiming fillies and mares and has the option of quickly establishing the pace or settling into a soft stalking position. A prior winner over the local main track and dropping a notch below her claim level, the daughter of City Zip may be able to get back on the winning track have having her three race streak snapped at Los Alamitos in a tougher starter’s allowance race last month. Both should be used in rolling exotic play with preference on top to Desert Smoke.

RACE 7: Post 4:00 PT. Grade: B
Use: 4-Reedley; 5-Exultation

Forecast: The finale is a competitive grass sprint for restricted (nw-2) $25,000 claimers that attracted a full field. We’ll double the race with two sons of Paynter and hope that’s enough. Exultation has been away for two days short of a year after being a voided claim for this price when missing by a head at even money on the main track. His grass numbers indicate he’s just as effective on the lawn, and hails from a barn that has superior stats with layoff runners. Waiver protected and landing F. Prat, the P. Eurton-trained son of Paynter looks ready to roll. We’ll also toss in Reedley, a $16,000 claim by R. Saldana in late November at Del Mar. The lightly-raced colt returns on the raise in a sign of confidence and is back on grass, the surface over which his career top speed figure was earned.