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Saturday, February 1: Santa Anita Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

February 1, 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 12:30 PT. Grade: B+
Use: 4-Quick; 8-Queen of the Track

Forecast: At first glance it may appear Quick is merely getting her feet wet in this abbreviated turf dash for first level allowance fillies and mares, having performed best in England at much farther distances. But the J. Sadler-trained import has trained like she had enough early speed to be effective at this trip, and with J. Rosario taking the mount the daughter of Olympic Glory appears extremely well-meant. Additionally, she’s a first-time Lasix user with solid Timeform ratings and was a winner in her debut, so we know she can fire fresh, so we’ll put her on top but also include in our rolling exotics Queen of the Track, a two-time turf sprint winner and possibly the quickest of the quick. She gets a break in the weights with the switch to bug boy Velez and has numbers that make her a dangerous with her top effort.

RACE 2: Post 1:01 PT. Grade: X
Single: 5-My Happy Girl

Forecast: This maiden special weight extended sprint for 3-year-old fillies drew just five runners, so we’ll take a stand with My Happy Girl, the first-timer by American Pharoah from the Bob Baffert barn. She’s trained well enough to win a race like this and can dictate the race from her cozy outside draw. She won’t be offering any real value at 6/5 on the morning line, so you can use her as a rolling exotic single or simply pass the race.

RACE 3: Post 1:32 PT. Grade: X
Use: 3-Auberge; 5-Speech

Forecast: Auberge ran a winning race when second in the Santa Ynez S.-G2 behind three-time Grade-1 winner Bast last month and with a better break from the rail that day she might have been able to upset her stable mate. The daughter of Palace has trained extremely well since, so this drop into the first level allowance ranks theoretically should be easy pickings. We’ll also include as a back-up or a saver in our rolling exotics Speech, a runaway winner of a maiden race at Los Alamitos in December with a huge figure in what was just her second career start. The daughter of Mr Speaker will be dangerous if she can repeat that type of effort in this tougher affair.

RACE 4: Post 2:04 PT. Grade: X
Single: 6-Divine Armor

Forecast: Divine Armor is improving with racing and appears ready to break through with a winning effort. In the money in both of his outings with rising speed figures, the son of Include retains J. Rosario, continues to look good in the morning, and seems capable of producing the last run. He’s 8/5 on the morning line with the likelihood of going lower, so here’s another logical rolling exotic single that probably won’t offer any real value.

RACE 5: Post 2:36 PT. Grade: B
Use: 1-Woke Up to Aces; 6-Rocking Redhead; 9-Moonhall Milly

Forecast: Here’s a maiden race with some depth, requiring a spread in rolling exotic play. Debuting Rocking Redhead has done some good work in the morning for a capable outfit and appears to be ready for a major effort right now. Certainly bred for turf (Hard Spun), the R. Baltas-trained filly recorded a bullet half mile training track workout (47 3/5) two weeks ago when beating older stakes winner Desert Stone that really catches the eye. Woke Up Aces attracts J. Rosario for her debut, is bred to win early (The Factor) and has trained a bit better than her moderate morning clockings might indicate. If she leaves cleanly from the rail, she’ll be dangerous. Moonhall Milly is an intriguing Irish invader that ran finished a strong third in an 18-runner field in only outing last summer. She gets Lasix and F. Prat and should be more than fit following a series of solid training track workouts. We’ll include all three in our rolling exotics and then have a few extra tickets keying Rocking Redhead on top.

RACE 6: Post 3:07 PT. Grade: X
Single: 2-Thousand Words

Forecast: Thousand Words is undefeated in two starts, including a win in the Los Alamitos Futurity-G2 when beating Breeders’ Cup Juvenile-G2 runner-up Anneau d’Oro. The son of Pioneerof the Nile has trained very impressively since, so at 4/5 on the morning and certain to go even lower, she’s an obvious no-value rolling exotic single.

RACE 7: Post 3:37 PT. Grade: X
Single: 4-United

Forecast: United has had a couple tough beats recently – he missed by a head in the Breeders’ Cup Turf-G1 to Horse of the Year Bricks and Mortar two runs back and then most recently dropped a neck decision in the Hollywood Turf Cup-G2 at Del Mar in early December – but recent works indicate he’s as sharp as a tack and ready to get back into winning form. In a race that figures to be slowly run early, the son of Giant’s Causeway should be within striking range every step of the way and then be able to kick home when it counts. At 8/5 on the morning line and likely to go closer to even money, he’s yet another short price rolling exotic single.

RACE 8: Post 4:07 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 1-Roadster; 3-Restrainedvengence; 5-Midcourt

Forecast: This year’s edition of the San Pasqual Stakes is a wide open affair in which no result would be surprising. We’ll go three-deep but not with any degree of confidence; you probably should spread as deeply as you can afford to. Roadster won last year’s Santa Anita Derby over this track and distance but hasn’t won since. The son of Quality Road continues to train well and just finished a closing second to Omaha Beach in the Malibu Stakes-G1 on opening day, so with any kind of forward move he’ll be tough to beat. But he’s never really been one to count on. Restrainedvengence got a confidence-building win at Zia Park in late November and is a versatile type that can win on any surface on the front end or from far back. Freshened and training well, the veteran son of Hold Me Back should be within striking range throughout and have every chance in the final quarter mile. Midcourt had won four straight prior to a somewhat lethargic third place effort (beaten more than seven lengths) in the San Antonio Stakes-G2 on opening day. He didn’t break well in that race but the slow didn’t get him beat. We’ll see if he can snap back today.

RACE 9: Post 4:37 PT. Grade: B
Use: 4-Absolutely Perfect; 5-Bodhicitta; 7-Out of Balance

Forecast: Bodhicitta is reunited with “win rider” F. Prat while exiting the Lady Shamrock S. and this first-level allowance event should be well within her capabilities based on her clever win over this course and distance two runs back. A bullet workout on the training track last week gives every indication that she’s on top of her game. Out of Balance is a first-time Lasix user in her 14th career start and has hit the board at this level in her last pair, so the daughter of Kitten’s Joy has every right to improve enough to be a strong threat . With some help up front, the late-running filly could be tough to contain in the final furlong. Absolutely Perfect looked good beating state-bred rivals during the fall meeting but hasn’t been out since. Her recent workouts are promising and if she returns as well as she left the D. Blacker-trained daughter of Vronsky should be competitive in open company and is worth including at 8-1 on the morning line.