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Saturday, February 22: Santa Anita Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

February 22, 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: 2-Kadesh; 8-Royal Suspect

Forecast: Royal Suspect is improving with racing and appears ready to graduate in this main track maiden-claiming miler for 3-year-olds. Third when seven lengths clear of the rest while earning a good speed figure last month, the M. Glatt-trained gelding should draft into a second-flight, stalking position and have every chance from the top of the lane to the wire. Kadesh drops in class for the fourth straight time – not really a healthy sign – but after missing by a head in a low-rated maiden $50,000 affair over this track and distance the R. Hanson-trained colt certainly won’t have to improve much at all to earn his diploma at this bottom-rung level. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics and then press with extra tickets keying Royal Suspect on top.

RACE 2: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: X
Single: 7-Saving Sophie

Forecast: Saving Sophie has been been stuck on seconds – she’s been the runner-up in each of her last four outings – but the R. Ellis-trained filly adds blinkers today, gets an extra furlong to work with, and may finally break through in this below par nine furlong turf affair for older fillies and mares. She switches to M. Smith and should be capable of producing the last run, but at 9/5 on the morning line and likely to go lower she won’t be offering much in the way of wagering value, other than as a short price rolling exotic single.

RACE 3: Post 1:29 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 4-Shanghai Barbie; 5-Boonesboro Beauty

Forecast: We’ll double the third race, a restricted (nw-2) $12,500 claiming main track miler for older fillies and mares. Shanghai Barbie, in the money in her last four, is overdue for a win and seems the logical top pick, though after being handed an easy early lead with slow fractions and then blowing a clear lead in mid-stretch in a similar event last month she might not be one to trust. Boonesboro Beauty, third in the same race ‘Barbie exits, also may not be one to count on after missing at even money, however she switches to hot-riding U. Rispoli and projects to enjoy a cozy stalking trip outside. We suspect the winner will be one of these two, but neither one really offers much wagering value.

RACE 4: Post 1:59 PT. Grade: B
Use: 3-Divine Armor; 6-Yeng Again

Forecast: Yeng Again missed at 4/5 in his debut but earned a giant number when second while five lengths clear of the others, so we’ll give him a chance to make amends while stretching out to a distance he’s bred to handle. The R. Baltas-trained son of Carpe Diem retains bug boy J. Velez and will take some catching if he leaves cleanly from his outside draw. Divine Armor, also beaten at odds-on last time out, adds blinkers after finishing second in his last pair. The son of Include may display improved early speed with the hood on. We’ll prefer Yeng Again on top but use both in our rolling exotics.

RACE 5: Post 2:29 PT. Grade: B+
Single: 1-Jolie Olimpica; 2-Carressa

Forecast: Unbeaten Joli Olimpica was highly impressive winning her U. S. debut in the Las Cienegas S.-G3 sprinting on turf last month and today should tackles a tougher group while stretching out to a mile. She was a Group-1 stakes winner in her native Brazil before being imported to the States, so the extra distance shouldn’t be any issue, and while she won from a stalking position last time out the daughter of Drosselmeyer may inherit the role as the controlling speed from her good inside draw. Carressa won her turf debut in capturing the Megahertz Stakes over this course and distance last month and did so impressively. She’ll need to step it up to challenge the favorite, but the lightly-raced daughter of Uncle Mo has plenty of upside and could be up to the task. Preference on top goes to Jolie Olimpica but we’ll use both in our rolling exotics.

RACE 6: Post 3:01 PT. Grade: B
Use: 2-Rinse and Repeat; 7-Temple Knights

Forecast: Rinse and Repeat has two wins from 28 starts along with 13 seconds and thirds, so while he usually hits the board the veteran son of Square Eddie – who just finished second as the 6/5 favorite in a similar spot – can’t always be counted on to seal the deal. However, at this extended sprint distance, and without pace to ensure decent early fractions, the S. Knapp-trained veteran may be able to find a way to get it done. Temple Knights, in good form for A. Lerner and likely to enjoy a soft pace-stalking trip in a race that might be slowly run early, earned a career top speed figure when beating a restricted $12,5000 field here just eight days ago and must be considered dangerous right back. Like Rinse and Repeat, the son of Temple City should draft into second flight early position and have dead aim when the pressure is turned on. Both should be included in rolling exotic play and very slight edge on top to Rinse and Repeat.

RACE 7: Post 3:32 PT. Grade: C+
Use: 1-Sunrise Royale; 3-Avalon Ride

Forecast: This first-level allowance turf miler for California-bred fillies and mares is an absolute raffle. A win by anyone of the five entrants would not surprise us. Avalon Ride, third in her last pair when facing similar company, should be a major factor again and really won’t have to improve much to win. She’s drawn nicely inside, and with some help up front should have her chance to tag the speed in the final furlong. Sunrise Royale lands the rail and probably will employ gate-to-wire tactics. Fourth in the same race Avalon Ride just finished third in, the daughter of Informed was forced into hot fractions and paid the price late, but with a little less pace pressure today she could stick around a long time. These are the two we’ll be using in our rolling exotics but not with a great deal of confidence.

RACE 8: Post 4:02 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 3-Promise Nothing; 6-Jaxon’s Goldie; 11-Call Offthe Lure

Forecast: This challenging maiden $30,000 claiming sprint requires a spread in rolling exotic play. We’ll try to get by using just three, but if you feel the need to go deeper, go right ahead. Jaxon’s Goldie, a fair fifth on turf in his debut vs. optional claiming types, tries maidens today while tackling a much easier group and seems likely to have found his friends. The son of Goldencents should be on or near the lead throughout. Promise Nothing has the route-to-sprint angle we like and ran better than the line will show when forced to lose ground from a poor outside draw against similar opposition as the favorite last month. Perhaps most comfortable as a late-running sprinter, the R. Becerra-trained colt should be dangerous if held up early and allowed to run late. Call ofthe Lure is a first-timer from the T. Yakteen barn (strong with debut runners) with an okay work tab and lands F. Prat, so you have to include him as well.

RACE 9: Post 4:34 PT. Grade: B
Use: 2-Exhort; 7-K P Indy; 8-Much More Halo

Forecast: Exhort is an intriguing first-time starter from the D. O’Neill barn that brought $135,000 at the OBS Sale last April and impressed during the previous session while displaying good speed. He finally makes it to the post almost a year later, but where will he run? The son of Will Take Charge shows a couple of bullet drills at San Luis Rey Downs to signal his readiness but was also entered a maiden sprint in tomorrow’s fifth race at Golden Gate Fields. As of this writing, we’re not quite sure where he’ll show up. K P Indy, freshened since the fall and training solidly for the J. Mullins barn, displayed ability sprinting on grass as a two-year-old and has every right to return better than he left. Much More Halo continues to train like he has more ability that he has shown in the afternoon so far, but we suspect he’ll prove most effective sprinting on turf and gets those conditions today. With the switch to F. Prat, the son of More Than Ready should have no excuses.f