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Friday, March 20: Santa Anita Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

March 20, 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: B
Use: 2-Charging Home; 5-Trouville; 6-Prance

Forecast: Prance has the route-to-sprint angle that we like and shows three bullet training track drills since she last raced more than two months ago. The N. Drysdale-trained filly switches to F. Prat and seems well-suited to improve a bunch as a late-running sprinter. We suspect this is what she’s always wanted to do. Trouville ran well vs. much tougher starter optional claiming company last month, pressing the pace and then holding on for third at the taxing distance of seven furlongs over a deep main track. She returns to the maiden claiming ranks today, shortens to five and one-half furlongs and switches to grass, all positive changes. The barn has had some tough luck this meeting with one win and 11 placings. Charging Home flashed good speed before fading in her debut behind subsequent stakes winner �clair last summer at Los Alamitos and then was stopped on. She returns in a realistic spot with a series of solid San Luis Rey Downs workouts including a bullet five furlong drill (fastest of 18) just four days ago. She could easily be a better type this time around, especially against this softer crew. All three should be included in rolling exotic play; we’ll have a few extra tickets keying Prance on top.

RACE 2: Post 1:33 PT. Grade: X
Single: 4-Buyback

Forecast: Buyback missed by a head in a starter’s $50,000 main track miler last month (she was more than seven lengths clear of the rest) but instead of returning protected in that same type of race she plummets to the $25,000 restricted claiming level today and shortens to a sprint. The class drop is somewhat suspicious but she does sport a healthy work pattern since that early February outing and perhaps this is simply a case of finding a race that would fill. Her maiden $20,000 win two runs back earned a number that would beat this field, and regular pilot E. Maldonado knows her well and stays aboard. In a five runner affair that offers little in the way of wagering value, she’s a short price rolling exotic single in a race that otherwise should be left alone.

RACE 3: Post 2:05 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 2-Ka’nah; 3 J Z My Man; 7-Whirl Candy

Forecast: There are lots of question marks in this maiden turf sprint, so a spread strategy in rolling exotic play may be the way to go. J Z My Man has done more than enough in the morning to be fit and debuts sprinting on grass, a surface that for whatever reason many of the American Pharoah’s appear to prefer. A $410,000 Fasig-Tipton 2-year-old purchase last March and out of the good sprinting mare J Z Warrior, the B. Baffert-trained colt tuned up with a bullet half mile drill in :47 3/5 seconds, the fastest of 214 for the distance, just four days ago. Some of his previous works were good, others not so hot, so we’re not sure what we’re going to get with him. Ka’nah has been away since December of 2018 but ran quite well in both starts as a 2-year-old, including a strong runner-up effort in his debut sprinting on grass at Del Mar. The R. Hanson-trained colt attracts shows a relatively brief work tab leading up to his return but a recent five furlong gate drill (1:00.3hg) should have him fit enough and F. Prat gets the call. If the son of Gio Ponti returns as well as he left, he’ll be right there. Whirl Candy was well-backed in his debut (5-1) last summer at Del Mar but faded after flashing early speed in a hot race won by American Theorem. The son of Twirling Candy returns with blinkers on and shows a bullet training track drill (5f, 1:00.2h, fastest of seven) that catches the eye. The J. Sadler-trained is likely better than his only previous outing indicates.

RACE 4: Post 2:37 PT. Grade: X
Single: 3-Raneem

Forecast: Raneem has failed at 2-1 or less in four of her eight career starts and clearly isn’t one to trust, but the B. Baffert-trained filly is the top pick by default in this below standard maiden $50,000 claiming abbreviated sprint for older fillies and mares. She was more than three lengths clear of the rest when runner-up under these conditions last month and not much more will be needed for her to finally earn her diploma. In a race that probably is best left alone, you can use her as a no-value rolling exotic single or simply sit it out.

RACE 5: Post 3:09 PT. Grade: X
Single: Y Not Sizzle

Forecast: Here’s another race that is difficult to embrace, as the logical top selection, Y Not Sizzle, is an 11-race maiden but clearly is the one to beat based on her two good recent runner-up efforts vs. similar state-bred company over this course. She was somewhat unlucky when missing by a nose in her most recent outing over a mile but today stretches out to nine furlongs, a distance that may be a bit farther than she really prefers (her only previous race at this trip was disappointing). That concern notwithstanding, top grass rider U. Rispoli stays aboard, so with anything close to her best the J. Mullins-trained filly should finally earn her diploma, but most likely not at a price that offers any real wagering value. Use her as a rolling exotic single or just pass the race.

RACE 6: Post 3:38 PT. Grade: C
Use: 1-No Wine Untasted; 3-Todos Santos; 4-Fair Lucky

Forecast: We’ll go 3-deep in rolling exotic play but otherwise pass the sixth race, a five-runner $10,000 claiming sprint for fillies and mares. Todos Santos and Fair Lucky finished one-two when they met under similar conditions in early February after which both were raised in class without success, so they’re back where they belong today. ‘Lucky has a bit more tactical speed and today’s race is a sixteenth of a mile shorter than when they squared off last time, but ‘Santos was able to wear her down late despite a slow start and a wide trip so either one should be capable of beating the other today depending upon pace and trip. No Wine Untasted could outrun them both. She’s a four-time winner dropping to the bottom and with enough early speed from her rail post to make the running and be a strong threat to keep on going.

RACE 7: Post 4:08 PT. Grade: B
Use: 8-Liar Lair; 9-K P All Systems Go

Forecast: K P All Systems Go left his previous form behind when breaking his maiden by six rapidly-widening lengths that gave him the appearance of being shot out of a cannon, a performance that pretty much came out of nowhere based on his previous form. It’s taken almost two months to get him back to the post but the work tab seems steady so if the son of More Than Ready can turn in two alike he’ll probably do the same to this first-level allowance field as he did vs. maidens in late January. That said, there are two areas of concern. First, his win came over nine furlongs and today’s race is a mile, and second, his late kick was bolstered by a fast early pace while today’s race flow projects to be softer. Liar Liar isn’t quite as fast on pure speed figures as our top pick but exits a pair of legitimate turf stakes and makes a monumental jockey change to U. Rispoli. He defeated K P All Systems by a head when breaking his maiden last fall and has a right to do it again. To be safe, we’ll have tickets using both in rolling exotic play.

RACE 8: Post 4:38 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 1-Gov From Above; 7-My Super Mario; 9-War Watch

Forecast: Here’s a maiden claiming state-bred $50,000 claiming sprint with a few first-time starters that appear intriguing. The gamble is that one of them will win. My Super Mario has been training out of sight of the private clockers at San Luis Rey Downs but has winning connections (Baltas/Cedillo) and a work tab that should have him plenty fit. Finally making it to the races at age four, the son of Ministers Wild Cat shows a five furlong drill in 1:00 flat in February that catches the eye for a barn that is more than capable of winning with debut runners. In a race in which the known element doesn’t inspire, let’s take a shot and put him on top. War Watch, a decently-bred son of Acclamation, has turned in a couple of recent noteworthy gate drills for his Los Alamitos-based connections, lands the cozy outside post, and looks well-meant first crack out of the box. Gov From Above is bred for speed (Govenor Charlie) and has worked well enough for A. Sherman to indicate some ability. The rail post is no help but at this level and little will go a long way, so we’ll toss him in.