Log In

Friday, June 12: Santa Anita Park Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

June 12, 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 Makers:

Gulfstream Park – 10th race. Post Time: 4:45 ET
8 – Lady Boss (10-1)

First-timer has shown excellent speed in morning drills, including a bullet gate work last week in :47 1/5, the fastest of 52 for the distance. The daughter of Street Boss goes for a strong jockey-trainer combo in a field that doesn’t have an abundance of early zip, so if she breaks with her field the E. Dobles-trained juvenile should be extremely dangerous at this abbreviated sprint trip of five furlongs on grass. At 10-1 on the morning we’ll make her a good price play in the win pool as well as all of the exotic wagers.

Belmont Park – 9th race. Post Time: 5:36 ET
4-Build to Suit (9/2)

Been away since October but has won off a 15-month layoff in the past, so we doubt he’ll be rusty in this year’s edition of the Commentator Stakes for New York-bred older horses. Lightly-raced at age six with just 10 career starts (six wins), the veteran in Chad Brown’s barn likes to settle in mid-pack and produce a strong late kick, and in a race that projects to have quick early fractions the son of Dominus should be capable of producing the last run. He’ll offer wagering value in the win pool and in rolling exotic play at or near his morning line of 9/2.

Today’s Workout Analysis: View PDF File

RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: X
Use: 3-Shines Her Light; 5-Affianced

Forecast: Shines Her Light has two good races over this course and distance, a maiden win in her U.S. debut and a strong third place effort despite a less-than-ideal trip in a similar first-level allowance turf dash last month. An easy five-furlong solo training track drill last week should keep her on edge, so the Irish-bred daughter of No Nay Never looks pretty solid for the always-potent J. Sadler/V. Espinoza combo. Affianced isn’t as fast on numbers as Shines Her Light but has improving form and is worth including in rolling exotic play. In a race that projects to have a below average early pace, the R. Mandella-trained filly may inherit the role as the controlling speed and be tough to catch, just as she was when breaking her maiden last month.

RACE 2: Post 1:37 PT. Grade: X
Use: 1-Uncle Chuck; 2-Big Mel; 5-Uncle Addouma

Forecast: This maiden main track miler drew just five entrants, three of which must be considered legitimate contenders. We’ll triple the race in our rolling exotics but otherwise pass. Uncle Chuck is a very well-regarded first-timer from the B. Baffert barn with enough of a foundation to win at first asking. The son of Uncle Mo has done everything asked in the morning and has trained very much like a route-type, so it’s not surprising that he starts his career in a two-two affair. Stable mate Big Mel was given a run in his debut when finishing mostly on his own before galloping out strongly in a good maiden sprint last month and seems sure to be tighter, sharper, and more serious today. In fact, we wouldn’t be surprised if the Quality Road colt makes the running and is the one we suspect Uncle Chuck has to worry about the most. Uncle Addourma stayed on nicely when a willing fourth in his debut sprinting at Oaklawn Park last month and should benefit greatly from that bit of experience. The M. McCarthy barn has excellent stats with second-timers, and with F. Prat staying aboard this promising colt has every right to produce a significant forward mover over a distance he’s quite likely to enjoy.

RACE 3: Post 2:09 PT. Grade: B
Use: 6-Lovely Lilia; 8-Going to Vegas

Forecast: In a grass miler for $50,000 claiming 3-year-old fillies that projects to have a faster than par early pace, Going to Vegas seems capable of settling in mid-pack and then producing a winning late kick. The daughter of Goldencents is reunited with “win rider” F. Prat, is realistically dropped to what should be her proper level, and sports a steady, healthy series of workouts at San Luis Rey Downs for her first outing since March to have her fit and ready for the hot P. Miller barn. Lovely Lilia, a first-off-a-claim play for the V. Cerin barn (good stats with this angle), certainly is bred for grass and distance (Animal Kingdom) and makes her first start around two turns with sprint numbers that make her competitive. A solid runner-up while more than six lengths clear of the rest in a main track sprint for $40,000 three weeks ago, she projects to be within striking range throughout and have every chance when the pressure is turned on. We’ll prefer Going to Vegas on top but include both in our rolling exotics.

RACE 4: Post 2:41 PT. Grade: B
Use: 1-Camino de Estrella; 2-Conquest Cobra

Forecast: Camino de Estrella, doubled jumped in class after being haltered for $12,500 by S. Knapp (excellent stats with the first-off-the-claim angle), was a strong runner-up in a highly-rated main track miler upon his return from Phoenix last month and this nine furlong distance has proven to be well within his wheelhouse. In a race that should be slowly run early, the veteran Mineshaft gelding should settle into an ideal second-flight, ground-saving position and then have dead aim when it counts. Conquest Cobra can handle the trip as well and under the projected pace scenario seems likely to be the controlling speed. Give that type of trip, the eight-year-old gelding could be very hard to catch. We’ll give Camino de Estrella a slight edge on top but include both in our rolling exotics.

RACE 5: Post 3:13 PT. Grade: B
Use: 3-Rawhide Rawlins; 5-Foothill

Forecast: Foothill was a bit too keen for his own good in his racing debut vs. similar last month and under the circumstances held on better than he had a right to after pressing the pace most of the way, eventually winding up fourth. With that effort behind him and two easy breezes since, the son of Vronsky should be fitter and tougher today, especially if he can establish the pace without pressure. A. Gryder returns and will try to get the S. McCarthy-trained gelding to settle better today. Rawhide Rawlins closed fastest of all and galloped out strongly in a promising debut sprinting on grass last month and is probably the most dangerous of the closers. His pedigree suggests he’ll handle two-turns and the S. Miyadi barn has spectacular stats with second-time starters. We’ll try to get by using just these two, with Foothill a slight preference on top.

RACE 6: Post 3:44 PT. Grade: B-
Use: 2-Abusive Gary; 6-All I Can Say

Forecast: Abusive Gary was overmatched in a first-level allowance main track miler last month but is realistically spotted today in this restricted (nw-2) $12,500 claimer and based strictly on speed figures should be able to handle this task with his best effort. The P. D’Amato-trained gelding may find himself as the controlling speed, though we suspect he can stalk and win against this group if the situation requires. All I Can Say, in his second start off a long layoff, closed well to be a willing third vs. similar last month in what has proven to be a productive race. His form suggests he’s better around one turn but on numbers he’s a fit, so if taken back and allowed to produce one run the son of Old Topper could make some serious noise in the final furlong. Both should be included in rolling exotic play with Abusive Gary the main push on top.

RACE 7: Post 4:15 PT. Grade: B
Use: 3-Querelle; 4-Great Return

Forecast: Querelle is a genuine and consistent late-running turf sprinter and in a small five runner field should be able to negotiate a trouble-free trip and produce the last run for the red-hot F. Prat/P. Miller team. She’s fresh from a career-top earning win over this course and distance vs. first-level allowance foes last month and a similar effort makes her tough right back despite the one-level class hike. Great Return, away since October, hasn’t been particularly impressive in morning drills leading up to this race, but as a grass specialist working exclusively on dirt nothing flashy should have been expected. If ready, she’ll be dangerous with anything close to her best race, and since she won her debut we know she can fire fresh. We’ll have tickets using both in our rolling exotics with preference on top to Querelle.

RACE 8: Post 4:45 PT. Grade: C
Use: 2-Kirsch Truffle; 13-Daddys Real Diva

Forecast: Daddys Real Diva has been away for more than a year but her form in 2019 is good enough to beat this field and her recent workouts at San Luis Rey Downs and before that at Turf Paradise are reasonably encouraging. Kirsch Truffle is slow on figures (as are most of these) but did manage to finish second in a similar affair last month and not much more will be needed in a race that simply doesn’t have much in it. These are the two we’ll prefer in our rolling exotic play but best advice is to go as deep as your budget allows in a race in which nothing would surprise us.