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Friday, June 18: Jeff Siegel's Santa Anita Analysis/Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

June 18, 2021

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.

The selections are posted at 6:00 a.m. and updated later in the morning to reflect late scratches and changes (approximately 10:30 a.m.). For additional commentary, follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.

Grade Descriptions: Grade A=Highest degree of confidence; Grade B=Solid Play. Grade C=Least preferred or pass; Grade X=probable winner but likely at odds too short to play.

Click Here to View Today’s Santa Anita Workout Report

RACE 1: Post: 1:00 PT Grade: B
Single: 3-Lookout Point

Forecast: The known element in this maiden juvenile turf miler is thoroughly unimpressive so let’s make an educated guess on a fresh face. Lookout Point, bred to run long on the lawn, makes his debut for a high percentage jockey-trainer combo and shows a healthy series of workouts at San Luis Rey Downs to have him fit and ready. A $32,000 OBS March sale purchase, the son of Point of Entry breezed a furlong during the preview in 10 2/5 seconds – that’s just an average clocking over the extremely fast Ocala all-weather surface - but in doing so showed himself to be a good mover with a nice, athletic stride, indicating that he’ll thrive over a distance of ground. He’s drawn comfortably inside (post three) that should lead to a ground-saving trip for leading rider F. Prat, so in a wide open affair in which nothing would surprise, let ‘s take a stand and make the P. Miller-trained colt a win play and rolling exotic single at or near his morning line of 7/2.

RACE 2: Post: 1:30 PT Grade: C+
Use: 5-Summer Rose; 8-Queen of Love

Forecast: Summer Rose has little to beat in this bottom-rung maiden claiming middle distance main track affair, so she gets top billing despite the fact that she’s hardly one to trust. A maiden after five career outings despite having been well-backed on the tote in each outing, the daughter of Jimmy Creed had every chance when establishing the pace in a similar affair last month but was worn down late, though to her credit she did finish 10 lengths clear of the rest. On pure numbers she’s clearly the top pick but for protection we’ll also include Queen of Love, unexposed after just one start sprinting against maiden $50,000 foes in late March but probably better than then race show after a slow start compromised her chances. She’s worked pretty well since, though her bullet five furlong gate drill of 59 4/5 seconds was actually much slower than given (1:01hg), though it was visually decent. At 12-1 on the morning line, she’s worth tossing in on a ticket or two in a race that is otherwise best left alone.

RACE 3: Post: 2:00 PT Grade: B-
Use: 2-Harbor Sky; 3-Really Big News; 5-Wilder Than Most; 10-Donner Lake

Forecast: Here’s a fairly intriguing grass grab bag for maiden state-bred older horses that offers several price possibilities. Donner Lake ships in from San Luis Rey Downs following a series of steady workouts that includes a bullet :59 flat drill last month. Bred for grass, the son of Hard Spun was impressive in the 2020 OBS 2-year-old in training sale, where he brought $80,000 through the ring after previewing in a quick :21 1/5, so we suspect this R. Baltas-trained colt is well-meant for a barn that has enjoyed considerable success employing jockey M. Gutierrez (32% with a significant flat-bet profit this year). Wilder Than Most finished second in his debut vs. maiden special weight foes at Del Mar during the summer of his 2-year-old season but then disappeared. The good news is that as a 4-year-old gelding off as 20 month layoff the son of Vronsky returns protected in maiden special weight company in what we’ll take as a sign of confidence by his connections. The comeback workouts aren’t flashy but can be considered okay for trainer C. Gaines, whose record with layoff runners is reasonably decent. Really Big News appeared to find his best stride late when a distant second in his debut over this course and distance last month and has every right to build on that favorable initial impression today, though we suspect he’s best work will come eventually over a distance of ground. The switch to top grass rider U. Rispoli is a plus, so we’ll regard the T. Yakteen-trained son of Mr. Big as a “must use” in rolling exotic play. Harbor Sky was given a race in his debut when taken back and then not really being knocked about in the stretch. He’s worked well since, has the route-to-sprint angle that we like, and could produce a dangerous late kick at 30-1 on the morning line.

RACE 4: Post: 2:31 PT Grade: X
Use: 1-Dr. Schivel4-Canadian Pride; 5-Speed Pass

Forecast: We’ll pass this five-runner affair while going three-deep in our rolling exotics. Del Mar Futurity winner Dr. Schivel makes his first start as a 3-year-old and has picked no easy spot for his first outing in 10 months, as the 3-year-old colt faces tough older foes from the rail in this second-level allowance sprint for new trainer M. Glatt. He was a good colt as a 2-year-old but didn’t break his maiden until his third career start and may be the type that needs to be raced into shape. The son of Violence has done everything asked of him in the morning and should come back as well as he left, but because he’ll need to shake off some rust we’ll also include on our ticket Canadian Pride, a genuine and consistent sprinting gelding with two career wins over the local main track and speed figures that are solid for this level, and the usually disappointing but capable-on-his-best-day Speed Pass, drawn comfortably outside and probably the quickest of the speed types.

RACE 5: Post: 3:01 PT Grade: C+
Use: 1-Little Bird; 2-A New Peace; 5-Lavender; 6-Invincibella

Forecast: Here’s another challenging affair, an extended grass sprint for $25,000 claiming fillies and mares that offers several possibilities. Best advice is to spread as deeply as your budget allows. Invincibella switches to F. Prat, and on that angle along is a logical contender. Though she’s just 2-for-24 during her career, the English-bred mare has recent form at this level that makes her a major player, and in a race that doesn’t have all that much early speed signed on she should be comfortably placed throughout and then have every chance from the quarter pole home. A nice series of workouts at San Luis Rey Downs since her most recent outing in early May is another positive factor. Lavender is a first-off-the-claim play for a low profile outfit so there’s no guarantee she’ll perform as well for the J. Glenn stable as she did for J. Sadler. However, the Irish-bred mare is a three-time winner over the Santa Anita turf track and shows a healthy series of recent workouts at Los Alamitos that should have the daughter of Born to Sea ready to fire a good shot. With good racing luck, this prototype late-running grass sprinter will be heard from late. A New Peace returns on short rest (two weeks) and turns back to a sprint. Her form suggests she’s better sprinting than routing and on pure numbers is a solid fit while returning to her claim level. Little Bird has been tried around two turns in each of her nine U.S. outings while always displaying a tendency to flatten out in the final stages. Today, she’s finally given a chance to sprint and on the chance that the turn back in trip will bring out her best, the Irish-bred mare is worth including on a ticket or two as a price chance.

RACE 6: Post: 3:32 PT Grade: B
Use: 1-Over Attracted; 2-She’s a Dime

Forecast: Over Attracted will be making her 15th career start in this allowance optional claiming miler but this will be her first race over conventional dirt, and she certainly trains like a filly who’ll appreciate the switch in surface. This will also be her first start in blinkers, and a recent five furlong main track drill in :59 4/5 with the hood on was her best drill since arriving from France last year. From the rail we’re expecting the daughter of Atreides to secure a favorable ground-saving, stalking position behind the committed front-runners and then have her chance to pounce and go by when called upon. She’s a Dime, fresh from a career top victory vs. starter’s $20,000 allowance foes, projects as the controlling speed, though she’ll likely be stalked and pressured from the get-go by recent gate-to-wire winner Ole Silver, who most likely will be sent from the bell by J. Pyfer, who isn’t inclined to wait around for anybody. It’s possible that the two speed types hook up, or at least set quick early fractions that could play to the strength to Over Attracted, who prefers to settle and make a run. But regardless of the race flow, in a five-runner affair, everybody should have their chance.

RACE 7: Post: 4:03 PT Grade: B
Use: 4-Brittle and Yoo; 6-Buy Wave Buy

Forecast: Brittle and Yoo returns from Oaklawn Park after earning a career top speed figure when second (while three lengths clear of the rest) in an optional claiming middle distance affair in late March and sports a steady, healthy series of recent workouts to have her primed for a similar performance today. The switch to turf shouldn’t be an issue, so against this considerably soft restricted (nw-2) $25,000 group of fillies and mares the J. Sadler-trained daughter of Include should have no excuses. Buy Wave Buy is a sparingly-raced 5-year-old mare dropping into a proper spot, and with a sharp recent training track drill earlier this month the daughter of Unusual Heatwave appears primed for a major effort. Reunited with “win rider” T. Baze, the A. Barba-trained mare earned a good number when breaking her maiden three runs back last November at Del Mar, and after being overmatched in a hot sprint vs. tougher last time out she could rebound in a big way against this group at 6-1 on the morning line.

RACE 8: Post: 4:34 PT Grade: B
Use: 1-Mulligan; 6-Agreetodisagree; 8-Taming the Tigress

Forecast: Mulligan launches a comeback for a stable that boasts superior stats with layoff runners (30% with a massive ROI) so we’re expecting the daughter of Trappe Shot to return at least as well if not better than she left in this starter optional claiming main track sprint for fillies and mares. A debut winner at Del Mar last summer (so we know she can fire fresh), the R. Baltas-trained filly will be making her first start on dirt but is bred for it and trained well on it so we’re hoping the surface switch won’t be an issue. The main concern is her lack of tactical speed, she’ll need good racing luck from the rail, and some help up front. Taming the Tiger is another dangerous comebacker shipping in from San Luis Rey Downs and perhaps in the one to fear most. The daughter of Smiling Tiger, a maiden claiming winner when last seen in September at Del Mar, returns protected while attracting top rider F. Prat, so we expect the P. Miller-trained filly to fire a huge shot from her cozy outside post. She’s had six workouts in her current pattern so she should be fit enough. Agreetodisagree, second in her last pair, gets a break in the weights with the switch to J. Pyfer and projects to be forwardly placed throughout. Beaten at 40 cents on the dollar last time out, she’s apparently not one to trust, but the P. Eurton-trained filly has numbers that fit and is worth including in rolling exotic play, at least as a back-up.

RACE 9: Post: 5:05 PT Grade: B+
Use: 1-Hudson Ridge; 7-Flashiest

Forecast: Hudson Ridge is improving with racing and just won the listed Cinema S. over this course and distance last month despite being badly bothered soon after the start that cost him valuable early position. That the son of American Pharoah was able to overcome the early trouble made his victory that much more impressive, and with a sharp, easy half mile breeze on the training track since that race we’re expecting the B. Baffert-trained colt to produce another forward move in this first-level allowance race that he conveniently remains eligible for. From the rail, he’s guaranteed a ground-saving, pace-prompting trip. Flashiest is unbeaten in two starts and was visually quite impressive when winning an optional claiming grass miler last month with an impressive turn of foot from the quarter pole home. Privately purchased by sharp connections after that outing (but remaining in the L. Powell barn), the son of Mizzen Mast switches to F. Prat, gets an extra furlong to work with, and looks clearly to be the most dangerous of the late-runners. We’ll prefer Hudson Ridge on top but include both in rolling exotic play.

RACE 10: Post: 5:36 PT Grade: B+
Use: 2-Ax Man; 5-Midcourt

Forecast: Ax Man has never been the most consistent of performers – it seems that he either wins or you can’t find him – but the one thing that is for certain is that he’s much more consistent routing than sprinting. Unbeaten in three starts over this track and distance, the veteran gelding projects as the controlling speed in this stakes-quality allowance main track miler while being reunited with M. Smith, who has won on him in the past. A bullet :58 1/5 five furlong workout just six days ago should have the son of Misremembered on his goes. Midcourt returns off a nearly six month freshening and probably is using this race as a springboard to Del Mar, but the son of Midnight Lute has trained well if not particularly fast in recent weeks and should at least give a good account of himself. You can use him as a back-up or a saver, but the main punch should go to Ax Man.

RACE 11: Post: 6:07 PT Grade: B+
Use: 1-La Gioiosa; 5-Cider Apple; 9-Rhythm and Grace

Forecast: La Gioiosa has a nightmarish trip when a self-caused much-troubled fifth in her U.S. debut in a similar maiden special weight turf event for fillies and mares (the “trouble line” in the DRF makes no mention of it), and if she minds her manners today the French-bred filly absolutely can beat this field. A four length winner in France last summer but subsequently disqualified, she was Group-3 placed at Deauville before being imported to California. In her local bow, the P. Gallagher-trained filly broke poorly to lose her early position, pulled very hard and became rank entering the backstretch, waited for room entering the lane and then finished willingly to wind up third, beaten less than four lengths, before galloping out strongly past the wire. U. Rispoli stays aboard and will be aware of her antics, so if he can secure a good position and get her to switch off with cover, the daughter of Myboycharlie should be along in time. Rhythm and Grace and Cider Apple are worth including in rolling exotic play as savers. The former is a bit too one paced for our liking but finished a willing third in the same race our top pick exits and will appreciate today’s longer trip, while the latter, beaten a nose vs. similar over this course and distance in late April, shows rising speed figure with each outing but has had just one workout in the seven weeks since she last raced.