by Jerry Shottenkirk
July 18, 2021
Tonalist’s Shape earned a place on the list of 3-year-old fillies during the 2020 Championship Meet at Gulfstream Park as she won three straight over the surface, most notably the Grade 3 Forward Gal and the Grade 2 Davona Dale.
That was the peak in her career, and she gets her second chance off a layoff when she faces allowance optional claiming opponents to kick off Gulfstream’s Late Pick 4 on Sunday.
Tonalist’s Shape closed a bit of ground when she ended 2020 with a fifth in the Grade 2 Raven Run at Keeneland on Oct. 17 and came off eight-month layoff with a somewhat lackluster fifth at seven furlongs and under the conditions she sees today. Filing that under “needed that one,” we can expect a much better effort in her second off the layoff, and it looks like the Saffie Joseph, Jr., trainee can finish this one-mile race as she did last year. Since her return race, she has three solid works and can get back to good form.
She’s a single on the $48 suggested Late Pick 4 ticket, and getting that first leg with a single can bring out a lot of optimism the rest of the way, as the ticket uses a 1x4x4x6 approach. Or it can make you focus on the Pick 3. We’re obviously looking at the former, but the latter will do, if needed.
Here’s a look at what’s on the Pick 4 ticket:
7th Race (4:13 p.m. ET, allowance optional claiming)
TONALIST’S SHAPE has a lot more in the tank than she showed last time and the pace scenario gives her a good chance to finish well going the mile.
Others on the ticket: None, she’s a single.
8th Race (4:46 p.m. ET, claiming)
COMPLEX SYSTEM ran in a stronger race than this last time and did the big fade in the final quarter. That race went in 1:33 4-5 for the mile, which was just too much for her. She has several races on her form than can give her a big chance going this 7.5-furlong distance.
She does her best on or close to the lead, and that’s where she’s expected to be as she takes a drop in class.
Claiming fillies and mares often make for a strong challenge in handicapping, and that’s the case here as this race looks like a spread event.
Others on the ticket: SPEND BENJAMIN, KRAMDEN, and NEW YORK STYLE.
9th Race (5:19 p.m. ET, allowance optional claiming)
WITH VERVE heads a strong group of veterans going seven furlongs, and there’s plenty of quality from which to choose.
He gets the nod due to the late move he often possesses. There will be a legit pace with plenty of runners going for the lead, and that should play into his big rally.
It’s a good race that requires a handful of numbers on the Pick 4 ticket.
Others on the ticket: FRONT LOADED, WANDERING WEST, and PUDDING.
10th Race (5:53 p.m. ET, maiden claiming)
The last leg looks like the most difficult of them all today.
KICK OUT OF JAMS looks competitive today, as she showed progress since her April debut. She was claimed by Mike Maker in her first one and took a class drop. After running eighth, she finished fourth and third. She hasn’t really established a running style and looks like she could adjust to whatever pace is presented in this one.
There are many legit contenders, and this one is a strong challenge.
Others on the ticket: UPTOWN QUEEN, QUIET STRENGTH, RUBY IN THE STARS, TWICEFOURTEEN and HUSTLE QUEEN.
Race 7) #6 Tonalist’s Shape.
Race 8) #2 Spend Benjamins, #3 Complex System, #8 Kramden, #9 New York Style.
Race 9) #2 Front Loaded, #3 With Verve, #4 Wandering West, #8 Pudding.
Race 10) #2 Uptown Queen, #3 Quiet Strength, #4 Rubyinthestars, #5 Kick Out the Jams, #8 Twicefourteen, #9 Hustle Queen.
Total Ticket Cost) 6/2,3,8,9/2,3,4,8/2,3,4,5,8,9 = $48 for $0.50