Free Picks & Analysis — Who Do Ya Like?
Saturday, February 10, 2018
Santa Anita Park
The Derby Trail continues at Santa Anita, with the San Vicente Stakes headlining the Saturday card. They’ve also got the Thunder Road Stakes and the Santa Maria Stakes providing some nice support. First post time is scheduled for 12:00 PM PST.
To help you out with all the action, we’re happy to have Robert Criscola (@itsgood2beking) providing FREE picks & analysis of the card! Robert’s been a Southern California handicapper on Danonymous Racing for a while now; be sure to give him a follow on twitter.
Good luck to everyone playing along!
We’re treated to 10 races at Santa Anita this Saturday, including a stakes triple-header with plenty of star power. Let’s dive right in, and keep in mind there’s an early first post of 3:00 p.m. Eastern.
Race 1: 8-7-5
#8 CELEBRATE LIFE drops after taking part in a cutthroat duel last time out. His prior two performances are good enough to top these. #7 TRUE RANGER, no stranger to picking up minor shares at this level, may improve on the Metz claim (17%). #5 ADVENTUROUS is the best of the rest.
Race 2: 3-6-7
#3 KABOOM romped over maidens at this distance last time out and meets an uninspiring field here; tepid pick. #6 GUTSY STREAK, also coming off an open-length maiden score, is slotted second here as he earned his diploma going five furlongs at Los Al. #7 TRAPALANDA drops off the Jacobson claim (17%); seems the most likely candidate to take advantage of a pace meltdown, and there’s plenty of speed signed on.
Race 3: 7-1-5
#7 GUSTNADO drops in class for his first start since April of 2017. His last two starts were poor but prior to that he’d won two straight with speed figures that would make him the one to beat here. The odds are enticing enough to bet that he’s back on the right track. #1 MAESTRO DEARTE overcame a long layoff to graduate last month; eligible to improve and take this despite the class hike. #5 LYMEBYRD nearly beat statebreds from a wide post in his last try on the lawn.
Race 4: 4-2-5
The Grade II Santa Maria Stakes
#4 UNIQUE BELLA looks vastly superior to these; exciting distaff prospect should take them all the way. #2 MOPOTISM was no match for UNIQUE BELLA in the La Brea but was a game winner of the La Canada last month. #5 MAJESTIC HEAT will try to bounce back off a no-show performance in the La Canada. Prior to that she’d won two straight stakes.
Race 5: 3-2-1-6
The Grade III Thunder Road Stakes
#3 BLACKJACKCAT won four straight going a mile before encountering trouble in the Breeders’ Cup Mile. However, he outran his odds that day, finishing third at 19-1. He could be set up for a big 2018 campaign based on that strong second half of last year. Beating #2 BOWIES HERO would be a good start. BOWIES HERO relished the turnback in the Mathis Bros. Mile last time out but needed every bit of the perfect trip Kent Desormeaux gave him that day. We’ll see what he does in his first start at four as he switches to Corey Nakatani. Desormeaux, of course, landed on the top choice. #1 NEXT SHARES put in a solid rally for second going down the hill in the Joe Hernandez last time out. Prior routing efforts have been poor but we’ll see what Baltas can squeeze out of him. #6 OM moves up if there’s a scratch.
Race 6: 1-4-5-6
The Grade II San Vicente Stakes
#1 AX MAN annihilated a group of maidens in his New Year’s Day debut that included Lombo, winner of two straight since, including last week’s Robert B. Lewis Stakes. He should speed off and never look back. #4 ALL OUT BLITZ is the main danger cutting back off a solid runner-up effort in the Sham Stakes. #5 KANTHAKA and #6 KRIS’ ROCKET KAT are eligible for a piece in their first try vs. winners.
Race 7: 4-2-3-5
#4 IS TREVOR CLEVER may finally break through if he gets a clean trip today. #2 SEAU was a decent third in his initial try at this level but loses Roman here. #3 WISE CURLIN drops in class and switches back to dirt, where he’s shown some ability in the past. #5 PATH OF EXILE fits on speed figures.
Race 8: 6-7-5-3
#6 SAWYER’S HILL looks primed for his first start since April based on his stellar worktab and finds a susceptible field. Expect him to win this gate-to-wire. #7 TONY BLACKJACK intrigues stepping onto the turf course based on pedigree; his comeback win last time out was solid. #5 VAN CORTLANDT will roll late on a big rider change to Prat. #3 MONGOLIAN GREYWOLF should appreciate the turnback but will likely have to sit off the top pick rather than set the pace.
Race 9: 10-9-11-12
#10 QUICK FINISH put it all together in his third career start when he blitzed state-bred maidens last time out, and it’s possible we haven’t seen his best yet. He’s the pick. #9 CONQUEROR had a tough trip in his first start vs. winners; consider. #11 LIBERTY JACK should come from off the pace for a piece. #12 DESERT GENERAL is the best of the rest.
Race 10: 8-10-1
#8 ESKIMO ROSES wheels back quickly but gets a key rider change to Desormeaux and is a potential lone speed. The downhill course has been friendly to frontrunners all meet long. #10 MASKED offered little in his debut for Baffert but that was on dirt. He’s bred for turf and that’s what he gets here; deserves a second chance. #1 JUNGLE WARFARE has never missed the trifecta in seven starts; logical underneath.
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