Handicapping Picks for 01/27/2012

Race #2 - Rating = 2
#1 Highway Bandit - Fair odds 2/1
#6 Slim Shadey - Fair odds 3/1
#2 Dynamic Host - Fair odds 3/1

Exacta: Box 1,2,6

Highway Bandit gets the ground saving rail for this long turf trip, coming back from 2 months off after being overmatched in a stakes but two before that having won at this NW2X allowance level, so today in for the optional claiming price of $62,500, allowing him to run at the level again. He’s won on turf and is reunited with Kevin Krigger, who rode him just once before, to that win at the level, another reason to think Highway Bandit can run well enough to win. Slim Shadey won nicely at this identical 10 furlong trip over this turf course last out on 1/12, at the one lower NW1X level. He was making his 2nd start in the U.S. and 2nd since coming back from 4 months off so he’s likely to improve and on that count should be a factor once again. Dynamic Host, missed by a half length in his last 2 races, both at the level but on the main track, his last turf race versus similar a game win by a head last summer at Del Mar, Rosario up then as now, Joel not having ridden him in 3 races since the win so giving the gelding a strong chance of returning to winning form.

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You can get my selections and analysis for the entire Santa Anita card at www.equibase.com, www.trackmaster.com as well as at the Xpressbet, Twinspires, Keeneland Select and TVG handicapping stores.