Jeff Siegel's Prime Picks for Wednesday, March 25 at Santa Anita

Today’s opener boils down to #1 Just Charmed and #5 Jan’s Ruling Angel and we’ll use both in an exacta box. Just Charmed flashed improvement when second in a similar spot last month, has trained well since, retains Gomez, and should be close up throughout from the rail. With another forward move today the Craig Dollase-trained gelding should get the money. Jan’s Ruling Angel has been chasing much tougher foes recently and is realistically returned to the claiming ranks. He’s a solid fit on speed figures and should be rolling late. The 2nd race doesn’t have much depth in it and if you’re playing the rolling exotics you probably can get through this event using only #2 Brent’s Passion and #8 Gifted Gina. Brent’s Passion was nosed out in her debut in a similar spot last month and really won’t have to improve much at all to graduate today. Gifted Gina has been facing much tougher straight maiden foes recently and figures to go much better in this considerably softer spot. A repeat of her race before last will make her hard to beat. We’ll pass the 3rd race – they all have a chance, especially if Icemancometh can’t keep a straight path – and jump ahead to the 4th race where we’ll combine #4 Sensational Score and #6 Marenostrum in an exacta box. The former is reunited with Bejarano, who won on him the last time he rode him, and that coupled with the return to the claiming ranks makes this Mitchell-trained gelding solid value at 7/2 on the morning line. Marenostrum was beaten as the choice in his last pair, but ran well enough to win and should be in the thick of things again for Gomez and Frankel. The 5th race is another one we’ll avoid – spread if you’re playing the late Pick-4 – but the 6th race offers a playable maiden claimer in which we’ll use #2 Dailies; #4 Kristen’s Lil Lady, and #9 Ocean Babe in an exacta or trifecta box. Dailies drops a notch, removes blinkers, shortens up and retains Smith. Look for her to be very dangerous from off the pace. Kristen’s Lil Lady has improving form and with another forward move today should be right there. Ocean Babe is a route to sprint play and figures to enjoy this extended sprint trip. At 12-1 on the morning line she’s worth throwing in. We’ll double the 7th race, using #1 Herr Mozart and #5 African Gray. Herr Mozart returns to turf – likely his preferred surface – and gets the rail while retaining Gomez. With a patient ride, he’ll be tough to contain late. African Gray adds blinkers, should be forwardly placed and has the pedigree (With Approval) to improve considerably in his first try on grass. The 8th race is a bottom rung maiden claimer and offers three main contenders, #2 General Buffet; #4 Goodlookindude; and #6 Olympic Force. General Buffet flashed some improvement when third in a similar spot last month, retains Rosario, and should be prominent throughout. Goodlookindude, second in his last pair with improving speed figures, has low profile connections but is a solid threat on pure form. Olympic Force seems to be improving and is re-equipped with blinkers. In a soft field, you have to use him.