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Jeff Siegel's Santa Anita Analysis (Sun., April 13, 2014)
The Sunday program begins with a $20,000 claiming miler that should be won by either #3 Bluegrass Reward or #4 Prime Issue and both are worth using in rolling exotic play. The former is solid in the speed figure department and likes this track, while the latter is a sharp Bay Area invader with plenty of zip and will take them as far as he can.
We’ll also double the second race, a $50,000 claiming miler on turf for fillies and mares. #1 Redressthebalance makes a major switch to Bejarano, stretches out, gets the good rail and drops in for a tag for the first time. This is her second off a layoff for O’Neill and a strong forward move can be expected. #7 Fantastic Mizz won at this level over this course and distance two runs back and should regain her best form after being overmatched in a strong allowance affair last month. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics.
The third race is a fairly wide open bottom-rung claiming sprint for fillies and mare; we’ll try to advance using just two but you may feel the need to go deeper. #6 Queen of the Hill ran well in a slightly stronger affair recently, gets a break in the weights today, and should be within striking range throughout. #3 Vindicted Ruler drops to her lowest level ever and her kind of early speed should be dangerous in this league. Baze stays aboard for Carava.
The Pick-6 begins in the fourth race, the Santa Barbara Handicap over 10 furlongs on turf for fillies and mares. #2 Miss Serendipity is winless in the U.S. since being imported from Argentina but she’s steadily acclimating for Drysdale and continues to impress in the morning. She was a Group-1 winner at this distance in South America so we’re expecting to see her very best effort today. #3 Stormy Lucy won the Santa Ana Stakes over a similar field last month and there’s no reason she shouldn’t be as effective at this longer strip. #7 Customer Base found a mile too sharp when no factor in the Buena Vista Stakes earlier this meeting but figures to move up considerably at this longer distance. Smith will have her rolling in the final furlong.
Baffert seems to hold the aces in the fifth race, a second level allowance miler on the main track. #3 Cat Burglar is lightly-raced with plenty of upside and is fast on figures. This step up in class should be well within his range. #6 Govenor Charlie failed to handle the wet fast track when unplaced as the favorite in the Razorback Handicap at Oaklawn Park last month but he’s in a much softer spot today and on dry land should regain his best form. Both are worth using in rolling exotic play.
The sixth race is a contentious downhill turf sprint for entry-level runners; we’re going to take a stand and single #8 Monument in our rolling exotics. The Sadler-trained colt is overdue for a win and gets ideal conditions for a break-through performance. He prefers to settle and make a run and Stevens got to know him last time, With good racing luck the son of Cindago can produce the last run and we’ll consider anything close to his morning line odds of 9/2 to be reasonable.
The seventh race, a decent starter’s allowance sprint, should be won by either #6 Remind Mee or #9 Head South and these are the two we’ll include in our rolling exotic play. Remind Mee returns to the main track and a repeat of his highly-rated maiden claiming win two runs back makes him a solid fit with these. He’s looks very much like the speed of the speed. Head South crushed high priced maiden claimers in February and was promptly claimed by Palma. He switches to Bejarano and has looked especially sharp in the morning for his new connections, so another forward move is likely. He’s capable of stalking and winning and should draft into an ideal spot just off the pace outside, ready to pounce.
The Sunday co-feature is the San Simeon Stakes down the Hillside course and is carded as the eighth race. #5 Sweet Swap won the Joe Hernandez Stakes under similar conditions earlier this meeting and if he runs back to that performance today he’ll be tough again. #8 Lakerville is a powerful late-running sprinter shortening up to his best trip and is back with Nakatani, who has won with him in the past. The Abrams-trained veteran was overmatched in the Kilroe Mile recently but certainly isn’t today.
The finale is bottom-level maiden claiming router, we’ll go three deep without any great conviction. #3 Kid Rollins has finished in the money in each of her last three starts and won’t have to improve much to finally graduate. #5 A Little Luckier drops drastically from straight maiden state-bred company and should go much better in this league. #8 Itsabeautifulday is a fit on number and is stretching out again, so in a weak affair she’s probably worth tossing in.