The racing week in Arkansas commences on Thursday afternoon with a nine-race card at Oaklawn Park. Here are my thoughts on the late Pick 4 that starts in Race 6 with an open $10,000 claimer and concludes in Race 9 with a $40,000 maiden claiming event at one mile.
The pace should be honest in this one given the presence of #5 Adulator, as well as several others that like to be on or right off the early pace. This should set things up nicely for #1 Esposito, who moves up in class after a neck defeat on Mar. 8. The 7-year-old gelding has rediscovered his form this winter. The inside draw should allow jockey Walter De La Cruz to save ground early and make his move on the far turn. My single.
This low-level claiming event at 6 furlongs drew a full field and will be much more wide open if neither of the also-eligibles draw into the race. If either #13 Dichotomy or #14 Fight to Glory draw in they are must uses, but assuming they do not I like the chances of #4 J P’s Gladys most. The 6-year-old mare makes her second start off the claim for trainer David Fawkes after a wide voyage against better over the slop on Mar. 13. The move to an inside post and probable fast track give the seven-time winner a big shot to get to the wire first.
#1 She’s a Lucky One finished well in a race a number of her Thursday rivals exit on Mar. 5. If they go too fast early she can run by them all late. #9 Eurodevilwoman is an interesting price option after two slow starts have compromised her chances this winter. If she can get back to her form prior to the start of the 2020 Oaklawn meeting she can spring the upset.
This high-level optional claimer at 6 panels looks like a three-horse race. #4 Silver Ride is my top pick after losing as the favorite in the slop just 12 days ago. The son of Candy Ride should get a great trip under jockey Orlando Mojica. If #9 Seven Nation Army can break well and clear from his outside post he could be tough to catch in his third start of the form cycle for trainer Ron Moquett. #8 Candy Cornell returns quickly after posting a 100 Brisnet Speed rating on Mar. 15. I am concerned he will regress off of the huge performance, but a repeat of his last will make him nearly impossible for this field to beat.
#10 First Citizen is the deserving 5-2-morning line favorite after a hard trying third-place finish in his initial try versus maiden claimers on Mar. 5. He is likely to be prominent early from his outside draw and could sneak away, but I am willing to let him beat me given his inability to relax last time out and his likely short price.
#4 Special Day is my top choice. The son of Tiznow drops out of special weight company for the first time after several competitive efforts versus better for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer. I will use the Don Alberto Stable runner, as well as a number of others that will offer greater separation in the final leg of the sequence.
Suggested Wager: (50-cent Pick 4)
- 1 with 1,4,9 with 4,8,9 with 3,4,5,7,8,9,11
Ticket Cost: $31.50