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Need some help getting started? Racing analyst Keeler Johnson is ready to share his plays for this week’s contest action:
Apr. 18: Saturday Special
$100 Bonus Cash
To pick the top three finishers in Saturday’s Count Fleet Sprint H. (G3) at Oaklawn Park.
The speedy #4 Bobby’s Wicked One easily won the Thanksgiving Classic S. and Duncan F. Kenner S. during the winter, throwing down fast times and triple-digit Brisnet Speed ratings. The son of Speightstown appears to have regained the strong form he demonstrated when claiming the Commonwealth (G3) and finishing second in the Churchill Downs (G1) last spring, so we’ll bank on Bobby’s Wicked One keeping his winning streak alive this Saturday.
For second place, we’ll use the consistent 7-year-old veteran #9 Whitmore, a Grade 1 winner who hasn’t missed the board in 13 starts at Oaklawn. We’ll round out our play with the stretch-running #3 Hog Creek Hustle, upset winner of the Woody Stephens (G1) last summer. The 4-year-old colt finished second behind Bobby’s Wicked One in the Duncan F. Kenner and should get plenty of pace to set up his late rally this time around.
1st: #4 Bobby’s Wicked One
2nd: #9 Whitmore
3rd: #3 Hog Creek Hustle
Apr. 18: Featured Race: Apple Blossom Handicap
$1,000 Bonus Cash
To pick the top four finishers in Saturday’s Apple Blossom H. (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
#11 Serengeti Empress isn’t the most consistent filly in the Apple Blossom field, but the 2019 Kentucky Oaks (G1) champion has a ton of early speed, which she used to dominate the Mar. 14 Azeri (G2) at Oaklawn by 6 1/4 lengths. In this large, competitive field, Serengeti Empress can use her front-running style to stay out of trouble and secure a clean trip.
#6 Street Band could only finish fourth in the Azeri, but racing closer to the early pace than usual may have compromised her chances. She’s quite effective when rallying from far off the pace, as she demonstrated when romping to victory in the Cotillion (G1) last fall, and there should be enough pace in the Apple Blossom to give her a fighting chance at victory.
For third place, we’ll use #5 Point of Honor, who showed promise while placing second in the Coaching Club American Oaks (G1) and Alabama (G1) last summer. The daughter of Curlin is bred to improve with maturity and finished a solid second sprinting 7 furlongs in her 2020 debut. Stretching back out in distance should produce a step forward, and trainer George Weaver wins at a 23% rate with horses running for the second time off a layoff.
We’ll complete our play with the consistent two-time Grade 3 winner #12 Go Google Yourself, who has cracked the superfecta in 18 of her 19 starts:
- 1st: #11 Serengeti Empress
- 2nd: #6 Street Band
- 3rd: #5 Point of Honor
- 4th: #12 Go Google Yourself