by Tim Holland
A jam packed day of racing across North America unfolds on Saturday as tracks start to open back up. Tim Holland breaks down his picks at each track.
Blinkers are added to #8 Seamialaugh (12-1), who showed some early run before fading to finish unplaced in his debut over the track and distance facing better last month. Daughter of Twirling Candy is a half-sister to one winner and posted a sharp 3-furlong work in :34 4/5 a week ago for trainer McDonald, who won with two of last eight runners using blinkers for the first time. Filly can be in the early mix with Rodriguez remaining aboard.
#9 Ginger Kitty (10-1) makes her first start for trainer Pugh and was unplaced in the Herecomesthebride (G3) when last seen here in late February. Pugh has won with three of his last 10 runners that had not raced for 46-90 days and daughter of Red Rocks has won one of four career starts. Dark bay can be forwardly placed early and competitive at this level with apprentice Torres up.
Trainer Mike Maker has won with 21% of his runners at this meet and saddles #9 Go Poke the Bear (6-1), who was last seen when finishing sixth in an even effort in the Pan American (G2) over 12 furlongs in late March. Son of Kitten’s Joy has won two of four starts on this turf and Maker wins with 17% of his runners that have not raced for 46-90 days. Gelding can be along from off what should be a solid pace with Torres riding.
#4 J’s Warrior (12-1) showed little in his debut on grass at Belmont last June but gets blinkers added and has since been gelded. Recent works at Belmont include a sharp 4-furlong move in :46 3/5 last month for trainer Summers, who has won with three of his last 15 runners that had not raced for 90+ days. Son of Warrior’s Reward figures to show more here with Beschizza taking the mount.
Some well-bred maiden fillies include #10 Offering (8-1), who made some belated progress after a slow beginning when fourth in her debut at this distance at Oaklawn last month. Daughter of Distorted Humor is from the family of Broodmare of the Year Better Than Honour and has worked well since her first outing for trainer Asmussen, who wins with 22% of his second-time starters. #11 Bernadette the Jet (5-1) is by excellent young sire American Pharoah and is a half-sister to Social Inclusion, who finished third in the Preakness (G1). $425K yearling purchase has not been seen since closing to finish second at Laurel in August in her second outing and has been working forwardly for trainer Motion, who wins with 19% of his runners that have not raced for 90+ days.
#4 Joysome (8-1) has not been seen since flattening out to finish fourth after making progress from off the pace over 6 furlongs at Keeneland in October. Daughter of Cairo Prince won her one previous start on this oval and has posted some sharp works in advance of her return for trainer Walsh, who wins with 20% of his runners that have not raced for 90+ days. Gray has shown speed in most of her outings and can be in good early position with Gaffalione riding.
Tampa Bay Downs
#5 Callie California (12-1) weakened to finish fourth after vying for the early lead on the main track at this level in her latest early this month. 6-year-old has won four of 24 career starts on grass and could get brave on the front end with Rivera retaining the mount.
With a recent winning start at Los Alamitos, #6 Speedy Gigi (12-1) may hold a slight fitness edge here. Daughter of speedy sire Calimonco is unbeaten in two starts and trainer Lerner has won with 20% of his runners since the beginning of this year. 3-year-old figures to be in front early and may be tough to catch with Maldonado in the irons.
Golden Gate Fields
Claimers on grass include #4 Upo (6-1), who has not been seen since fading to finish unplaced on the all-weather main track facing better in mid-February. Son of Archarcharach has a record of 3-1-1-1 on this turf and trainer Wright wins with 18% of his runners that have not raced for 90+ days. Gelding can be on or near the lead in event that has little early pace.
Trainer Lucarelli wins with 12% of his first-time starters and sends out #8 Twisty Luck (20-1), who is by 19% debut sire Tixthirteen and out of a mare by Slewledo, whose offspring win 17% of their first outings. Dark bay is a half-sister to one winner and has been working well for Lucarelli, who wins with 20% of his runners overall in maiden claiming events. Filly may be ready for a good first outing with Herrara riding.
Another newcomer from the Lucarelli barn is #8 She Owns the Paynt (20-1). Daughter of 10% first out sire Paynter is out of a mare by Tiz Wonderful, whose offspring win 18% of their first outings. Recent works include a solid 5-furlong move in 1:01 3/5 and bay is worth a look under Pena, who has won with one of his last five rides for the barn.
Trainer Runco wins with a high 33% of his first-time starters and saddles #7 Any Way Now (5-2), a debuting son of Shackleford who is out of a mare by 14% first-out sire Smart Strike. Gelding has been working well for Runco and is likely ready to win at first asking under Bocachica, who has won with two of his last seven rides for the barn.
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