The Rainbow Pick 6 jackpot at Santa Anita continues to accumulate at a rapid rate, climbing to $415,148 for Sunday’s nine-race card.
Although sweeping the whole pot requires assembling the only winning ticket on any given day, “consolation” payoffs on days with multiple winners can still be hefty. Saturday’s sequence (featuring five single-digit winners and one 34-1 longshot) produced a payoff of $24,009.32 for a 20-cent ticket.
Sunday’s Rainbow 6 sequence looks playable on a modest budget, so let’s go over the action on a race-by-race basis and construct a ~$20 ticket:
Race 4: $40,000 Maiden Claiming (1 mile, 5:05 p.m. ET)
#4 Kennebec (3-5) is dropping from maiden special weight to maiden claiming company and boasts the best Brisnet Speed ratings in the field. The son of Lookin At Lucky is a short price on the morning line, but he looks like a deserving single to start the Rainbow 6.
Race 5: Maiden Special Weight (6 furlongs on turf, 5:37 p.m. ET)
#9 Delta Wind (5-2), a daughter of Square Eddie, has been cranking out sharp workouts for trainer John Sadler, who strikes at a 17% rate with first-time starters. But Delta Wind isn’t the only promising debut runner in the field—#2 Big Clare (3-1) and #6 Big Beauty (6-1) have also shown some talent in the mornings. We’ll use all three in the Rainbow 6.
Race 6: Starter Optional Claiming (6 1/2 furlongs, 6:07 p.m. ET)
#2 Uncle Boogie (9-5) is cutting back in distance after finishing last in the 1-mile Sham (G3) against early Kentucky Derby favorite Life Is Good. He’d previously placed second in the 7-furlong Bob Hope (G3) and should get plenty of pace on Sunday to enhance his late rally. #3 Gates of Heaven (7-2) and #7 Hung Jury (5-2) are other logical contenders for hot trainers Shelbe Ruis and Phil D’Amato, respectively.
Race 7: Astra (G3, 1 1/2 miles on turf, 6:37 p.m. ET)
#9 Ms Peintour (4-1) won this race last year by two lengths, but her lone start since then produced a poor effort in the Aug. 16 CTT and TOC S. at Del Mar. She’s training strongly for her title defense and picks up the services of top jockey Flavien Prat, but we’ll use the CTT and TOC S. runner-up #8 Quick (5-2) and recent Santa Anita allowance winner #1 Avenue de France (6-1) as backup.
Race 8: Allowance (1 mile, 7:07 p.m. ET)
The well-bred American Pharoah filly #5 As Time Goes By (8-5) graduated by four lengths in a 6-furlong maiden sprint at Los Alamitos last month, earning a solid 92 Brisnet Speed rating. She’s bred to handle a mile and is working sharply for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, setting the stage for another victory.
Race 9: $50,000 Maiden Claiming (1 mile on turf, 7:37 p.m. ET)
#3 Commanding Chief (5-2) has cracked the trifecta in eight of 10 starts and hasn’t finished off the board in half a dozen runs on turf. He’s an obvious contender while dropping down from maiden special weight to maiden claiming company, but his tendency to settle for the minor awards is a bit concerning.
We’ll certainly use Commanding Chief, but for good measure we’ll also include #2 Mongolian Kingdom (6-1), #9 Fire Polish (5-1), and #10 My Indy (8-1). The latter two have run races fast enough to challenge for victory, while Mongolian Kingdom is bred to thrive in his first start on turf.
Race 4, 20-cent Rainbow Pick 6: 4 with 2,6,9 with 2,3,7 with 1,8,9 with 5 with 2,3,9,10 ($21.60)