April juvenile maiden at Santa Anita revealing itself as a key race

The term “key race” is synonymous with a race that has produced multiple horses that have run well following the said event. And a perfect example of a key race is one that was the third race held at Santa Anita on April 19. Seven horses went postward in the 4 1/2-furlong dash, and what the youngsters that have come out of that race have done since has been superb.

The winner of the maiden dash was Fore Left from the barn of Doug O’Neill. The Kentucky-bred son of Twirling Candy led throughout to win on debut, and he returned to dominate his foes at Belmont Park in a sharp Tremont triumph. $97,000 yearling purchase appears to have an especially bright future.

Phantom Boss was runner-up in his first offering in the race, and he came right back to graduate at Santa Anita second out. Shipped to Churchill Downs for his third engagement, the Shackleford colt was the 3-2 choice in Saturday’s Bashford Manor (G3) and didn’t disappoint. The Jorge Periban pupil defeated a solid field of contenders en route to his first stakes tally.

Verb remain a maiden but gave a nice account of himself at Churchill Downs on Saturday. Conditioned by Keith Desormeaux, the Dialed In colt dueled for the lead to the top of the lane before ultimately finishing third in the Bashford Manor. The colt has been third in each of his three assignments this campaign and is among the more accomplished maidens in training. He will graduate soon.

Raging Whiskey finished in a dead-heat for third with the aforementioned Verb in that dash and came back to post a 2 1/4-length triumph for conditioner Luis Mendez. The Bourbon Courage colt posted a healthy 87 BRIS Speed figure for his work and could be stakes bound before long.

The Val Brinkerhoff-trained Bobs Blues Man was a well-beaten fifth in the loaded maiden event when going postward at 49-1. The Can the Man gelding showed improvement in his subsequent outing when finishing second-best in a $50,000 maiden claiming contest at Santa Anita. The bay could make good in his third lifetime performance with a forward move.

Restoring Dreams has finished fourth and sixth following his sixth-place finish in the April 19 maiden run. The $110,000 Candy Ride colt has shown early foot in each of his tries to this point, and his dam is a half-sister to a multiple stakes queen who thrived on the turf and synthetic surfaces. Tab this one for success if/when he opts for a run on the green or all-weather.

Twirling Derby was never involved in his debut and has no published works since late May. However, with the success of the runners exiting the April 19 maiden tilt, we would suggest putting this dark bay colt in your horses to watch list.

In total, the April maiden dash at Santa Anita has produced two good-looking stakes winners, a graded-placed juvenile, an impressive next-out graduate, a two-year-old who finished second, as well as a pair of youngsters that should not be taken lightly going forward.

It is not easy to define a key race when it occurs. But when you do envision one, there is money to be made.


(c) Horsephotos.com/Kathleen O’Leary

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How to Bet the 2019 Bashford Manor Stakes

A field of 10 two-year-olds will go six furlongs on the Churchill Downs dirt in Saturday’s $125,000 Bashford Manor Stakes (G3). Half of the well-matched field was victorious last time out with a pair of most impressive winners among those.

FREE Bashford Manor Stakes (G3) PPs courtesy of Brisnet.com!

PHANTOM BOSS (#1) (9-5) — Shackleford colt has run a pair of nice ones at the maiden level and makes his stakes debut in this spot. Jorge Periban trainee was a head shy on debut to a runner who dominated the Tremont Stakes in his subsequent performance. Likely one to beat will have Rafael Bejarano in the silks.

SNELL YEAH (#2) (8-1) — John Ennis trainee will aim to break his maiden in a graded race today. Kentucky-bred was a clear second to a nice one in the slop on this surface most recently, and he deserves a chance with a forward move against this cast. Gabriel Saez picks up the potentially live mount.

ALEC AND ARTHUR (#3) (8-1)Stakes-placed son of Successful Appeal hasn’t done much wrong from a trio of lifetime runs, two of which resulted in victories. May foal prepped for this with a facile allowance win on the course and smoked a bullet half-mile in the interim. Colt is very logical with Tyler Gaffalione on board.

ROOKIE SALSA (#4) (5-1) — Kentucky Juvenile Stakes star finished third in the Tremont Stakes most recently and returns to the Bluegrass State for this assignment. Two Step Salsa colt was a winner in his lone local appearance and has to be given a winning chance beneath Angel Suarez.

FINNICK THE FIERCE (#5) (30-1) — Second timer was a resilient winner on debut at Indiana Grand and has some appeal at a price. Chestnut son of Dialed In will be forwardly placed in the early stages with Abel Lezcano retaining the mount.

SILENT MALICE (#6) (20-1) — Maiden returns in just six days following a third-place maiden run at Churchill Downs on Sunday. Interesting sort was never going to win last time, but he did show great interest late once getting a clear run. Chris Landeros will guide the exotics contender.

JAMMING CAMERON (#7) (30-1) — Longshot was outrun with allowance foes in his Churchill Downs debut most recently. Maiden winner will need marked improvement to challenge this field in the stretch.

VERB (#8) (9-2) — Keith Desormeaux trainee has put in a pair of solid third-place finishes from two races to date. $65,000 Dialed In colt could put it all together in his third lifetime assignment. James Graham gets off of another contender to pilot the Kentucky-bred.

TWO LAST WORDS (#9) (15-1) — Bay gelding from the Tim Glyshaw barn led throughout in an off-the-turf race at Indiana Grand on debut. The second timer faces a tall task in this event, but he could be in the mix from the start in a field lacking an abundance of pace. Corey Lanerie takes the call.

ROWDY YATES (#10) (7-2) — Superb first out winner draws widest as a major contender for conditioner Steve Asmussen. $42,000 son of Morning Line was geared down late in his maiden romp and should have clear sailing throughout from this slot. Oklahoma-bred will always be forcing the pace under Ricardo Santana Jr..


Phantom Boss will be sent from the rail, and he will likely have company on his outside from Alec and Arthur, Two Last Words and Rowdy Yates.

Verb and Rookie Salsa will be in the next flight hoping to pounce at the head of the stretch, while Silent Malice will aim to run them all down late.


$20 Win #1 = $20
$1 Trifecta Part Wheel: 1,10 with 1,8,10 with 1,4,5,6,8,10 = $16

PHOTO: Phantom Boss (c) Benoit Photos

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