How to bet With, and Against, Geaux Rocket Ride in the Pacific Classic

August 31st, 2023

An outstanding field of 11, including a trio of fantastic sophomores, will vie in Saturday’s $1 million Pacific Classic S. (G1) at Del Mar. Trained by Richard Mandella, #1 Geaux Rocket Ride (5-2) is the morning-line choice. The bay son of Candy Ride is three-for-four with a second in his lifetime, and he comes off of a superb score in the Haskell S. (G1) at Monmouth Park last time out.


Geaux Rocket Ride – With

$14 exacta 1 with 7,9,11 ($42)
$.50-cent superfecta 1 with 7,9,11 with 7,9,11 with all ($24)

Geaux Rocket Ride – Against

$.50-cent trifecta 7,9,11 with 1,7,9,11 with all ($40.50)
$.50-cent superfecta 7 with 1,9,11 with 1,9,11 with all ($24)

The Pin Oak Stud color bearer has displayed both early speed, and the ability to rate early on, and the colt gets a dream post on the inside of the big field just as he did when earning his first Grade 1 tally most recently. The Kentucky-bred bay is a very athletic three-year-old who hasn’t hit his ceiling yet, and he figures to be fit following a pair of seven-furlong drills leading up to this run. Mike Smith stays in the silks.
#7 Slow Down Andy (8-1) is a bit underrated in my opinion and deserves a long look in the feature. The chestnut son of Nyquist has won or placed in seven of his last eight outings dating back to last spring, and I loved his prep for this contest when a clear second in the recent San Diego H. (G2) on the surface at 1 1/16 miles. Third in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) to conclude his sophomore campaign, the California-bred gives me the impression of a colt who will be able to endure 1 1/4 miles with the right trip. He has every right to peak while making his third run of the season with Mario Gutierrez in the silks.

John Shirreffs’ #11 Skinner (10-1) has a Grade 1 trophy with his name on it somewhere, and this could be the race. The $510,000 purchase is just a maiden winner at this stage of his development, but he has the ability to make eye-catching moves and the transition to 10 furlongs seems ideal for the long-striding three-year-old. Drawing widest in the field might actually aid the bay, as he should be able to release his big middle move without any traffic in the event. Hector Berrios picks up the mount.
The lightly raced #9 Arabian Knight (3-1) will make his fourth career showing for Baffert. A sublime winner in his first two career outings, the $2.3 million son of Uncle Mo tired some when third in the recent Haskell, but I like how stayed on late after being passed near the midstretch mark. The Kentucky-bred colt has excellent early foot and shows some sharp morning drills leading up to his second run since January. He will be a major factor every step of the way with an expected move forward under Flavien Prat.