Pick 3 for Gulfstream Feb. 4, including Forward Gal Stakes

February 3rd, 2023

Gulfstream Park will offer a 12-race card on Saturday packed with five graded stakes, including the Forward Gal S. (G3), which will award qualifying points toward the Kentucky Oaks (G1) to the top five finishers on a 20-8-6-4-2 scale.

Below we provide spot plays and a Pick 3 for the aforementioned stakes along with the Kitten’s Joy S. (G3) and Sweetest Chant S. (G3).

Race 9: Kitten’s Joy S. (G3), 1 1/16 miles on turf, three-year-olds

#4 Major Dude (5-2) failed as the even-money favorite to #1 Candidate in the one-mile Dania Beach S. last out at Gulfstream on Jan. 7, finishing 1 3/4 lengths in second after a belated rally. The Todd Pletcher pupil will re-oppose his conqueror here in his second start off a layoff and should improve with the stretch-out to 1 1/16 miles, a distance over which he won the Pilgrim S. (G2) three back at Aqueduct. The Bolt d’Oro son will keep regular rider Irad Ortiz Jr., a 26% winner this meet, and posted a sharp, four-furlong workout ahead of this Grade 3 test. Pletcher is a 25% winner at Gulfstream and strikes at a 23% rate with horses making their second start off a break.

Race 10: Forward Gal S. (G3), 7 furlongs, three-year-old fillies

The Kentucky Oaks prep drew 10 fillies, including Smart Halo S. hero Twice as Sweet, and Gulfstream stakes winners Atomically and Lynx. But I like Fern Creek S. champ #8 Red Carpet Ready (4-1), who is undefeated in two career starts while running six and 6 1/2 furlongs. On debut, the Kitten’s Joy granddaughter beat the field by 10 lengths in a $120,000 maiden special weight at Churchill Downs while recording a 91 Brisnet Speed rating, then returned to win by 3 1/4 lengths in her first stakes appearance, finishing with a 92 Brisnet speed figure. The filly will also get a rider switch to Luis Saez, a 22% winner at Gulfstream and a 21% winner with sprints.

Another intriguing runner in the field is debut winner #7 Undervalued Asset (7-2), a Chad Brown filly who dominated by 8 1/4 lengths in an $85,000 maiden special weight at Aqueduct on Nov. 10. The Speightstown three-year-old has a chance if she can break well from post 7 and get out front early to set the pace. She’ll keep rider Irad Ortiz Jr., while Brown is a 25% winner with horses coming off layoffs of 46-90 days and a 22% winner in graded stakes.

We'll try to beat morning line favorite #3 Atomically (3-1) in our Pick 3 and play Red Carpet Ready, Undervalued Asset, and #6 Lynx (6-1), who posted a 47-second, four-furlong work on Jan. 29 and is eligible to improve in her second start off a break.

Race 11: Sweetest Chant S. (G3), 1 1/16 miles on turf, three-year-old fillies

From a Brisnet Prime Power perspective, #7 Cairo Consort (2-1) ranks first, 13 points higher than the next-best runner, #1 Sweetlou’sgotaces (4-1). The Cairo Prince filly won the one-mile Ginger Brew S. last out by a half-length over Stephanie’s Charm, who re-opposes here, while making her first start for Todd Pletcher. She faced much tougher while under the guidance of Nathan Squires, placing second by a length in the one-mile Natalma (G1) and third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) as a 19-1 longshot at the end of last year. Pletcher is a 24% winner with horses that won their last race as well as those making their second start off a layoff. Irad Ortiz Jr. will stay in the saddle and is 16-6-2-2 paired with Pletcher over the last 14 days.

$3 Pick 3 ticket

4 with 6,7,8 with 7 ($9)

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