Playing the March 25 Bayou Bluegrass 5

March 24th, 2023

Sister tracks Fair Grounds and Turfway Park team up Saturday to offer the Bayou Bluegrass 5, a 50-cent minimum Pick 5 wager that includes the main features on the biggest cards of the season at both facilities.

Takeout on the Bayou Bluegrass 5 is 15%, and here's how I'll be approaching the sequence.

Fair Grounds Race 9, New Orleans Classic (G2), 5:04 p.m. ET

#2 Art Collector (8-5) showed a new dimension, or perhaps an old one, with a stalk-and-pounce upset of the Pegasus World Cup (G1) in late January. If able to employ similar tactics here, he'll figure tough to beat with a few speed elements, namely Treasury and West Will Power, ensuring an honest pace.

Turfway Park Race 11, Bourbonette Oaks, 5:43 p.m. ET

#5 Botanical (2-1) has dazzled at Turfway all winter, though admittedly was in receipt of an absolute perfect trip, pace-wise, when crushing the opposition in the Cincinnati Trophy last time. Perhaps she works out something similar here in this slightly longer race.

The other Brad Cox, #8 Flashy Gem (4-1), is of interest, too. Slightly more precocious last season, she made a favorable impression in her return to competition in mid-February against first-level allowance company over this track.

Fair Grounds Race 11, Fair Grounds Oaks (G2), 6:08 p.m. ET

#3 Pretty Mischievous (8-5) has been the best three-year-old filly at Fair Grounds this winter, taking the Untapable S. and then the Rachel Alexandra (G2) after skipping the Silverbulletday S., which was won by #4 The Alys Look (2-1). They're obviously very capable, and we'll use both while fading a potential return to form by Hoosier Philly.

Turfway Park Race 12, Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3), 6:25 p.m. ET

#4 Funtastic Again (6-1) skipped over this surface twice previously, including an easy win in the Leonatus S. This spot will be more testing and he might have other pace to contend with, but has passed most any eye test so far.

#3 Event Detail (15-1) offered little in the Rebel (G2) over the slop at Oaklawn, but is back to the site of his maiden win in late January and Lobo runners have a history of being live on Turfway's biggest day.

Trainer Mike Maker is the winningest trainer in this race during the synthetic era, with six victories dating to 2006. Thus, I'm giving #5 Maker's Candy (12-1) a look at a price despite having raced exclusively against New York-breds on dirt so far.

Fair Grounds Race 12, Louisiana Derby (G2), 6:42 p.m. ET

#2 Instant Coffee (2-1) doesn't stand out against this field on paper, but impressed so far with his ability to handle varying pace scenarios when proving best in the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) and Lecomte (G3). He's the horse to beat if able to build on those wins.

#5 Disarm (10-1) makes his stakes debut in a tough spot, but showed a lot of promise with an open-lengths maiden win at Saratoga last summer and was surely in need of a race when second in a one-mile allowance at Oaklawn on Feb. 19 following a long spell. From the connections that brought you last year's winner, division champ Epicenter.

  • 50-cent Bayou Bluegrass Pick 5: 2 with 5, 8 with 3, 4 with 3, 4, 5 with 2, 5 = $12