4-9. We turned the corner a little -- for the day at least -- as we had more winners on top (4) than top selections running second (2). But the way it started had us worried as our top two completed the 1st race exacta in reverse order -- doh, not another one! But then we proceeded to rip off four straight winners on top (2nd, $5.00; 3rd, $2.80; 4th, $5.50; 5th, $9.70). Those consecutive wins meant a 2nd/3rd race daily double ($7.60/$2), races 2-3-4 P3 ($23.60), and races 3-4-5 P3 ($53.00).
We also had a nice mix of gimmicks -- the highlight of which was probably the 4th race tri where our top pick won followed by our third and then second choices for a generous $540.00/$2 payoff. The race was particularly exciting because it was a 5F sprint for 2YO fillies and our top pick, Pletcher's Ready's Gal got off to a bad start and spotted the field what appeared to be too many lengths to make up. Coming into the lane Gal was still too far back for us to feel good -- but she started to gain ground. By the finish line she had miraculously made up all the lost ground and was almost three lengths in front. Then the second happy jolt of the day was when the prices were posted. With the fave on top, not only was the tri juicy but so was the exacta ($106.50).
Besides the flip-flopped exacta in the 1st ($14.60), we also had a cold exacta in the 2nd ($18.20). There were a smattering of additional payoffs using the picks on the card.
Attendance was 16,849 and they enjoyed what ironically was probably the best day of the meet. Ironic because the weather forecast was calling for miserable conditions, wet and cold. Instead the temps were comfortable, the humidity was low, and, though there were some clouds, there was no precipitation to speak of and the sun even broke through a few times.
There is a $52K P6 carryover.
Yougonow...Woke up last time to run best race yet -- by far. The question now is: Was it the switch to turf -- or was he showing added maturity in second start as a 3YO? We're betting the latter but we'll know better after today.
Seaside Salute...Just missed in latest.
Mayo Post...Last seems to indicate he might be getting the hang of it -- and jock switch is big.
Nick the Noodge.
Moon Dolly...Tried a couple turfers at Churchill but last confirms that this one is probably better on dirt.
Thin Air...Mott filly returns to dirt after turf try.
Starlit Lake...Good improvement from first to second start.
Taittinger Rose...We liked her last time in the minor Monmouth stake -- jock had her too far back early. Expect a better trip under Bailey.
Points West...Going well this year if we ignore the clunker two back.
Two Mile Hill...Might have bounced last time off of big effort two back. Could be dangerous if able to rebound.
Come Close...Got a nice prep last time at Colonial under a 7-pound bug. Expect a good try today.
Zurich...Second-time starter for Mott -- a potent angle.
English Channel...First-time for Pletcher -- another good angle, although two-turns on grass is a tough debut event.
On dirt: Come Close, United, English Channel, Zurich, Triton, Port Chester, Thunder Ridge.
The Penny Drops...Had real trouble separating this one and Sabre Baby, eventually just went for the top trainer/jock combo and the improved form shown after two-month layoff.
Sabre Baby...Nice improving form since being claimed this winter.
Potomac Chase...Has done well when dropped in for a tag before.
On dirt: Chelyan, Rubi Echo, Riddle, Potomac Chase, Parkers Mill.
Palacios Appeal...Asmussen trainee drops into mdn clm'r from MSW, a 34% move for this conditioner -- including the winner of Thurday's second race.
Golden Laces...Have a feeling this Delaware-based 2Yo will come out running.
Mr Heartbreaker...Also makes the potent move from mdn clm to MSW.
Garavogue...Iwinski filly has blasted two off-the-turf field at Delaware. Looks well-meant for the surface and can keep streak alive.
Path of Thunder...Pletcher/Tabor runner has shown good form on dirt and looks like the one to beat.
Aspen Gal...Kind of a hard read. Frankel/Gann private purchase off of a nice 2YO season in midwest. Hasn't quite panned out although graded stake sprint tries weren't all that bad. And just missed in a turf sprint stake at Santa Anita this winter. The face that they're looking at this two-turn turf alw seems to indicate they're experimenting a little -- but these connections are always dangerous.
EIGHTH RACE - Honorable Miss G2 $150K
Ebony Breeze...Good improving form in four starts this season. We have to hope she holds it and doesn't bounce off of nice Philly stakes win.
Yell...McGaughey filly is arguably better sprinting.
Summer Mis...11-20 lifetime. 7-9 at the trip. Typically is in the mix.
Say Cousin Lenny...A little leery about putting this guy on top because he's been a long time in this condition -- but that first start of the year was very good and he picks up Prado today.
Casper Peterson...Probably would be top pick but latest raises some questions. did he just need one after six week layoff, or is he off-form? We're always willing to forgive one, so we'll leave him in the mix, but can't put him on top.
Joshua's Jet...Expect a good run third off layoff.
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