The GQ Approach – Laurel March 23

by | Mar 23, 2018 | Breaking, Handicapping, Maryland, MD Racing

Great Soul takes the 2016 Wide Country. Photo by Laurie Asseo.

The GQ Approach features full-card selections from Laurel Park for the live spring racing meet, Post Time 1:10pm EDT including a daily Best Bet, Longshot Play, and multi-race wagers — including the 20 cent Rainbow Pick-6, 50 cent Early and Late Pick-5s, as well as Pick-4s and rolling Doubles, Pick-3s and the Super High-5.

Today's Carryovers
  • Rainbow Pick 6: $109,253.01
  • Super High 5: none
  • Late Pick 5: none
GQ's Handicapping Tip of the Day
House Silks - This is a “play against” angle, especially in a maiden race. If the connections did not make their own silks available to the track for the jockey to wear, then what are the odds any of them will show in hopes of getting in a Winner's Circle photo with the jockey not donning the barn's silks?!
Best Bet of the Day
Race 1 / #7 – Island Queen (2-1)
Longshot Play of the Day
Race 7 / #4 – Magical (8-1)
Multi-race Wagers
  • Race 1 – $2 Double  7  w/ 1. 3, 4  ($6)
  • Race 3 – 50 cent Pick-3  1, 2, 3  w/ 3, 4, 9  w/ 3, 4, 6  ($13.50)
  • Race 4 – 20 cent Pick-6  3, 4, 9 w/ 3, 4 w/ 2, 3, 7 w/ 1, 3, 4 w/ 1, 5 w/ 1, 5, 7, 8  ($86.40)
  • Race 8 – $2 Double  1, 5  w/ 1, 5, 8 ($12)


  • Weather: Partly Sunny, highs in the mid-40s
  • Scheduled turf races: NONE
  • Projected track conditions… Main: FAST 

1st race Post Time 1:10pm EDT

Race 1

  1. #7 – Island Queen (2-1): *** BEST BET *** Hard not to give this one the nod let alone leaving her off your ticket  based on what she’s done since trainer J. O’Dwyer claim three back; that fourth was against a bunch of fine fillies; not concerned about the drop
  2. #5 – Mo Money Monica (5-1): Been a different runner since being stretched out to one mile; extra sixteenth should be no problem; a distant second to top pick two back
  3. #3 – Florida Lady (3-1): Only entry on the card for trainer L. Rice who ships in from Aqu after biting off more than she could chew in first start v. winners ($32kN2L) trailing throughout

Race 2

  1. #3 – Noregretsfornow (2-1): Lynch trainee was ambitiously placed for first start v. winners coming off nearly a 3-month layoff yet almost pulled an upset; should have plenty of pace to catch in deep stretch 
  2. #1 – Albertos Al Qunito (3-1): Claimed out of latest by leading trainer C. Gonzalez (31% in first off claim) but uncharacteristically waits until out of jail to run back; at least he’s back in at same level
  3. #4 – Sir Brahms (5-2): Game try in first start of ’18 when third and ahead of a couple other foes in here (#1 and #5) but that was 7 weeks ago; lone win came on Lrl dirt oval at this distance

Race 3

  1. #2– Visual Effects (2-1): Hamilton stays aboard in lieu of taking mount on #1; running style doesn’t bode well for this 5½ furlongs but is 1 for 1 at the distance; second start after one-year vacation 
  2. #3 – Off Road (8-5): Drops back to $10k tag after two tries a level higher after claim; gets 10th different rider in last 11 starts
  3. #1 – Cent Comm (10-1): Found $10kN3L much tougher after an easy win v. $5kN2L; taking a flyer that he’ll like the cut back to sprint

Race 4

  1. #4 – Lost On the Stairs (4-1): Wasn’t too happy at the break losing all chance yet still rallied taking the overland route (5-wide on the turn) to be second best; better break here will equal better result
  2. #3 – Thirst for Truth (3-1): A pair of sixth-place finishes against much better as been getting minor shares since breaking maiden 13-months ago; gets leading rider J. Vargas, Jr. for the first time
  3. #9 – Claravoyant (4-1): Been picking up minor shares against better since breaking maiden just over a year ago (10 races back); trainer M. Eppler makes another rider change in hopes of getting to Winners’ Circle

Race 5

  1. #3 – She’s Got a Shot (7-5): Prohibitive favorite took a 2-month hiatus after showing some late interest in first start after claim; gets H. Karamanos as pilot who can improve her versus these     
  2. #4 – Saturday’s Rein (3-1): Hits the board in more than half her starts but just one trip to Winners’ Circle which came at Pen in PA-bred bottom level; ye of little faith… the stretch out to 7f gives hope
  3. #6 – Kyleigh’s Smile (15-1): 5-year-old mare has a hard time stringing races without a break but if this one can wipe away the memory of her 27-length loss

Race 6

  1. #7 – Wedgewood Blue (2-1): Ran out of gas going one mile in the mud in latest but did the same two back at this distance; third start after layoff might be the charm
  2. #3 – Ladyoftheheirarchy (3-1): Should match strides early with top pick as she broke maiden going two back going 7 panels at bottom then was in over her head v. $16kN2L in latest
  3. #2 – Janealee (5-2): Gets different jock after two questionable rides making premature moves going longer; cut back to 7 furlongs with a more patient ride gets career win #2

Race 7

  1. #4 – Magical (8-1): $$$ LONGSHOT $$$ Home/KY-bred FTS by Tapit out of an Empire Maker mare for Peter Blum who gave freshman trainer B. Trimble her first winner last month; has extensive work tab; like the latest going 5f
  2. #3 – It Was Considered (5-2): Sagamore Farm ’16 purchase for $95k when a two-year-old has taken longer than usual to make it to the races, otherwise she’s a top pick with those recent works
  3. #1 – Cut Time (15-1): Could be the price horse that Pick-6 players need to weed out the Chalk; decent performance mixing it up early when stepped up to this MSW level off claim for $16k

Race 8

  1. #1/1A – Prime Time Man/Spirit Grabber (1-1): Double trouble for foes today as both have the goods to win; prefer “Man” based on strong effort in latest though he’s 0 for 7 on fast track; “Spirit” will at very least guarantee a spirited early pace 
  2. #5 – Uncle Woodrow (8-1): Been 6-months since last effort but quartet of works and confidence from trainer J. Ness to come back in protected event makes him worth a second look
  3. #3 – Sam Sparkle (3-1): Huge disappointment in last outing versus a trio of foes and hung badly but have to like fact first race off claim this 10-year-old is protected

Race 9

  1. #1 – Cherokee Fire (7-2): Rail assignment may not be a hinderance as sub-freezing temps and snow may make the rail the place to be; owns best BRIS# of this bunch
  2. #5 – Rockin Ruth (5-1): Usually steer clear of FTS in for $16k tag but this Majestic Warrior filly only cost $5k, so trainer G. Capuano might be trying to sneak in a win which would be first with a firster in maiden claimer
  3. #8 – Pictura (6-1): It’s not often you see a runner go off Post Time favorite on the step up after a third-place effort at 50-1 but this one did and dropped a big steamer (5th by 19); drops back a level; trainer D. Barr is an amazing 31% with sprint-route-sprint angle


  • On Sunday March 18th at Laurel had just 5 winners from the 9-race card (2 Top Selections; payoff in BOLD) having $2 WIN pay-offs of $3.00 (1st race), $2.80 (3rd), $4.40 (5th), $3.80 (6th) and $4.00 (9th). Top Selections are 91 for 302 (30.13%). In 2017, Top Selections went 340 for 1,197 (28.40%).
  • BEST BET of the Day (32:9-8-3; in 2017 119: 39-25-19) Classic Wildcat (2nd race: 5-2 M/L; 3-1 PT) stalked the pace, circled the turn three wide, had aim on the leaders in upper stretch and weakened in the drive to finish fourth.
  • LONGSHOT PLAY of the Day (31:4-6-4; in 2017 107: 18-13-15) Swingstage (5th race: 15-1 M/L; 63-1 PT) bumped with FLY E DUBAI leaving the starting gate, raced in the two path between horses on the turn and weakened to finish fifth.

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