by Jo Talbot

In Jo’s last foray, millionaire Heros Reward came away empty-handed, finishing fourth, while favored Biddy led throughout to win.

Not much racing today in the mid-Atlantic region, but we’ll be handicapping Delaware Park for today’s feature.  The fourth race is a $7,500 claiming event for fillies and mares three and up that have never won two races going six furlongs on the main track.  Nine horses are entered.  The morning line favorite at 5-2 is E Street Bourbon, a three year old filly with one win in nine starts.  E Street Bourbon certainly fits in this company.  Last out at this level she broke in air, was in tight, and still managed to just miss first by a neck.   Her speed figures are comparable with par for this race and at 5-2, she’s probably fair value.  However, I wouldn’t be surprised if the bettors pounded her down to close to even money by post time.  At anything less than 2-1, she’s an underlay.

The second favorite at 7-2 is Seven Days, another three year old filly making only her sixth career start.  She broke her maiden at the $40,000 claiming level but has made a pretty rapid descent down the claiming ladder since that time.  At $7,500, she is entered for her lowest tag to date.  Normally between the drop in class and having only five starts, I’d find Seven Days an attractive betting possibility.  However, she hasn’t fired in her last three races so I am leaving her out of my selections.

FEATURED RACE

Marama Mama, a three year old filly with only five starts, is much more enticing at 8-1.  She broke her maiden two back at the $15,000 level in November 2012.  In her only start since then, she showed little in a $12,500 claiming event at Laurel, not uncommon when a horse faces winners for the first time.  This race will be her first start in 2013, and her posted workouts suggest she is ready to run.   I’m going to take a flyer and make Marama Mama my top selection in this race.  She is also, coincidentally, one of two “Mama” horses in the race; Reckless Mama is 15-1.

Two other horses that figure to be in the mix are three year old Loco Sweet, lined at 5-1, and four year old Delonix, at 9-2, both of whom won their last races.  Loco Sweet’s win was in a minor stakes — the Kudzu Juvenile for Alabama-breds (who knew?) — at Fairgrounds, although that is somewhat deceiving as she failed to win previously in several attempts in $10-$20,000 maiden claiming company.  Still, her last race was her best outing to date, and she is eligible to move forward.

Delonix’s record is less impressive with one win in 15 starts, normally a big negative for me.  I generally favor lightly raced competitors in lifetime restricted races.  However, if Delonix duplicates her efforts in the last race, run on a wet fast track, it’s likely that she will hit the board in this race.  The weather forecast calls for scattered thunder showers, which should favor her.

My selections are Marama Mama, E Street Bourbon, Loco Sweet and Delonix.  Post time for Delaware’s fourth is 2:45.  Good luck!