Laurel Park: Spot plays and horses to watch, October 29
Gary Quill is taking a brief hiatus from his GQ Approach full-card picks and analysis. In his stead, we present daily spot plays and horses to watch. Good luck!
- The second race, a $40,000 maiden claimer for older fillies and mares going seven furlongs, is probably going to present a chance to root — or observe — more than wager. Maybe wager just a little. The horse we’ll have an eye on is #3 Great Craic (15-1). The sophomore Bullsbay filly is winless in her three tries to date, though we can probably toss the last, a disastrous last-place finish on turf. Back on the main track, she could give an improved account of herself and may appreciate a bit of added ground after going 6 furlongs and 5 1/2 furlongs in her two prior dirt tries. She’s a half-sister to the millionaire Grade 1 winner Cathryn Sophia, who, despite winning the Kentucky Oaks at 1 1/8 miles, probably was at her very best going seven furlongs. Despite the travails of her last, Forest Boyce stays aboard the Tim Keefe trainee. Look for an improved try here.
- The seventh is a $40,000 maiden special weight test for two-year-old fillies going one mile on the main track. It’s brought together a group of horses with performances that, for the most part, are just OK — nothing to wow you. While the morning line fave here is #6 Vindictive Ways (5-2), a runner from the Tres Abbott barn who was second last out in her second career start, the horse we’re intrigued by here is one stall farther out. #7 Tip Top Tap (9-2) was fifth on debut on the synthetic at Presque Isle, and that race has produced three next-out winners from six to run back. The daughter of Tapit had a bit of a rough trip that day before making up ground belatedly, and she gets Lasix for the first time today. The Graham Motion trainee is a full-sister to Grade 1-winning millionaire Ring Weekend, and while that suggests she’ll like the turf, her last work — a bullet half-mile on the dirt — indicates the main track shouldn’t be an issue. Sheldon Russell has the mount.