Laurel Park: Spot plays and horses to watch, December 10

by | Dec 10, 2017 | Breaking, Handicapping, Maryland

Edgar Prado

Edgar Prado smiles after Always Thinking won the Sensible Lady Turf Dash. Photo by Dottie Miller.

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!

First post today 12:30 p.m. The late Pick 5 has no carryover. The Super Hi 5 has no carryover. The Jackpot Rainbow Pick 6 has a carryover of $3,627.91. Eight races are on the card, all on the dirt.

  • The fifth is a seven-furlong allowance for Maryland-breds with a 9-5 favorite in the form of #2 Tricky Lion. The Dale Capuano trainee has finished second against similar in his last two dirt tries with the best speed figs of the bunch, and the Capuano barn has been having a banner meet. But this hard-knocker doesn’t win much, including just once in 20 tries on the main track. We’re going to look elsewhere, specifically to #5 Eastern Bay (3-1). The E Dubai gelding, a Nancy Lee Farms homebred out of the $300,000 earner Chrusciki, ran an even fourth last out against similar, finishing behind Tricky Lion in the process. But he was stuck down inside on a day when it was better to be removed from the rail, and drawing the five-hole here should let jockey Elvis Trujillo find the spot he wants. This runner has made just six starts, so still has some upside, and he ran perhaps his best race — a fourth-place finish, beaten just three lengths in the Frank Whiteley Jr. Stakes here — at today’s seven-furlong distance. Trainer Ferris Allen’s had a bit of a rough meet, but this guy might help him get back in form.


  • Race 1 – 6-2-4-5
  • Race 2 – 2-6-3-7
  • Race 3 – 4-1-6-5
  • Race 4 – 3-5-2-1
  • Race 5 – 5-2-6-7
  • Race 6 – 5-7-2-6
  • Race 7 – 1-4-8-5
  • Race 8 – 3-4-6-7

  • The seventh is a second-level allowance going 1 1/16 miles, and it’s attracted a big, and wide open, group. The favorite here is #8 Frosty Margarita (7-2) from the Rudy Rodriguez barn, which once again is cleaning up when it ships in (five-for-14 at the meet), and this runner certainly is capable. But her recent form doesn’t quite measure up to that which she flashed as a two-year-old and early in her sophomore season, when she won three consecutive New York-bred stakes and placed in four others. What’s more, horses breaking from the five-hole and beyond at this distance at Laurel — and Frosty is in stall number eight — have just four wins from 78 starts. Let’s look elsewhere for our horse to watch: specifically to #1 Lucky in Malibu (5-1). The Lookin At Lucky filly — the fifth of seven progeny of the Malibu Moon mare Slow and Steady to earn six figures — has been (sorry) slowly and steadily moving through her conditions, taking six tries to break her maiden, eight more to win a second race, and four more to win her third. Last out she ran a solid third in the Maryland-bred Geisha Stakes going a flat mile; the horse that finished just ahead of her that day, Moon Virginia, came back to win a third-level allowance in her follow-up, and the winner, My Magician, ran a decent fourth in a salty version of the Willa On the Move Stakes, contested yesterday at Laurel. Lucky in Malibu owns a win in one try at the trip. Franklin Ceballos will ride.