The GQ Approach – Laurel April 21

by | Apr 21, 2018 | Breaking, Handicapping, Maryland, MD Racing

Rapid Dan

Rapid Dan (#2) cruised to victory in an allowance at Laurel Park. Photo by The Racing Biz.

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.

[su_box title=”Today’s Carryovers” style=”glass” box_color=”#66ADCC”]
  • Rainbow Pick 6: $2,104
  • Super High 5: $1,462
  • Late Pick 5: none[/su_box]
[su_box title=”GQ’s Handicapping Tip of the Day” style=”glass” box_color=”#66ADCC”][stray-random][/su_box]
[su_box title=”Best Bet of the Day” style=”glass” box_color=”#66ADCC”]Race 9 / #4 – Ring Weekend (7-2)[/su_box]
[su_box title=”Longshot Play of the Day” style=”glass” box_color=”#66ADCC”] Race 11 / #1 – Ay Carumba (8-1)[/su_box]
[su_box title=”Multi-race Wagers” style=”glass” box_color=”#66ADCC”]
  • Race 1 – $2 Double  3, 4, 7  w/ 1, 7  ($12)
  • Race 3 – 50 cent Pick-3  5, 6, 9  w/ 1, 6, 7 w/ 3, 9, 13 ($13.50)
  • Race 7 – 50 cent Pick-5  1, 4 w/ 1, 3, 4, 8 w/ 4 w/ 2, 6, 9, 10 w/ 1, 11 ($32)
  • Race 10 – $2 Double  2, 6, 10  w/ 1, 11 ($12)

[su_heading size=”21″ align=”left”]Analysis[/su_heading]

  • Weather: Mostly Sunny; highs in the low-50s
  • Scheduled turf races: 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th
  • Projected track conditions: Main – FAST / Turf – FIRM  

1st race Post Time 1:10pm EDT

Race 1

  1. #4 – Velocita Brillante (7-2): Second start with blinkers, first after a brief 2-month layoff and stretches out from sprints to one mile; past running lines and pedigree suggest she’ll relish it
  2.  #7 – Our Anthem (5-1): Cold on the toteboard (11-1) in debut but got an education as she was tardy from the gate and showed late interest travelling 6 furlongs; added distance should help chances
  3. #3 – Nowitna River (3-1): FL-bred FTS by Oxbow out of an Include mare ships in from Bel with a pair of stablemates in stakes for trainer L. Rice who wins with 15% of firsters, 20% when going a distance of ground

Race 2

  1. #1 – A True Gentleman (6-1): Must have been keen in latest as he was uncharacteristically up close early leaving nothing in the tank for the stretch run; drops to bottom N3L and gets a perfect setup
  2. #7 – Junction (5-2): Hasn’t seen the Winners’ Circle since last July at Pen; blinkers on in last 3 haven’t made a difference other than being more forwardly placed early on; switches to bug boy in hopes of earning barn bill money
  3. #5 – Brilliant Choice (15-1): Connections take advantage of Waiver Claiming Rule to protect this 4-year-old making first start in 10-months while being gelded during his time off 

Race 3 is ON THE TURF

  1. #6 – Secret Temple (7-2): Had a token public workout 19 days ago in dirt sprint as this 6-year-old mare makes her living on the turf; that should help her get in position just off the early leaders today; won here last Summer at this level and distance 
  2. #5 – Justice for Sheena (2-1): Vulnerable favorite is 2 for 31 lifetime and just 1 for 17 at the distance on turf; only gets a call from the announcers in deep stretch, to get minor awards regardless of level; last win came against condition $5k claimers
  3. #9 – Fleur de Force (5-2): Claimed by trainer J. Maldonado for $5k four back and has put her in too deep in last two; drops down to manageable level but will have to improve off lone turf effort (non-threatening 7th v. $10k claimers) 
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Race 4

  1. #7 – Zorally (3-1): MD-bred FTS by Wiseman’s Ferry out of an Elusive Quality mare gets sent out by trainer D. Capuano who scored in the night cap on Friday with a firster piloted by W. Hamilton (12 for 32 as a team during the meet); last 4 works have been at 5f or further
  2. #6 – Hot Friesia (9-5): Beaten favorite when just second best in ’18 debut when coming off a 4+ month layoff; moves back up a level to take on 7 foes, 5 are making career debut
  3. #1 – Simonela (6-1): Just when the public will give up on her might be when she puts it all together to make start #19 a winning one; 7-time bridesmaid has bounced back from a “clunker” in the past; speed from the rail on cut back

Race 5 is ON THE TURF

  1. #13 – Sarah’s Whisper (4-1): Regular jock A. Cortez got back to town just in time to ride one of his favorites who makes first start of ’18 now that turf season has arrived; will have company early but if she hits the turn in front, she’ll be tough to pass late
  2. #9 – Crystal Pier (3-1): 3 for 5 on the Lrl lawn; does well at this level and should get a nice stalking trip in hopes that the early speed comes back to her late
  3. #3 – Porte Cochere (10-1): First start after trainer J. Rodriguez claim for $5k must have had turf in mind as this 5-year-old who has shown moderate success on the grass (11:1-2-1) at a higher level   

Race 6 is the Primonetta Stakes

  1. #5 – Cairenn (5-1): Gets the nod here based on ability to sit off what should be a hot early pace and take advantage of leg weary foes approaching the wire; goes for natural Hat Trick in first stakes start
  2. #6 – Short Kakes (7-2): Winner of 3 of her last four starts, the latest in a minor stakes event at Aqu versus 5 others; she’ll square off against twice as many in here, gets leading local rider J. Vargas, Jr. for trainer D. Cannizzo who seeks first ITM finish with his third shipper to Lrl this meet
  3. #9 – Chalon (9-5): Only runner in here who is graded-stakes placed; one of many with early speed but her late pace numbers tower over her rivals; could be vulnerable making first start in 6-months as only two OTB career efforts came in first starts off the shelf 

Race 7 is the Dahlia Stakes on TURF

  1.  #4 – Hawksmoor (7-5): Has towering class advantage over this group, owning multiple graded victories and G1 placings; this will be her first start in an ungraded stake since career debut; note presence of regular rider J. Leparoux, which suggests connections are serious; on best, the winner, but we’re looking for more value than likely to be on offer here 
  2.  #1 – Compelled (7-2): Never worse than third at the distance and has plenty of room to improve off last after rugged trip left her nowhere to go until too late; odd that trainer-jock combo winless in 10 tries
  3.  #2 –   Flower Fashion (6-1): No shame in last visit to Laurel, as two-length defeat came to multiple G3 winner Rymska; trainer Clement not the type to tilt at windmills, so assume she’ll be ready to run here 

Race 8 is the Weber City Miss Stakes

  1.  #1 – Goodonehoney (6-1): Makes just her second career start as she won impressively in debut sprinting on the local dirt oval after a slow start and encountering traffic along the way; connections are asking a lot of this MD-bred daughter of Great Notion to stretch out to two turns and taking a huge step up to face seasoned fillies but only needs to improve a tad based on speed figure earned in debut
  2.  #4 – Shamrock Rose (7-5): NY shipper for one of the top nationally known trainers M. Casse who gets J. Leparoux (17% as a team) to ride as they also have one in the Tesio Stakes; third race after layoff angle; runner-up in the $100k Cicada Stakes at Aqu going 6 furlongs; dirt BRIS#s are going in the right direction
  3.  #3 – Blue Union Rags (10-1): Goes for the natural Hat Trick in here as the lightbulb came on two back when finally breaking her maiden in sixth career start; can boast best last race BRIS speed-figure (93)

Race 9 is the Henry S. Clark Stakes on TURF

  1.  #4 – Ring Weekend (7-2): *** BEST BET *** Two back posted first win since ’16 and followed that with a credible try against multiple G3 winner Synchrony despite rough trip; former G1 winner has the class edge
  2.  #12 – Phlash Phelps (5-1): Big question here is the 10-month layoff; capable sort usually runs his race and likes the distance (4:2-0-1) and Lrl lawn (8:4-1-1); earned SHOW purse in this event in ’16    
  3.  #10 – Ghost Hunter (9-2): G3 winner on the lawn kicked off his ’17 campaign in this event, beaten less than a length; trainer Ness 10-for-37 off similar layoffs in last five years 

Race 10 is the Federico Tesio Stakes

  1.  #6 – Diamond King (4-1): Rough trip in G3 Swale going 7 furlongs at GP yet salvaged SHOW purse, his first defeat not counting G2 KY Jockey Club as he clipped heels and lost the jock in scary scene into the first turn; will be first real test at two turns but has pedigree to get it; like seeing work tab filled with 5f drills and one at 1 mile
  2.  #2 – Still Having Fun (5-2): Nightmare trip as 3-5 favorite in $100k Private Terms when seeking third consecutive victory in a stakes, his first two-turn start and hung late; willing to excuse him due to poor start, pinched back thereafter, rank in the back and jock putting the brakes on throughout then was green in the stretch; can make amends with jock switch to S. Russell
  3. #10 – V.I.P. Code (8-1): This MD-bred $74.40 winner of the $100k Private Terms shocked trainer P. Schoenthal who gave him one last chance to prove he belonged; got a perfect trip which isn’t guaranteed every race but pace scenario looks favorable; one bullet work since indicates he’s a force to be reckoned with in here 

Race 11

  1.  #1 – Ay Carumba (8-1): $$$ LONGSHOT $$$ KY-bred FTS by The Factor out of a Speightstown mare has the pedigree for turf and this sprint distance; well-spaced works at Lrl
  2.  #11 – Benevolent Prince (2-1): 4-year-old year hasn’t competed in a race since last May when failing as PT favorite for 4th time in 5th career start; first time in for a tag following extensive work tab 
  3.  #3 – Cape Apache (8-1): Most experienced runner in this contest with 10 starts, all but 1 on the turf is a typical late running sprinter; makes first start in 6-months; best finish came in similar situation



  • On Friday April 20th at Laurel had 7 “chalky” winners from the 10-race card (3 Top Selections; payoff in BOLD) having $2 WIN pay-offs of $3.20 (1st race), $3.80 (2nd), $3.60 (4th), $2.80 (5th), $3.00 (6th), $4.20 (7th) and $5.60 (8th). Top Selections are 129 for 421 (30.64%). In 2017, Top Selections went 340 for 1,197 (28.40%).
  • BEST BET of the Day (45:14-9-6; in 2017 119: 39-25-19) Clickjab (2nd race: 9-5 M/L; 4-5 PT) saved ground under early rating, eased out while put to pressure mid turn, circled four wide into the lane, forged to command three sixteenths out and widened under repeated right-handed encouragement to win going away by 9¾ lengths to return $3.80 to WIN, $2.40 to PLACE and $2.10 to SHOW.
  • LONGSHOT PLAY of the Day (44:5-12-6; in 2017 107: 18-13-15) Me Darlin Kara (7th race: 8-1 M/L; 5-1 PT) steadied leaving the backstretch, eased outside on the turn, challenged for the lead outside the winner in mid-stretch and hung to miss getting to the even money favorite by a neck to return $5.60 to PLACE and $4.40 to SHOW.