The GQ Approach – Laurel August 17

by | Aug 17, 2018 | Breaking, Handicapping, Maryland, MD Racing

Laurel Park

First turf race of the 2018 season at Laurel Park. Photo by Jim McCue, Maryland Jockey Club.

The GQ Approach features full-card selections from Laurel Park for the live summer 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: $12,162
  • Super High 5: $1,578
  • Late Pick 5: $5,393
GQ's Handicapping Tip of the Day
Exits a “Key” Race - A “key” race is one where two or more horses came back to win in their next race, and horses coming out of the races often ran better than the figs might suggest.
Best Bet of the Day
Race 2/ #6 – Tam Tam Attack (7-5)
Longshot Play of the Day
Race 6 /#3 – Sanguine (5-1)
Multi-race Wagers
  • Race 1 – $2 Double: 1, 2, 4, 6 w/ 6 ($8.00)
  • Race 6 – 50-cent Pick 3: 3, 5, 8 w/ 3, 4, 8 w/ 1, 7, 8 ($13.50)
  • Race 9 – $2 Double: 3, 4, 6 w/ 2, 3, 4 ($18.00)


  • Weather: Mostly cloudy, high of 92
  • Scheduled turf races: 1st, 3rd, 5th, 8th, 9th 10th
  • Projected track conditions: Main – FAST / Turf – FIRM

1st Race Post Time 1:10pm EDT

Race 1 is ON THE TURF

  1. #1 — Clear as Day (7-2): Rider Feargal Lynch leaves two other runners here, including favored #2, to pilot this one
  2. #2 — She’s Divine (5-2): Don’t see much of Keiber Coa around these parts; Creative Cause filly ran a good one on debut on the main track and breezed a half on the lawn on 8/10
  3. #4 — Indigo Queen (15-1): Trainer Gaudet has a solid record with first-time starters

Race 2

  1. *** BEST BET #6 – Tam Tam Attack (7-5) ***: Crushed lesser two back and gave perfectly credible effort last out vs. STALW foes
  2. #2 – King’s House (3-1): Speedy sort should be involved from first jump 
  3. #5 – Gotham News (7-2): Probably want better value than morning line suggests for closing sort who’s more likely to be underneath in the exacta or triple

Race 3 is ON THE TURF

  1. #6 – Here’s Johnny (3-1): Speedy sort ran a good one in last grass try; trainer Maldonado’s barn a bit chilly right now (3-for-43 at the meet)
  2. #1a – The Catmancan (5-2): Has been competitive against similar, including a four-back triumph
  3. #8 – Shan Dian Kia (5-1): Recent tries vs. similar aren’t bad

Race 4

  1. #2 – On the Hop (9-5): Has beaten similar and makes second start off a 7-week break; never worse than third in six at the trip
  2. #3 – Gingeresk (12-1): Improving Robb trainee has bested elders in last two
  3. #4 – Queen of Schmooze (9-2): Beat similar in last; makes third start off a short break after edging #5 in here in last

Race 5 is ON THE TURF

  1. #5 – Esquisse (1-2): Believe me, I’m not any happier about this pick than you are: odds are gonna be too short on a runner who’s solid but no world beater, yet she’s clearly the most likely winner in this group; can’t criticize you if you want to take a swing against, and it might be worth keeping an eye out for bridge jumpers
  2. #3 – Jumpin’ Nancy (20-1): Her recent turf tries aren’t that bad, and added ground projects to benefit her; veteran Pino in the irons knows where the wire is
  3. #8 – Enthrall (9-2): Has demonstrated tendency to make big middle move before emptying out late, including in last; trainer Goldberg gives her a slow six-furlong work in preparation for this and legs up Hall of Famer Prado for third time on her

Race 6

  1. ***LONGSHOT PLAY #3 – Sanguine (5-1) ***: Half-sib to two $100k earners is working well for trainer Motion
  2. #8 – Abbo (6-1): Trainer Lawrence just 3-for-45 with debut maiden special weight runners, but this one’s sibs include Bern Identity ($877k) and Battle of Evermore ($264k)
  3. #5 – Bye Bye Bertie (9-5): Good effort in debut in the mud when running second, but rivals from that race are 0-for-4 in follow-ups

Race 7

  1. #4 – Angelinas Star (5-1): Nicanor filly is working well enough for this and trainer Robb is 5-for-27 with debut maiden claimers in recent years; he and rider Pino have been thriving together
  2. #3 – Lonely Drifter (5-2): Takes major drop from last dirt try at MC 40k
  3. #8 – Purring Valentine (5-1): Ness trainee makes ’18 debut here; show horse from last won MC 16k in follow-up

Race 8 is ON THE TURF

  1. #7 – Not in Jeopardy (7-2): Good rally in last when forced to alter farther outside after beginning to gain steam; runner-up from two back try won an ALW in follow-up
  2. #8 – Dorothy Vaughan (10-1): Cutback to short sprint should put this miss back in the mix
  3. #1 – Bells Irish Fancy (9-2): Useful season debut in last when leading until late; can move forward here, as addition of blinks two back has been a boost

Race 9 is ON THE TURF

  1. #4 – The Tortoise (5-2): Last a bit of a puzzle, but we’re inclined for the time being to draw a line through it as it came on yielding ground; return to best would be good enough for Rubley trainee
  2. #6 – Maru’s Raven (3-1): Top five from last turf start, when this one ran second, all finished in the triple in follow-ups: 5:2-2-1
  3. #3 – Swinging Star (2-1): Second off a brief break and second in Matz barn; Matz 0-for-19 at the meet

Race 10 is ON THE TURF

  1. #3 – Grace Isabella (5-1): Was one of four in the photo in last when rallying stoutly
  2. #2 – Scarfree (8-1): A turf race without front-end speed? That’s what this one looks like — except for this runner, whose Achilles Heel is penchant for tiring and coughing up lead late
  3. #4 — Oh So Lovely (10-1): Added half-furlong ought to aid cause of runner who came from the clouds to win last while in hand in final jumps; rider Toledo and trainer Farrior have stellar record together

Yesterday’s News

  • On Thursday, August 16 at Laurel had 5 winners from the 10-race card (2 Top Selections; payoff in BOLD below). The last two races of the card were taken off the turf late.
  • Top Selections are 282 for 993 (28.40%). In 2017, Top Selections went 340 for 1,197 (28.40%). The payoffs of the day’s winners…
    • R1: $9.20
    • R2: $4.00
    • R3: xxx
    • R4: xxx
    • R5: xxx
    • R6: $12.40
    • R7: xxx
    • R8: $8.00
    • R9: xxx
    • R10: $24.40
  • Of the suggested multi-race wagers, hit the race 1 Double, which returned $22.20 (bet cost: $12.00).
  • BEST BET of the Day (100:26-27-9; in 2017 119: 39-25-19) Sophia Is an Angel (8th race: 7-2 M/L; 3-1 PT) tracked the early pace under a light hold while inside, moved out entering the lane before altering back in for running room, and surged to win by almost two lengths, returning $8.00 to WIN, $4.00 to PLACE, and $2.60 to SHOW.
  • LONGSHOT PLAY of the Day (97:16-19-11; in 2017 107: 18-13-15) Carved (3rd race: 6-1 M/L; 7-2 PT) stumbled leaving the starting gate before settling into a stalking position, took command midway on the backstretch and led to the stretch before giving away to finish fourth, beatn by almost 11 lengths.

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