Laurel Park picks and ponderings July 7, 2019
Doctor Mounty held off Projected narrowly to upset the 2018 G3 BWI Turf Cup at Laurel Park. Photo by Laurie Asseo.
by Frank Vespe
In which we pick the races from Laurel Park each day…
Post time: 1:10 p.m.
Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $46,722; Super High 5 — $3,463; Late Pick 5 — None
Stat of the day: Jockey Trevor McCarthy is 7-for-17 in turf routes at the meeting and has live contenders in both of today’s turf routes. Second is Jorge Ruiz (4-for-21).
Nothing wrong with that last effort from #4 Victory Given (5-2), who chased the pace, bid nearing the quarter-pole — and then was bothered by a loose horse before fading late. He held second and with a loose-horseless trip today stands a good chance to graduate. We’ll keep the show horse from that same race, #7 Promising Pistol (8-5), on the ticket, along with #5 Jack’s Dreamer (9-2), who showed little on debut but drops from maiden special weight company to this claiming spot and can improve.
The favorite in this turf sprint is #5 McPherson (8-5), who has the best speed figs and has run competitvely at this level. But he’s winless on the lawn, including two recent tries versus similar. Let’s take a bit of a swing here with #1 Godlovesasinner (6-1). This one didn’t run especially well last out but is dropping from better company and shortening back up to a distance at which he’s finished in the top three is six of eight starts.
This looks like a cozy spot for #2 Lead Astray (3-1). The Beth Worton trainee ran a decent one last time out against slightly better, finishing third, and winner Incorporate returned to defeat open $12,500 claimers in his follow-up. There’s enough pace in here to unleash his late kick, and the added ground should put him in striking range. The favorite here is #7 The Robert (2-1), who, on best, should win here but who really threw in a clunker last out, when he was done by the half pole. We’ll keep him on the ticket but aren’t inclined to take short odds.
- RACE 1
- RACE 2
- RACE 3
- SCR: 1
The favorite, and our top choice, is #5 Music Maker (8-5). This one obliterated never-won-two rivals two back and gave a respectable accounting of herself last out against better. Dropped back into an easier spot and with Trevor McCarthy up, she figures tough. We also wouldn’t toss #2 Mixways (8-1), who’s taking a multi-level drop from allowance company to this spot and gets Sheldon Russell in the irons.
Pretty competitive group in this turf sprint, and we settled on the formful #1 Market Money (5-2). The five-year-old mare has won two of three and her lone defeat came when third against better; winner Eye on Berlin had finished third prior to that in The Very One at Pimlico. We’ll also use #6 Go Magician Go (10-1). This one had previously proven herself competitive against these sorts, and while her last looks bad on the page, she ran like a horse who left her race in the paddock; she was noted as “unruly prerace,” pressed the pace for a half-mile, and then faded. Making her second start of the year, she can move forward here.
Good try last out by #3 High Society (6-1), who’s our top choice here. Two back he ran credibly against open claiming types, and in his last against never-won-three rivals, he was stalled for several jumps mid-stretch while awaiting room. He ran willingly enough to earn third once clear and can move forward today, especially with a cleaner trip. One knock against him is his unsightly 2-for-42 record, but it looks at least a little bit better once those 18 winless dirt and synthetic tries are removed. The favorite here also should be on the ticket; #1 Ride to the Sunset (3-1) made a big move while well wide on the far turn last time out before flattening out and today gets McCarthy up.
- RACE 4
- SCR: 4
- RACE 5
- SCR: 10
- RACE 6
- SCR: 11, 12, 14, 15
A fairly short but rugged field is set to line up in this Maryland-bred allowance. In a sense, the most intriguing horse here is #7 Bull Shark (2-1), who broke his maiden at first asking by six lengths with a big fig after a bit of an awkward break. The runner-up from that race returned to graduate next out. In a typical Maryland-bred allowance, he might be favored, but here he’ll have to contend with our top choice, #3 Taco Supream (9-5). This veteran crushed open a-other-than foes two back, and last out, he was a good second in a second-level allowance going seven furlongs. Had he won that, he would not be eligible for this spot, so that may be a blessing in disguise. This one should appreciate the distance cutback to 5 1/2 furlongs, a distance at which he has run one-two in five of six tries.
The last couple look kinda chalky to us. #4 Flyingontheground (8-5) won nicely last out at the never-won-two level, and the second- and third-place finishers both returned to win next out (the former now having won two straight). A repeat performance would make her tough.
We’ll go with #7 Creative Budgeting (9-5), who gets blinkers on for his first start in the Kelly Rubley barn. This one has kept some tough company, finishing third last out behind the talented Gnarly Mo, a $385,000 auction purchase, and next-out winner Edict; and two back having run second behind Top Line Growth, who on Friday won the $250,000 Iowa Derby via disqualification. Among the rvials he’ll face here are #6 Galerio (5-2), who finished just behind this one last time out after stalking the early pace; and #1 Awesome Tracker (8-1), who makes his first start for trainer Jose Corrales, drops from better company at Churchill, and gets Lasix and blinkers on for the first time.
- RACE 7
- SCR: 8
- RACE 8
- RACE 9
- SCR: 1A