Laurel Park picks and ponderings December 13, 2019

by | Dec 13, 2019 | Breaking, Handicapping, Maryland, MD Racing

Anna's Bandit

Anna’s Bandit. Photo by Laurie Asseo.

In which we pick the races from Laurel Park each day…

Post time: 12:25 p.m.

Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $13,336; Super High 5 — $2,801; Late Pick 5 — None

Notable: Trainer Jerry Robb is 17-for-62 with a $3.13 ROI going turf to dirt.



  • 3-5-1-4
  • Let’s give another crack to #3 Master Distiller (9-2) in this maiden claimer; the Sagamore Farm runner had some very good efforts late last year and earlier this year before things went sideways after he left the DePaz barn; back home, he didn’t show much last time out but he was never asked for his best in the lane and drops another step today; if he can get back to anything resembling the horse he was in February, he wins here… Favored #5 Great Go Go (9-5) takes a two-level drop for trainer Tim Keefe and two back ran pretty well at the $40,000 level, but note that he got away with an easy lead and couldn’t seal the deal… 


  • 6-4-1-5
  • In her second start in the Claudio Gonzalez barn and dropping into an easier spot off an acceptable effort last time, #6 Landing Zone (3-1) gets our nod in this spot… The deserving favorite in this spot is #5 Naughty Thoughts (8-5), who dusted our top choice when they met two back, but this runner ran just a week ago in the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship, and the concern is taking short odds on a horse who must have had something taken out of her when running a distant third behind the very impressive Hello Beautiful… Big drop here for #4 Paisley Singing (5-2), who bested allowance rivals last out and may have an advantage on the off track today…


  • 6-4-1-7
  • Last time out the late-running #6 Blame the Kids (5-1) didn’t get much pace to run into in a second-level allowance and finished well up the track; by contrast, this optional claiming/starter event looks to have plenty of early types to spice up the pace — among them another runner trained by this one’s trainer, Kieron Magee — which might allow Blame the Kids to strut his best stuff; look for him to be rolling late at a distance he likes and over an off-track, which he also likes… Tepid favorite #4 Unbridled Outlaw (7-2) makes his first start in the Farrior barn and has competed with better than these but arrives with two straight defeats, the second of which was against lesser… #1 Try Flying (5-1) chased #5 Hayne’s Fever to no avail last time but figures to get a more congenial arrangement today with other speed signed on to complicate that rival’s trip… 



  • 5-1-4-2
  • We’ll eat the chalk in here with #5 Too Much Minutia (7-5), who should find the class relief to her liking and picks up rider McCarthy today… Curious to see what #4 Shake D Moon (15-1) does in this spot; the Rubley trainee hasn’t shown much on dirt — she’s not bad at all on turf — and this has the look of a tough spot for her, but seeing Pimentel in the irons — that trainer-jock combo hits at 26% — makes you wonder if she might be sitting on a move forward…


  • 2-4-6-1
  • Three scratches, including that of the favorite #9 Warm, seem to throw this one in a bit of disarray, and we land on the Gonzalez trainee #2 Mia Gift (6-1), who’s won two straight and gets Carrasco in the irons today… The Mary Eppler-trained #4 Pearl Gem (6-1) was thrashed two straight by Warm but won’t have to deal with that rival today; she makes her first start in two-plus months… 


  • 1-11-6-13
  • Top choice #1 Midnight Crossing (7-2) arrives with two straight wins, the first of which produced four next-out winners and the second of which has seen the two to run back both finish in the money; she should be on the lead or up close from the get-go under Karamanos… Thinking an improved effort may be in the offing for #11 Majestic Pic (12-1), who has run competitively against similar and should appreciate cutting back to six furlongs after a tiring effort going a mile… #6 Market Money (6-1) makes her first start in two months for trainer Jerry Robb; though her dirt form isn’t much, she’s kept much better company on the grass, and Robb is 17-for-62 with a $3.13 ROI going turf to dirt…



  • 2-8-7-10
  • Unless one of the first-time starters turns out to be something, this looks to be a pretty evenly matched maiden special weight heat, and we’ll take the Mark Reid-trained #2 Omni Diva (9-2) on top; the daughter of Awesome Again rallied mildly into third on debut and should appreciate the added furlong today… Jonathan Thomas sends out #8 Evocative (4-1), who didn’t run poorly when fourth in a grassy maiden event at Belmont, but note that only one of seven to run back has finished in the money… We’ll include first-timer #7 Windy Lane (5-1) on the ticket, though she may need a race or two; she’s a half-sis to graded winner Fioretti and stakes winner Louisville First but does not have a particularly win-early pedigree… #10 Sudden Brilliance (9-2) has run a pair of good races, one on turf and one on dirt…


  • 2-11-8-6
  • Five scratches take a bit of a toll on this contest, and we end up on the favorite, #11 Lady Kim (9-5); the likely odds are probably too short, but she ran on willingly last time once finally in the clear, and breaking farther outside may prove an advantage for her… #6 Flirtation Walk (6-1) figures likely to try to grab the early lead and take ’em as far as she can… #8 Towson (7-2) has had gate issues in her last couple, and last time out she was very hard to handle, hopping at the start, rushing up, rank when clear; if rider Rosales can get her to settle, she can be a player today…


  • 8-7-11-9
  • Another race with numerous scratches, we’ll take a stab with the Dale Capuano-trained #8 Rip Rap Riley (8-1); he enters with three consecutive wins while moving up the ladder, and last time out he showed a new dimension when rating off the pace before rallying to win — always a good sign… #7 Odds On (20-1) has been keeping better company than these and may improve with class relief today… 


About The Author

Frank Vespe

Frank Vespe, the founder and publisher of The Racing Biz, has owned, bought, sold, claimed, written, and talked about horses, in varying combinations, for a decade. Email him at [email protected] or follow him on twitter @TheRacingBiz.

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