Laurel Park picks and ponderings February 9, 2020
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 — $10,496; Super High 5 — None; Late Pick 5 — None
Notable: Trainer Jerry Robb has 1,999 career wins, and one horse entered today, in the seventh race.
- Favored #6 Crossingthevalley (8-5) drops a level off a pair of middling performances against better; when last seen against nickel runners, she won easily and she should have a chance to work out a good trip from the outside stall… #5 Shak’s Hidden Gem (2-1) ran a pretty good race last out against similar going a mile, and the only question is whether the cutback to 5 1/2 furlongs may leave her some work to do late… #1 R True Sensation (8-1) opened a long lead, completely stopped, and was never asked for any run after five-eighths of a mile last time out; she can improve today…
- Unless one or more of the first-time starters in this maiden claimer can run a little, this is a bad group of horses… We’ll include the two firsters trained by Phil Schoenthal in our mix; #7 Determined Pursuit (5-2) and #1 Inspired Options (4-1) both cost more than the $10,000 tag they’re offered for here — generally a bad sign — and appear to have been working together in the mornings; the former has a sibling that won at first asking, but the latter looks to have been getting the better of the morning breezes… #6 Bourbon Agogo (9-2) ran a stinker last time, but his debut one level up was acceptable, and if he can return to that, he contends with these…
- It’s possible that #1 Lucky Trinity (9-5) is too good for these, but our concern here is that she may have a lot to do late in a race without a ton of pace in it… #3 Combat Queen (3-1) won nicely last out at Laurel and may be the major speed player in this group; trainer Trombetta will leg up go-to rider Pimentel (5-for-15 in limited action thus far this meet)… We want to have #4 Girl Next Door (6-1) in the mix here; this miss makes her first start since July and for trainer Cal Lynch’s son Anthony; she was pretty green in her debut, but when she got clear late, she was absolutely flying at the end and indicated she might have lots more upside…
- This is another race where what a horse doesn’t have makes her the choice; #6 Aciano (3-1) has made all 13 of her career starts on turf and synthetic and will try dirt for the first time here, which is also her first start since May; she’s been working reasonably well for trainer Lacey Gaudet, her sire was a Grade 1 winner on the main track, and in a race in which the rest of the group is pretty lukewarm, if she takes to the main track, she ought to win here… #7 Ortinla (4-1) ran just OK last out when a distant third at the level but should appreciate getting back on a fast track… #1 Bearing Secrets (7-2) closed a little bit of ground late last time out at Parx and may enjoy the change of scenery… This is a race that could go a lot of ways, though; all of these runners look pretty similar, so spread out in your multi-race wagers…
- There’s some speed outside in this race, and some horses light on speed inside, which may create a perfect trip for the tactical favorite, #1 Chasing the Candy (9-5), who should have no problem getting ahead of the three horses immediately to his outside and then be able to sit off the likely speed of the speed, #6 Thunder Grunder (5-1); last time out he was chasing the even-money favorite who went on to win, and two back, he finished fourth behind a next-out allowance winner… #5 Lectric Choke (3-1) has run pretty good races his last two, but he’s had pretty ideal trips and been unable to seal the deal in both…
- Pretty good group of maiden claimers on offer here, including two dropping in class after decent efforts, but we’re going to take a swing with a first-timer: #4 Johnny Jiggle (5-1) is a son of Shakin It Up out of a two-time winning mare by Include; he’s been training well enough, including a bullet half-mile move January 11, at Parx Racing, for trainer Jamie Ness, who wins 21% of the time with first-time starters in maiden claiming company — and is 6-for-16 making that move with horses owned by his own Jagger Inc… #8 Paradise Pride (7-2), third against $40,000 maidens last time, and #2 Day of Honor (9-2), a credible fifth in maiden special weight company on debut, both are dropping from better levels… #6 Supercross (8-1) has been training forwardly for Mary Eppler, who’s 6-for-31 with debut maiden claimers…
- Top choice #2 Sexyama (7-2) drew away to win last time after a wide journey and wheels back on 10 days’ rest for trainer Jerry Robb (9-for-29 at the meet and at 1,999 wins for his career); this one doesn’t have a ton of speed, but may have more of it than this rivals… #5 Jumping Michelle (5-2) figures to have work to do late and has finished second in five of eight tries at the trip…
- No need to overthink this one: when trainer Linda Rice sends a horse down on the drop in price, she’s looking to win a race and lose a horse via the claimbox, and she ought to accomplish at least the first of those with #2 Eight Oaks (7-5); this 5-year-old mare is dropping from the $16,000 level at AQU, and Rice wins 34% of the time when dropping horses in half or more, including 4-of-8 when doing so at Laurel… #3 Chicken Dinner (3-1) keeps churning out pretty good races and figures the main beneficiary if the favorite doesn’t fire…
LATEST IN HANDICAPPING
We’ve got Charles Town picks and preview today as the track presents its Friday card!
We’ve got Delaware Park picks and horses to watch for this afternoon’s racing program.
We provide full-card picks and analysis for this afternoon’s races at Laurel Park.