Elate was much the best in the 2019 Delaware Handicap. Photo by Allison Janezic.

Delaware Park has an 8-race card on tap for this Saturday afternoon. Post time for the opener is 1:15 p.m., and we’ve got Delaware Park picks.

How’d we do last time at Delaware Park?

Race 43, 4, 5It’s $40,000 two-year-old maiden claimers in this race, and you have to include the favorite, #3 Alwaysinahurry (8-5) in your mix. The Dale Capuano trainee had a nice debut when rallying into the exacta, then was in a three-way photo for the place in his second start. Last time he was a well-beaten third behind a Godolphin homebred by Quality Road. Dropping out of the special weight ranks should put this one right there… Another making the special weight-claiming move is #4 U S Constitution (2-1). The Jamie Ness trainee didn’t show a lot on debut after stumbling leaving the gate, but that race has produced two next-out winners. Ness gave this one some time, adds blinkers today, and is 10-for-39 moving horses down from the special weight ranks… First-time starter #5 Brooklyn Strong (9-2) has a couple of decent works under his belt, including a six-furlong move September 5. Trainer Velazquez is 3-for-17 with 2yo making their career bows…
Race 41, 6, 8The speed figs say she’s not fast enough, but we really like three-year-old #6 Gray Haze (10-1), who should offer value. The Jose Camejo had a fairly disastrous trip last time out, yet still rallied into in an allowance here. She got the squeeze leaving the gate, dropping to last place; she then began to move forward but approaching the turn, she ran up behind horses and had to steady out of it again. Then she was wide around the turn and rallied in the lane while wide and still on the wrong lead. It was also a change of pace for a horse who’d shown speed and backed up in her last couple — all in all, a pretty terrific effort for a horse who went off at 15-1… We’re inclined to use but try to beat the favorite in here, #8 Gracetown (2-1). She’s run competitively against better and makes her third start off a layoff, but trainer O’Dwyer, who has a good overall record, is 0-for-30 with horses making their first start in his barn. Keep this one around in your multi-race wagers but look elsewhere for your win bets, we’d say… #1 Virginia Beach (4-1) won at first asking but makes her first start here since March…
Race 61, 3Huge effort last time out by #1 Gravel Road (6-1) when finishing second against similar. Sent off at 44-1, the sophomore dueled for the lead along the inside, disposed of his speed rival who finished fifth, but then couldn’t quite seal the deal and settled for second. That was a big step forward; can he repeat in his third off the bench? He probably will have company in the form of #4 Fix Me a Sandwich (2-1), who last time out, as the 2-5 favorite, ran off to a long lead in wicked fractions before tiring badly to be a well-beaten third… If those two slug it out up front, the horse perched just off them to benefit might be #3 Workin On a Dream (3-1), who ran a good one last out to be second to the hard-hitting Golden Candy; this one was right there all the way around and went with the winner to the wire while clear of the rest despite failing to switch leads…
WAGERING…A $1-dollar Pick 3 will cost $18.00 using all of these.