LAUREL PARK PICKS AND PONDERINGS Feb 6, 2021

Monday Morning Qb
Monday Morning Qb was a dominant winner of the Maryland Million Classic. Photo by Allison Janezic.

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

Post time: 12:25 p.m.

Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $401 Super High 5 –$3,810 Late Pick 5 — $0

RACE 1: CLAIMING $40,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS, 6 FURLONGS

1-5-4-2

  1. #1 Palatial Times (9/5): Beat winners at Parx three races back, with a strong closing move. He missed in his next two tries against allowance foes, now drops into a straight claimer. He ran at 5 1/2 furlongs last out, but he looks like the kind who might want more distance.
  2. #5 Indian Lake (2/1): Ran a big race last out at Penn National. He got entangled in a speed duel, dismissed his dueling partner into oblivion, and was clear late before getting caught. He earned a career-high brisnet figure of 88 in that race, the best last-out number by six points
  3. #4 Swing Your Sword (4/1): Goes against winners for the first time, after a sharp gate-to-wire win at Charles Town. That was the first time he was on the pace at the first call, usually he rates just off it.

RACE 2: CLAIMING $5,000 (CONDITIONED), 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 1/16 MILES

2-5-8-3

  1. #2 Bring Me Answers (5/2): She held on well on the pace last time, battling in the stretch until the last eighth. Won her last race at 1 1/16 miles, which was at Charles Town last March.
  2. #5 Simmard Shenanigan (7/2): Went off as the even-money favorite at this level last out, and looked like she was making a winning move before flattening out. Steadily runs figures in the mid-70s, and has hit the board in every try at this distance. If you still believe, you’ll probably get better odds than last time.
  3. #8 Two Carat (3/1): She’s run similar races in her last few at Parx, falling way behind early, then rallying admirably but ultimately too late. Her race two back was probably her best, as she got stuck behind a very slow pace, but still missed by just half a length.

RACE 3: MAIDEN CLAIMING $16,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/8 MILES

6-3-5-1

  1. #6 Grey Giant (2/1): Earned a big figure of 73 in his debut at Penn National, but he’s declined a bit since then. Still, his last-out figure of 58 is the best in the field by a good margin. He adds Lasix and Alex Crispin in the saddle.
  2. #3 Who’s Counting (3/1): Made a mild move going shorter last out, after showing no early speed whatsoever. He at least showed some signs of life in that race, suggesting that he may improve second out.
  3. #5 One More Chapter (5/2): Finished a well-beaten third against similar in his debut. He got action in that race, despite being the only firster in the group. The winner, Lost My Vowcher, looms as a contender later today. The runner-up, Pirate’s Punch, came back to win last Friday.

RACE 4: CLAIMING $12,500, 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 6 1/2 FURLONGS

5-1-3-4

  1. #5 Just Kidding (5/2): He’s won four of six down in Florida, mostly against Florida-breds, while running some huge figures. He also has far and away the best early pace figures in the field, with most of those earned in routes. Cutting back to a sprint, he could run them off their feet.
  2. #1 True Boldness (9/5): One of two Pennsylvania shippers for Jamie Ness. This one made his first start off a two-month break last out, and subsequently didn’t run up to his best. Ran in the 80s and low 90s pretty steadily last year, and will look for a return to that form here.
  3. #3 Divine Interventio (5/2): Last out, he chased a loose leader, but held clear for second by half a length over the others. I can see the same scenario unfolding here. If Just Kidding runs away with it, Divine Interventio can hold off the others and secure a piece of the exotics.

RACE 5: CLAIMING $5,000 (N/W3L), 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 6 1/2 FURLONGS

9-3-6-8

  1. #9 Embrace a New Day (5/2): Tries the level for the first time, off a dominant win against n/w2L horses last out. She sat a good trip off a duel, then powered away with an impressive figure of 73. She lost two of her prior three by less than a length.
  2. #3 Olive’s Bumpa (9/5): Cuts back around one turn, after a wide trip led to a visually unimpressive effort last out. Her best races have generally been sprinting, including a strong effort first off the bench two back.
  3. #6 In Class (6/1): She’s been knocking on the door at this level, running figures in the upper 60s pretty steadily while hitting the board in her last three. Last out, she made a serious bid from behind at Charles Town, before giving way.

RACE 6: MAIDEN CLAIMING $25,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 5 1/2 FURLONGS

2-9-6–3

  1. #2 Cookies and Cream (7/2): Had an impossible trip at Charles Town last out. Now drops for a tag for the first time, over a track where she just missed seconds against straight maidens on debut.
  2. #9 Keepyourskateson (4/5): She crossed the wire first in her debut, but was disqualified. Since then, she’s been coming very close against similar types, but hasn’t been able to get the job done. It’s a pretty soft field here, but at low odds, I’m a bit suspicious.
  3. #6 Reine Secret (7/2): Trombetta firster has had a string of good workouts, including a bullet drill a little while back. Looks like the best of the five firsters in here.

RACE 7: ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, MD-BRED, 1 MILE

4-3-7-2

  1. #4 Queen of Tomorrow (5/2): She’s gotten some time off since a relatively lackluster performance last out, where she was outkicked and finished second. Steadily ran figures in the 80s in the fall, before declining in that most recent race. If she recovers here, she’s in with a major shot.
  2. #3 Sarah’s Treasure (5/1): No fan of winning, she came pretty close last out, when she surged and missed by a nose. Has some very good late pace figures, and a grinding style that should be good for an exotics spot at least.
  3. #7 Lookin Dynamic (2/1): This Laurel-loving filly has hit the board in five of six over this track, including a dominant win against open company last out. She’ll most likely do her best running in the last eighth of a mile.
  • BackTracks: Well Armed
    In today’s BackTracks, top handicappers Armed and Stymie square off in the 1946 Dixie in the second of a trio of compelling meetings.

RACE 8: STARTER OPTIONAL CLAIMING $25,000, 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 6 FURLONGS

6-3-2-1

  1. #6 Workin on a Dream (2/1): After a winless 2020, he broke through to win last out after being pressed on the pace. He’s susceptible to a tough trip, with lots of early speed on the outside, but he is very fast early on, and has held in well against similar fields in the past.
  2. #3 Marco Island (4/1): Had a similar trip as Workin on a Dream last out, beating a starter optional claiming field on the front end. This will be his first race since that November 6 effort. In this past, he’s generally run strong races when coming off a layoff.
  3. #2 Reform School (5/1): This drop in class should be a breath of fresh air for him, as he’s been knocking heads with very tough allowance horses in his last few. He usually runs figures in the upper 80s/low 90s, which would be enough to win this race. Should stalk the leaders towards the rail.

RACE 9: CLAIMING $25,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES

4-5-1-6

  1. #4 Tribal Notion (5/1): His only bad figure came in the Pennsylvania Nursery Stakes, when he was caught wide against much better and backed up. He earned figures in the 70s in his two races outside of that, including a solid maiden score on debut. This’ll be his first time around two turns.
  2. #5 Triple Titos (3/1): Ran them off their feet on debut going short, then flattened out in his next two against winners at Charles Town. He has plenty of early speed, but he’s never been beyond 6 1/2 furlongs. Can he stretch out his speed?
  3. #1 Lost My Vowcher (5/2): The only horse in the field with a two-turn win, he crushed a maiden group last out after setting a fast pace. He didn’t run on that well late, but if he can get clear enough from the others, he might have plenty left to hold them off.

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