Laurel Park picks and ponderings November 7, 2021
Horses race down the stretch at Laurel Park. Photo: The Racing Biz.
In which we pick the races from Laurel Park each day…
Post time: 12:25 p.m.
Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $0 Super High 5 — $0 Late Pick 5 — $0
RACE 1: MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 MILE (GRASS)
- 10-11-12-13 (DIRT: 13-4-2-7)
Before we gets started here, I’ll give a shoutout for the two Maryland-breds who won at the Breeders’ Cup yesterday. Congratulations to Sprint winner Aloha West, bred by Katy Voss and the late Bobby Manfuso, and to Classic winner and presumptive Horse of the Year Knicks Go, bred by Angie and Sabrina Moore.
Frost has knocked races off the grass of the past few days. The temperature was not forecasted to drop below freezing overnight, so the writeups will assume the races are on the lawn, I’ve got dirt picks just in case. #10 Slip Sliding Away (9/2) made a premature move last out, stalking the pace and drawing clear late only to get caught. That race was a sixteenth of a mile longer than this one, but I’m not sure if the distance was to blame. She’s raced well at 1 1/16 miles before. Just hoping that that race was an aberration, and that she’ll perhaps have a better-timed move this time around. #11 Cajole (7/2) outfinished Slip Sliding Away to get second last out, with a career-high brisnet figure of 82. In fact, she’s improved in three consecutive races. She’ll pack a powerful late punch. #12 Looks Don’t Lie (8/1) has abundant early speed and almost wired a weaker group last out. If no one runs with her, she could find things very comfortable on the lead.
RACE 2: CLAIMING $10,000, 2-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 7 FURLONGS
#3 Holiday Connection (3/1) is the only one in the race coming off a win. She broke her maiden at fifth asking last out, impressively defeating a maiden claiming field at Delaware Park. Should once again enjoy a good stalking trip. #6 No More Mask (2/1) was also impressive in victory two back at Timonium, going gate-to-wire, but struggled last out against better in her first try against winners. I don’t think she’s as good as that win over the speed-favoring Timonium track, but she’s also better than that last performance. J.D. Acosta, who rode her to victory, gets the mount back and is likely to send. #4 Cabra Chica (5/2) was in decent form earlier in the season but has declined in her last two starts. She fell too far behind to contend last out, but closed decently late. Will try to stay a bit closer to the pace here.
RACE 3: MAIDEN CLAIMING $16,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES AND MARES, 5 1/2 FURLONGS (GRASS)
- 6-4-2-14 (DIRT: 6-2-9-14)
- #6 Happylife (5/2) wasn’t terribly visibly impressive in either of her two grass starts, but both of those races were routes. She didn’t run a figure lower than 66 in either one of them; that mark might be good enough to win this race. Cuts back around one turn here as well. #4 Love Dust (2/1) was a fast-closing third in her lone grass start two races back. Adds blinkers and here. #2 Nine Mast (8/1) pressed the pace and faded last out, in her first race in over three months. She’ll try to improve second off the bench.
RACE 4: MAIDEN CLAIMING $10,000, 2-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES
- #2 Citizen’s Fire (9/5) showed speed second time out, something he did not do on debut, and stayed on the pace for a while before flattening out. It was a promising performance, and he should improve on it here. #1 Jump Free (9/2) raced wide throughout last out but won a photo for third, improving eleven points in the process. His stablemate, #3 Keen On You (2/1) adds blinkers and stretches out for the first time for Jerry O’Dwyer. He didn’t do much on debut, although he took some wagering action. Perhaps routing will wake him up a bit.
- RACE 5- CLAIMING $12,500, 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 5 1/2 FURLONGS (GRASS)
- 2-1-6-12 (DIRT: 9-3-5-10)
- #2 Gins and Tins (3/1) drops from the $25,000 starter allowance level, where he declined several points to a 77 in a mild fourth-place finish. He ran figures in the 80s consistently prior to that. #1 Railmaster (5/1) has abundant early speed and the inside post, which should be a massive boon for him. He went gate-to-wire against a similar field as the favorite at Penn National over the summer. #6 Sky Magician (9/2) just missed against a n/w2x allowance optional claiming field two back at Delaware, then tried stakes company at Colonial Downs and showed little. Should enjoy the class drop.
RACE 6- CLAIMING $16,000 (N/W2L), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 MILE
- #5 King Alan (4/1) broke his maiden two starts back, then made a solid move and flattened out in his first start against winners. He’s run a lifetime-top figure in three straight races, including a 78 last out. #7 Jack Get Back (7/2) makes his first start for the Jerry Robb barn here. He has no early speed at all, but has closed well for a share in his recent dirt starts. His career-best mark of 83 came at a one-turn mile. #4 Rippolino (5/1) tries winners for the first time after an impressive maiden win last out. He sat the trip off the pace and drew off to win by 4 1/2 lengths. We’ll see if the lightbulb angle comes into play here.
RACE 7– ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, MD-BRED, 6 FURLONGS
- #7 Juror Number Four (7/5) was well-beaten in the Delaware Oaks last out, but gets some class relief and cuts back to a distance that she prefers. She closed well for fourth in the Miss Preakness Stakes in her last start at this distance. #5 Factorintheheat (5/2) has won two of her last three races, including a win at six furlongs in January before going on the bench. The second and third-place finishers in her last race, Assume and Miss Tap Dance, both came back to win their next races. Assume won a starter optional claiming race here, while Miss Tap Dance scored at Delaware in a conditioned claimer. #6 Unrequited Love (6/1) saw a three-race dirt winning streak snapped last out, when she chased the pace against Princess Kokachin and faded. Usually, this one is in control of the pace, so it might be a different story here.
- RACE 8 — ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING (N/W2X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 1/8 MILES (GRASS)
- 1-8-12-13 (DIRT: 13-9-14-7)
- #1 Dance Warrior (10/1) enters off a very impressive n/w1x win last out, where she stormed wide and got up by half a length, earning a career-best mark of 89. Could shake it up in the stretch at a price. #8 Epic Idea (9/2) has improved her figure in each of her four starts, peaking at an 84 last out in her Maryland Million Ladies victory. She hasn’t competed at this level in a route, and this shouldn’t be too much of a class shock. #12 Judi Blue Eyes (5/1) got outkicked by Epic Idea last out, but still got up for third. She always makes a menacing move but hasn’t finished the job in a while.
- RACE 9 — CLAIMING $5,000 (CONDITIONED), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 7 FURLONGS
- #6 Cooke Brothers (2/1) has hit the board several times in a row at this level, but hasn’t been able to seal the deal. In three starts this year, he finished second twice and was a flat fourth before going on the sidelines. He improved second off the layoff two races back, and may have had some sort of ailment or mishap last out, which would explain the layoff. We’ll see if he bounces back. #2 Frankee Merch (7/2) has speed and a good draw, and will try to take this field gate-to-wire. This is his first time in a dirt sprint against these types since mid-August. He got caught up in a speed duel in that race, but looks like the controlling speed in this race. #7 Edict (5/1) races third off a very long layoff, and second time against these types. He’s likely to stalk and rally on late.
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