LAUREL PARK PICKS AND PONDERINGS: mar. 25, 2022
In which we pick the races from Laurel Park each day…
Post time: 12:40 p.m.
Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $8,101 Super High 5 — $0 Late Pick 5 — $10,349
Check out our other handicapping here!
RACE 1: CLAIMING $10,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 1 MILE
We’ve got a nice 10-race card today, including a late pick 5 carryover starting in race 6. Today marks the first day at Laurel Park for apprentice Jerion Barbosa, who has been riding in Puerto Rico over the past few months. #7 Heliacal Rising (9/5) is his first Maryland mount. This one is the only one in the field who has not lost against winners. She finally broke through for an impressive maiden win last out as the odds-on choice, with an impressive brisnet figure of 74. She’s run in the 70s twice in her last three starts, while most of her rivals struggle to hit that mark at all. #5 Sax (7/2) competed against stakes horses several times last year in California, but wasn’t a factor in any of those races and has continued to drop down the class ladder. She’s shown speed and flattened out in her last few starts. Maybe the class relief will help her out, but I’m a bit wary. #1 Chica Rabiosa (2/1) has come close numerous times at this level and has abundant speed from the inside.
RACE 2: MAIDEN CLAIMING $10,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 6 FURLONGS
#5 Amicalola Falls (4/1) improved second off the layoff to a lifetime-best brisnet figure of 68 last out, albeit in a visually unimpressive performance. He broke a bit awkwardly, rushed up, and faded in the late stages of the mile contest. Cutting back should help. #6 Dune Dune (5/1) has also slowly been improving. After double-digit defeats in his first three starts, he held on better than usual in his most recent outing, losing by “only” 9 1/2 lengths. Should be a factor on the early pace. #8 Chauffeur (6/1) raced well at this level a few months ago and now gets relief from the $16,000 level. Must be skeptical with the 0-for-20 record, however.
- Deciding Vote is “aye” for MATCH Series titleDeciding Vote earned a narrow win in Monday’s Sal Debunda PTHA President’s Cup at Parx Racing to secure the 2022 MATCH Series title.
RACE 3: CLAIMING $5,000, 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 1/16 MILES
#1 Flatexcel (4/1) raced wide on the lead last out and faded. Should get a better trip with lots of early speed and a good draw. #2 Percher (3/1) got a pace to run into two starts back at Penn National and won going away. When he got stuck behind a slow pace last out, he had no chance. He has a good closing kick, but will need the fractions in front of him. #5 Ludicrous Mode (8/1) is very similar to Percher, in that he has no early speed whatsoever but always closes well. Should round out the exotics at decent odds.
RACE 4: STARTER ALLOWANCE $5,000, 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 6 FURLONGS
This is a clash between two exciting hard-knocking sprinters. #3 Beverly Park (6/5) has already won four times from eight starts this year, while bouncing between this area and the midwest. He usually shows early speed, but he’s no guarantee to hold on. By contrast, #4 Military Hop (8/5) has won four of his last five races between here and Parx while showing good tactical speed. If Beverly Park flattens out, Military Hop will be right there to take advantage and roll by. Both look like serious contenders, and given how much money they’ll take, I would only use one or the other in multi-race bets. Don’t think there’s much value in using both. #5 Rock and Fellers (10/1) looks to rebound second off the layoff and will also press the pace.
RACE 5: MAIDEN CLAIMING $25,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 6 FURLONGS
#5 Shinelikadiamond (7/2) made decent ground on debut last out and lost a photo for third with a decent figure of 66. Drops for a tag for the first time. #7 Dats a Superstar (7/2) improved sharply when she added lasix last out and gets to stay on it. She has shown solid closing speed in the past, and was more forwardly placed than usual last time. #4 Thunder Boss (3/1) makes her 3-year-old debut for Brittany Russell, and drops in class right away as she launches her comeback. She gets a fairly easy field to return to and will attract money based on the connections.
RACE 6: ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 MILE
This race begins the late pick 5, with the carryover of more than $10,000, and it’s a nice sequence. #2 Miss Chesapeake (4/1) got up for third at this level last out. It was a decent field she competed in that day. The winner, Hybrid Eclipse, finished second at the n/w2x level next out, while runner-up Award Wanted crushed a first-level field as the odds-on favorite on March 4. #3 Tweet Away Robin (5/1) fought hard throughout last out and finished second behind odds-on choice Sammie Sunshine. She lost to Miss Chesapeake by just a head two races back. #8 Met in Miami (6/1) closed gamely for second last out at Tampa Bay Downs with a strong, wide move. She’s been uber-consistent in her last few starts and boasts a victory over this surface.
- BackTracks: The kingly Henry of NavarreIn today’s BackTracks, New Jersey-bred Henry of Navarre found Hall of Fame success on the racetrack and later played a more martial role.
RACE 7: ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING (N/W2X), 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 6 FURLONGS
This looks like a three-horse race on paper. #5 Response Time (8/5) has quickly risen up the class ladder with three consecutive victories and ascending figures. Combat Queen closed well late and almost caught her, but the wire came in time for this filly as she pulled away late. #4 American Bastet (9/5) sat on the pace and drew away to beat a first-level field last out, in her first race off a two-month layoff. She’s proven she can handle pace pressure. #6 Hope Has a Name (2/1) has been inconsistent as of late, but has run in the 90s twice in her last four races and will also be on the pace.
RACE 8: ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES
This race begins the Stronach 5. #2 The Addison Pour (9/2) has run an 85 in both his starts, including a solid second in his first start at this level. Shouldn’t have any problem staying at two turns. Jamie Ness has a pair in here; #1 Heartness (2/1) looks like the stronger half. He’s run at least an 85 in each of his last three starts, including a strong third-place finish in a tougher race at this condition last out. #4 Maximum Impact (6/1) has finished behind both of the aforementioned two in his recent races. He was very impressive in breaking his maiden at Mahoning Valley a few races back and has closed well off slow paces before.
RACE 9: ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 7 FURLONGS
This is leg 2 of the Stronach 5. #4 Bandits Warrior (7/2), the younger half-sister of Anna’s Bandit, made her first start off a long layoff last out, and finished second after engaging with the leaders. It was a promising performance, and she should only get better second off the break. #2 Misty Mauve (5/1) faced a tough field in her first start at this level, and battled well before flattening out late. Cutting back form a mile should help. #10 Bazinga C (9/2) went gate-to-wire against similar going 1 1/16 miles at Penn National last out, and while the post isn’t ideal, her early speed makes her a threat.
RACE 10: CLAIMING $16,000 (N/W3L), 4-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 MILE
It’s a bit of an interesting circumstance here. While morning-line favorite has been very sharp lately, he’s ducked out and knocked out of the race each of the last two times he’s drawn the outside post. As such, I’ll take a shot against him. #7 Striking a Pose (7/2) handily crushed a n/w2L field in his first start off the claim for Lacey Gaudet, and now tries this level for the first time. He’s in career-best form but is making his first start since January 30. Still, if he runs back to form he’ll be very tough. #1 Jebologist (4/1) stopped badly in his first start off a break last out but was claimed out of that effort by Jamie Ness. He ran in the 80s pretty consistently last year and will be tough if he can get back to that form. #5 Jack Gave Back (8/1) has great closing speed and should at least rally for a piece.