PIMLICO PICKS AND PONDERINGS: May 28, 2022
In which we pick the races from Pimlico each day…
Post time: 12:40 p.m.
Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $1,781 Super High 5 — $0 Late Pick 5 — $0
Check out our other handicapping here!
RACE 1: MAIDEN CLAIMING $10,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES
#3 Oro Gris (4/1) dropped to this level for the first time last out and turned in an admirable effort, closing for third after a wide trip. Two of his three best brisnet figures have come in his two two-turn races. #5 Auspicious Lad (7/2) raced wide throughout last out but consistently ran in the 60s prior to that race. Looks to come from behind and get a piece. #7 Playing Gold (9/2) was a solid fourth when he stretched out around two turns in his post recent start. He’ll hope for a more ground-saving trip here.
RACE 2: STARTER OPTIONAL CLAIMING $25,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 5 FURLONGS (GRASS)
2-11-7-6 (DIRT: 11-2-4-5)
#2 Gravitron (4/1) stayed in when a race at this condition was washed off last week, and took the field gate-to-wire in an impressive performance. She raced on grass consistently last summer and usually ran in the upper-70s. This’ll be her second start off the claim by Jamie Ness. #11 Flirtatious Lass (6/1) got up to win her grass debut last year at Delaware Park with a strong rally up the rail. She ran a very sharp 85 in her first start off the break last out. Should improve getting back to grass second time off the bench. #7 Miss is Zippy (10/1) might need a race first off a brief layoff, but she’s ran strong late pace figures in the past on grass and can close for at least a piece.
- Jockey Sheldon Russell “really close” to return to racesJockey Sheldon Russell, out with injuries for the last nine months, is “really close” to returning to the races, his agent said.
RACE 3: MAIDEN CLAIMING $40,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES
#4 It Beats All (3/1) makes his first start since March 13, when he was a clear-cut second at Gulfstream Park and had a claim on him voided. He’s made mild rallies for a runner-up finish in each of his three starts, and has a fairly recent workout at Monmouth Park under his belt. I have to imagine whatever ailed him has been fixed by Kelly Breen. #5 Wonder Water (4/1) lost against similar by a nose in his most recent start after a rein drop. He’s improved with every dirt race. #7 Hardspun Reason (5/2) closed well for fourth on debut and adds lasix for Graham Motion. I imagine he’ll enjoy the extra distance.
RACE 4: MAIDEN CLAIMING $40,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 5 FURLONGS (GRASS)
4-3-1A-8 (DIRT: 7-4-5-6)
#4 Lunar Dash (5/2) got some action on debut, got hung wide early after a tough starts, and held on for fourth. He has a shot if he improves off his debut figure of 66. That’s the same mark earned by #3 Father Red (9/2) in his debut, which came going two turns at Aqueduct. He pressed the pace and stopped badly. Now he’s dropping in class and cutting back around one turn for Mike Stidham, who has had a great Pimlico meet. Hopefully he’ll take to the shorter distance. #1A The Last Scip (8/1) drew one of the far outside posts, making his task somewhat more difficult, but he’s very fast out of the gate and should be able to get into good position. He ran a 65 in his lone grass start so far two races back.
RACE 5: STARTER ALLOWANCE $5,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 6 FURLONGS
#3 The Wolfman (5/2) returns to his preferred surface and has a strong middle punch. He won a start at this level at Laurel Park in April in a game performance. #2 Pictor (6/5) takes a big drop in class and has lots of early speed. He’ll get some challenges on the lead, but if he runs his race he’s going to be tough to catch. #6 Rock and Fellers (5/2) went gate-to-wire against these last out and just missed against The Wolfman two starts back. He’s taken steps forward since mid-March and will be a serious pace presence.
RACE 6:MAIDEN CLAIMING $40,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES (GRASS)
11-13-9-1 (DIRT: 2-8-6-13)
#11 Crosswind (6/1) made his grass debut last out and turned in a big effort. He pressed the pace and led briefly in the stretch, but flattened out in the last eighth. The figure of 67 he earned that day definitely contends in this race. #13 Ripken (3/1) just missed in his first grass start of the year last out, and has run at last a 69 in three of his last four races. He was a little more forwardly-placed than usual last out; we’ll see if that keeps up. #9 Jardani (7/2) has shown a decent late kick in his last few starts and closed well for second last out at Gulfstream.
- BackTracks: Challedon, dominant in Maryland & beyondIn today’s BackTracks, Maryland-bred Challedon became the first two-time horse of the year after dominating 1939 and 1940.
RACE 7: ALLOWANCE OPTIONAL CLAIMING (N/W3X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 6 FURLONGS
A fun field of top local sprinters will line up for today’s feature. #1 He’s in Charge (3/1) won a stretch duel last out to take a second-level allowance optional claiming race at Monmouth Park, his first start off the claim by Kelly Breen. He’s gotten better with every start this year and will likely rate off the pace on the inside. From there, it’s a matter of if he can find a place to go. #6 Going to the Lead (5/2) has crossed the wire first in four of his last five races and has powerful middle acceleration. He’s also likely to get a good trip. #2 Battle Station (9/2) returns to dirt after a sharp third-place effort in the King Leatherbury Stakes on the lawn last out. He’s turned in promising performances in his recent dirt starts. He can show speed or rate.
RACE 8: MAIDEN CLAIMING $10,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 1/16 MILES
#2 Divine Victory (2/1) ran a big figure of 68 when she was a strong-closing second on debut, and looks for a rebound after a turbulent trip last out. #3 Bad Temper (6/1) has run back-to-back career highs of 59 and shouldn’t have trouble stretching back out around two turns. #6 Kisses for Hannah (5/1) has broken awkwardly in her two starts, but will contend second off the claim by Kieron Magee if she can break cleanly.