PIMLICO PICKS AND PONDERINGS: SEPTEMBER 11, 2022
In which we pick the races from Pimlico each day…
Post time: 12:40 p.m.
Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $3,642 Super High 5 — $0 Late Pick 5 — $0
Check out our other handicapping here!
RACE 1: CLAIMING $16,000 (CONDITIONED), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 5 FURLONGS (GRASS)
1-2-11-9 (DIRT: 4-3-8-1)
There’s 11 races scheduled for today, and some wet weather in the forecast. As such, we’ve got picks for both dirt and grass for the five races scheduled for the lawn. #1 Password Protected (9-2) didn’t run a bad race in four starts over the grass at Laurel Park over the summer. He cleared his n/w2L condition with a strong rally two starts back and was a sharp third in his first try at this level. #2 Boss is a Pal (9-2) cuts back from 5 1/2 furlongs, a much-needed reduction after getting caught late in two straight starts at Colonial Downs. He’s likely going to set the early pace. #11 Chauffeur (6-1) outkicked Password Protected in his last start and consistently runs brisnet figures in the mid-70s. He’s hit the board at generous numbers in his last few and can do so again here.
RACE 2: MAIDEN CLAIMING $12,500, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES
#9 Auspicious Lad (6-1) is starting to veer dangerously close towards “sucker horse” territory, with three seconds and a third from nine career starts. However, he’s run in the mid-60s in both of his recent dirt starts. A repeat of those performances makes him a serious contender. I’m willing to give him another shot. #6 Neverfold (15-1) improved dramatically last out to a 65, narrowly missing his lifetime-top mark, when he was a grinding third against similar at Laurel. It was the second straight race where he improved his figure by at least seven points. #5 Epic Rise (5-1) drops in class third off the claim for Claudio Gonzalez and races around two turns for the first time since last October.
- Whereshetoldmetogo prevails in New CastleVeteran Whereshetoldmetogo scored in Friday’s New Castle Stakes, while Philadelphia Belle upset the Tax Free Shopping Distaff at Delaware Park.
RACE 3: MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT, 2-YEAR-OLDS, 1 1/16 MILES (GRASS)
2-7-6-5 (DIRT: 9-1-2-3)
My top three picks exit the same race at Colonial on August 22. #2 Otago (7-2) made his debut that day, and chased on in the stretch after stalking the pace to get third. He had a bullet drill going into that race, and enters this one with another sharp workout under his belt. #7 Furiously (4-1) was beaten a neck by Otago in that race, and now goes second out for Graham Motion, who is better with his second-time starters than with his debuters. #6 Kitten Around (5-1) was well-bet that day for top steeplechase trainer Keri Brion, going off as the 5-2 second choice. He was flat in the stretch after a wide trip. He’s had a solid workout since and might improve with experience. Brion saddled a 2-year-old maiden winner at Colonial last Wednesday, upsetting a Chad Brown horse in the process.
RACE 4: CLAIMING $10,000 (N/W2L), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 1/16 MILES
#7 Uncommon Valor (3-1) has closed well in sprints in his last few starts at this level, but has run out of time in every start. He’s stretching out to two turns for the first time since April, and has run some of his best races over a route of ground. #3 I’m Not Slow (8-5) has hit the board in his last three starts and will likely be on the early pace. His main challenge on the lead will come from #2 Dashing Circles (7-2), who has lasted through long duels and just missed in two of his last five starts. He’ll likely be sent to the front and try to keep I’m Not Slow from getting away with easy fractions.
RACE 5: MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT, 2-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 5 FURLONGS (GRASS)
8-10-6-4 (DIRT: 8-5-1-15)
#8 Lady Serenity (8-1) has blazing early speed and is one of the most experienced runners in the field, having raced four times so far. She’s shown a little more tenacity late in her last few starts; we’ll see if she can put it together here. #10 How Lovely (6-1) has been working very well for her debut for Arnaud Delacour. She’s by hot first-crop stallion Justify, who has already sired two group winners on grass in Europe. #6 Breton Girl (6-1) has been working for a while and should be ready to fire first time out for Shug McGaughey.
RACE 6: MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT, 2-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 6 FURLONGS
Seven of the ten horses entered in here are Maryland-breds, and I’ve got one of them picked on top. #1 Free Admission (7-2) overcame a wide trip to miss by a neck last out, in a split maiden race at Laurel. She was in the more experienced division of the two. She earned a 71 that day, representing an eight-point improvement on her debut. #5 Blowthruyelowlites (6-1) went off favored in her debut, and while she showed minimal early speed, she closed well and got third as the favorite. Looks to improve second-time out for Brittany Russell. #7 Malibu Moonshine (5-1), a Maryland Million-eligible who shares a name with the 2005 Federico Tesio Stakes winner, worked at Saratoga for a while but did not race there. Charlie Baker ships her here for her debut, and puts Dylan Davis aboard. He rode here yesterday, but is hanging around today just for this mount. That’s encouraging.
- 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: CLAIMING $16,000 (N/W2L), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 5 FURLONGS (GRASS)
12-6-2-3 (DIRT: 15-10-5-9)
#12 Sidney Sue (5-1) has a gnarly 1-for-31 record but has shown some improvement in recent races. She earned a 73 in her last start, when she chased gamely in the stretch and got second. #6 Looks Don’t Lie (6-1) has run in the 70s in each of her last four one-turn grass starts and will be a pace presence. The same is true of #2 Mamba Queen (12-1), who led most of the way at Colonial last out. She’ll almost certainly set the early pace but will have to call on everything she’s got to hang in there late.
RACE 8: MAIDEN CLAIMING $45,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, 6 FURLONGS
#2 Brilliant Ice (6-1) has been caught brutally wide in each of his two starts to date, but still ran in the mid/upper-60s both times. Should be able to save more ground here and turn in an improved effort. #3 Take Charge Too (4-1) chased favored Elusive Agent last out, but held on for second while earning a 73, far and away a career-best mark. He gets to face an easier field today and will likely set the pace. #7 Invective (5-2) was a promising second on debut at Delaware Park, but that was last October, and he hasn’t raced since then. He has lots of upside but I don’t know if I can trust him first off the very long layoff.
RACE 9: ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 1/16 MILES (GRASS)
7-1-6-4 (DIRT: 11-10-5-2)
#7 My Candy Girl (7-2) beat starter optional claiming types two races ago, exploding through once she found clear sailing to defeat stakes winner Out of Sorts and earn a 91. Last out, she rallied wide and lost at this level by less than a length. After some up-and-down form last year, she’s finally put together two good races in a row and will try to keep the momentum going here. #1 Cupid’s Strike (9-2) was outkicked by My Candy Girl last out, but she still got third after rating in last early on. She was further off the pace than usual that day and will likely try to stay closer here. #6 Gals Gal (10-1) lost in a blanket finish in a tough Maryland-bred allowance last out, finishing behind multiple stakes-placed Island Philo and Awesome Jazz. She’s stretching out around two turns for the first time.
RACE 10: ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, MD-BRED/SIRED, 6 FURLONGS
There’s lots of Maryland Million eligibles in here. #9 Blue Collar Boom (5-2) is not one of them, but he’s going to be very tough to beat. He crushed the field by eleven lengths in his debut, then fended off challenges to win a first-level race last out. The runner-up, Maximum Impact, won a first-level race in his next start. This guy’s been working very well and shouldn’t have much trouble with these as long as he runs his race. #3 Goldenize (8-1) has been second in his last two starts at this condition, but hasn’t moved forward off some promising races earlier in the year. He’s likely to rate in mid-pack and suck up for another exotics spot. #4 Al Loves Josie (3-1) served as a rabbit for his stablemate, Alottahope, in the Robert Hilton Memorial at Charles Town last round. He ran a good race of his own, holding on until the last eighth and getting fifth. He should be able to clear to the lead from his post and will be able to control things up front.
RACE 11: MAIDEN CLAIMING $12,500, 2-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 6 FURLONGS
We’ll wrap up the racing week with a group of 2-year-old fillies. #7 Com On (8-1) was compromised by a terrible break at Timonium on debut, but ran on well late even though she had no chance to win. She’s going to be a threat if she learns how to break. #6 Ladyness (2-1) cuts back from a mile and has shown some signs of life in her two starts, with figures in the 50s both times. Adds blinkers for the first time. #4 Replicated (5-1) made decent ground in two grass starts at Colonial and switches back to dirt.