LAUREL PARK PICKS AND PONDERINGS: OCTober 16, 2022
In which we pick the races from Laurel Park each day…
Post time: 12:40 p.m.
Carryovers: Rainbow Jackpot Pick 6 — $8,412 Super High 5 — $0 Late Pick 5 — $0
Check out our other handicapping here!
RACE 1: CLAIMING $40,000, 2-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 5 1/2 FURLONGS
It took her five tries, but #4 Lady Serenity (7-2) finally broke through for a gate-to-wire maiden-breaking score at Pimlico two races back. She didn’t do much against better last out, but takes a drop into claimers and has potent speed. #3 Golden Neve (4-1) lasted through fast fractions to break her maiden impressively at Delaware Park last out, in a dramatically improved race from her first two outings. She’s making her first start off a brief layoff and could set the pace or be right near it. Her stablemate, #1 Don’t Tell Deren (7-2) broke awkwardly last out and lost all chance. She’s exiting the same race as Lady Serenity and has shown promise.
RACE 2: CLAIMING $16,000 (N/W2L), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 MILE (GRASS)
My top three picks are all on the also-eligible list, but you gotta pick who you think are the most likely winners, no matter if they’re in the main body or not. #13 Heartburn (4-1) cruised to a gate-to-wire win at Colonial Downs three starts back, then led most of the way in her first start against winners at Penn National. Although she was ultimately defeated, she ran a career-best brisnet figure of 77 in that race. #12 Blame the Irish (6-1) was no match against better last out, but ran on well in the stretch two back and held third against slightly better n/w2L foes, in her first start against winners. #15 Gogo Chanel (5-2) drops in class from the starter optional claiming level and has runs two figures in the 70s in each of her starts against winners.
- Armando R over the top to win Small StakesOnetime claimer Armando R rallied outside to prevail in Saturday’s Richard W. Small Stakes at Laurel Park for his second straight stakes win.
RACE 3: CLAIMING $8,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 MILE
#4 Camp Pendleton (4-1) ran a career-best 84 last out with a great stalking trip against conditioned foes. He is taking a step up in class here but has raced well at this level earlier in the year. #5 Albertano (3-1) has a steady closing style that plays well around a one-turn mile. He’s won three times from four starts going a mile. #6 Spitball (2-1) chased the pace and was second against these last out. In his previous starts, he was dull at Timonium and had a claim on him voided in the prior effort. It looks like it’s all coming together here.
RACE 4: STARTER OPTIONAL CLAIMING $20,000, 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 1/8 MILES (GRASS)
With the 8-race card, the late pick 5 starts here. Many of these exit a race at this condition on September 30, including the winner of that race, #7 Battalion (9-2). After a wide trip in his prior start at Saratoga, he set the pace here and battled back for a clear victory with an impressive 85. Horacio Karamanos had the mount that day, and gets back aboard today. #5 Papal Law (8-1) won going away at this level two races back, then raced wide against much better next out and flattened out. His various class adventures have led to somewhat obscured form but his best contends with these. #3 U S Constitution (4-1) went off as the favorite last out in that September 30 race, but had some traffic and ended up fourth. With a cleaner trip here, he should improve, and you’ll get a much better price if you still believe.
RACE 5: MAIDEN CLAIMING $45,000, 2-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES, 6 FURLONGS
All of my picks come out of the same race on September 25. #1 Elle Victorina (7-2) made a huge rally from the clouds to get third on debut for Brittany Russell. It would be nice if she was a bit closer to the pace here but that move definitely serves notice to the rest. #7 Mysisternancy (9-2) finished second that day, running an improved figure for the third consecutive race. She rated three-wide off the pace and just missed. #2 Genieinabridle (6-1) went off as the favorite that day, but didn’t kick in until the last eighth and made ground up the rail. She ran two big figures in her two prior starts and will hope for a rebound here.
RACE 6: ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 MILE (GRASS)
#8 Tom Hagen (6-1) has run his two best grass races in his last two starts. He flattened out late going 1 1/16 miles last out, but he should be able to manage his speed better going a mile. #10 Crisper (5-1) was a strong-closing third in the Alphabet Soup Handicap at Parx last out behind Buy Land and See and Midnight Hauler, both of whom are stakes winners this year. These are much easier waters. This one has great closing speed and should at least rally for a piece. #7 Wish Me Home (9-2) has run in the 80s consistently this year, and was third behind Tom Hagen last out. He got the trip and couldn’t convert, but his recent form should at least get him a share of the exotics.
- Nick Sanna’s long journey to the winner’s circleLong before he owned horses, Nick Sanna had a job sweeping up after the races at Delaware Park. It’s been quite a journey.
RACE 7: ALLOWANCE (N/W1X), 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP, 1 MILE
#7 Critical Threat (6-1) races first off the claim by Horacio De Paz off a big performance at Saratoga last out. He narrowly missed his lifetime top in each of his last two starts and has already won at a one-turn mile at Gulfstream Park. #9 Seiche (9-2) just missed at this level last out and has closed well off slow paces all over the Mid-Atlantic. He’s hit the board in his last six starts at five different tracks, however, this’ll be his first start at Laurel. #6 Tenebris (8-1) has won his last two starts while running ultra-consistent figures in the mid-80s throughout his six-race career. Those two wins came at six furlongs, but his career-best figure of 87 came at a mile and 40 yards at Tampa Bay Downs.
RACE 8: MAIDEN CLAIMING $45,000, 3, 4, AND 5-YEAR-OLDS, FILLIES AND MARES, 1 1/16 MILES (GRASS)
#1 Call Me Vivian (6-1) made a frantic late rally and lost a three-horse photo for second in her last start. She ran an 81 that day, far and away a career-best figure. #3 Foretell (6-1) ran her two best figures in her last two starts at Colonial Downs and should get a great trip rating off the pace near the rail. #7 Self Assured (4-1) made her first start off a nine-month layoff last out. She was pressed on the pace but held on most of the way and managed to salvage third. She ran a career-best figure of 83, an impressive mark for her first start in such a long time.
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