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Santa Anita for Saturday 29 February 2020

Decent card today but the weather is iffy for tomorrow which might mean there will be selections for on or off of the turf so fewer comments because of time constraints.

Best of luck as always!


race 1    above average clarity

1  Establish Justice   2 months off and then a solid win/effort 2 back off of 28 days rest on a drop into claiming.......then another 2 month break in a protected alw race where this filly ran so so.......now back in 29 days for today's race.......and you guessed it dropping back into a claiming race........hmmm

3  Going in Vegas   consistent sort has fired back to back one mile grass races that fit fine at today's racing level.......with Prat not at SA today Cedillo gets the mount and with a better post than Prat had to work with........let's call it a wash as far as the jock situation is concerned

2  Kleen Karma   SCRATCHED OUT OF THE RACE  first on the grass might wake this filly up some as new sire Clubhouse Ride is off to an outstanding start as a sire of grass runners and he hasn't exactly mated with top mares

7  Sugar Pickle


race 2    below average clarity

1  Blame It On Kitty    trainer Craig Dollase stepped his gelding up very ambitiously and he was right in doing so as his four year old improved drastically in a 9F turf race.........he steps him up again and if he handles the longest race of his life he has a shot to upset the apple-cart here.....pedigree to get 10F is decent

6  French Getaway  SCRATCHED OUT OF THE RACE  3 of his 5 foes in this race are speed types........like our top pick he is not........that and he was able to win his latest overcoming soft fractions from the rear of the field.......should be once again motoring late

5  Royal Insider   seems better on the dirt and shorter distances.......but he sure is very sharp right now and for a trainer in Knapp who is quite hot.......tough call but dangerous

4  Swamp Souffle


race 3    average clarity

6  Castle Gate   lone lifetime race run on conventional dirt which was run in August was his lifetime best and fits fine here.......but.......more importantly than that this Mullins colt is training like an alw/Stakes horse and he is in a 25K nw2 claiming race......and with no worry of being claimed as he is not eligible to be claimed......should be tough and then some

3  Factorial   O'Neill turf horse has figs that fit fine but his lone dirt race is poor.......but it was run three years ago and of course was only one race.......working OK on dirt especially in December.......dangerous

2  Moonoverthebayou   both lifetime races run at SA on a fast track which were run over a year ago are his two best lifetime races and a solid fit at today's lower level.......but his abilities have diminished some since then......maybe the "real dirt" and racing 2nd out after a long layoff (and turf to dirt) will wake him up


race 4    above average clarity

3  Galilean   amazing that this outstanding Cal-bred is still eligible for this nw alw race........all his fast track races fit solidly here and his a.m. work hints this is not a gimme........and Sadler is ever so tough with his top runners returning off of long layoffs

7  Dessman   one of this fellow's three lifetime races has a shot to beat our top selection and that race was his second lifetime start which was at 7F at SA......but the race was run on a sloppy track......Baffert does have him training sharply for his return off of an extended layoff suggesting he might be just as good on a "fast" surface

4  Principe Carlo   seems like a good claim by Ryan Hanson and company of a colt who likes the SA dirt .........especially considering more than half the races run in a given year in S Cal are at SA ........3 wins and 3 2nd's competing at today's 6 1/2 furlong distance........not impossible but easy to place 3rd as the top two are monster's if they fire like I believe they will

5  Rogallo



race 5    average clarity

7  Predictable Tully   not much cooking in her 1st U S of A race (after showing plenty of ability in GB) but she showed it in his 2nd start in the U.S..........and the effort is somewhat disguised by an uncharacteristically wide trip by newcomer Rispoli........stout turf jock will be out to make amends

4  Lucia's Design   improving sort (impetus for stepping back up to the MSW level) and her latest race/improvement is hidden as she sat too far of a slow pace and did well to still close down for 2nd........4F speed work put in since......Velez will be sitting much closer in all likelihood today.........dangerous sort

2  Reducta   very bad trip given from a struggling rider these days in Bejarano or this filly might have broken her MSW in her latest which was run at 5 1/2 on the sod........route-sprint-route scenario today and changes jocks to one that is not struggling in Cedillo..........not out of the win picture by any means

10  Le Tub

5  Lookintogeteven


race 6    below average clarity

2  Caerulean   Ben Cecil's three year old colt has to face older in his MSW debut but he shows some drills that indicate he owns some talent.......and this seems like a good spot for a 1ster as the three that have run so far aren't exactly world beaters

6  Fellow Citizen   best of those that have run a race to date and gets to run turf to dirt.......2nd out after a long layoff.......and with 1st time blinkers........trainer Miller is strong in each of those three moves......needs a move forward and might be up for one

4  Luck is Golden   another three year old 1ster who has to deal with older but like our top selection he shows some drills that indicate he owns some talent.......and this seems like a good spot for a 1ster as the three that have run so far aren't exactly world beaters........and when Mike Puype has legged up Rispoli his stock for the most part has been "live"


race 7    average clarity

6  Smooth Like Strait   colt has plenty of early speed and he is 2 for 2 when getting the lead.......last time our 2nd choice stupidly went with him when he has shown that he is a good stalker.......so I doubt the 8 horse will put himself in that position this time around.......thus 6 should be loose on the lead today

8  Goliad   as mentioned above this colt has been successful stalking the lead and my guess is that is where R Mandella will want Cedillo to sit down the back stretch.........like his chances if that is what occurs

9  Hariboux   off pace turf runner might be a ton if the 1 and the 6 and the 8 all press the issue early.......but like mentioned above I doubt that will occur........still warrants 3rd pick as sort of a safety value in case my race shape scenario is all wet

2  Last Opportunity

5  Liar Liar


race 8    average clarity

3  Noble Contessa   four year old filly has won her last two distance dirt races at SA by a combined 13 lengths (7 Feb 19 & 12 Jan 20).......seems ready for another strong route race at The Great Race Place off of 5 solid looking works since her 12 Jan winning endeavor

1  Miss Stormy D   improved since switching to the dirt and she showed she can handle the two turns.........she did flatten out some in her last at the 1 1/16 dirt distance.......so.......the cut back to a one mile affair seems to be a plus

6  Mongolian Humor   five year old mare owns some big back numbers but is she capable of rebounding to those 2019 races?.........seems like a mixed bag 1st out following the Miller claim (from Cerin) as Cerin tends to "give nothing away" but Miller seldom makes a bad claim........tough call but dangerous


race 9    average clarity

7  Wound Tight   five year old gelding has been at his best at today's 9F turf distance going 2 for 2 and winning both by daylight.......that and both races were run on the Santa Anita turf course.......Cedillo has options as this guy is capable on or off of the pace

1  Foray   quite consistent in his turf route races in 2019 and 2020........and his lone attempt racing as far as 9F is one of his better career efforts.......bug boy Velez remains up and he owns a good history riding this Sadler seven year old

6  Originaire   owns plenty of talent for the given level (alw racing) of racing today and yet he has come up short the last two times he has been entered in one running 2nd and 3rd.........but Rispoli stays put and with many of the top jocks out of town today he likely had an opportunity to ride quite a few in this race but landed on this Mullins runner

4  Chosen Vessel

9  Gregorian Chant