One Saturday closer to the only Saturday everyone has on their minds, Derby Saturday! In that spirit we have a great prep in the Risen Star with a full field. Fairgrounds also has a very strong and deep supporting stakes schedule as well. Unfortunately, When I opened todays form at Gulfstream, I thought it was a Wednesday afternoon card in July, it was so weak. I don’t think I’ve seen a weaker Saturday card at the Gulf winter meet recently. Its so bad, not what I’ve come to expect down there. An lets dive in….
Gulf race 1
7-9-2 DABRIA should be tough here, dropping a level after a wide run last time and not getting beat to much. Another dropper DUCHESS BIRD looked like she was going to be tough in her last but fattened out, should like the easier company.
Gulf race 3
7-2-5 I loved GREY GLORYs maiden win last out, should sit a similar trip breaking from the outside here. DEEP SEA has run 3 consistent high buyers, I am throwing his last race out because I just think he is better then that, love the last work, showing he’s ready. JUAN AND BINA is not a favorite I want any part of, stuck at this level for a while, just doesn’t ever seem to want to finish the deal. You can have him at 2-1 or 9/5
Gulf race 4
1-5-2 SHARP AZTECA looks like he could be fast enough to grab the lead here in what I think is a pace less race. Got bumped in his last and set fast fractions before tiring, should get an easier trip today. SINGLETON, plodded along ion his debut, got a modest number, few works since have been fast so maybe the light bulb has been turned on, if closer to the ace then last time, he has a shot. Sticking with the slow pace I’m foreseeing, EQUINE PERFECTION also might sit a good stalking trip.
Gulf race 6
1-5-4 Ill admit GINGER GOOSE doesn’t like to win, loves to come in second, I just Feel with the switch to Rosario, that should get the job done, as he is probably the finishing rider out there. ARE WE NOT MEN drops into this group off two good efforts against better. DUVAL ST for Dale Romans should also appreciate the drop In class.
Gulf Race 9
5-11-10 STOCKYARD was 23 lengths out of it in his debut, rallied to only lose by 6. Nice set of works for Pletcher since and shouldn’t be that far back today, big shot. COMMEND, has the look of a real contender for Mott with a nice debut and some nice follow up works, just might get caught wide from the 11 hole. MONTAUK MAN just missed last out and beat my top choice will be tough to deny again.
Pick 4 Play 5-11/1-6-9/3-6/2-6-10 $18
2-10-6 TWO STEPS FORWARD wont have to take many steps forward to win this, in fact a duplicate of his last is probably good enough. First timer MAKE IT COUNT should be difficult to keep out of the payoffs for Chad Brown and Rosario, long steady works, should be ready to go. With a good amount of trouble in his last, ADD FOUR should be coming late.
Race 5 In the Mineshaft Handicap I’m going to lean towards EAGLE turning the tables on INTERNATIONAL STAR, hoping he can get the jump on him and that Int’star regresses off his last huge performance. 4-3-2
Race 6 A turf allowance, I like TREND to get up this time with a cleaner trip then he got last. HAMMERS TERROR will also be tough off the layoff for Maker. 6-10-4
Race 7 CLEARLY NOW looks awfully tough in this spot with some speed to run at. 6
Race 8 The ultra consistent STREET OF GOLD will be tough to hold off in this one. She always comes with her run. NOTTE D’ORO and speedy CASH CONTROL are also live looks. 3-10-9
Race 9 STAGEPLAY will be very tough here but at short odds, I like her stablemate at much better odds, ROYAL OBSESSION. Should be able to close into a some what fast pace. 9-8-4
Race 10 I’m hoping the jockey change to Castellano will help ROMAN APPROVAL turn the tables on ultra tough CHOCOLATE RIDE. BLARP has an outside shot to upset. 3-6-8
Race 11 The big one, the Risen Star, derby points are on the line here. I like TOMS READY to turn the tables on his stablemate MO TOM. Two really good works since, showing he’s fresh and ready, coupled with the switch to Johnny Velasquez make the difference. Until AIROFORCE shows me he can do it on a fast main track, I cant put him on top, tons of talent though. 8-2-10