the Nile - Littleprincessemma, by Yankee Gentleman) showed speed in the early
stages of his debut, but tired badly to fifth, beaten by over nine lengths.
He draws the rail, which has been a good winning post position in sprints. The colt adds blinkers and he worked a
pre-race bullet, but Pioneerof The Nile offspring are 0-8 on the Del Mar Poly
and Garcia sticks with stablemate Holiday Camp. Have to respect Baffert, as he’s won this
race 11 times. Maybe he’ll stick
around for the exotics.
American Pharoah—When a jockey plays
musical horses right before an important race, I tend to sit up and take
notice. Like Laurie pointed out, the rail draw and addition of blinkers is
favorable, but his debut was anything but impressive. Baffert does warrant
respect, but I have to go with the "other" Baffert colt. Pass.
- Missannalouise, by Storm Creek) was off slow in his debut, but made up
ground over the speed-favoring track to finish third, beaten barely a length
by Inexcess Time. Freshman sire Munnings is a superior polysire. Oh Newman is
a half to Little Jerry (Candy
Ride) and heworked a sharp pre-race 3F out of the gate, so he should
be on top of things this time.
|Oh Newman—Is probably better than
what he was able to show in his debut. Not only did he break slowly, he was
also fractious in the gate and was pinched back at the start. That's a lot of
trouble for a youngster to run into in his first race, and I must confess
that that makes me a bit wary. Was all that trouble a one time affair or will
this colt end up being the type that always manages to find trouble and be
his own worst enemy? It'll take a few races to figure that out, but for now,
I'm willing to give him another shot. Contender.
Charlie - My Time Now, by Unbridled) went five wide on the turn, but still
got up to score his maiden win by ½ length.
He should love the extra distance.
The colt has breezed well since his last race. The jockey swap continues. Elvis jumps off
of him to ride Calculator while Joe Talamo takes over. Contender.
Inexcess Time—Has two nice races under
his belt. He was beaten by less than 2 lengths in his debut, and then
rebounded smartly to score by 1/2 a length in his last outing despite being
hung wide. I like his work pattern since his last race, but I don't like that
Trujillo hopped off him and opted to ride Calculator instead. Regardless, the
colt obviously likes the Del Mar track, so I see this one getting a piece of
Summation - Back to Basics, by Alphabet Soup) has been slow to put it all
together. Iron Fist beat him a length in his last race, The runaway winner
Om, hasn’t been seen since, and the third place finisher, One Lucky Dane, was
second in his last start, so who knows how strong that races was. This
doesn’t add up for me, so I’m subtracting him from my picks.
|Calculator—I think Laurie summed
this one up nicely. Still a maiden after two starts, I just can't see this
one getting it together enough to best this field. Pass.
- Successful Outlook, by Orientate) has been off slow in both starts. He was
best of the rest in his last start and owns the second highest late pace
speed figure in the field. The extra distance should suit but if he’s slow
off of the mark again this time, he’ll really need to step up his game. The pretty gray colt is a half to Test
(G-1) heroine SWEET LULU (Mr. Greeley). Mike Smith sticks with him.
Iron Fist—Sweet Lulu was one of my
favorite filly sprinters, so I may have just a bit of a bias toward Iron
Fist. He has two heavy hitters in his corner in trainer Jerry Hollendorfer
and jockey Mike Smith, and there's no denying that Tapit has been one hot
sire. Smith has been aboard Iron Fist for all of his career starts, and I
feel pretty confident that he has figured out what will work and what won't
work for his mount. The extra distance will likely help, but I don't know how
much help he will get from the pace scenario. Exotics.
Holiday - Ford Gallop, by Victory Gallop) closed for second place, beaten
only 1 ¼ lengths by Skyway in the Best Pal.
With Belmont Stakes winner VICTORY GALLOP and Triple Crown runner up
ALYDAR found in his distaff line, Henry’s Holiday should love stretching out.
|Henry’s Holiday—Is battle tested and will
looking to turn the tables on Skyway after losing to that one in the Grade 2
Best Pal. I tend to agree with Laurie's assessment overall. Contender.
Humor - Skipping Around, by Skip Trial) showed improvement in his second
start, rating off of the pace before making his move to win by ½ length. He’s a half-brother to the Grade 1 winner SUGAR
SHAKE (Awesome Again) and stakes placed Explosive Heat (Touch Gold).
Baze sticks with Henry’s Holiday, so Bejarano picks up the mount. I’d like this guy, but the Mark Glatt barn
is 0-22 in graded stakes wins.
Red Button—Apparently liked the
switch from traditional dirt to polytrack. The Glatt barn may be 0-22 in
graded stakes races, but it's hard to ignore improving numbers. Besides,
there's a first time for everything, and any trainer that has graded stakes
wins once stood where Glatt stands. I have to at least consider him for
Boss - Albany County, by Forest Wildcat) had an eventful trip in the Santa Anita
Juvenile Stakes after being squeezed at the start, he fell back and didn’t do
much running after that. He’s had a few months off and comes back for
Baffert. Garcia probably had his pick between American Pharaoh, Oh Newman and
this guy. Guess who he chose? Contender.
|Holiday Camp—Looks to be the lone speed
in this race. That coupled with the fact that Garcia had his choice and chose
him speaks volumes about what he could potentially do in this spot. Pace
makes the race, and if Holiday Camp gets the easy lead that I think he will,
it could be game over. Contender.
Mesa - Bedside Manner, by Dr. Blum) winners of the Best Pal Stakes have fared
well in the Del Mar Futurity. In the last seven years, eight colts have
won/placed in both races. Skyway is
the class of the Del Mar Futurity and the one to beat. He’s a half to multiple stakes winner AVA
K. (Dixie Union). Skyway should get a good stalking trip from
his outside post. Contender.
Skyway—Well traveled Skyway is
the class of the field, having won the Best Pal and placed third in the
Bashford Manor after an eventful trip. He's perfect on synthetics, and the
John Oxley/Mark Casse combination is a potent one. Contender.