Santa Anita & Golden Gate Horse Racing Picks for Saturday, May 30, 2020

Honeymoon Stakes – Race 7 at Santa Anita – Post Time 6:30 PM Eastern/ 3:30 Pacific

Parkour may have a significant edge over the other eight fillies in the field as she is very likely the “lone front runner” in the group and that makes her the one to beat. In her third career start last December, first on turf and first around two-turns, Parkour established a clear lead before the field had rounded the first turn and went into cruising mode, giving no other horse in the field of 12 a chance to get close while coasting home by two and one-half lengths. She never made the lead in the Blue Norther in her next start but after a three month rest returned to win even more easily on March 22. In that race, Mike Smith rode for the first time and by the time the field had run a half-mile, Parkour was in front by four lengths, widening to a six length margin before coasting home by three and one-quarter lengths. Considering the improvement expected of her in her second start as a three year old and the lack of any serious early challengers, Parkour appears pretty likely to successfully play “come catch me” with this field and earn her first stakes win.

Laura’s Light disappointed as the odds-on favorite in the Bourbonette Oaks Stakes at Turfway Park in March, her first start outside of California and first two-turn race on an all-weather surface. Prior to that, Laura’s Light had run extremely well in all three races on turf. First, she finished second in the Jimmy Durante Stakes in November with a 97 figure, then improved to 103 winning the Blue Norther Stakes one month later. Cutting back in distance to a sprint, Laura’s Light ran a strong race when closing from third of seven to win the Sweet Life Stakes in February before the Oaks. In steady training for the last month, Laura’s Light is likely to be in the catbird seat behind early leader Parkour in for the first part of the race and if able to show the late kick she put forth in the Sweet Life, could go on in the late stages for her third career stakes victory.

Stela Star won a Group 3 stakes race in her native Ireland last October in the fourth start of her career then was purchased by Hronis Racing and sent to John Sadler. Given a few months to mature, Stela Star made her North American debut in March in the China Doll Stakes and after lagging back in 12th of 13 in the early stages, commenced a steady rally to finish second at the end, beaten just a half-length. The effort earned a 91 figure, more than decent enough that with logical improvement in her second start off the layoff she could be rallying strongly late under Santa Anita leading rider Flavien Prat, who recently won six races on the day.

Win: Parkour to win at odds of 3 to 2 or more, a true KEY BET on the day.

Exactas: Parkour, Laura’s Light and Stela Star over Parkour, Laura’s Light, Stela Star and Red Lark

Trifecta: Box Parkour, Laura’s Light, Stela Star and Red Lark

Pick 3: (Ticket one)
Race 7: Parkour, Laura’s Light, Stela Star
Race 8: Rational, Traffic Stopper, Tiz a Unicorn, Rain Diva, Sweet Honor
Race 9: Capital Call, Whirl Candy, Cosmo, Rio Ocho

Pick 3: (Ticket two)
Race 7: Parkour
Race 8: Rational, Traffic Stopper, Tiz a Unicorn, Rain Diva, Sweet Honor
Race 9: Capital Call, Whirl Candy, Cosmo, Rio Ocho, Reprobate, Tallien, Unusually Handsome

Optionally, you can also play the double from race four to race five using the horses above in those races.


Race 8 at Santa Anita – Post Time 7:08 PM Eastern/ 4:08 Pacific

Rational and Tiz a Unicorn are first time starters in a race in which mostly every horse which has run hasn’t shown the physical or mental ability to win. Rain Diva has run and has a valid reason she can improve and win. Traffic Stopper and Sweet Honor are just okay but we can use them on Pick 3 tickets.

Rational opens at 10/1 because she’s a first time starter. There’s nothing special about her breeding but she’s been working consistently for her debut. The main reason I’m going to take a shot is because her veteran trainer Hector Palma pops with this kind, particularly with Flores aboard. In the last year, they have won three times and finished second once in in 13 starts with first time starters, at odds of 3/1, 17/1 and 34/1. Basically there’s nothing the public knew about two of the three winners but still the horses won and so in case this gal is live first out in a 50K Cal-Bred maiden claimer I want to have the winning ticket.

Tiz a Unicorn opens at 4/1 mostly because Prat rides for Baltas. The sire’s only first time starter in a dirt sprint to date won first out and the dam has thrown a first out winner as well. The jockey/trainer combination has won a solid 30 races from 108 starts in the past 17 months, another sign the filly may be live.

Rain Diva takes the biggest drop in racing, into a maiden claimer for the first time. She finished fourth and fifth in her two starts to date and by default should run much better, not to mention trainer Glatt has won with 7 of his last 12 maiden special weight to maiden claiming starters.

Win: Bet TWO of the THREE contenders (Rational, Tiz a Unicorn, Rain Diva) which are the highest odds, at 4 to 1 or higher.

When making multiple win bets, use a “Dutching” tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

Exactas: Rational, Tiz a Unicorn and Rain Diva over Rational, Tiz a Unicorn, Rain Diva, Traffic Stopper and Sweet Honor.

Also play the reverse, which is Rational, Tiz a Unicorn, Rain Diva, Traffic Stopper and Sweet Honor over Rational, Tiz a Unicorn and Rain Diva.


Camilla Urso Stakes – Race 8 at Golden Gate – Post Time 7:23 PM Eastern/4:23 Pacific

14 Turf Sprinters line up for the superb betting race, and if the field goes as is Ima Happy Cat and Red Livy are going to set a sizzling hot pace as neither will be able to get out of the other’s way as they are both need the lead types. I can’t find a race either ran in the past year that they won other than wire to wire and they are both capable of going 21.4 so I really hope neither scratches. IF only one of them scratches, the other MUST be added as a contender for all wagers made involving this race.

As it stands, Left Alone looks best suited to pick up the pieces after the pacesetters melt down. Her zero for seven record on turf is irrelevant as all but one of those races all took place more than a year ago and she’s a totally different horse now. Coming back from three months off, the mare put in a sensational 46.6, best of 67, half-mile workout so show she’s fit and she won two in a row before the short break, both sitting off some hot speed types. Antongeorgi has been aboard for her last four wins and knows how to get her to relax early and storm home late.

Fantasy Heat has a big edge in the “representative race” department as she’s won three of four races at this five furlong turf sprint trip. She’s closed from as far back as seventh and there’s no concern about coming back from a eight month layoff as she won in her debut at the trip. Like Left Alone, Fantasy Heat put in a very strong half-mile drill (47.2, second best of 46) coming into the race and Alvarado riding for the first time is great because he is one of the top two jockeys in the colony at this short turf trip.

Storming Lady and Tomlin are the other two contenders, both with slight knocks but still with every right to run well enough to win. Storming Lady won two races at 5 ½ furlongs on turf at Santa Anita in January and March, although she was disqualified for interference in the first of the two wins. She also won at this five furlong trip last summer at Del Mar. She put in a sharp half-mile workout the dame day as Fantasy Heat before shipping from Southern California and her best race can win. Tomlin has only run on grass once and finished third, that effort coming in a route. She’s a better sprinter, having won the Golden Gate Debutante Stakes as a two year old on the main track in the fall of 2018 and she won on March 1, one race before last, also on the main track. She was out of her element in the Grade 3 Desert Stormer, on conventional dirt at Santa Anita, 13 days ago and can rebound to the form shown in that 3/1 race where she beat three horses in this field.

Win: Left Alone to win at odds of 2 to 1 or higher.
A second win bet can be made on the one of the other three (Fantasy Heat, Storming Lady and Tomlin) which goes to post at the highest odds, with a minimum of 7 to 2.

When making multiple win bets, use a “Dutching” tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

Exacta and Trifecta Box: Left Alone, Fantasy Heat, Storming Lady and Tomlin.


Race 9 at Santa Anita – Post Time 7:38 PM Eastern/ 4:38 Pacific

Rio Ocho makes his U.S. debut in this nine furlong straight maiden race, following a short layoff since February, which is of no concern because of the likely slow pace in this kind of race. He finished second, beaten just a half-length, in a 14 horse field in his debut and was purchased by Red Barons Barn and sent to Jeff Mullins. The works have been steady and Prat getting on is a HUGE signal this gelding can run, particularly as he’s getting Lasix for the first time and an import running in a straight maiden race. Stats Race Lens lets me test a number of theories I’ve accumulated over the years and many involve horses making their U.S. debuts on the turf on Lasix. Most don’t show any high win percentage or profit, but this one, although on small numbers, does just that year after year, with the record over the last year just 7 for 30 but with a big profit of nearly 100% if you bet all 30 runners. Although 7/2 aren’t great odds they’re good enough for me.

Whirl Candy could try to take the field wire-to-wire stretching out off his turf debut in a sprint last time out in which he pushed a hot pace before tiring to fourth. He’s worked well and given his breeding should run better around two turns. Cosmo finished well for second of eight when blinkers were added last time out, at this nine furlong trip, and would be no surprise taking another step forward in form. Capital Call rallied from 11th to third in a big effort, his best yet, just two weeks ago. Smith chooses to stick around for the nightcap and ride back and this colt is going to break his maiden soon if not today.

Reprobate, Tallien and Unusually Handsome all have a shot to hit the board and since one of the Pick 3 tickets in the seventh race singled Parkour, that provides the opportunity to cover them if they should win.

Win: Rio Ocho to win at 5 to 2 or more.
Among Whirl Candy, Cosmo and Capital Call, bet the one at the highest odds to win as well, with a minimum of 7 to 2.

When making multiple win bets, use a “Dutching” tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

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Ellis Starr

Ellis is a well respected handicapper and contributor of AmWager. He has been a public handicapper for more than twenty years, educating racing fans of all skill levels with detailed commentary few other handicappers provide.

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