And they’re off at Aqueduct Racetrack.
And they’re off at Aqueduct Racetrack.|Aqueduct / NYRA

2 FREE Thursday SmartCap Horse Racing Picks - the 7th at Aqueduct and the 6th at Santa Anita – Subscribe Today!

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Today we’re going Casey Kasem coast to coast with two starter races.

Aqueduct 7th is a $50K starter allowance for fillies and mares that are four years of age or greater, going six and a half furlongs.

The second race is the Santa Anita 6th and it’s a $50K starter optional claimer for three-year-old boys. This is a turf race that goes five and a half furlongs

For Aqueduct, SmartCap has identified #3 Winifred J (4/1) as best class and a close best speed and overall. #4 Questeq (9/2) has the best last and best overall speed. Those numbers are hunky dory; however, I am going to take the #6 Peggy Sue (8/5). A recent article talked about how trainer Linda Rice has one the keenest eyes for claiming horses and making them better. She stated that the level of talented horses has become so incestuous that finding quality stock was a major challenge. I’ve followed her for a couple of months and she is not the prototypical trainer that claims horses. Her infrequency is an anomaly compared to her contemporaries. Today, her entrant is a first off the claim where her connections spent $25K and now she’s moving up in class. It could be too much, yet it is worth the shot. Linda is 26% off the claim, 29% with Jose Lezcano, 22% with a last out winner, and an eye popping 50% with horses coming back in under seven days.

Among other bets, this look like a good spot for a 6-4-3 Exacta box.

The Santa Anita 6th is another short field and the standout in this appears to be #5 Shootin Money (7/2), who is coming off an Equibase high of 86, which is significantly greater than the others have achieved. Except for the first timer, #4 Jason’s Goldie (4/1), every one of these horses have some type of peccadillo.

#1 You’reright Again – trainer is 0% dirt to turf, 0% class down and 0% first turf

#2 Bad Beat – trainer 0% off 6+ months

#3 Mosienko – trainer 4% route to sprint

#5 Shootin Money – trainer 0% dirt to turf, 0% won last

#6 Baltimore Beecho – trainer 0% turf to dirt 0% first turf

That said, there are two factors that I’ll wager on

a) Abel Cedillo rode #1 to almost a victory last out, yet he opts to ride Doug O’Neill’s first time starter. O’Neill is 18% with first timers

b) #2 Bad Beat recently worked a six furlong and this race is for five and a half. Unfortunately the fractions are unavailable and I’m guessing that the final furlong is the quickest. His prior work was a bullet from the gate at four furlongs in a strong :47.8.

So, who to bet? I’m going with #2 Bad Beat. The percentage of winners after a longer than next race is astounding. Don’t ask specifically because I’m old that way and don’t remember.

SmartCap's 7th at Aqueduct.
SmartCap's 7th at Aqueduct. RT
SmartCap's 6th at Santa Anita,
SmartCap's 6th at Santa Anita, RT

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For Wednesday, Jan. 29, we are evaluating the 9th race at Gulfstream.

This is a $50K Starter Allowance for 4yo and up going one mile.

SmartCap has uncovered #6 - Overdeliver (5/2) and I concur. It’s the first off the claim for Saffie Joseph, where he’s a 36% win prop. Add in jockey Tyler Gaffalione and they’re a 35% winning pair. This guy is coming off a razor sharp win versus lesser and his stalking/closing style will fit well with the contested up front pace. Look for #5 Speed Effect (7/2) to take the money due to his jockey – Irad Ortiz. #2 Bueno Bueno Bueno (7/2) lurks another danger.

SmartCap's 9th at Gulfstream.
SmartCap's 9th at Gulfstream. RT
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