We have five plays in four total races, two at each oval, and we are expecting fast dirt in all of them. First picked post is 4:15 pm EDT
Will Rogers Downs in Oklahoma and Fonner Park in Nebraska are the only tracks running today. We have five plays in four total races, two at each oval, and we are expecting fast dirt in all of them. Let’s go.
Allowance, 6 furlongs, Dirt, Oklahoma-bred Fillies & Mares 3 & Up
This first-level allowance for state-bred females drew a field of nine. The races at Will Rogers the past few weeks have pretty dramatically favored horses on the outside in the stretch, which means in one turn races, like this one, you want to avoid horses who will be running along the rail. We’re looking for stalkers and closers making wide moves around the far turn, with outside post positions favored.
That makes 8-Justaboutright just about right: she’s won two of her last three races with exactly the kind of trip that is winning at Will Rogers now, sitting a few lengths off the pace, making a wide move around the turn, and finishing strongly down the stretch. By going wide, she’ll be running on the better part of the track, which is analogous to one fish swimming with a current while the others are trying to move through still water. At 9/2, she is a fantastic play, and we will bet her enthusiastically. The bet: Will Rogers Downs, Race 5, $50 to win on 8-Justaboutright.
Allowance, 6 furlongs, Dirt, Nebraska-breds 3 & Up
Six state-bred seek the second win of their career in this first-level allowance at 6 furlongs. 4-Gogetmbugs is the play, one based primarily on speed figures, as the Beyer fig he earned in his last race, a 32 when he finished second at a similar level on May 5, is 15-20 points higher than the last-race figures the other five earned. This means that at six furlongs, he’s about five lengths faster than the other runners, and in handicapper-speak, a five-length advantage means, “Go to the windows.” We will bet him to win at 3-1, and play him in the early Double at Fonner, which covers Races 1 and 2. The bets: Fonner Park, Race 1, $40 to win on 4-Gogetmbugs; $20 double, 4-Gogetmbugs with 1-Giant Gamble.
$2,500 Claiming, 6 furlongs, Dirt, 3 & Up
This bottom-level claimer drew a field of seven. We like the horse on the rail, 1-Giant Gamble, who has good early speed, and should be able to win this race on the front end. He’s an 8-year-old gelding, an old warrior with 45 career starts, and though the end of his career is a lot closer than the beginning, we think he can squeeze one more good effort form his tired legs. We will bet him to win at 5/2. The bet: Fonner Park, Race 2, $20 to win on 1-Giant Gamble.
$55,000 Cherokee Nation Classic Cup, 1 1/16 miles, Dirt, Oklahoma-breds 3 & Up
The day’s lone stakes race is for state-breds at a mile and a sixteenth. We’re going to ride the outside-rally bias one more time, with 11-United Patriot, who is another strong play. He’s got decent early speed, but the main reason we like this 5-year-old is that he’s got a very strong finishing kick, and his wide post should force him to use it over the best part of the Will Rogers surface, which is the center of the track. Look for him to sit mid-pack during the first four or five furlongs, move toward the front around the far turn, and blow the field away with a strong move down the stretch. We will bet him to win at 5/2, and it’s another play we will make enthusiastically. The bet: Will Rogers Downs, Race 9, $50 to win on 11-United Patriot.
That’s all for today. Until tomorrow, enjoy the racing, be safe, and, as always, good luck at the windows.