First post is 4:12 pm EDT
We have four plays today, from four different tracks, all within about 30 minutes of each other. We expect fast dirt and firm turf in all three, so pour a cold beverage, pull up a chair, and let’s go.
Allowance, 1 mile, Dirt, Indiana-breds 3 & Up
Nine go in this third-level allowance for state-breds. The heavy favorite is 3-Big Fudge, and while he probably is the most likely winner, having won his 2020 debut two weeks ago, getting a big speed figure in the process, he’s going to be a very, very short price, and at something like 3/5, he’s an underlay, and we are looking elsewhere.
We like 8-Comfort Me Now. He’s a 4-year-old gelding who made his seasonal debut in a June 15 sprint at Indiana Grand, and now stretches out to a mile. We think he should be primed for a top effort, and at 6-1, he’s a very square price. We also like that unlike the favorite, he has won at this distance before. We will bet him to win. The bet: Indiana Grand, Race 5, $25 to win on 8-Comfort Me Now.
$8,000 Claiming, 1 mile 70 yards, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up
A full field of twelve hard-knocking claimers goes here, and it’s absolutely wide open, the kind of race we like to handicap. We like 12-Sundrenched, who ships to Delaware Park from Florida, where she wintered at Tampa Bay Downs. She has run ten times since November, so she’s sound, and we like the fact that she drops into this claimer after running in races at a higher level over the winter. We also like her style: she’s a stretch-runner in a field that is filled with speed. Look for her to be toward the rear early and flying late. We will bet her to win at 8-1. The bet: Delaware Park, Race 7, $25 to win on 12-Sundrenched.
Starter Allowance, 6 furlongs, Dirt, 3 & Up
The nightcap at Parx has twelve entrants going 6 furlongs on the dirt. We think the pace will be very, very fast, so fast, in fact, that it will cook not only the front-runners but the stalkers, the horses just behind the early leaders. We’re looking for a horse coming from pretty far back to take the race.
The pick is a big price, 2-Raggy Rocks. His recent races have been poor, but they were against tougher, and he does have some back form showing that he can be an effective closing sprinter. Trainer Jennie Wilhelm-Saldana is winless in 33 starts in 2020, and jockey Abel Mariano winless in 20 starts this year, and while this combined 0-for-53 would be enough to toss Raggy Rocks from consideration entirely, we will choose to look at it as though they’re both overdue for a win. At 20-1, we’ll take a stab, and bet Raggy Rocks to win and to place. The bets: Parx Racing, $15 to win/place on 2-Raggy Rocks.
Allowance, 5 furlongs, Turf, 3 & Up
This first-level allowance turf sprint drew a field of nine. We like the horse all the way on the outside, 9-Tigerbeach, who starts for Karl Broberg. He last ran on June 9, which was his seasonal debut, and to say that the only luck that he had that day was bad is an understatement: he was very wide around the turn, he had so much traffic trouble that his jockey had to steady him, and to top it off, his jockey dropped the whip. He actually ran pretty well considering all the difficulty, and we think he will run much, much better today, partly because he’ll get a better trip, and partly because this is his second race off a layoff. He was competitive in some tough turf springs at Santa Anita over the winter, and a return to that form will put him in the winner’s circle this afternoon. We will bet him to win at 5/2. The bet: Lone Star Park, Race 5, $40 to win on 9-Tigerbeach.
That’s all for today. Until the next time, enjoy the racing, be safe, and, as always, good luck at the windows.