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Garrity's Friday Dad's Hat Happy Hour Handicapping Picks Belmont, Woodbine, Los Alamitos, Ellis Park, Monmouth

First post 4:40 pm. Last post 5:16 pm. Let it Rye-d.

If it’s Friday, it’s time for a midsummer installment of Dad’s Hat Happy Hour Handicapping: we have plays in five races, all of which go off in just over a half hour’s time. We have races on dirt, and on grass; we have logical horses at relatively short prices, and a couple of long shots at big numbers that will hopefully pad the bankroll for what looks like a terrific weekend of stakes action. We expect fast dirt and firm turf in all races, so pour yourself a refreshment from our friends at Dad’s Hat Pennsylvania Rye, and let’s go.

Belmont Park, Race 8, 4:40 pm ET

Allowance, 1 mile, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

A field of ten turf females lines up for this first-level allowance at Belmont Park. We like 4-Parnac, a French-bred 3-year-old filly who began her career in Germany, and who today makes her first North American start for new trainer Christophe Clement. The competition she will face today is tougher than she faced in Europe last year, so she will have to show up and run well to win, but running well is exactly what we expect her to do, especially since this mile distance should be perfect for her, and since Clement is so good with Euro turfers making their first North American start. We will bet Parnac to win at 5-1. The bet: Belmont Park, Race 8, $40 to win on 4-Parnac.

Woodbine, Race 8, 4:45 pm ET

Maiden Optional Claiming, 1 1/16 miles, Turf, Ontario-breds 3 & Up

Nine Ontario-bred maidens line up for the 8th at Woodbine. We are taking a shot with one who is making two big changes today, and who is therefore a big price: it’s 4-Mucho Man, whose last start, which was the first of his career, was pretty bad, as he ran last in a field of seven, finishing 37 lengths behind the winner. It’s hard to back him off that effort, but there are two things about him that we like here: he switches from synthetic to turf here, and we think he might be a bit better on grass; and he drops into the maiden claiming ranks after running in Maiden Special Weight company in his debut. The rest of this field is somewhere between weak and very weak, and Mucho Man just might move forward in a big way, and spring a parimutuel surprise. At 20-1, that merits a play: we will bet him to win. The bet: Woodbine, Race 8, $35 to win on 4-Mucho Man.

Los Alamitos (Thoroughbred), Race 1, 5:00 pm ET

Starter Allowance, 5 ½ furlongs, Dirt, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

Six line up for the opener at Los Al. 6-Ana Lisa is a strong play: there’s a lot of speed in here, and with it all drawn to her inside, she should get a perfect stalking trip from her outside post, sitting a couple of lengths behind the early pacesetters, moving to the front around the far turn, and drawing away late. Ana Lisa just missed in her last start, running second at this starter allowance level two weeks ago; she will not miss today. We will bet her to win at 7/2. The bet: Los Alamitos, Race 1, $35 to win on 6-Ana Lisa.

Ellis Park, Race 8, 5:10 pm ET

Maiden Special Weight, 1 mile, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

It’s opening day at Ellis Park, and this maiden race, which drew ten entrants, is the nightcap. There are a couple of good-looking first-time starters who look like contenders, but the one we like has credentials that are a bit more obscure: it’s 4-Love Perfection, who debuts today for trainer Caio Caramori. She has a pedigree (by Cupid, out of a Harlan’s Holiday mare) that we think is sneaky good, especially on turf, and Caramori has a knack at getting horses to fire first out, especially on turf. She has a good workout pattern, with a long string of regularly spaced morning drills, so she should be fit; the only question is whether Love is Good is good enough, and at 20-1, we are betting that she is. We will play her to win. The bet: Ellis Park, Race 8, $35 to win on 4-Love Perfection.

Monmouth Park, Rce 8, 5:16 pm ET

$16,000 Maiden Claiming, 1 1/16 miles, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

Nine maidens line up to run eight and a half furlongs on the Jersey Shore. The pick is 2-Time Goes Fast, who was a bit unlucky in her last, when she ran very wide finishing second at this $16k maiden level. She should get a better trip today, which means Time Goes Fast is going to beat this group of very slow horses. We will bet her to win at 5/2. The bet: Monmouth Park, Race 8, $40 to win on 2-Time Goes Fast.

That’s all for today. Until tomorrow, enjoy the racing, be safe, and, as always, good luck at the windows.

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