Racing at Fair Grounds.
Racing at Fair

Garrity's Friday Dad's Hat Happy Hour Handicapping picks races at Aqueduct, Santa Anita, Fair Grounds, Oaklawn

First post is 4:28 pm ET. Last post is 5:22 pm. Let it Rye-d.

It’s Friday, which means it’s time for another installment of Dad’s Hat Happy Hour Handicapping. We have plays in five races, in New York, Louisiana, Arkansas, and California, which go off in about an hour’s time. It’s an all-dirt lineup today, and we expect a fast track for all races. So pour yourself a couple of fingers of one of the delicious, hand-crafted ryes from our friends at Dad’s Hat, settle into your favorite easy chair, and let’s go.

Aqueduct, Race 7, 4:28 pm ET

Allowance/Optional Claiming, 6 furlongs, Dirt, New York-bred Fillies & Mares 4 & Up

State-bred fillies and mares, nine of them, line up for this second-level allowance at the Big A. The pick is 4-Khali Magic, whose past performances show two different kinds of races: when there is a fast early pace that sets up her stretch run, she does well; when the early fractions are moderate, or even slow, she spins her wheels trying to make up ground late. We think she gets the pace wants today – a hot one –  and wins going away. We will bet her to win at 4-1. The bet: Aqueduct, Race 7, $40 to win on 4-Khali Magic.

Santa Anita Park, Race 3, 4:33 pm ET
Maiden Special Weight, 5 ½ furlongs, Dirt, California-bred Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

An octet of California-bred fillies and mares lines up for the 3rd at Santa Anita. We’re going with speed, in the form of 4-Kiss My Kat, who got the early lead in both of her career starts, only to be caught late. We don’t think she will be caught today: look for her to go right to the front early, and not look back. We will bet her to win. The bet: Santa Anita, Race 3, $40 to win on 4-Kiss My Kat

Fair Grounds, Race 6, 4:45 pm ET
Allowance, 1 mile, Dirt, Louisiana-breds 4 & Up

This state-bred allowance drew a field of eight. We’re all in on 3-Calculated, who has abundant speed, and who has shown it in his last two starts, running his competition off their feet in a couple of races at Delta Downs. The competition he faced in those heats was not quite as tough as what he will face here, but figures don’t lie, and the speed and pace figs that Calculated earned say that he is good enough to win this. We think he wires this group, and will bet him to win at 9/2. The bet: Fair Grounds, Race 6, $40 to win on 3-Calculated.

Oaklawn Park, Race 7, 4:50 pm ET
Maiden Special Weight, 1 mile, Dirt, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

The 7th in Hot Springs is a terrific maiden race at a mile on the dirt; it drew nine runners. We like 3-Vow, who has done OK in his two most recent starts, but who we think will improve today, as his pedigree suggests that he will be much better in races around two turns, like the mile here, than he was sprinting, which he has done exclusively so far. Look for Vow to press the pace early, and draw away late; we will bet him to win at 2-1. The bet: Oaklawn Park, Race 7, $40 to win on 3-Vow. 

Oaklawn Park, Race 8, 5:22 pm ET

Allowance, 1 mile, Dirt, 4 & Up 

Oaklawn’s featured race today is the 8th, a first-level allowance for older horses. Ten are entered. It’s an evenly matched group, but we give the nod to 5-Megan’s Honor, who did some good work in Chicago last fall, running quite well in allowance races at Hawthorne Race Course, but who finished far up the track in his seasonal debut a month ago, when he finished ninth on a sloppy track. We are drawing a line through that race, partly because Megan’s Honor probably needed that race, and partly because he has never run well on wet tracks. He looks poised for a top effort today. We will bet him to win at 9/2. The bet: Oaklawn Park, Race 8, $40 to win on 5-Megan’s Honor

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

Related Stories

No stories found.
Bettors Insider