God's Tipster's Saturday Picks for Gulfstream Park include the Davona Dale, Fountain of Youth and more
Friday’s Race Recap from Gulfstream:
(All odds US)
Replays for Friday’s races from Gulfstream can be found here:
Race 1: 1st@ 1.80/1 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥
Race 4: 5th@ 18.20/1
It’s always nice to kick off the weekend with a win! Spirit of Power allowed us to do that with a no doubt about it stalk and pounce win in Race 1. In Race 4, Equal Protection gave us a good run for those 18/1 odds. He stalked a fast early pace, made a move inside on the turn for home but had his lane taken away when caught in behind the tiring speed and had to alter course which shuffled him back to fifth. At the very end he was closing again missing fourth by 1/2 length.
We’ll stay at Gulfstream for Saturday’s races but we’ll toss in the Gotham at Aqueduct as an added bonus. We’re expecting fast and firm conditions again at Gulfstream and I’m expecting some rain at Aqueduct. Longshots a plenty on today’s selections so BUCKLE UP!!
Ready to roll!!!
Race 2: Image of Love - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 5/2)
Strong-looking group of two year old maiden fillies lines up here to kick off Fountain of Youth day for us. I wasn’t overly impressed with the runners with experience so I’m leaning to the debuting Image of Love for the white hot barn of Todd Pletcher. Image of Love is by top sire Into Mischief, who wins with 16% of his debut runners and out of a multiple Grade 2 winning and Grade 1 placed dam. I love five furlong workouts and this miss has several. She has a workout on 2/25 that matches Bright Future who won his debut race a year ago here at Gulfstream before getting injured. Grade 1 winning and today’s Grade 2 Fountain of Youth favorite, Forte was also on that same worktab and for what it’s worth she worked slightly faster than him. They were just breezing though. On Feb. 18 Image of Love had an almost identical breeze time to flashy blowout maiden-winner and stablemate - Bandita. First time starters can be difficult to predict but this one has a lot of evidence in her corner saying she’s the one.
Race 3: Eyes On Target - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 8/1)
Turf runners go a mile and a sixteenth in this allowance affair. The rail runner - Up to the Mark is likely to go favored on the basis of his blowout turf debut win here which produced a 94 speed figure but he had a fast pace to close into that day. I’m having trouble taking my eyes off from Eyes On Target here. Since he was claimed in December of 2021 he’s won twice, finished second twice and third once in 8 starts. Trainer Mike Maker is winning at 17% for the meet and having a lower profile, local rider will keep his odds fair. Eyes On Target is one of only two runners in here with a win at today’s distance (twice actually) as well as a win over the Gulfstream Park surface. And what really separates this five-year-old ridgling from some of the others is his consistency. Our favorite put up a 94 speed figure last time out with a perfect trip but this guy put up a 94 two back where his running line says he was bumped early then steadied at the 1/8th pole. Hoping for a cleaner trip this time for a runner with a versatile running style.
Race 4: Let It Ride - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 12/1)
“You might be walking around lucky and not even know it.” - A quote from my favorite all time horse racing movie: “Let It Ride”. Three-year-old maidens sprint 7 furlongs here and I’m letting it fly on Let It Ride here. He’s a $260K first time starter by the great Candy Ride with a few solid workouts including one nice five furlong drill on Dec. 30. What I really like about Let It Ride though are his trainer’s statistics with George Weaver winning a tremendous 32% of the time (6 for 19) with his maidens debuting here at Gulfstream in dirt sprints over the last five years. Today’s rider, Tyler Gaffalione, has been a bit of a good luck charm for him as they’ve won with 3 of 4 debuting runners here on the Gulfstream dirt together. I expect this guy to come FIRING out of the gate and take us gate to wire at long odds.
Race 10: Steal Sunshine - 1 pt E/W (win/place) (US Morning Line Odds: 20/1)
Based on the opinions of the public handicappers and most of horse racing Twitter, we don’t need to run the Grade 2 Gulfstream Park Mile because Charge It is already the winner. Just give his owners their 60% of the purse and split the rest among the other entrants. Yes, Charge It had a nice return to the races last time out after a long layoff but he had an absolute dream pace setup and outclassed that field by a wide margin. He may very well outclass today’s field but with a faster pace scenario expected today I’m taking an old favorite, Steal Sunshine, to close from the clouds to upend our favorite. Four competitors from last year’s Grade 1 Florida Derby are entered in this race. Of the four, the one with the strongest final three furlongs wasn’t Charge It or Simplification or even O Captain. It was Steal Sunshine. Steal Sunshine has been expertly handled by trainer Rob Dibona (who’s winning at a crisp 19% for an under the radar trainer) and will be ridden by a low profile jockey who wins at a 25% rate for this barn. After the Florida Derby, Steal Sunshine won three of his next four starts including two stakes. After a layoff he returned to finish a closing third in a perfect prep tightener race for today. He’s has 6 works since that last start including several very fast very recent works. For a runner who may be above 20/1 today he offers excellent value.
Race 12: Infinite Diamond - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 10/1)
The Grade 2 Davona Dale at a mile is the filly counterpart to this afternoon’s feature race, the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth and NEITHER of our morning line favorites: Red Carpet Ready and Undervalued Asset have run this far yet. They also both ran their eyeballs out last time and while I think they’re both talented, I’m siding with a runner who‘s had a little time off and might just sit the right trip and that’s Infinite Diamond who’s fresh off a New Year’s Day win in the Cash Run stakes. That was her second career win here at Gulfstream and at today’s one mile distance. She’s one of four with a win at a mile or longer and the only one with two wins at a route of ground. I love the fact that she’s been given ample time off since that win and has even been working on turf in true Patrick Biancone style. I’d have to think Jockey Jose Ortiz had the choice between riding for Todd Pletcher with Atomically or riding for Biancone with Infinite Diamond and he stayed here. I like her trip and the confidence her connections have in her and look for another mild upset.
Race 14: Shadow Dragon - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 12/1)
Today’s Grade 2 Fountain of Youth at a mile and a sixteenth on the main track features the return of last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile champion, Forte for trainer Todd Pletcher as well as Blazing Sevens for trainer Chad Brown. Neither trainer has a very good record with three year olds returning from similar layoffs in graded stakes dirt routes with three-year-olds. Pletcher is just 3 for 23 (13% wins) and Brown is an abysmal 1 for 16 for a 6% win rate. At short odds I’ll pass on those two who are using this race as a prep for richer races down the road. General Jim breaks from the rail but trainer Shug McGaughey says he had a cough and missed some training so he may actually scratch. Either way that’s not ideal. I’m not sold that Mage is ready for prime time yet after just a maiden win and now losing Lasix. Feb. 4’s Holy Bull featured a 1-2 finish by trainer Bill Mott with Rocket Can and Shadow Dragon. I was all over Shadow Dragon who was 34.10/1 on the odds board and came up short by less than a length. On the gallop out Shadow Dragon actually passes Rocket Can. With so much focus on making sure Mage doesn’t get away early and General Jim stretching out from sprint races I’m thinking Forte may be closer to the pace than usual. For this reason I’m going with Shadow Dragon to take advantage of a faster pace. Last time out he chased a slow pace which forced him to use his closing kick early and that took some punch away from him in that last 1/8th of a mile. Today’s a new day and with more pace signed on I look for Shadow Dragon to breathe fire from the back of the pack and upset the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth.
Race 9: Radio Red - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 50/1)
The Grade 3 Gotham at a mile for three-year-olds trying to get some points on the Triple Crown trail. We drew a full field of 14 with one also eligible and my selection here actually needs a scratch in order to draw into the body of this race. There are a ton of owners and trainers tossing up Hail Mary’s in the hopes they earn some points to make the Kentucky Derby. LOTS of horses listed here that are stretching out from sprint races for the very first time and many of them don’t look like they want to go this far. There are two runners moving from polytrack to dirt. That almost never seems to work out. Bob Baffert’s two blue-blooded runners are coming in off losses and rarely seem to be able to win outside of California anymore. What do I like about a $10K New York-bred with modest connections taking on the big barns? Well for one thing his last race was really eye catching. He didn’t beat much and his first two races weren’t very good but last time out he looked like a different horse, waiting in behind horses and looking absolutely loaded the whole way. Once they hit the turn for home he imposed his will on his competition and drew off for an easy score. He changed leads perfectly turning for home and kept his mind on business once he got the lead and owns a long but efficient stride. His final 1/8th of a mile was 12.91 seconds. That was significantly faster than older horses ran that day. His Optix plot figure validates my findings so I’m moving forward with him. He’s going to have to improve again to win this but I really think a lot of these are fraudulent types navigating a route of ground most of them don’t want, so this is the type of race to take a shot and try to score with a price. Trainer Danny Gargan winning at 22% for the meet and wins with 21% of his sprint to route runners and 20% of his graded stakes runners. Bombs away!
Wishing our members the very best of luck wagering on Saturday’s races from Gulfstream and Aqueduct!