God's Tipster's Saturday Florida Racing Picks: Tampa Bay Derby, Hurricane Bertie from Gulfstream Park, more
Friday’s Race Recap from Gulfstream Park:
(All odds US)
Replays for Friday’s races from Gulfstream can be found here:
Race 4: 2nd@ 1.60/1
Race 6: 3rd@ 11.80/1
In Race 4 we had a good trip with Crispy Cat who stalked and took the lead in front of a wicked 43.87 half mile but top rider Irad Ortiz ran us down by 1/2 length so we had to settle for second. In Race 6 the debuting Gomomischief didn’t break fast enough to go to the lead but the filly who did won the race. Gomomischief might’ve been best, but was hemmed in for much of the race and rallied late to be a fast closing third behind that slow pace.
More seconds and thirds threaten to give us our first losing month of the year but we’ve still got plenty of time to fix that.
We’re navigating the road to the Grade 1 Kentucky Derby and the next stop on our trail is the Grade 2 Tampa Bay Derby. I’ll be adding that to our agenda along with our usual racing action from Gulfstream. We are expecting fast and firm conditions at both tracks. Let’s get started!
Race 3: Mo Town Madison - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 8/1)
Maiden optional claimers sprint 6 furlongs here in this race for three year old fillies. West Bank is likely to vie for favoritism with Mama Maria but both have lost as odds-on favorites (Mama Maria has done it more than once) so I’m looking elsewhere. The runners exiting the Jellicle Katz/West Bank race from Feb. 17 are a pretty weak bunch so I’m going to 22% winning trainer Saffie Joseph who’s likely to be a price here with Mo Town Madison. We already know that the speeds in here like to quit and the closers flatten out. Mo Town Madison will be making her main track debut for a barn that has strong numbers with turf to dirt runners (24%) runners off similar layoffs (20%) and runners dropping from maiden specials to maiden claiming races on dirt here at Gulfstream, Mr. Joseph has won with a whopping 15 of 30 starters for a 50% win percentage. Second time out this miss was entered in a stakes race on polytrack. She did raise a little bit of a run on the far turn of her most recent before flattening out but with a few more works under her belt I look for Mo Town Madison to blow by this field in the stretch.
Race 8: Frank’s Rockette - 2 pts win (BEST BET) (US Morning Line Odds: 4/5)
The Grade 3 Hurricane Bertie drew a field of six fillies and mares to sprint 6 1/2 furlongs and this one looks like a free square. Frank’s Rockette, the 8 time stakes winner and earner of more than $1.2 million takes on a field of rivals that appears overmatched based on every handicapping angle I can employ. Trainer Bill Mott is still red hot winning with 27% of his dirt starters over the last two months alone at Gulfstream. Not much more to write here. As long as she’s healthy and sound the race is her’s to win or lose.
Race 9: Drinking Problem - 1 pt win (US Morning Line Odds: 8/1)
Bottoms up and make it a triple! As we go for back-to-back-to-back wins with Drinking Problem at long odds. We caught this grandson of speedy turf specialist Words of War at 24/1 odds when he broke his maiden and we tipped him again for his next win at 8/1. The waters get deeper here and I’ll be honest, based on numbers, Far Bridge is supposed to win this race. In his debut he ran down a fellow debut runner named Carl Spackler for the win. Carl Spackler would return to post a 93 speed figure which is supposed to validate the high speed figure they both got on debut. Far Bridge had a nice setup that day with two horses battling in front of him that he came and ran down. While there’s other speed signed on today I have a sneaky feeling Drinking Problem may get away on a loose lead again and may be able to gut out another gate to wire score. Cheers to that!
Tampa Bay Downs:
Race 11: Tapit Trice - 2 pts win (US Morning Line Odds: 8/5)
The Grade 3 Tampa Bay Derby at a mile and a sixteenth for three year olds on their way towards the run for the roses on the first Saturday in May. Trainer Todd Pletcher saddles two in here but who’s not here really tells the story. Litigate, also from the Pletcher barn won the traditional prep for this race and Kingsbarns also recently won for Pletcher in impressive fashion but Pletcher says he’s moving them to the Louisiana Derby trail. That’s typically where Pletcher puts his “C-string” this time of year and it tells me that everyone who finished behind Litigate in the Sam F. Davis is probably not very good. Visually, only two caught my eye. Tapit Trice is sounding like he’s Pletcher’s “B-Player” for the Derby behind last week’s Grade 2 Fountain of Youth winner Forte. Tapit Trice is bred to run all day and he’s improved in every start thus far. Last time out he blasted his stablemate Shesterkin by 8 lengths. Those two will meet again today and I actually think that one has a big shot for second. (Classic Legacy is the other one I like behind Tapit Trice) but I’ve been high on this horse ever since he closed belatedly in a maiden race back in November at Aqueduct. He won’t pay much but he looks to give trainer Todd Pletcher two aces heading towards the run for the roses.
Best of luck to all our members playing Saturday’s races from around the U.S.!