FIRST RACE: Things begin with an optional claimer at a mile on the TURF. There’s been plenty of bounce in this course, given the opportunity to rejuvenate through September and October following the Summer Meet, meaning, runners from a bit further back have every opportunity to make up ground down the lane. Early at any Meet, and in the case here, a short Meet still constitutes “early,” the ground has bounce, meaning the front runners are not given the luxury of a conveyor-like surface as they are later in the Meet when the ground is hard as a result of lots of racing, thus, a front running win is well deserved, and a win from off the pace is within reason. Top selection is WOUND TIGHT (#3), who has the capability of settling while never far back, and in general, ‘speed and stick’ is a fantastic combination for the shorter route races such as this mile offering (as well as a longer sprint such as 7 furlongs). He’s in sharp current form, always a good thing but even more so late in the year, as most runners are pointed to either a Spring, Summer, or Fall/Winter campaign, making them dangerous depending on the direction taken by the connections, while others plod along the entire year, silly in this age of year round racing, but many do it, and then wonder why they’re horse is tailing off after starting 17 times during the previous 12 months, crazy. Expecting a sharp effort with Cedillo taking over, a guy who immediately moves his horses up when jumping aboard (same with Prat and Van Dyke). MUSAWAAT (#13) finished right behind the top pick last time out, and there’s no reason this one as well isn’t gonna fire, as he’s running for only the fourth time since March, improving when given more ground last time out, which also coincided with Drayden taking over. Both runners have plenty of upside here late in the year.
Hot / Cold Race Trends: none
Win Contenders (order of preference): 3-13-6-5
X Out Runners (eliminating on the win end): none
5 Soul Beam - This one could be an interesting price play. Back in 2007-2008, Valdivia used to work many horses in the morning for Periban, and though Jorge didn’t have a ton of horses, he’d ride some live horses for the barn. They add blinkers today, and his form isn’t terrible.
6 Three Ay Em - Tries hard, never a bad thing to back in a runner.
TOP PICK: WOUND TIGHT (#3 7-2 Cedillo)
SECOND CHOICE: MUSAWAAT (#13 4-1 Van Dyke)