Nice score on Thursday at Santa Anita with 7-to-2 on Seduire to kick off that card, so let’s see what we can come up with on Friday.
Churchill Downs Race 2 (click for free Brisnet.com Ultimate Past Performances)
A field of seven runners will dash five furlongs in this Maiden Special Weight event. The two fancied debuters are #2 Cloverdale Nine (5/2 morning line) and #6 Lucky Player (2/1 morning line).
Cloverdale Nine goes for the Wesley Ward machine. This Sky Mesa homebred is a half to Grade 1-winning two-year-old Whywhywhy. He's also the 11th foal of his overachieving broodmare, Thorough Fair. She once competed for a $5,000 claiming tag at Beulah Park and went on to have a very good career as a broodmare. Cloverdale Nine's worktab is very unimpressive. We generally respect Ward's debuters in these type of races, but it's probably wise to oppose this one.
Lucky Player goes for Steve Asmussen. This son of freshman stallion Lookin At Lucky is the first foal out of his well-bred dam. Lucky Play RNA'd for $175,000 as a yearling and has the potential to be a good horse, but this five furlong distance might prove to be too sharp for him.
The edge in this race has to go to the experienced runner, 9/5 morning line favorite Far Right. In his career debut, Far Right was unruly and ran off in the post parade. He broke awkwardly at the start and made the early lead, before fading to finish second in what was the fastest of four 2-year-old races at the Keeneland Spring meet. He returned in two weeks, and ran a very credible second in what appeared to be a very deep maiden race.
Interestingly, Far Right was entered in a $75,000 stakes race at Pimlico last Friday, but was ultimately scratched. It's been rumored that his connections have been trying to sell this bargain basement colt who fetched just $2,500 as a yearling. Far Right's 5th dam Princess Ribot, is also California Chrome's 5th dam.
Far Right is making his third start in less than a month, but if he's able to merely run back to his first two performances, he'll be very tough to beat.
Santa Anita Race 1 (click for Brisnet Ultimate PPs):
The 5/2 morning line favorite is the Michael Pender trained debuter Two Six Wins. This Midshipman colt has an extensive auction history. He was purchased for 7k as a January yearling, and 13k as an August yearling, before being entered in the OBS March two-year-old in training sale. Two Six Wins worked a furlong in 10.60 seconds and was RNA'd for $60,000
Video of his work: http://obssales.com/marcatalog/2014/156.mp4
Two Six Wins obviously has a very precocious pedigree. His sire Midshipman was a champion two-year-old. His dam Friona was a stakes winning sprinter at age two. However, he doesn't offer any betting appeal at all if he goes off in the range of his morning line price.
The edge in this race goes to the Dan Hendricks trained Story to Tell. Originally purchased for $82,000 as a yearling, Story to Tell was entered in the Barrett's March two-year-old sale and impressively worked a furlong in 10 seconds flat.
Video of his work: http://www.barretts.com/sales/TrainingPreviews/vidmar14/hip128a.wmv
Story to Tell became a successful pinhook when he sold for $200,000 at Barrett's. Indeed, he's the most expensive of 15 Bluegrass Cat two-year-olds sold at auction this year.
Trainer Dan Hendricks rarely gets expensive horses from auction, but he does well with the few he's able to obtain. The best one being Brother Derek, who Hendricks also trained for Story to Tell's owner Cecil Peacock. Brother Derek was also bought from Barrett's for $275,000 after a dazzling sales work, and he also won his debut going 4.5 furlongs.
The other interesting debuter in the race is Social Request. This son of Lookin at Lucky smoked a furlong in 9.80 seconds at OBS April.
Video of his work: http://obssales.com/aprcatalog/2014/634.mp4
He sold for $100,000 to Social Inclusion's owner, who posted this on Twitter: https://twitter.com/StableRontos/status/469300435732660224
Social Request's owner claims that he "moves with ease" and "will give people something to talk about."
However, I'm a little bit dubious of this horse. Old South Farm always has them super cranked up for sales drills, so that 9.80 furlong isn't quite as impressive as it would be for other connections.
Betting Strategy: Win bet on Story to Tell.