1st: 3-7-5…Spoofy Doo (3) is one of two in here for trainer Eric Reed, and appears to be the best of the duo. This filly, by Proud Citizen, ran a good one for MC25K at Houston in February. A repeat of that performance makes this one tough in here, on the significant drop to the bottom ranks. Golden Fire Fly (7) gets the drop from Churchill Downs. Was with throughout that one and far out in the turn. A better trip could mean a better run today. Blameitonthebadboy (5) is Reed’s other entry and he could finish 1-2 with these. Jack Gilligan, who normally rides both, opts for the 3. I bet the 3 to win/place and then box in the exactas with 3-7-5.
2nd: 5-6-2-1…Rhythm Park (5) reeled off five straight wins and seven firsts in eight consecutive starts last year into April. Pretty impressive run in any circle. Comes off a win at Churchill Downs for a hot trainer, in Steve Asmussen. Lieutenant Seany O (6) has had seven straight ITM finishes, and is a consistent sort, as well. Comes off an impressive run at CD against a solid field. Seems to be a rung below the 5 on his best day, but is capable. Woodmans Luck (2) was picked out of the claiming ranks for $16K last out by a trainer that has good luck winning right back (.24 win percent in first tries off the claim). I bet the 5 to win/place and key over/under the rest of the numbers.
3rd: 3-6-7-4…I’m Ready to Roll (3) plummets out of his last start (from $35C to $7.5C). Gets a new rider, who is faring better here than he did at Churchill. This dead closer will need a clean trip, but could come with a big run at this distance – where he has a win in three starts. Conquest Goinggone (6) has five straight ITM finishes and won his last easily. Moves up in class for this one, but goes for third win in a row and has never been better. Goes for a good trainer/rider combo. Mr. Haire (7) picks up Jon Court in the saddle and gets class relief, as well. That combo may be enough today. I bet the 3 to win/place and then box the 3-6-7 and the 3-6-4 in the exactas.
4th: 6-7-4-1-3…Grace Margaret (6) is saddled by one of the best young trainers in the Midwest, who could have a really good second half of the year with some new ones added to the barn. This one drops to the lowest level she has ever been off a small layoff. If she can find her back class, she swamps these. See the Bird (7) is a dead closer, who drops to her lowest level ever, as well, off two subpar efforts. Will need to navigate a good trip with a rider who hasn’t gotten off to a good start at Ellis, after a rough Churchill meet. Carmen’s Picture (4) is an Arkansas-bred, who has been running in Louisiana. But gets Jon Court, who is riding very well. I bet the 6 to win/place and keys over/under the rest of the numbers.
5th: 7-2-1-6-8-3…Tapsolute (7) is the star of this show. This son of Tapit cost $600,000 as a yearling and goes for the Winchell Thoroughbreds/Asmussen team. He has caught some good ones in his first six starts and figures to find the circle for the first time today. Best Bet of the Day, even at low odds. Strong Yen (2) comes off two solid races and stretches back out to a mile today. Has faced some good ones, too. Yonderling (1) could move way up today and gets the “dot” (must use) in here. If there is to be a shocker, it could come from this one, who goes for a barn that has been doing well most of the spring. Had a tough beginning in his career debut, but should be better today, rallying from off the pace. Stretches out today and that should help, too. Harlan’s Vador (6) and American Sparrow (8) may catch some of the minor awards. I bet the 7 to win/place and key over/under the rest of the numbers. I key the 7 in all Doubles and Pick 3s/Pick 4s that I can. I also box the 7-1 in the exactas.
6th: 4-7-3-1-6-8…Forest Mist (4) gets the nod in a wide open affair. He has only finished worse than fourth once in the last seven outs – with a win and two seconds. Picks up a solid rider change. This trainer/rider combo does well together. Harlan’s Howling (7) got a start on the grass in his last and obviously didn’t like it. Has worked well since that debacle. Has raced only twice on traditional dirt – but one of them was good. The class drop here could move up. Leroli’s Thrill (3) gets the drop back down to the level he likes. Has done well at the distance and at Ellis before. Could return to that performance for a trainer, who bases his operation here. I bet the 4 to win/place and then box the 4-7-3 and the 4-7-1 in the exactas.
7th: 3-8-5-7-9…Classy Music (3) caught a real terror in her first out, and has returned to work like a good one. Gets the addition of Lasix for this one. Trainer’s numbers are nearly triple on the second start over the first one, and his numbers are super on this type of layoff (.24 win percent). Looks set and ready to fire here. Kelly’s Humor (8) goes for a barn that knows how to saddle winners, including first timers. This one has been working well, too, and she would be no surprise. Boom Pow Pow (5) would be a surprise, but I use — because the trainer knows how to get a 2YO ready. Reality Queen (7) and Eskimo Kisses (9) will get bet, and for good reason. Both come from good barns and Eskimo Kisses has been training great. Don’t leave out the 9 – even though the trainer wins with .05 percent of first timers. That’s why I opt for the 3. I bet the 3 to win/place and then key over/under all the other numbers.
8th: Approvethismessage (4) was picked off trainer Stephen Lyster for $35,000 last August at Saratoga, when he won. Now, he goes for half that number for trainer Joe Sharp. Might be worth claiming back today at this price. In last seven starts, this one has hit the board five times. Gets back on the grass today, if the sun ever shines again. And, could be tough at this level. Purely Boy (5) hasn’t made the races since April 2016 – over 14 months ago. But goes for a trainer that can get them ready off a long layoff, off works alone, and for the grass. Beware. Ship Disturber (2) is really good right now; really good. Has won three in a row and five of his last eight starts. But is truly untested on grass. Question mark? West Village (7) gets a needed class drop, as does Consultation (3). Both have a shot on their best day. I bet the 4 to win/place/show and then key the 4-5 over/under the rest of the numbers.
Good luck &
All the Best/