Jeff Siegel's Santa Anita Analysis (Sunday, March 17, 2013)

Melanistic has been popular at the claim box lately and goes back to a previous trainer, Baltas, who re-claimed her after one race. She’s ambitiously placed in this first race allowance event but lands Bejarano and has numbers that make her a solid fit. Plus, she loves to win races. Sweetrayofsunshine also has been claimed in her last pair and today goes for Spawr (superior stats with this maneuver). She’s unbeaten in four outings over this main track and Krigger fits her perfectly. Both should be used in rolling exotic play; we’ll give the edge to Sweetrayofsunshine on top.

In the second race, Lico has finished in the money in his last four starts and retains Stevens. If he can project his man track form to turf, he should factor very strongly in this high priced maiden claiming sprint. Wind of Bosphorus was nosed out in a straight maiden affair over this course last month and today shows up for an expensive tag. A repeat of his last more than likely will get it down. We’ll double the race in our rolling exotics and then press with Bosphorus on top.

We find the third race a tad too tough; we’ll use three contenders in rolling exotic play and hope to move on. Sir Allison takes a one level class drop for Baffert in his second start off a layoff and has a right to improve. He’s always preferred this track and Garcia knows him well. Shame on Alex is improving with racing and is tough on any surface. Espinoza will have him pressing the pace once again. Fast N Furius Cat is racing in sharp form and has the benefit of the outside draw. He can win on the lead or from a stalking position, so Baze has a couple of options. The West-trained gelding is fast on numbers and rates top billing, though all three should be used in your rolling exotics.

Sidepocket Run has rising speed figures and with another forward move looks capable of graduating in the fourth race, a state bred mile turf affair for fillies and mares. She should be doing her best work late under Baze. Jade With Envy, in the money in three of four career starts, retains Bejarano and figures to be a strong pace factor. We’ll give a slight nod to Sidepocket Run while using both in our rolling exotics.

Ain’t No Other simply should be too fast for his fifth race competition. Fresh from a sharp and game win in the Sensational Star down the hill last month, he switches to the main track today but can handle any surface so the change shouldn’t be an issue. This extended sprint distance seems perfect for his style and we’re expecting Bejarano to have him along in time as a straight play and rolling exotic single.

Rock Me Baby had his win streak snapped when beaten in a similar downhill turf sprint last month but lost little in defeat, holding on gamely to be second after pressing a hot pace. His chances will increase in today’s sixth race if he can settle in the second flight in a race loaded with early zip. Dixieland Blues, a beaten choice when third in the same race ‘Baby exits, should have plenty of heat to chase again today and switches to Bejarano. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics while pressing a bit with Dixieland Blues on top.

Consurgo flipped leaving the saddling paddock and then ran off in the post parade in his debut, yet ran remarkably well when a closing third in a very promising performance. If the Mitchell-trained colt can remain composed in today’s seventh race, he seems more than capable of earning his diploma in a strong straight maiden router for sophomores. Footbridge missed when favored in his last pair and really didn’t have any excuses, though both races were highly rated. Maybe the light switch hasn’t quite gone on yet, but if does today he’ll be hard to handle. Both should be included in rolling exotic play; we’ll prefer Consurgo on top.

Curvy Cat tried turf for the first time in a softer spot last month and came away with a very nice win while earning a career top speed figure. If she can turn in a similar effort in today’s Irish O’Brien Stakes, she can win right back with Talamo staying aboard for Hollendorfer. First or second in 10 of 13 career starts, she is thoroughly genuine and consistent and rates billing as a rolling exotic single and straight play.

Inflamed Spirit drops considerably in class in the nightcap and appears to have found a modest maiden claiming field he can handle. Garcia should be able to control this race from gate to wire; but at 2-1 on the morning line there’s not a whole lot of value. We’ll use him as a rolling exotic single.