Jeff Siegel's Santa Anita Analysis (Sat., Oct. 5, 2013)

There’s a $26,256 Pick-6 Carryover for players on an outstanding Santa Anita Saturday program.

#7 Heyyoucan looked very good breaking his maiden at Del Mar with a sharp speed figure and finds himself in a logical starter’s allowance affair in the opener while seeking his second straight score. The Miller-trained gelding seems like a handy type that can run well pressing the pace or settling early to make one run. We’re expecting Talamo to have him along in time.

#1 Miss Pippa seems well-spotted for a big run in the second race, the Swingtime Stakes for fillies and mares over a mile on turf. The Sadler-trained filly has done especially well over the local lawn and should draft into an ideal second flight, ground-saving position. We like her on top but in rolling exotic play we’ll also include #5 Customer Base, overmatched in the Yellow Ribbon at Del Mar last time out but realistically spotted today while switching to Stevens. A mile looks like a perfect distance for her.

#3 Spirited Touch doesn’t have a whole lot to beat in the third race, a bottom rung maiden claimer over a distance of ground. This is his fourth consecutive class drop – certainly not a healthy sign – but the Baffert-trained colt continues to look solid in the morning and has several back speed figures that would beat this field. There’s really no depth here so we’ll use him as a no-value rolling exotic single.

The Grade 2 City of Hope Mile was left out of the Pick-6 sequence because #5 Obviously will be an extremely short priced favorite once again, and deservedly so. As is usually the case, the Mitchell-trained gelding is the controlling speed and should dominate from gate to wire in his final prep prior to the Breeders’ Cup Mile. #6 He Be Fire N Ice, second to the heavy favorite in the Del Mar Mile ‘Cap last time out, seems like the likely exacta partner once again.

A fairly decent band of older maidens compete in the fifth race, the first leg of the Pick-6, and we’re expecting a major forward move from #2 Magic Daddy. A distant second in a hot race in his debut at Del Mar in July, the son of Scat Daddy seems sure to improve for Baffert following a series of very impressive workouts over this conventional dirt surface. #7 Drover Crazy, in the money in all three of his outings and exiting a series of very strong races for older maidens, is very much the one to beat. We’ll use both in our rolling exotics.

The sixth race is a wide open turf slalom with many contenders. Use as many as you can afford to in rolling exotic play. #7 He’s a Dance Star was nosed out in his comeback last month at Del Mar in a huge effort; if he doesn’t bounce today he’ll be very tough once again. #10 A Toast to You is a dangerous class dropper with prior success over the Hillside course and should be prominent throughout. #12 Mr. Bossy Pants loves this course and loves to win and should fold into an ideal pace stalking position from his outside post. He loses Maldonado today but lands the very capable Perez.

Trainer Bob Baffert has two bullets to fire in the L. A. Woman Stakes for top class sprinting fillies and mares. #3 Socialbug is very fast but unproven at this level; today we’re expecting her to prove she belongs. The daughter of Curlin won both of her starts like a quality filly and continues to impress in the morning. She could easily be the controlling speed. Uncoupled stable mate #5 Executiveprivilege will be rolling late and then you can toss in #6 Teddy’s Promise, a Grade 1 winner at Santa Anita as well. However, our strategy is to simply take a stand and single Socialbug.

#7 Key Vista will be a very short priced choice in the eighth race, despite the fact that she hasn’t been out since last December. A debut winner by almost 10 lengths, the Baffert-trained filly need only return as well as she left to handle this out classed entry-level allowance field at what surely will be odds on.

The Santa Anita Sprint Championship is carded as the ninth race and is a pivotal Breeders’ Cup Sprint prep. The six furlong dash once again brings together #7 Points Offthebench and #8 Goldencents, one-two finishers in the Bing Crosby Stakes at Del Mar last July. The former hasn’t been out since that race but has trained like he’s fit and ready; the latter removes blinkers and won the Santa Anita Derby over this track last April. You also have to deal with the defending Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner #5 Triniberg, who may (or may not) need an outing in his first start since early July. We’ll go with Points Offthebench on top but this is a race you may find the need to spread.

The nightcap is a downhill turf sprint for maiden juvenile fillies and looks completely wide open. Those worth including in rolling exotic play include #1 Pretty Storm (first time turf, dangerous early speed); #3 Blameitonthecat (first off the claim for Sadler, first time turf) and #12 Savings Account (even effort in July in her only outing but training like a better sort now for Proctor). Feel free to toss in anybody else you like.