Jeff Siegel's Santa Anita Analysis (Fri., May 30, 2014)

There’s a well-worth-playing $407,077 double Pick-6 carryover today with a late first post time of 3 p.m.

The opener finds #1 Eltoninadress on a one-level class hike for new trainer Kitchingman after being claimed out of a fully-extended victory for $8,000 earlier this month. The number was okay and Baze stays aboard, so from her inside draw the consistent mare should fire another big shot. We like her on top but this is hardly a prime play and there are much more attractive wagering opportunities later in the program.

A strong group of maiden juveniles sprint four and one-half furlongs in the second race with several pretty nice California-bred prospects in the field. #7 Lucky Logan brought $150,000 at the recent Barretts May Sale and has looked the part in the morning with a series of sharp drills. By California Chrome’s sire Lucky Pulpit, the Miller-trained colt seems geared up to win right now. #3 Nardo has done plenty of good work in the morning for Puype and though not really bred to sprint (Olmodovor) this colt seems to have more than his share of zip. #4 Full Bird Colonial has shown ability for Dominguez prepping for this race and Talamo has gotten to know him in the morning. The son of Awesome Gambler should make his presence felt and is worth using in rolling exotic play.

The Pick-6 begins with the third race, a bottom-rung middle distance maiden claimer. #4 Midnight Mayhem ran reasonably well at this level two races back but was no factor when overmatched vs. maiden $40,000 foes on turf last time out. He’s realistically placed today back on the main track, so we’re expecting the Baltas-trained gelding to be tough to beat. At 8/5 on the morning line he offers little in the way of wagering value in the straight pool, but small ticket players certainly can consider him as a potential rolling exotic single.

$25,000 claiming fillies and mares meet over a mile on turf in the fourth race and we’re anticipating a huge run from the comebacking #4 Gelila. Away since September but training like she’s fit and ready, the daughter of Bernstein has low profile connections but owns a prior win over the course and several back numbers that make her a strong contender in this league. Yes, she hasn’t won in a long time and has been stopped and started on a number of times, but this is a realistic spot for her and the price should be right. We’ll make her a straight play and should get every bit the 4-1 that she’s listed on the morning line. Small ticket Pick-6 players might consider using her as a single; however #5 Gia Is a Bella is another layoff runner with credentials and might be worth using on a back-up ticket for protection.

The fifth race is a restricted (nw-3) claiming sprint for fillies and mares. #5 Fanny Brice just destroyed a non-winners of two $25,000 field by more than seven lengths while earning a career top speed figure, so this drop to the $16,000 level isn’t really a sign of confidence. Maybe she’s being dangled or maybe this high percentage barn is simply trying to squeeze another win out of her. She’ll beat this field if she has one good one left; otherwise it’s an open affair with all but one starter being listed at 8-1 or less on the morning line.

First-level allowance fillies and mares travel nine furlongs on turf in the sixth race; we’ll use three in our rolling exotics and hope that will be sufficient. #6 Hijra ran well down the hill in her recent U.S. debut, finishing a solid third with a good figure and today stretches out to nine furlongs while switching to Nakatani. This distance should be within her range and the lightly-raced French import figures to produce a forward move following a steady, healthy work pattern since her late April outing. She’s the 9/5 morning line favorite and deservedly so. #4 Winning Rhythm, away since October but training nicely for her comeback for Gallagher, seems to have a touch of quality and packs a potent stretch punch. She looks live under Smith. #8 Nickels Wild exits a pair of graded stakes races and seems certain to improve in this considerably easier spot; the Sky Mesa filly has enough tactical speed to draft into a good stalking spot and she is quite solid in the speed figure department.

The featured seventh race is a competitive entry-level allowance sprint for fillies and mares; we’ll double the race using two closing types in a field with enough early speed to set things up for a late runner. #2 Sagebrush Queen is a route-to-sprint play and seems much more comfortable around one-turn; she switches to Talamo and a repeat of her race before last makes her the one to beat. #1 Miss Radiance also is capable of doing damage in the final furlong; six furlongs might be a tad sharp for her but if she can negotiate a trip from the rail and gets a favorable race shape she should be heard from late.

The nightcap is a maiden claiming sprint down the hill and qualifies as a grass grab bag; the best advice is to use as many as you can afford to. #4 Tribal Dude, away since last June, has trained well enough to be fit and ready for O’Neill and at this level must be considered the one to beat. He’s actually run pretty well over this course and distance in the past and Trujillo has been impressivel since arriving in California. #3 Red Globe and #1 Navarre ran two-three in a slightly tougher maiden claiming Hillside sprint recently and both represent late threats off their best efforts.