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Jeff Siegel's Santa Anita Analysis (Sunday, June 15, 2014)
The Sunday nine race program begins at 1 p.m., with the featured Desert Stormer Stakes for sprinting fillies and mares carded prior to the Pick-6 sequence as the third event.
In the opener #7 Swiss Perfection drops into a maiden claimer for the first time, lands the cozy outside post and seems well-spotted to graduate. The lightly-raced filly in the Harrington barn should have enough early zip to be on near the lead throughout. #4 Ryderroo is a 10-race maiden and appears to lack a real winning punch, but she’s a fit on figures and with two straight recent runner-up efforts she should at least hit the board again.
The second race, a $75,000 claimer for 3-year-olds fillies over a mile on turf, seems like the proper spot for #6 Loan Savant. Overmatched in the American Oaks in her most recent outing, the O’Neill-trained filly gets realistic today and looks capable of producing the last run. We’ll also include in our rolling exotics #4 Unusual Style; she, too, is trying claimers for the first time and should enjoy the softer company. Nakatani will have her doing her best work from off the pace.
The Desert Stormer marks the first stakes try for #4 My Sweet Addiction, a sparingly-raced but very talented daughter of Tiznow. She was impressive in her 2014 bow by easily handling entry-level allowance distaffers; she took two months off after that early-April score and has trained quite well since for Jones. She’s quick enough to press the pace but can win from mid-pack as well, so Smith has a few options. #5 Doingitthehardway, away since last August, has trained like she’s fit and ready for Hollendorfer, and although the California-bred filly seems most effective over a distance of ground, she can sprint as well. From her outside draw she should enjoy a lovely trip.
#4 Valley Cat is raised to the $75,000 claiming level by Hollendorfer in a sign of confidence in the fourth race, and the veteran gelding should be set for another huge run. An excellent second vs. softer last month in a race in which he earned a career top speed figure, the son of Royal Cat switches to Trujillo and should be along in time. You might also consider tossing in #3 Dry Summer, a first-off-the-claim for Miller (20% with this angle) and returning to the main track. His best race makes him dangerous.
Bottom-rung fillies and mares sprint five furlongs in the fifth race; #3 Bodie Girl has been away for nearly 17 months but she’s trained like she’s fit and at this level deserves top billing. Let’s hope she has at least one good one left in her. #1 J Louie finished a decent second vs. similar last month and today shortens up a half furlong. She’ll show plenty of zip from the rail and will take them as far as she can.
Maiden $20,000 claimers meet over seven furlongs in the sixth race, a modest affair begging to be won by a fresh face. #1 Badasmaysifeletsmeb seems as good as any; the Abrams-trained gelding finally makes it to the post at age four and actually has trained reasonably well. He’s a contender by default. #3 Salt of the Earth is a nine-race maiden but seems to be improving gradually and appears to be the best of the known element, for whatever that’s worth.
The seventh race is a Hillside turf sprint for first-level allowance fillies and mares and there appears to be three main contenders in a very contentious affair. #9 Zanbo, freshened since January but training in sharp style for Puype, should be comfortably placed outside throughout and have every chance. She’s winless over this course but has run well down the hill on three occasions and is overdue for a victory. We like her slightly on top but will also include#6 Blake’s Magic (a route-to-sprint play with winning form on this grass course) and #8 Noise of the Crowd, first off the claim for Spawr and switching to Smith. She should be part of the pace throughout.
The eighth race, a strong seven furlong allowance sprint, looks like a logical spot for #1 War Academy to regain his winning form. A strong second in a fast, highly-rated affair in March in his first start in nearly a year, the Baffert-trained gelding has trained well since and should be set for a forward move. Garcia rides him back. #6 Airfoil exits a pair of hot races and has the route-to-sprint angle working for him. He should be a late factor under Desormeaux.
The nightcap is a turf miler for maiden fillies and mares and presents a good price chance with #2 Smart Typical. Given a run down the hill in her racing debut, the daughter of Kodiak Kowboy closed a big gap on her own courage before galloping out nicely and should be set for a major forward move today while stretching out to a distance she should enjoy. There’s some value here at 8-1 on the morning line. #6 Kristinite, a strong second in a turf sprint in her recent comeback, has worked sharply since for Mulhall and is likely to try gate-to-wire tactics.