Racing at Hollywood Park with Marc Doche: Swaps pot at the end of Blueskiesnrainbows
- Updated: July 4, 2012
If pace makes the race, the “other” Bob Baffert is liable to strike again with 4-to-1 co-third choice Blueskiesnrainbows leading every step of the way in the $150,000 Swaps Stakes (Grade II) for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8-miles on the main track.
The only main track try at this distance for the son of English Channel came when he nearly pulled off a massive upset at 42-to-1 in the Santa Anita Derby (Grade I) in April before settling for third beaten just half a length behind I’ll Have Another and Creative Cause. In his only try over Cushion Track, Blueskiesnrainbows broke his maiden against $30,000 claimers by nearly three lengths last December.
Baffert’s Liaison is the 5-to-2 favorite despite being winless through five starts in 2012. The son of Indian Charlie has shown an affinity for this main track by winning the Cash Call Futurity (Grade I) and Real Quiet Stakes over it as a 2-year-old and it helped wake him up with a much improved effort when coming up half a length short in the Affirmed Handicap (Grade III) a month ago.
The Affrimed was won by today’s 3-to-1 second choice Nonios, one of two entered for Jerry Hollendorfer. The son of Pleasantly Perfect rewarded those (me) who backed him at 15-to-1 in the Affirmed off a pair of resounding wins and a solid third-place effort against some classy older dudes at Golden Gate.
Holldendorfer’s other runner also enters on a long losing streak, with Rousing Sermon falling to defeat in his last six races since winning the Cal Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita last October. The Cal-bred son of Lucky Pulpit was the runner-up behind Liaison in a pair of starts to close out 2011 before his late kick made little impact in four graded stakes efforts this year.
Listed at 5-to-1, Called to Serve is a trendy selection off a pair of wins including defeating his elders in a first-level allowance over this track on May 28. However, the son of Afleet Alex was not flattered when Patriot’s Voyage came back to be defeated by over 10 lengths last weekend.
We’re off to the races!
Pick 4 -
Leg 1 – Race 5 (2,4,5) – Lots of pricey horse flesh in this maiden allowance, including $900,000 purchase No. 2 Jimmy Creed, who posted a big number debuting with a narrow miss. His last three works are a bit puzzling, but he must be used.
Baffert sends two again and it appears $500,000 purchase No. 4 Caminetto is the better runner with Bejarano taking the call.
We can’t get beat by the “other” Baffert, so we’ll also use $475,000 purchase No. 5 In Deep, who returns after a disappointing debut last summer at Del Mar.
Leg 2 – Race 6 (3,4,5,7) – No. 3 Romeo Royale drops in class off getting eased, but returned with a sharp bullet work. Not sure what to make of Joy Scott getting the call, which tempers the enthusiasm a bit.
No. 4 Valley Cat and No. 7 He’s Very Rare hit the wire together at this level in their last, but Tizpat was right along with them and he returned to disappoint against weaker.
No. 5 Huntsville always had promise and finally broke through at Golden Gate in his last. That could give him the confidence to win right back.
Leg 3 – Race 7 (2,5,6) – The top pick is No. 2 Blueskiesnrainbows, but we’ll also use No. 5 Liaison and No. 6 Nonios.
Leg 4 – Race 8 (3,5,6,7) – Maiden female babies close the day and No. 5 Leona Pegasus is a live bomber after breaking from the rail in her last. She’s returned with a solid series of works for a trainer that excels with runners that have a race under their belt.
We’ll spread with No. 3 Pursuitofparadise, No. 6 Angel Be Quick and No. 7 Wellington Beauty.
Recap – (2,4,5) w (3,4,5,7) w (2,5,6) w (3,5,6,7) – Total cost of ticket = $72
Sunday’s Result – (+$188.50)
Total for current Hollywood Park spring/summer meet – (-$1,700.95)
Total from 12/26/10 – 4/22/12 – (+$588.70)
Pick 5 –
Leg 1 – Race 1 (4) – The 5-day holiday week of racing begins how most cards have lately, with a short-priced favorite that should be difficult to beat. No. 4 More Chocolate was inhaled by next out winner Jolly Days in his last and a repeat of that effort here makes him the most likely winner on the card against a modest group.
Leg 2 – Race 2 (ALL) – The first of consecutive races for females that have never won twice and despite No. 5 Pardon My Excess likely having a pace advantage, we can’t trust her at this tricky sprint distance so we’ll use them all.
Leg 3 – Race 3 (ALL) – The same strategy with all five runners in this short starer allowance field.
Leg 4 – Race 4 (1,4,7) – No. 7 Capture the Call is a win machine and should clear again, but he might be due for one of his clunkers.
No. 4 Man Chester Man also likes to win races and should be in the hunt.
No. 1 Life Is a Rock can wake up moving into the capable hands of Jack Carava for the first time.
Leg 5 – Race 5 (2,4,5) – Same trio as the late Pick-4.
Recap – (4) w (ALL) w (ALL) w (1,4,7) w (2,4,5) – Total cost of ticket = $157.50
Sunday’s Result – (-$108)
Total for current Hollywood Park spring/summer meet – (-$86.10)
Total from 7/20/11 – 4/22/12 – (+$2,150.80)
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