Sep 16, 2011
HORSES TO WATCH
By: AMERICAN TURF CLUB
FAIRPLEX / SANTA ANITA
AVA’S PARADISE: First starter got shuffled back in traffic and was not a factor in career debut, but really didn’t run bad given the trouble, finishing just 2 ½ lengths out of third. Don’t overlook at a big price.
ELLO GUV: First starter broke poorly and steadied early, yet still managed to pass eight horses en route to a second-place finish in sharp career debut. Just needs a clean start.
FULLBRIDLED’S SIS: Got hooked and cooked in a three-length-gap duel for the lead and still held on for third. Can post a surprise front-running win for low-profile trainer.
IZZY RULES: Set a fast and pressured pace and outlasted her speed challengers for second, losing only to a perfectly set-up stalker. Looks good in second off the layoff.
JOYFULL JULIA: Well-bet first starter got fanned out wide on the first turn at Fairplex, but ran a big race to pass all except the loose lone speed wire-to-wire winner. May not remain a maiden for long.
KVELL: Stumbled at the break and lost her best chance at the start when going down in flames at shot odds. Can rebound with a better start.
PICK AND PRAY: Got caught in a three-length-gap speed duel and held on well for second. Can shake loose and win next off the claim.
PURSE LUVA: Broke slowly and had too much ground to make up at Del Mar, yet still closed strong for fourth, losing by less than a half-length in a race otherwise ruled by front-runners.
RIO GOOD: Showed good speed but never got a breather up front in return from a 3 ½-month layoff. Too early to give up on him.
ROYAL TIGER: Broke slowly and needed a race in return from a 5 ½-month layoff. Prepped and ready to win in continued return from the layoff.
SILVER DRAGON: Needed a race off a year layoff, yet still outran 15-a odds for second. Ready to graduate.
TRIBAL MAGIC: Got hooked in a three-length-gap speed duel and held on for second behind a perfect-trip even-money winner. Dangerous speed vs. maiden claimers.
TRUCO LATINO: Got caught in a duel for the lead and held on for third after his early challenger tired badly to finish last. Speed threat vs. cheapie maidens.
BEST BET: C J RUSSELL: Got bumped and fanned out five wide to lose his best chance on the first turn at Fairplex. Ready to make amends for Baffert.
LONGSHOT: ALWAYS TEMPTING: Toss out last-place finish after a bad start at Fairplex. Well-bet first-starter is worth another shot.
DEVILS TOWER: Got hooked in a four-length-gap speed duel on a fast 6 ½-furlong pace. Outlasted his early challenger for third and is dangerous next time.
GREY KNIGHT: Got shuffled back in traffic at the start and had too much work to do from there in a race dominated by pace horses. Can make amends next time.
PLAYON PLAYER: Got hooked in a three-length-gap speed duel and still finished strong to just miss by a nose. Can shake loose up front.
SCATTER A STAR: Hit the side of the gate to break last in an 11-horse field in a horrible start, but then got rolling and put in an impressive run only to get the worst of a three-horse blanket finish. Just needs a better beginning.
SEE NO STARS: Pressed the pace and was the only front-runner still around at the end in a race otherwise ruled by closers. Threat to graduate in next race off the layoff.
SHERIFF BULLOCK: Battled for the lead and settled for second behind only the perfect set-up closing 4-5 odds winner. Finished far clear of the third horse and can’t be overlooked in next.
TABLE GAMES: Was too close to the pace early and then too far behind after getting shuffled back when the race was on the line before getting caught in close quarters down inside in deep stretch. Better luck next time.
WINNING WILDCAT: Finished a clear second despite a six-wide trip in first start off a seven-month layoff. Prepped and ready now.
YOU’RE TOO WILD: Broke slowly to begin four lengths behind the field, but came on strong to be second with the worst luck of any of the four horses involved in the blanket finish.
ZIPPED AGAIN: Broke slowest to start last in a 10-horse field to appear to lose all chance in a five-furlong race, but managed to finish second in a sharp effort behind only the 7-5 favorite. Just needs a clean start.
BEST BET: SONGS AND SONNETS: First starter was up close all the way and held on nicely for second before losing by only a neck to the perfect-trip odds-on favorite. Won’t be maiden for long.
LONGSHOT: LEAD THE WAY: Was unable to launch what could have been a winning rally after getting shuffled back in traffic in the stretch. Don’t ignore.
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