​Santa Anita Horse Racing Picks for Saturday 5/30/20

With most of the sports world on pause, it's a great time to dive into horse racing, and FanDuel Racing gives you the chance to do just that.

Starting at 3:30 p.m. EST, we have nine races at Santa Anita. Using our projections as a guide, here are some of the best bets.

As always, keep an eye out for scratches and changes.

Count Alexei, Race 5

FD Racing Odds: 7/2

State breds going 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf, and Count Alexei makes his debut against a sub-par group. Purchase price for this colt was over 20 times the stud fee at auction. Working fantastically well leading into this and can outduel front running Stir the Pot (4/1), who returns just two weeks off a dirt race. Brix (4/1) will also challenge up front, making his 10th start with two runner-up finishes in his three turf sprint starts.

Parkour, Race 7

FD Racing Odds: 7/2

This is the $100,000 Honeymoon Stakes (G3) for three-year-old fillies on the turf. We’ll try to beat the Irish invader Stela Star (2/1), who has Santa Anita’s leading rider Flavien Prat aboard (25% win rate and 60% in-the-money this year), according to Equibase. Stela Star just missed in her U.S. debut March 7, finishing second at Santa Anita, going 1 mile. That was a field of 13 and followed a five-month layoff, but Stela Star is still a strong, deserving favorite and a reliable board hitter to be included in Exotic and Pick 4 bets.

Parkour (7/2) is slightly preferred at a better price now stretching out to 1 1/8 miles. Parkour was an impressive front-running winner in her 2020 debut March 22 at Santa Anita and is the lone front speed in here with only Laura’s Light showing tactical speed. Going one mile as the 2/1 favorite against similar, Parkour cut out super-fast fractions to open a six-length lead in the stretch and cruised home a 3 1/4 length winner under today’s rider Mike Smith. Parkour trainer Richard Mandella has the highest win rate (24%) of all Santa Anita trainers this year, per Equibase.

An off-pace closer of value if spreading is another Irish-bred Red Lark (12-1), who rallied well to finish less than a length behind Stela Star on March 7.

Whirl Candy, Race 9

FD Racing Odds: 5/1

A very competitive Maiden Special Weight completes the Pick 4 with nine runners going 1 1/8 miles on the turf. The Baltas barn takes Whirl Candy from a 5 1/2 furlong sprint in March to nine furlongs against better competition, but this colt has been prepping well for his feed trainer after posting a solid 98 Equibase speed figure in that last sprint race at Santa Anita. Abel Cedillo rides with a 45% in-the-money rate this year at Santa Anita. Irish invader Rio Ocho (7/2) makes his U.S. debut as favorite. Trainer Neil Drysdale has just three winners in 40 starts at Santa Anita this year, but he saddles three horses in this race route finale. Cosmo (6/1), Reprobate (6/1) and Capital Call (6/1) with money Mike Smith aboard who should relish the distance, and Drysdale brings him back quickly off a deep-closing third-place finish two weeks ago when he rallied wide five wide in the stretch, passing horses to pick up a piece.