Thistledown Horse Racing Picks for Thursday 7/16/20

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 12:50 p.m. EST, we have eight races at Thistledown. Using our projections as a guide, here are some of the best bets.

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

Jettin Pegasus, Race 1

FD Racing Odds: 9/1

Our model picks an upset in Race 1 as we have Jettin Pegasus (9/1) winning over heavy favorite Sheza Fine Justice (1/1).

It's easy to see why we like Jettin Pegasus. The mare hasn't been in great form in 2020, but she ended 2019 with back-to-back speed figures of 78 and 75, per Equibase, and she posted a career-best 87 speed figure earlier in 2019. Erik Barbaran will be riding, and Barbaran has a 16% win rate and 50% top-three rate this year at Thistledown.

Sheza Fine Justice, meanwhile, has a career-best speed figure of just 83, and jockey Edgar Paucar has only a 4% win rate and 31% top-three rate this season. What Sheza Fine Justice does have going for her is much better form as she has speed figures of 71 and 78 in her two 2020 races -- compared to speed figures of 49, 49 and 66 this year for Jettin Pegasus.

But given the pricing here, there's a lot more bang for your buck available if you take Jettin Pegasus.

Kid Russell, Race 5

FD Racing Odds: 8/1

Our model highlights another longer shot in Race 8 as we pick Kid Russell (8/1) to win. Our algorithm sees this race being volatile as we have favorite Iron Men of Metz (5/2) finishing outside the top three.

Kid Russell has a career-best 84 speed figure to his name across three career races, and this will be his second outing of 2020. He certainly has an edge at jockey in the form of Luan Machado, who paces all jockeys this year at Thistledown with a 24% win rate.

Iron Men of Metz has a career-best speed figure of just 55, so oddsmakers are either banking on improvement from him or expecting Kid Russell to run at less than best speed. Iron Men of Metz does have veteran Luis Raul Rivera (20% win rate) at jockey.

Native Hawk and Favorite Lewys Vaporizer, Race 6

FD Racing Odds: 7/2 and 5/2

Native Hawk (7/2) is our pick to win Race 6, which is scheduled for just six horses, while we have Lewys Vaporizer (5/2) taking second.

Native Hawk has placed in the top two in five of his past six events, including one win, so the recent form is there. He's also posted speed figures between 84 and 87 in four of those outings. Plus, he recorded a speed figure of at least 90 in each of his last four 2019 races. He's been consistently solid.

Favorite Lewys Vaporizer (5/2) has flashed some gaudy speed figures, including clips of 100 and 94 in his last two. But he can be a bit hit or miss with a pair of 62 speed figures last year and an 86 two races ago.

These two are the class of this field. Betting them in an exacta makes sense. I'd side with our model and choose Native Hawk to win due to his consistency, but Lewys Vaporizer could -- wait for it -- vaporize this field if he's on top form.