HORSE RACING

​Del Mar Horse Racing Picks for Sunday 7/26/20

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 5:00 p.m. EST, we have 11 races at Del Mar Racetrack. Using our numberFire projections as a guide, here are some of the best bets.

As always, check the program for scratches and changes.

(I will reference Equibase's Speed Figure in selected races, which tells you how fast a horse has been running in each of its races -- adjusted for track, distances, and conditions.)

Plum Wild and Smiling Annie, Race 6

FanDuel Racing Odds: 10/1 and 7/2

Race 6 is an Allowance race for state bred fillies and mares sprinting five furlongs on the turf. Favorite Bella Vita (5/2) was scratched, opening the lane for others to cash in.

We’ll shoot for a price on Plum Wild (10/1), who is working very well in his return from a four-month layoff. All 13 of his starts have been at Golden Gate. He's notched just one win, but 10 times he's been in the money and will be looking to surprise “Where the Turf Meets the Surf.”

Smiling Annie (7/2) has been freshened and sharp in the mornings after running second her last race off a seven-day turnaround. She posted her best career speed figure (96) in 15 starts a year ago over this turf surface when running on the lead and finishing third going a mile.

Songofthedesert (5/1) gets the support of numberFire on top followed by Smiling Annie. She won her last race by four lengths in May in Allowance company.

Bowie’s Hero and Cleopatra's Strike, Race 8

FanDuel Racing Odds: 4/1 and 8/1

Race 8 is the $200K Eddie Read Stakes (G2) at 1 1/8 miles on the turf. We have just six runners, and Bowie’s Hero (4/1) won this race last year hitting a 118 speed figure from off the pace. In his 2020 debut off a long layoff last month, Bowie’s Hero came flying down the stretch to finish second after running each successive quarter mile faster than the other. EPO trainer Phil D’Amato has his horses ready to fire and now gives this one an extra boost along with his other runner, Cleopatra’s Strike (8/1), who should not be overlooked despite his worst race off a layoff last month. Cleopatra’s Strike's triple-digit speed figures can match the top runners.

Favorite United (8/5) is the top pick at numberFire and top class in this field. United is working sharply since winning a Grade 2 race in May with a 120 speed figure.

Neptune’s Storm (6/1) has hit the board in 14-of-17 starts and won last month in the San Francisco Mile (G2) with a pace pressing ride. Drayden Van Dyke jumps on for EPO trainer Richard Baltas.

Galilean and Ultimate Bango, Race 10

FanDuel Racing Odds: 3/1 and 8/1

Race 10 is the $125K California Dreamin’ Stakes for state-breds going 1 1/16 miles on the turf. Camino Del Paraiso (5/2) is the morning line favorite on the rail with top jock Drayden Van Dyke taking over for the first time. This seven-year-old has hit the board in five straight races this year while posting stronger triple-digit speed figures. Proven form on grass and finished third last out up North against a solid Grade 3 group.

Galilean (3/1) is the third pick at numberFire, but we’ll move him to the top spot with leading rider Flavien Prat riding for John Sadler. Guaranteed Tip Sheet notes Galilean is 8-for-8 on a fast track with four wins. Galilean is in peak form with turf pedigree coming off a pair of races with triple-digit speed figures, including a margin win last month.

Favorites are 7-for-13 (turf) since this Cal-bred race was inaugurated in 2006, and one of those top two will be post-time favorite.

Longshot Brandothebartender (15/1) will try to mix it up, changing from dirt to turf but finishing second last time on grass in early June. He’s hit the board in six straight races with four of those minor stakes and high 90s speed figures. Leading meet jockey Umberto Rispoli rides. Brandothebartender is a sneaky play that can payoff underneath in the Exacta and Trifecta bets.

Ultimate Bango (8/1) is racing second off a layoff with a bullet five-furlong morning work tab on July 19. He finished fifth in the race last year at similar odds, but numberFire has Ultimate Bango pulling the upset on top.

Six of the last 11 winners of this race were moving up from Allowance company, and that fits Irish Heatwave (6/1) from the outside No. 11 post having won last month at Golden Gate. It's a tougher group to make up ground against.