​Del Mar Horse Racing Picks for Friday 8/28/20

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 9 races at Del Mar Racetrack. Using numberFire’s 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.)

He’s Like Violence, Race 3

FanDuel Racing Odds: 7/2

Race 3 is a Claiming race with 10 runners going 1 1/16 miles on the Turf. Daily Horse Picks projects He’s Like Violence (7/2) to win followed by Seeking Refuge (9/2), who has leading jockey Umberto Rispoli riding. But Seeking Refuge is winless in five 2020 starts and finished in-the-money just once. The numberFire algorithm projects Go Time (5/1) to win followed by He’s Like Violence.

Go Time is a 3-year-old running against older horses. He’s in good health, stringing races together off a good effort and had a third-place finish last month. Top jockey Flavien Prat rides with a competitive chance to win and hit the board.

He’s Like Violence strides out like a route runner and galloped out well when finishing a close fourth off a long layoff earlier this month. His 95 speed rating was encouraging, and trainer Mark Glatt used that sprint race as a prep for this preferred route. Well meant and placed runners are worth supporting, especially when jockey Abel Cedillo is riding.

Vodka Twist and Debt Monger, Race 4

FanDuel Racing Odds: 4/1 and 8/1

Race 4 is a Claiming race at 1 mile. If you like shorter favorites, Zorich (2/1) will be your colt to try to cash in with as the fastest horse in this field, according to Daily Horse Picks, and numberFire also projects Zorich to win.

Let’s try a capable runner who is well-placed here and celebrate a win with Vodka Twist (4/1), a 3-year-old who is eligible for this race against older horses. Top Race Reports notes how he dug in gamely and was full of life after winning here a month ago. He’s working very well in the mornings since that win at Del Mar a month ago after being claimed by new trainer Steve Knapp.

Debt Monger (8/1) is worth including after making up ground and finishing a close second behind Vodka Twist last race. He’s finished first or second in each of his last three races and can cash in again.

Miss Costa Rica, Race 7

FanDuel Racing Odds: 6/1

Race 7 is a Maiden Special Weight for 2-year-old fillies, and it's sprinting 5 furlongs on the Turf. This is the stronger of the two MSW races for juvenile fillies on Friday, and the top pick according to numberFire's data is Pizzazz (9/2) followed by German-bred Quinevere (8/1).

Mike Smith rides Pizzazz in her debut. But Smith has won just 5-of-55 starts at the Del Mar meet, and respected trainer Richard Mandella has won just 3-of-40 but has a positive training pattern leading into her debut. Pizzazz was sired by War Front but has more distance pedigree in her profile from her dam. Include her in your Exacta and Trifecta bets.

Top jockey Umberto Rispoli rides favorite Brilliant Cut (7/2), who finished fourth in her debut on dirt but is bred for the turf. Rispoli leads the Del Mar meet with 36 wins and a 27% win rate. Just behind Rispoli is Flavien Prat with 34 wins, and Prat could ride Freedom Flyer (3/1), who is entered but needs a horse to scratch for her to enter the starting gate.

Miss Costa Rica (6/1) debuts for EPO trainer Richard Baltas. She has show consistent speed on her work tab in the mornings with a full slate of 12 works the past three months in prep for her debut. That’s something to track for trainers bringing a young horse into their first race. She has the pedigree to perform well at first asking. Another leading jockey, Abel Cedillo, is summoned to ride, and Top Race Reports notes that Cedillo is getting his choice of more horses to ride. Miss Costa Rica has the ability to take this at a price on first asking.