​Fair Grounds Horse Racing Picks for Saturday 3/20/21

It's a great time to dive into horse racing, and TVG gives you the chance to do just that.

Starting at 12:20 p.m. EST, we have 14 races at Fair Grounds. Using Daily Horse PIcks and Guaranteed Tip Sheet as a guide, here are some of the best bets.

As always, check the program for scratches and changes, and check the weather and track conditions.

(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.)

Dreamlildreamofu and Pass the Plate, Race 10

TVG Odds: 15/1 and 8/1

Race 10 is the $150K Tom Benson Memorial for older fillies and mares racing 1 1/16 miles on the turf. The race has very high payoff potential, and the top contenders according to Guaranteed Tip Sheet (GTS) are Dominga (8/1) and Dreamalildreamofu (15/1), both of whom are trained by EPO trainer Brad Cox. Also, Dalika (3/1) is contender, and GTS notes she ran the highest last-race speed figure when winning her third race in last five starts. Dalika should press the pace while Dreamalildreamofu should get a stalking trip.

Dominga has two wins and a runner-up finish in three starts at Fair Grounds, and Horse Racing Radar (HRR) notes Dreamalildreamofu finished in the money in 6-of-7 starts, Also, HRR suggests Pass the Plate (8/1) has solid value, moving forward in her last three starts and finishing third off a layoff last out. She has strong late speed figures and has two wins and a third-place finish at this distance. Joy Epifora (15/1) is another with good risk and reward.

Obligatory and Li’l Tootsie, Race 13

TVG Odds: 5/1 and 4/1

Race 13 is the $400K Fair Grounds Oaks for three-year-old fillies racing 1 1/16 miles. The top four finishers receive qualifying points to the Kentucky Oaks, with the winner getting 100 points. The favorite and top pick according to GTS is Clairiere (2/1) with Li’l Tootsie (4/1) a major contender. Clairiere has won 2-of-3 starts with a runner-up finish and posted a 100 speed figure last month when winning the Rachel Alexandra here by a neck over the favorite that day, Travel Column (5/2). A rematch is set for this one, and Moon Swag (20/1) also returns after finishing a distant third in that race.

Obligatory (5/1) and Li’l Tootsie are both win contenders and value runners, according to Super Screener and Daily Horse Picks (DHP). Obligatory has top jockey Jose Ortiz riding for trainer Bill Mott, and she broke her maiden impressively last month at Gulfstream with a strong rally and quality speed figure as the favorite. Obligatory’s sire is the great Curlin. Li’l Tootsie is 2-for-3 at Fair Grounds, and HRR notes her one race over a fast track produced an excellent 104 speed figure. Jockey Luis Saez rides her for trainer Tom Amoss.

Midnight Bourbon and Hot Rod Charlie, Race 14

TVG Odds: 5/1 and 3/1

Race 14 is the $1 million Louisiana Derby for three-year-olds racing 1 3/16 miles. This Kentucky Derby Championship Series races awards the top four finishers points and the winner is awarded 100 points. The favorite is Mandaloun (8/5), who beat five of these runners in last month's Risen Star. He’s 3-for-4 but finished third in January’s Derby prep at Fair Grounds to Midnight Bourbon (5/1) and runner-up Proxy (7/2). GTS projects Mandaloun and Proxy to decide the race but notes value on pace-presser Midnight Bourbon and potential surprise Run Classic (12/1).

HRR adds that Hot Rod Charlie (3/1) is the only other horse to hit 100 on the speed gun in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile last November. The race should have swift, strong pressure, according to Super Screener, which sets up well for Hot Rod Charlie from off the pace. Run Classic has late pace figures and a winning time last race to match these as he makes his stakes debut.