Santa Anita Horse Racing Picks for Saturday 10/16/21
As always, check for scratches and changes and monitor 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.)
Fearless Girl and Ultimat Hy, Race 5
FanDuel Racing Odds: 9/5 and 4/1
Race 5 is an Allowance race for fillies and mares at 1 1/8 miles on the turf. Top Race Reports notes that the turf course has been very fair to runners further back. There’s more cushion earlier in the meet, allowing for more bounce rather than a harder surface favoring frontrunners.
The numberFire model projects Mercy Mercy (6/1) to edge Ultimate Hy (4/1). Mercy Mercy has won 2-of-6 starts this year, but she’s a frontrunner and has not raced at Santa Anita in more than two years. She’s the only runner in the nine-horse field racing for the optional $50,000 claiming price.
Ultimate Hy broke her her maiden her in April as a three-year-old and then won again in May. She’s improved her speed figures in two recent races and fits the profile of an off-the-pace runner.
Fearless Girl (9/5) is the favorite and obvious choice for EPO trainer Phil D’Amato. She’s a best bet of Guaranteed Tip Sheet and won at this distance in Ireland in June. She finished second in her U.S. debut last month at Del Mar as the favorite. Fearless Girl had a good late kick in that race but was blocked near the far turn before finding room in that 1-mile race.
Bella Vita and Warren’s Showtime, Race 7
FanDuel Racing Odds: 5/2 and 9/5
Race 7 is the $100K California Distaff Handicap for fillies and mares at 6 1/2 furlongs on the downhill turf course. numberFire's data picks favorite Warren’s Showtime (9/5) to win with Anna Fantastic (8/1) and Pulpit Rider (7/2) to hit the board. Leading jockey Juan Hernandez rides Warren's Showtime, who is breaking from the rail.
This is not the preferred distance of Warren’s Showtime, but she’s the class of the field with a pair of Grade 3 wins among her six stakes victories. She’s the main contender along with Bella Vita, according to Guaranteed Tip Sheet, and Horse Racing Radar reports she is coming off her best race and has hit the board in 9-of-11 races. That includes two wins and four runner-up finishes at Santa Anita last year, and she has tactical and natural speed with improved figures as a four-year-old.
Anna Fantastic has good speed and will likely try to win on the front end.
Warren’s Showgirl and Infinite Love, Race 9
FanDuel Racing Odds: 6/1 and 6/1
Race 9 completes the day at “The Great Race Place.” It's a Maiden Special Weight for two-year-old state-bred fillies going 1 mile on the turf. There will be plenty of wagering options on FanDuel Racing with this being a full field of 12 horses, and the numberFire algorithm projects an upset by Vivacious Vanessa (15/1) over favorite Candy On Top (8/5) and Infinite Love (6/1).
Vivacious Vanessa makes her debut with a bullet workout at six furlongs last week. Candy On Top has two races under her belt, including at this distance when finishing a second by a neck.
Warren’s Showgirl (6/1) is the full sister to the aforementioned Warren’s Showtime, and she'll likely prefer the longer distance of a sprint race this summer. Peacehaven (5/1) has Jessica Pfyer riding in her third start with no solid finishes, while Infinite Love ran better in her fourth start last month, showing speed late from way off the pace.