Projected fair skies to begin the racing week in Oldsmar and an entertaining optional allowances for juvenile going 1-1/16 miles on the Tampa turf.
Two appear best on form and they are the two early line choices, Dataman (5-2), half of an uncoupled tandem from Graham Motion, and Candidate (3-1), an impressive maiden winner on Maryland Million Day at Laurel.
Dataman has been keeping good company and has an experience edge. His win came despite a lead change that never came; lefty all the way.
But check out Candidate’s maiden score: Laurel Park, OCT 23, Race 1. We think he’ll make a favorable impression.
Yes, the fractions were slow but the course did have some cut in it and this colt was pressured down the backside and rounding the far turn. In fact, the chaser stuck his head in front soon after straightening away, which is exactly when Daniel Centeno pushed the button.
The scopey chestnut responded instantly, opened stride, and was drawing out to the end under a vigorous hand ride. Centeno, meanwhile, is 2-for-2 hooking up with major client Arnaud Delacour at the young meeting.
Coming from a race that has produced two next-out winners, we’re betting he’ll make it three. Taking Candidate to win, no price restrictions, and an exacta box with the Motion early line favorite.