With weather handicappers calling for rain, we looked at turf races in which horses could transfer their recent trips into dirt victory. Fortunately, an HRI Horse to Watch, Quality Step (4-1), is entered in the eighth race starter handicap.
See his local return on the TAMPA BAY TODAY VIDEO on our homepage and note his recent start against much stiffer allowance competition now drops to meet claiming competition, protected by the starter handicap conditions.
At no time in RACE 5 on DEC 4 in Oldsmar did he even get a whiff of the rail. Given that ground loss in anathema to grass runners, he had no viable chance to win. With all hope lost, the Keith Nations-trained 5YO was not abused late through the stretch.
Sure to benefit from the effort, the Nations barn has come to life in recent weeks and so marked improvement is expected here. Given that he’s run competitively on dirt, a surface switch should not affect him too adversely.
We’re taking Quality Step to win at 3-1 or greater, and will key-box exactas with runners from two live outfits; the Arriagada-trained Shendam (7-2) and The Boss Factor (5-2) from Wayne Potts.