Looking to Wednesday’s finale to begin the racing week at Tampa Bay Downs, a 5-furlong turf sprint that should go on that surface if weather handicappers are correct. Take a look at the local race on the Tampa Bay Today video. See if Oceanic’s (3-1) recent graduation impresses you, too.
What we liked, in addition to the visual, was the way he distributed his energy throughout the race, running faster than he ever has on the Thoro-Graph scale as a newly turned gelded four-year-old, going to the front and, as the racetrackers say, improving his position.
We also like the idea that trainer Jordan Blair gave him seven weeks to recover from his effort in RACE 6, JAN 17, and that the trainer has a success rate of an otherworldly 40% when he gives Antonio Gallardo a leg up.
Yes, Chess Master (2-1) is a deserving favorite but can be upset if the Blair runner’s forward looking pattern continues. We’re taking Oceanic to win at 5-2 or greater and key-boxing exactas with Chess Master and trip specialist price shot, Bee By the Sea (10-1).