RACE 5: Does Chad Brown have a first-time starter that was the lure to attract Irad Ortiz Jr. out of his self-imposed quarantine? And does that even matter?
Basquiat has been in training since early February. The bay is by American Pharoah from a mare that’s dropped three winners from four starters. She’s been working at Payson Park, who owns both the colt and the training center. Word must be out: He’s 8-5 on the early line.
There are a dozen published workouts, three of the bullet variety and Brown is not a fast-working kind of guy. As my friend Marc Lawrence says: You know what to do. But remember Lee Corso’s line? Not so fast my friend.
That’s because Ashiham (9-2) is making his debut for Tood Pletcher, with experience. See, he’s had a run, for Kiaran McLaughlin here, who retired from training to book mounts for Luis Saez, who is in the boot here.
Both trainers, of course, graduated from Lukas U a long time ago and Kiaran thought of Todd, as might have the Sheikhmeister of Shadwell, to manage the rest of his career. Tapit colt has worked five time for Todd, including a bullet 5/8s on April 18.
Based on early line odds, I know what I’m doing: Taking Ashiham to win, boxing the exacta and will try to sneak Tons of Gold (10-1) into the number.
UNBRIDLED STAKES (R9): Dr. Post (8-5) was very good last out breaking maiden at 7 furlongs in second start, earning an excellent Thoro-Graph figure. Before I get too excited, I’d like to see him do it around two turns before taking a short price, even with Irad.
Hence, I’m going to attempt putting this race in a value-laden lock box; exactas with Attachment Rate (3-1), Relentless Dancer (6-1) and Necker Island (12-1).
‘Dancer’ catches the eye in the straight pool. Getting class relief, he’s dropping out of consecutive graded stakes, last seen setting a strong, pressured pace in the Tampa Derby and held fairly well for fourth, finishing behind a blowout winner but ahead of eight rivals.
This event has confidence building potential. Louisiana bred, he’s had five works since the Tampa tussle, including three bullets, and we believe he will be aggressive here getting a switch to Chris Landeros, who recently awakened following a long slumber. Like to get 4-1 straight, but probably won’t.
We’re back later with a Late Pick 4 sequence for Oaklawn Park