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Hallandale Beach FL, December 25, 2021 – Unusual quality Sunday programs thanks to a Saturday Christmas.

Sunday, of course, is prime time Santa Anita as the venue celebrates it traditional day-after season opener.

Of particular national interest is the Grade 1 Malibu at 7 furlongs for three-year-olds.

We fully realize that Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner Aloha West is the leader in the Eclipse clubhouse, but this category might still be open. Consider:

Were Dr. Schivel, who lost the Sprint by several grains of Del Mar sand to Aloha West last month, were to rebound with a victory, it would be his second Grade 1 and improve his slate to (5) 4-1-0 for the season.

And what happens if the freakish Flightline blows the doors of the Malibu by wide-open lengths, improving his career to 3-for-3, an effort that convinces many he is the best sprinter in all the land? We predict that vote will become a horse race.

This Grade 1 almost always is good theater. Sunday’s Malibu might be historical at the end of the day. Post time is 6:49 EDT. Can hardly wait.

Meanwhile, you may be entertained by a six-pack of betting grids as prelude, including the G1 La Brea. So, like Hyman says, “Enjoy.”


Tropical Park Derby     Race 10

PROJECTED WINNER:  2-Never Surprised (8-5)

EXOTICA: Exacta Box with 5-Yes This Time (9-2)


Optional Allowances   Race 3

PROJECTED WINNER:  5-Obiwan (10-1)

EXOTICA: Exacta Box with 2-Wolfie’s Dynaghost (1-1). Exacta Boxes including 5-Obiwan, 2-Wolfie’s Dynaghost, 3-Two Steppin Kluki (10-1) and 6-Nick Papagiogio (4-1).


G2 San Gabriel      Race 5

PROJECTED WINNER:   2-Friar’s Road (5-2)

EXOTICA:  Friar’s Road to win at 5-2 or greater. Exacta Key-Box 2-Friar’s Road with 4-Hit the Road (8-5) and 6-Red Storm Risen (4-1). Trifecta Wheel using 1-Indian Peak (8-1) and 7-Ready Soul (6-1) for third.

G2 San Antonio     Race 6

PROJECTED WINNER:  4-Hot Rod Charlie (6-5)

EXOTICA:  4-Hot Rod Charlie to win at 6-5 or greater. Exacta Key-Box 4-Hot Rod Charlie with 2-Express Train (7-2) and 5-Eight Rings (4-1). Trifecta Wheel using 6-Kiss Today Goodbye (5-1) for third.

G2 Santa Anita Mathis Mile      Race 7

PROJECTED WINNER:   7-Du Jour (3-1)

EXOTICA:  7-Du Jour to win at 2-1 or greater.  Exacta Key-Box 7-Du Jour with 8-Beyond Brilliant (5-2) and Law Professor (8-1).  Trifecta Wheel using 5-Cane Creek Road (20-1) and 6-Flashiest (5-1) for third.

Grade 1 La Brea         Race 8

PROJECTED WINNER:   4-Private Mission (8-5) to win

EXOTICA:  Private Mission to win at 1-1 or greater. Exacta Box 3-Kalypso (5-1) and 4-Private Mission. Exacta and Trifecta Wheel 3-Kalypso and 4-Private Mission with 5-Missy P (5-2) for second and third.

Grade 1 Malibu      Race 10

PROJECTED WINNER:  Triple Tap (5-1)

EXOTICA: 7-Triple Tap to win at 5-1 or greater. Exacta Key-Box with 4-Dr. Schivel (5-2) and 5-Flightline (4-5). Trifecta Box 4-5-7.

Grade 1 American Oaks      Race 11

PROJECTED WINNER:  5-Going Global (9-5)

EXOTICA: Going Global to win at 6-5 or greater. Exacta Key-Box with 4-Nicest (8-1), 1-Fluffy Socks (3-1), 11-Single Soul (12-1) and 8-Ivy League (20-1). Superfecta Key 5-Going Global first and second with–extra Ticket with Going Global first.

Exotica horses listed in graded order. Per usual, all multiple wagers made a minimums available per each pool, win wagers at the $2 increment

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4 Responses

  1. JP–
    Flightline made his odds of 2-5 look like an overlay! What a performance on a relatively dull surface! If there were any questions whether Flightline is the real deal, they were answered decisively in the Malibu.

    Looking forward to Flightline’s next race as he continues his campaign to join the pantheon of the legendary thoroughbreds of yore…….

    Happy New Year to you and Toni!!

  2. First and foremost, right back at you, and a Healthy 2022 as well.

    Of course, I was as impressed by his first two wins like everyone, but I had to see it going seven-eighths in a Grade 1 against, especially, another unbeaten rival and a proven Grade 1 winner. The performance has me reaching for words like gobsmacked.

    In the old neighborhood, it would have been more like “what the hell was that?”

    Trainer Sadler had it right when he described him as one of those “historical horses.” For the time being, I’m looking for a Met Mile Future Book. Only problem, any more efforts like the Malibu, the 2022 Metropolitan Handicap would more resemble the 1980 Woodward.

    Too bad there aren’t any racing secretaries like John Blanks Campbell around, or connections willing to accept the kind of weight he would need to carry in order to give his rivals a chance.

  3. Too bad flightline is arriving just when Knicks Go is leaving.

    It isn’t often one comes across a BRIS PP that ranks a horse on top for both early and late pace, last race, and then sees that phenomenon repeated.

    I agree that 2022 could see the first walkover since Spectacular Bid.

  4. Knicks Go is going, going gone, but Life Is Good is still here. How about that matchup in the Met Mile?? Stay healthy. And to your point, you just don’t horses match top pace and final figures at once. Pretty amazing, really…

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