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Grade 1’s Galore on Saturday

Posted by Pete Mitchell on 4/8/2011 6:02:42 PM
  • Who: Thoroughbreds – Apriority, Delightful Mary, Uncle Mo, Anthony’s Cross
  • What: Horse Racing Betting Tips – The Carter Handicap, The Ashland, The Wood Memorial, The Santa Anita Derby
  • Where: Aqueduct, Keeneland, Santa Anita
  • When: Saturday, April 9th

There’s plenty of top-quality equine talent headed postward this Saturday at tracks across the country. We’ll focus on a quartet of Grade 1’s…The Carter Handicap and The Wood Memorial at Aqueduct, The Ashland at Keeneland and The Santa Anita Derby.

In The Carter Handicap, Apriority looks like a star on the rise. The key for him was the move to dirt, after doing nothing special in his first six starts on turf and polytrack (similar to the great Cigar). He ran a bang-up second to the ultra-tough Amazombie in The Sunshine Millions Sprint at Santa Anita, then elevated his game to another level last out at Gulfstream Park, recording a Beyer Speed Figure of 113, and missing the track record for 6 ½ furlongs by a few hundredths of a second. His trainer says the 7-furlong distance of The Carter fits Apriority to a T. I agree. I’ll bet on #7-Apriority to win at odds of 5-2 or better.

The Wood Memorial looks like a walkover for the beast we know as Uncle Mo. He’s 1-5 on the morning line, so there’s no value there. I’m expecting improvement from Toby’s Corner, who gets blinkers for the first time, but he’s the second choice at 8-1…there’s no value in that exacta. I’ll pass the race and enjoy watching Uncle Mo power his way to The Kentucky Derby.

Kathmanblu is the most accomplished filly in The Ashland, and enters on a three-race win streak. She has never started on an artificial surface, however, so it will be tough to back her as the favorite. I’m intrigued by 5-1 shot Delightful Mary. She’s 3-for-4 on the fake stuff, with a second to Wyomia, the horse to her immediate inside. Delightful Mary has quality, having fetched $500K as a 2YO, and finishing in the money in the BC Juvenile Fillies. She kicked off her sophomore campaign with a stakes win at Ocala, and figures to move forward off that effort. I’ll bet on #4-Delightful Mary to win and place at odds of 4-1 or better.

The Santa Anita Derby lost some of its luster when probable favorite Premier Pegasus was scratched due to an injury. Jaycito will inherit favoritism, but I’m leaning toward Anthony’s Cross (morning line 4-1). He improved last out with the addition of blinkers to win the Robert B. Lewis by a nose. His training has gone well in the interim and I’m expecting another move forward. This colt broke his maiden going two turns at Churchill Downs, so if he turns in a big effort on Saturday, he’ll get plenty of respect on the first Saturday in May. I’ll bet on #9-Anthony’s Cross to win and place at odds of 3-1 or better.

Those are my horse racing betting tips for the weekend. Best of luck and happy gambling!

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