Horse Racing Picks -$200,000 Echo Eddie Saturday, March 30, 2013 Santa Anita

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Today’s co-feature—with its sister race, the Evening Jewel—is a 6.5-furlong main-track affair with a lucrative purse of $200,000. Twelve Cal-bred three-year-old runners have been entered, and with no clear standout on paper, this race offers some nice wagering opportunities. Let’s take a look at Horse Racing Picks for this race.

Horse Racing PICKS#1 BACK TO BAKO tried stakes company once before and was outclassed. He now makes the switch from turf-to-dirt and cuts back from one mile, so he should be ready to run a good one today—but is his best good enough? He also has the tricky rail post to contend with.

THE RACE
$200,000 Echo Eddie
Santa Anita
Race 8 (Saturday, March 30, 2013: Post time: 7:07 p.m./ET; 4:07 p.m./PT)
6.5-furlongs on the main track (Golden State Series Eligible Cal-bred or Cal-sired 3-year-olds

#2 FOLLINI was well-meant in his debut, where he just missed in a very game effort. Optimists will say he can improve off that race; pessimists will say he can bounce. Since he couldn’t beat maidens that day, I’m siding with the latter camp today.

#3 SURFCUP has two wins on the turf and zero wins on the dirt, but one of his losing efforts was a nice third-place finish in the California Breeders Champion Stakes. His tactical speed gives him an advantage, and he looks obvious to me.

#4 COULD BE TROUBLE broke his maiden for $30K, was switched to the Peter Miller barn, and then took a starter allowance in impressive fashion. He gets a class test today, but his last race says he’s good enough.

#5 ALYDIDIT is a deep closer whose only win came against $50K state-bred maiden claimers. He’ll need to prove he belongs with this group today.

#6 INDIAN CLASSIC has run two very nice races, but he’s a recent maiden breaker and now faces winners for the first time.

#7 RAISED A SECRET ships in from Emerald Downs after a barn change. He adds blinkers for his new trainer, but I’m not sure a horse that was 9/1 and 11/1 in Washington can hang with the best of his generation in SoCal.

#8 HUNGER has been very consistent running up north for trainer Stephen Miyadi, but he doesn’t look good enough or fast enough to win here. That said, his trainer is sharp, and he wouldn’t ship down unless he thought he had a chance, so I’m intrigued at a price.

#9 OMEGA STAR looks like the one to beat, since he has three races on his form that are very sharp. His last race is a toss-out—it came against much tougher company.

#10 I’M DENNY CRANE enters the Scott Hansen barn by way of Lone Star Park. He’s a maiden facing winners on a new, tougher circuit—not really a recipe for instant success.

#11 FIGHTING HUSSAR has danced a lot of dances, and he has races that are certainly good enough to win. Rafael Bejarano sides with another foe, but this guy is still usable in your exotics.

#12 LOVMEISTER hasn’t won since his debut race, and his recent stakes attempts have been lacking.

SELECTIONS
1. #9 OMEGA STAR – Solid runner should easily reverse form here.

2. #3 SURFCUP – Needs a top showing on dirt.

3. #11 FIGHTING HUSSAR – Always seems to try hard.

LONG SHOT VALUE PLAY: #8 HUNGER – Sharp trainer sees fit to invade from the north.

WAGERING STRATEGY
#9 OMEGA STAR is a solid key horse for me, so let’s use him in exactas with #3 SURFCUP, #4 COULD BE TROUBLE, #8 HUNGER, and #11 FIGHTING HUSSAR ($10 exacta: 9 with 3,4,8,11; $4 exacta: 3,4,8,11 with 9).

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