Race 2: Starter Allowance $50,000 at 6 1/2 furlongs for fillies and mares
If Henry’s Gal (#1A) is the half of the Rudy Rodriguez entry to run, she is going to be tough to beat. Her last race was better than it looks as she was away slowly and had to rush up through the pack down the backstretch to get to the front. She also chased outside of another horse on a day when you wanted to save as much ground as possible due to a mild rail bias.
However, today there is a lot of other speed signed on and Henry’s Gal is going to have her work cut out for her just making the front even with a clean break. She might be the best horse in the race, but I’m going to take a small shot against her with the lone closer, Go West Marie (#5). Perhaps Go West Marie is a bit slower than some of the other contenders, but she’s going to get pace and should appreciate getting back on a sloppy track.
$10 Win 5
$5 Exacta Box 1A / 5
Race 3: Starter Allowance $50,000 at 6 1/2 furlongs
I need to see Monster Mash duplicate his last win before I believe it. He had the benefit of racing in the first race of the day on a gold rail, which was most pronounced early in the card. The first four races on March 3rd all received suspiciously high Beyers that horses coming out of those races have already failed to run back to and I’m wondering if it will be more of the same with Monster Mash.
Additionally, there is a legitimately good horse facing him today, which was not the case last time. Salutos Amigos (#5) may have gone slightly off form earlier this year, but David Jacobson privately purchased him and has taken his time getting him ready for this race. It’s always good to see David Jacobson run these new acquisitions in protected spots since he’s usually realistic about their potential. If Jacobson can get this one back to his better efforts they all may be running for second.
$15 Win 5 (WINNER; Payout: $54.00)
Race 7: Maiden Special Weight at 6 1/2 furlongs for fillies and mares
[Update: J. Quirk was scratched.]
J. Quirk (#2) ran exceptionally well in her debut at Saratoga last summer, suggesting that she was a two year-old filly with stakes potential. Something forced her to be away from the races for the next seven months and her return at Gulfstream was very disappointing. However, to be fair, a few horses did not show up with their usual efforts in a race that was basically a merry-go-round with the two speeds wiring the field. Some horses just don’t handle Gulfstream’s main track, so I’m willing to give her a pass and will hope that she gets back on track here. I know there are some other promising fillies in this race, but if J. Quirk runs back to her debut she has just as good of a chance as any and will likely be the biggest price.