By Tom Quigley
Oaklawn Mile at Oaklawn Park: The lightly raced (17 career starts) seven-year-old TOM’S D’ETAT ($3.80) earned his seventh consecutive triple digit Beyer Speed Figure at a distance shorter than where he may be at his best and can now be certainly considered one of the top older handicap horses in the country. I whiffed on the race as I tried to beat IMPROBABLE in the exacta, so when he finished second, I was ok not cashing the chalky exacta.
Oaklawn Stakes at Oaklawn Park: The key to deciphering this race was knowing in advance that the Risen Star (G2), which was run at the Fair Grounds on February 15th, was the key race to focus on as both MR. BIG NEWS ($95.60) and second place finisher FARMINGTON ROAD both exited that race. Unfortunately, I was not that astute in my analysis.
$46K Allowance Optional Claiming (Race 11) at Gulfstream Park: One of the main benefits of playing large field races is the chance of hitting a home run when you’re right and that’s exactly what happened here as I was able to connect the dots three times on a $1 exacta that paid $64.80 when CONVICTION TRADE ($33.60) won with BATTLE OF BLENHEIM finishing second.
$48K Allowance Optional Claiming (Race 12) at Gulfstream Park: When a 8% trainer wins with a 1% jockey, it’s unlikely I’ll tab the winner, and that’s what happened here when PRINCESS CAUSEWAY ($13.40) crossed the wire first.
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