Pick your spot. California horse race betting enthusiasts have abundant wagering choices Saturday at Santa Anita Park.
Selections fall into three major areas:
- California state stakes events
- Races with large fields dangling potential big payouts
- A mandatory Pick 6 payout with a pool of perhaps $2 million
Gamblers can access the action at the Arcadia facility or via the TVG app. Racing occurs Saturday and Sunday, with 1 p.m. first posts. There is no program on Friday.
Sunday highlights include:
- California Flag Handicap, 6 1/2 furlongs (Turf Hill) – $100,000
- Anoakia Stakes, 2-year-old fillies, 6 furlongs – $85,000
Saturday’s big fields should produce big betting action. Bettors will find them in Races 6, 8, and 10. They all have 12 horses.
None present prohibitive favorites. Multiple betting entries ensure good values both on the win line and in exotics.
Bettors might also consider trifecta and superfecta keys as the pathway to profit. For $12, one can leverage six horses in the 10-cent superfecta wagers by “taking a horse first and second.”
Example: The 1 is your favorite horse and you like horses 2-6. Put the 1 in the win position with the 2-6 occupying second, third, and fourth place in any order. Put the 1 second with the same horses to finish first, third, and fourth.
It will be tempting to chase exceptional payouts, so budgeting is important.
Knowing when to take a big shot and when to ignore a race is a betting art.
Races should also pay well given Saturday’s potentially large betting pool.
Attribute that to the mandatory Pick 6 payout.
Pick 6 Payout at Santa Anita Park
There will be a mandatory payout Saturday for the 20-cent Rainbow Pick 6.
The carryover pool is $266,211. That’s a significant enticement and gamblers may hike the payout pool above $2 million throughout the day. All of that will be paid at the conclusion of Race 10.
On this day, a bettor does not have to produce the lone perfect card in order to collect a victory. Anyone managing to pick winners in all of the final six races will pocket a good sum of cash.
The Pick 6 Approach
Bettors tend to wager more money for mandatory payout pools.
And this one could become expensive because of the big fields. A winning strategy will often require making a stand and having at least one “single.” That means picking one horse in a particular race and that horse wins. This would allow a bettor to take multiple entries in other races.
Either way, it will benefit bettors to decide whether they want to chase the Pick 6 jackpot, go after some huge payouts in other races, or stick more to chalk betting and try to put heavier money on short-priced horses.
What a puzzle.
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California Distaff Handicap
Saturday’s main event is the $100,000 California Distaff Handicap for fillies and mares bred or sired in California at about 6 1/2 furlongs down the hillside turf. It has a field of five.
Here is a look at the horses from the rail out.
Tries to make lightning strike twice. He thrilled the Santa Anita faithful on Oct. 2, winning a 6 1/2-furlong race at odds of more than 40-to-1. Kleen Karma paid $83 to win and launched a payout bonanza that included a $615 exacta, $5,773 for the $1 trifecta, and $44,133 for the $2 superfecta.
This is a step up from that allowance victory but he deserves the chance. Edwin Maldonado, who guided him to the last victory, is aboard.
Was seventh in the Solana Beach Stakes at Del Mar in August won by Eddie’s New Dream, who is in this race. Would be a shock.
Should be the favorite. Looking for her seventh stakes win. The 5-year-old mare by 2014 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Bayern finished second as the 6-to-5 favorite in a 5-furlong turf allowance at Del Mar on Sept. 2. May benefit from the added distance.
Eddie’s New Dream
Sixth in the Grade II John Mabee Stakes at Del Mar. Over her head in that one, comes down to the $100,000 level. The drop in class will help, the question is how much.
Won the Solana Beach Stakes earlier in the summer.
Hasn’t won in more than a year and doesn’t fit the winner’s profile. But the battle for third is anyone’s guess.
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A Chance to See Flightline in Person
Flightline continues navigating a path to the Breeders’ Cup.
Trainer John Sadler’s undefeated superstar, who won the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic at Del Mar on Sept. 3, will drill 6 furlongs Saturday at 6:30 a.m. at Santa Anita.
Flightline is the likely post time favorite in the Grade I, $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Keeneland on Nov. 5.
In winning the Pacific Classic, his first two-turn assignment, by a record 19 1/4 lengths, Flightline earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 126 — best in North America this year.
Flightline has won his five races by a combined 62 3/4 lengths. California horse bettors have seen four of them.
Salute to Longshots
Excerpt from last week’s post regarding the Oct. 8 card at Santa Anita:
“Race 1 has 12 horses in a $50,000 maiden-claiming event. That is the perfect breeding grounds for a big betting payoff, as good horses will be overlooked in the large field.”
Weemissgrammy was indeed overlooked, drifting from 6-to-1 on the morning line all the way up to 20-to-1 at post time.
Bettors who kept the faith and bet this horse collected $41.40 on the win line, $14.80 for place, and $11 for show. The show price was excellent.
Lookintogeteven almost did get even, and ahead, with a strong homestretch rush. But he ran out of track and just missed. The exacta paid $117.80
Classy finished third at 12-to-1 and completed a $1 trifecta of $1,187.
Very Scary, at 4-to-1, came home fourth and completed a $2 superfecta worth $9.906, a $1 super for $4,953, and the 10-cent super worth $495.30.
Sunday’s Malibu Beach Stakes illustrated a concept we outlined last week — the key wager.
This became quite a payoff, despite even-money favorite Packs A Walhop prevailing. Second went to 40-to-1 shot Castle Knock, completing a $187.40 exacta. Malibu Coast at 12-to-1 was third and the trifecta paid a sizzling $703.
How some bettors cashed: Putting the favorite first and second with four other horses in the field would cost $24.
If you had the right key, there were four other entries to give you two other places.
The payout was exceptional for having an even-money favorite on top. That’s a result of the 12-horse field with no clear stick out besides the favorite in this $200,000 race.
Knowing that big fields in maiden races produce big payouts (especially on turf), bettors can at least line up their best shot.
The bankroll may not be there to try the key wagering strategy in several races. It’s just a matter of getting a little lucky of taking a stab at the right time.