October 21, 2020. 12:00 p.m.
Gulfstream Park West has eight races on its card on Wednesday. Here is a look at two of the better events.
Race 1 – Maiden Special Weight (Purse - $46,000) Ten 2-year-old male runners, along with six also-eligibles, will go seven and one-half furlongs on the turf in what should be an exciting race.
#2 Chess’s Dream (ML 5/2) is one of the most experienced of the racers as well as the fastest of all of the competitors. The son of Jess’s Dream has raced well this year with two second-place finishes and returns to the turf -- after finishing a distant seventh in the FTBOA Florida Sire In Reality Stakes -- while also getting both class relief and a shorter distance in this one. Plus, the Florida-bred colt has been training well for Mike Maker and gets Edgar Zayas back in the saddle after Victor Lebron got the ride in the last outing. #11
#11 Golovkin (ML 9/2), an also-eligible, has shown extremely well in his last two outings – cashing in both – as he finished less than two lengths behind the winner in both contests. The Kentucky colt has been out of action for a month, and trainer Carlos David has a 28% strike rate when his horses are coming off a 31-60 day layoff and gets relief in distance along with class in this one.
#1 Esperanto should be primed for an improved effort in his South Florida debut after finishing seventh in a $72,000 maiden special weight event at Saratoga back in August. Trainer Amador Merei Sanchez is having a current good meet at GPW and his horses fare well when coming off a layoff of over 61 days.
12 Raulito (an also eligible, ML ) is coming off a third-place finish and should be able to compete for a spot on the ticket as he is a closer. While the son of Overanalyze has yet to beat Golovkin or Chess’s Dream head-to-head, he does get relief in class and distance in this one.
#10 Lost a Legend is making his debut on the grass after finishing second in his first career race on the dirt. Emisael Jaramillo gets the ride for trainer Ralph Nicks and the two have won 23% of the races when working together this year.
Particularly if there are scratches to some of the top players in the field, you should also consider #3 Demon (ML 8/1) and #7 Buenisimo (ML 15/1) on the bottom of the target. Demon has good pedigree, with his sire being Into Mischief, and Buenisimo – making his debut – is coming off a good workout performance.
Best Picks: I like a win pick on the #2. I also like an exacta box of #2, #11, #1 as well as a super-hi 5 box pick of #2, #11, #1, #12, #10, #7, #3. Additionally, I will make a show bet on the #5.
Race 2 – Maiden Claiming $50,000 -$40,000 (Purse -$32,000)
Seven 2-year-old fillies, including one first-timer, will go seven furlongs on the dirt. This should be a very competitive race.
4 Love in Her Eyes is coming off her best performance in three races – a third-place finish at this level in what was her first race on the dirt (Sept. 17). The Kentucky-bred horse, who appears to be a closer, should have the stamina as she has gone a mile twice on the turf. Paco Lopez, who has a 22% career win percentage and a 52% WPS percentage on the dirt, gets the ride for trainer Carlos David – whose barn has a 28% strike rate when coming off a 31-60 day layoff.
#5 Miss Mikaela has been clearly second best in each of her first two career races though she has finished at least six lengths behind the winner in each of those two meets. Jockey Edgar Zayas, who has a 53.9% WPS at Gulfstream Park West this meet, gets his third ride on the back of Tonalist’s daughter.
#2 Charge It All should be primed for a better effort in career start No. 2 after turning in a decent workout performance. While she is stretching out to the current distance for the first time, trainer Tim Hamm’s horses have fared well coming off a 31-60 day layoff over the last year.
#6 Shiny Empire is also stretching out to the current distance for the first time. She showed well in her debut before drifting out down the stretch and finishing a distant fourth. The daughter of Empire Maker has put up a couple of good workout performances recently.
Best picks: I like an exacta box of #4, #2, #6. I also like a show bet on #2.