Claiming Crown Spot Plays for December 5
A total of nine Claiming Crown stakes races will headline a superb day of racing at Gulfstream Park on Saturday.
Race 4 -- Express S. (1:35 p.m. ET)
The 6-furlong dash attracted nine, and #1 Krsto Skye (5-2) is difficult to go against. David trainee has a huge class edge exiting a pair of Grade 3 events.
I will play an exacta with the favorite and seven-time local winner #7 Combination (9-2). Saffie Joseph pupil is 8-for-10 this season, and he poses a real upset chance with his best.
Race 6 -- Jewel S. (2:38 p.m. ET)
An octet of boys will travel 1 1/8 miles on the main surface in a solid race. Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) runner-up #2 Jesus’ Team (6-5) will receive plenty of attention at the windows, and deservedly so, but I will try to beat the sophomore.
#6 Rebelde (20-1) might be a bit of a stretch to win the race, though I think that the son of Khozan will run a big one at a square number. Bay owns four wins on the oval, and he has shown considerable improvement since adding blinkers in May. In addition, he has the right running style for the race.
Race 7 -- Emerald S. (3:08 p.m. ET)
Turf test drew an overflow field of 15 in a wide-open event, including six from the barn of Mike Maker. But I will tab the up-and-coming #11 Over the Channel (15-1) for the top prize. David Fawkes trainee has been first or second in eight of his nine lifetime tries on the lawn, which includes tallies in his last pair of local assignments. Overanalyze gelding will benefit from having Paco Lopez on board as well.
Race 10 -- Canterbury S. (4:40 p.m. ET)
Turf dash brought out some talented sprinters, including #1 Fiya (8-5) from the barn of Tom Albertrani. The fleet son of Friesan Fire has never been touched from four career races on the green, winning by a combined 13 1/2 lengths in the process. An awkward break from the tricky rail post could be the only thing to upend the Maryland-bred.