Gulfstream's all-stakes Pick 5 tough, but hittable

Profile Picture: Vance Hanson

January 23rd, 2015

Gulfstream Park will be presenting an all-stakes, 50-cent Pick 5 on their quintet of three-year-old features on Saturday, and here's how I'm playing it.

Race 7 -- Hutcheson Stakes

Barbados (#7) looks to be a strong favorite after an impressive three-length score in the January 3 Spectacular Bid going six furlongs. The step-up in distance to seven furlongs doesn't figure to be problematic, and the colt is well drawn on the outside and should get an ideal stalking trip.

Richard the Great (#4) is surely better than what he showed in the $97,000 Buffalo Man at Gulfstream Park West in late November, when he was forced to steady while racing along the inside. He never recovered that day as the 11-10 favorite, and offers value at 5-1 on the morning line.

Race 8 -- Sweetest Chant Stakes

Consumer Credit (#7) was quite sharp when taking the $75,000 Wait a While at Gulfstream Park West on November 29 by 3 3/4 lengths, and she wouldn't need to do much more to take the measure of this field.

Miss Temple City (#3) is ready to take this leap to stakes company after a three-length win against allowance foes last month. She showed she could be something special in her debut at Laurel in October when re-rallying to take a 5 1/2-furlong sprint going away.

Race 9 -- Holy Bull Stakes

The New York-bred Upstart (#8) proved he was not just a state-bred powerhouse when a fine second to Daredevil in the Champagne, and then was a solid third in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile behind the the runaway winner Texas Red. Upstart was actually a nose away from garnering runner-up honors.

First Down (#6) gets Lasix for the first time in the Holy Bull, which suggests he likely bled in his disappointing try in the Nashua at Aqueduct on November 4. That was a highly-competitive affair with Blofeld and El Kabeir (subsequent winner of the Kentucky Jockey Club and Jerome) taking the top two slots.

First Down broke his maiden over Frosted (#1), who subsequently romped in a one-mile Aqueduct maiden and then couldn't quite get past Leave the Light On in the Remsen over a speed-favoring surface.

Race 10 -- Forward Gal Stakes

Easily the toughest and most wide-open race in the sequence. Enchantress (#6) will be favored after blowing out the competition in two of her three outings, with her lone setback in the Tempted too far below par to take at face value. Frizette winner By the Moon (#10) is obviously one of the classiest in the field, but being stranded in an outside post going seven furlongs might prove to be a tall order.

California invader Seduire (#5) simply might have more speed than the rest of these and will take some catching. Momameamaria (#9) and Birdatthewire (#4) offer some longshot appeal if the projected pace gets blistering hot and the speed knock each other out.

Race 11 -- Kitten's Joy Stakes

Little went right for Dr No (#7) in his U.S. debut against allowance foes last month. The 17-10 favorite was steadied repeatedly and could do no better than fourth. He can be more effective with a clean trip, even while stepping up in class from a first-level allowance.

Eh Cumpari (#12) was meant to run on grass in his debut, but instead overcame a 10-length deficit to win by 3 1/4 lengths going a mile on Aqueduct's main track. Although he fared poorly in the Remsen, he might appreciate taking stab on the turf. His dam is a Sadler's Wells half-sister to Unbridled's Song.

The Team Valor-owned Stefochop (#1) makes his U.S. debut after compiling a 4-1-1-1 mark on the tough Parisian circuit. He could be any kind.

50-cent Pick 5

Ticket - $90


Photo of Barbados (Leslie Martin/Adam Coglianese Photography)