How to bet the 2022 Daytona Stakes

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

May 28th, 2022

An intriguing field of six will sprint about 6 1/2 furlongs down the hillside turf course at Santa Anita in Sunday’s $100,000 Daytona S. (G3).

Daytona Contenders

#1 BURNING TURF (9-5) – Blacker trainee has won three races in succession to kick off 2022 with the last pair coming over the course. Acclamation gelding has responded well since cutting back to sprint trips, and the six-year-old makes a lot of sense while in career form. Drayden Van Dyke will be in the stirrups atop the stalker.

#2 HOMER SCREEN (8-1) – Group 2 victor makes his second run in the U.S. for Drysdale. Team Valor colorbearer is 5-for-7 lifetime with obvious class to him, and I expect him to be a major late player in the small field with Joe Bravo in the controls. Top selection is training like a horse who is sitting on a big effort.

#3 MAJESTIC EAGLE (6-1) – The second Drysdale pupil is a hard-knocking seven-year-old who has placed in each of his trio of attempts at the distance, which includes a runner-up result in this race last season. Medaglia d’Oro gelding doesn’t win often, but he is one to consider for the exotics beneath Maldonado.

#4 BRAN (8-5) – Sadler trainee has hit the board in a trio of stakes tries since arriving in the States, with a big runner-up in the TwinSpires Turf Sprint S. (G2) at Churchill Downs last time out. Talented dark bay has a versatile running style, and the gelding has had success here (although not on the hillside course). Juan Hernandez has the assignment.

#5 NERO (10-1) – Former claimer has not been in great form since being claimed by Drysdale, and the son of Pioneerof the Nile is hard to endorse in the field with Curatolo taking the reins.

#6 KANDEREL (4-1) – Mandella trainee makes just his second start since June and owns a previous stakes victory on the course. Candy Ride five-year-old is not overly consistent, but he is training well and can unleash a big late kick on his best day. The dark bay is eligible to improve second time back beneath Rispoli.

Daytona Wagers

  • $20 win #2 Homer Screen ($20)
  • $10 exacta box 1-2 ($20)