Million Week Friday Late Pick 4 and Spot Plays
by JOE KRISTUFEK
With a tremendous Arlington Million Day card looming on Saturday, it only makes sense to take advantage of some Friday spot plays and the daily TwinSpires.com “15% Win or Lose” Late Pick 4 All-Ways promotion (if you haven’t already, opt in for FREE today).
Trainer Louie Roussel III
The man is loaded in the early races on Friday and I wouldn’t be surprised if he won all three (at least two), so wager accordingly.
1st Race -- #1 Can She Scoot (9-5 ML)
She’s won two in a row, is three-for-five lifetime over the Arlington Poly, and she drops to the lowest level of her career. She has speed, but has also shown the ability to finish from off the pace. With other pace pressers signed on, she’ll likely sit an advantageous pocket trip. #4 Includere (4-1) is the wild card. Her A-game puts her squarely in the hunt, but this will be her first career start on Poly.
3rd Race -- #4 Prairie Rebel (6-5)
The last three winners this gray gelding has faced have all returned to win again and he drops in for the third start of his current form cycle. Shows a pair of useful works between starts and top jock Jose Valdivia Jr. stays aboard. #6 Senor Blanco (7-2) steps up off a rare Wayne Catalano claim. He’s in good form, and in a race that appears to lack early speed, he may have a tactical advantage.
4th Race -- #4 No Boundaries (3-1)
The third of the Roussel parade of class droppers, this one is the least trustworthy, but on the flipside, he should also offer the best price. We haven’t seen him since April 27 at Hawthorne when he finished a close third over a turf mile as the 2-1 favorite. He cuts back to dash on grass for the first time, but off some sharp works in recent weeks, he should be on edge for a big run. Macho Alpha (12-1) could offer value. He steps up first off the claim for under the radar connections but enters this race as sharp as a tack, and his natural speed could prove dangerous in the grassy dash debut.
Late Pick Four (races 5-8)
Before you punch your ticket(s), make sure you’ve opted in to the Arlington Pick 4 All-Ways Bonus. Bet at least $50 into Arlington Park’s TwinSpires.com Late Pick 4 at Arlington and get a 15% bonus if you win or 15% back if you lose, up to $100 per day. On Arlington Million Saturday, we raise the stakes to 20%, but that’s a separate promotion, so don’t forget to opt in to that too!
I’ll budget $100 for my Late Pick 4 plays.
In a race full of proven lawnmowers, #7 Blue Sky Kowboy (2-1) has the most upside. He’s run some huge races over the Arlington turf course, none better than his runner-up performance last out. With a sharp turn of foot, he and Christian C broke away from the pack last out, but the narrow decision did not fall in his favor. A similar effort (and I’m guessing he runs even better) would make him tough to beat.
Two starts back, #5 Happy Wanderer (6-1) set the pace before being run over late by Arlington Million participant Twenty Four Seven. He should be the controlling speed here.
A – 7
B – 5
C – 1,3,4,8
Jockey Skyler Spanabel is 0-for-67 this year (entering Thursday), but she’s got a couple of live shots on today’s card. In this 5-furlong turf dash, the 10-pound weight allowance could greatly benefit #9 Staria Peach (9-2), who has held her own against better. #12 Crazy Lady (3-1) closed best of all in her July 21 comeback race, only to fall a half-length short in what was her grass debut. A similar effort could land her in the winner’s circle.
A – 9,12
B – 3,10
C -- 6
In what looks to be a three-horse race, I’ll lean slightly on #1 Alpha Boy (3-1), who should benefit from a major post shift and a class drop. #4 Antrim’s Giant (9-5) and #5 Fort Commander (2-1) also make perfect sense. It’s tough to include anyone else.
A – 1
B – 4,5
This race honestly couldn’t be more wide open. I’m serious. Look at the morning line. It drove me nuts. That being said, for Pick 4 purposes, I’m going to “narrow” it down to four horses.
If she wins earlier with Staria Peach, Spanabel has a legit chance to double up with #2 President Elect (5-1), who closed strongly to just miss against similar last out. The speedy #4 Matthew’s Thunder (5-1) seemingly got good out of nowhere back in June at Fairmount and he ran a better than it looks fourth versus an open field of foes last out. #6 Scarlet City (6-1) has shown flashes of talent. It’s somewhat surprising she’s yet to try Poly, but if the turf run in her first start of the year translates, she’s as good as any here. In his Poly debut and just the second career start last summer, #7 Ghaaleb’s Winner (9-2) closed fast to finish third in the Arlington Washington Futurity. He’s just now rounding back into form and is eligible to take a solid step forward here.
A – 2 4 6 7
Pick 4 Tickets
50-cent Pick 4 -- 5, 7 with 3, 9, 10, 12 with 1, 4, 5 with 2, 4, 6, 7 = $48 (all A’s and B’s)
50-cent Pick 4 – 5, 7 with 3, 9, 10, 12 with 1 with 2, 4, 6, 7 = $16 (A’s and B’s with best single)
50-cent Pick Four – 5, 7 with 6, 9, 12 with 1 with 2, 4, 6, 7 = $12 (all A’s and C’s)
$2 Pick 4 – 7 with 9, 12 with 1 with 2, 4, 6, 7 = $16 (all A’s)
Total = $92
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