Player Quick Pick: Gulfstream for 5/17/014

Profile Picture: Molly Jo Rosen

Molly Jo Rosen

May 17th, 2014

by D.S. Williamson

Gulfstream Park 8 | 5:02 pm ET Optional Claiming (25) for 3&up going 1 mi.

4 – Bird E House – That was one heck of a maiden victory that Bird E House rewarded trainer Martin Wolfson for claiming him for $35K. The three-year-old gelding sired by Birdstone took the lead at the second call and never looked back winning the race by a stunning 7.25 lengths. The victory occurred at the maiden special weight level as well and Wolfson wins with 27% of his last out maiden winners coming right back. Jockey Jilver Chamalfi stays.

1 – Rock Alice – This figures to be the speed that Bird E House will have to run down in order to get to the wire first. Going first time for trainer Sandino Hernandez isn’t a bad thing. Hernandez wins 18% with horses going first time for him after the claim. Jockey Abidel Jaen hasn’t been having a great year, but he was on this guy when Rock Alice won at this distance going gate-to-wire. Hernandez isn’t worried about losing Rock Alice since the horse is up for the claim.

6 – We’re All Set – There might be enough speed in this mile race, Bird E House should be on the pace along with Rock Alice, Tartanero and Pontos, to allow this closer ample chance to get to the wire first. The William Kaplan trainee has never run at a level this low. His class should definitely put him in the mix.

Gulfstream Park 9 | 5:33 pm ET Flying Pigeon for 3&up going 1-1/16 mi (T)

1 – Padilla – The last race was a throw out since he didn’t break nearly as quickly as he usually does. The switch to straight speed jockey Abidel Jaen should help him mightily in this and breaking from post-position one will give Jaen the opportunity to save a ton of ground. There is other speed in this, but he could get a good trip and once they turn for home, if Jaen can find a seam, Padilla will have a shot.

3 – Dashing David – My gut tells me that Little Mike won’t be ready first in the states after running in a race in Hong Kong. I’m willing to think of Dashing David as my co-first place pick in this along with Padilla. Jockey Edgard Zayas Jr. is having a terrific 2014 and the last race, where Dashing David drew off for a 4.25 length victory at this distance and over this turf course in an optional claiming $35K event, might be a sign that he is improving rapidly.

5 – Little Mike – He’s definitely the class but what’s up with the barn switch to Carlo Vaccarezza? Nothing against Vaccareza, but he’s probably not the trainer that you want if you’re making a run at the BC Turf. Maybe, that’s the thing. Little Mike is a seven-year-old gelding now and there are only so many races where he can take the lead and run off. There are a lot of places where they could have put this guy first time back after the $1,000,000 race in Hong Kong. There are too many question marks on Little Mike to accept the short odds. Is this the great turf star’s swan song?