Santa Anita: Spot Plays and picks for Oct. 1, 2022
Santa Anita Stakes Spot Plays
A total of six stakes races, with five being of the graded variety, will lead the way during a huge afternoon of racing at Santa Anita on Saturday.
Race 3 – John Henry Turf Championship (G2)
Six will go postward in the 1 1/4-mile test. #1 Gold Phoenix (2-1) has never missed the board from eight lifetime tries and the son of Belardo comes off a game tally in the Del Mar H. (G2) in his latest venture. Gelded chestnut earned a lifetime best 100 Brisnet Speed number in a similar attempt on the course in April, and he looks best in this spot while luring jockey Juan Hernandez.
Race 5 – City of Hope Mile (G2)
I am not sure if #2 Irideo (5-2) will receive a proper set up to aid his big late kick in the six-horse field, but I love the improvement shown by the gelding this season and will stick with him in this offering. The six-year-old son of Easing Along, who was a Group 1 winner in his native Argentina, will be moving best of all late with Hector Berrios in the silks.
Race 6 – Santa Anita Sprint Championship (G2)
Two-time Grade 2 winner #2 Forbidden Kingdom (9-5) makes his much-anticipated return for conditioner Richard Mandella, and I am excited to see how the fleet son of American Pharoah fares off the shelf and on the cutback in distance. Last seen tiring in the stretch of the Santa Anita Derby (G1), the $300,000 yearling purchase had blazed his way to victory in two straight prior to his most recent performance, and he is the one to catch and beat. Regular jock Hernandez retains the mount.
Race 7 – Eddie D. S. (G2)
In a wide-open field, I will give a shot to Mark Glatt’s #7 Whatmakessammyrun (8-1) from off the pace. The gelded son of We Miss Artie registered a pair of impressive tallies on the surface last campaign, and he has had excuses for his last pair of results. The late-running bay will have Joe Bravo in the stirrups.