Scully: Handicapping Coast-to-Coast All Dirt Pick 5 on March 5

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March 4th, 2022

Saturday’s Coast-to-Coast All Dirt Pick 5 includes a pair of 85-point Kentucky Derby qualifiers, the $400,000 Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream Park and $400,000 San Felipe (G2) at Santa Anita, and the new wager features a 12% takeout and $1 minimum.

Here is how I will attack the all-stakes sequence.

San Carlos (G2), Santa Anita – Leg 1 (4:28 p.m. ET)

#1 Brickyard Ride, who is expected to scratch if the track isn’t fast, will be the one to catch from the rail. The Cal-bred enters in top form for Craig Lewis, but #6 Eight Rings is eligible to sit a stalk-and-pounce trip just off the speed and rates as dangerous on the cutback to seven furlongs. #4 Cezanne disappointed in the Palos Verdes (G3), but probably needed the race following an eight-month layoff. He’ll be running late with Flavien Prat.

Gulfstream Park Mile (G2) – Leg 2 (4:40 p.m. ET)

#3 Speaker’s Corner opened his four-year-old season with an electric performance, establishing a fast, pressured pace before striding away spectacularly in upper stretch of the Jan. 29 Fred Hooper (G3), and he’ll be singled in this spot. Bill Mott will keep the Street Sense colt at a one-turn mile, and the Hooper appears to have taken little out of Speaker’s Corner, who has worked three times in the 35-day interim.

San Felipe (G2) – Leg 3 (5:30 p.m. ET)

#6 Forbidden Kingdom failed to impress when trying to rally past an unaccomplished stablemate in a recent seven-furlong workout, leading to questions about stamina, but he won’t be trying to rate in the San Felipe. The American Pharoah colt displayed speed to spare when recording a brilliant wire-to-wire win in the seven-furlong San Vicente (G2), easily clearing the ultra-quick Pinehurst during the opening stages, and Forbidden Kingdom coasted home after building an insurmountable cushion by upper stretch. Look for a similar trip from the controlling speed on Saturday.

Fountain of Youth (G2) – Leg 4 (5:42 p.m. ET)

A hot and contested pace appears very possible, and I will be four-deep in this spot, including all three stakes-winning juveniles returning from a layoff. #9 High Oak registered a 97 Brisnet Speed rating when convincingly winning the Saratoga Special (G2) last August, a number on par with the unassuming figures being earned by three-year-olds in Gulfstream races this winter, and the colt will make his first start since early September.

From the first crop of Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner Gormley, and out of a stamina-laced female family, High Oak could have easily come back in Saturday’s one-turn Gotham (G3) if there were any distance concerns. Mott knows he’s a two-turn horse, and High Oak appears to be training well for the Hall of Fame trainer, recording multiple five-furlong bullet works at Payson Park. In fact, his worktab resembles Tacitus, another promising type for Mott who was training forwardly before winning the 2020 Tampa Bay Derby (G2) off a layoff at nearly 9-1.

#3 Howling Time, unraced since a fifth in the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2), is another midpack stalker eligible to make a major impact in the final furlongs. #6 Rattle N Roll, last seen winning the Breeders’ Futurity (G1), may receive the right setup for his closing kick, and I won’t throw out #8 Emmanuel, who may face serious pressure in his stakes debut but remains a candidate to shake loose early if the other speed doesn’t go.

Santa Anita H. (G1) – Leg 5 (8 p.m. ET)

#6 Express Train and #8 Stilleto Boy may outclass the competition as the main principals, but it’s tough to trust either at the 1 1/4-mile distance. I’ll use four in the finale, adding #1 Spielberg and #7 Kiss Today Goodbye to the ticket.

$1 Pick 5 ticket: 1,4,6 with 3 with 6 with 3,6,8,9 with 1,6,7,8 = $48