Turfway: How to bet the 2023 Big Daddy Stakes

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

March 10th, 2023

A total of nine horses will go postward in Saturday’s $125,000 Big Daddy S. at Turfway Park. The six-furlong contest over the all-weather surface lacks a clear-cut favorite and is an attractive betting event, with value to be had on numerous contenders.

I’m interested in the Joe Sharp-trained #5 Anaconda (4-1) on the surface change, as well as the cut back in distance. The dark bay son of Pioneerof the Nile never fired in the Thunder Road S. (G3) at Santa Anita to commence his 2023 season last time out, but he closed out last campaign with four straight solid performances and seems poised to improve second time off the layoff.

The six-year-old gelding has some obvious class to him and fits well while making his local debut. Kentucky-bred finished a close second in the grassy Turf Sprint Championship S. at Aqueduct two back to prove that he can be effective at sprint distances, and I expect him to stalk the pace before passing horses in the stretch with sharp local pilot Gerardo Corrales accepting the assignment.

Mark Casse’s #8 Candy Overload (9-2) aced his initial try on the oval when rallying for a victory in the Forego S. here most recently. The five-year-old is a Grade 2 hero on synthetic and possesses a powerful turn of foot that will be on display once again on Saturday. Reload gelding has been first or second in 10 of his 15 career all-weather tries to date, and the Ontario-bred looks like the one to hold off inside the final yards of this dash with Luan Machado in the stirrups.

#3 Here Mi Song (3-1) has finished first or second in eight of his last 10 races overall, which includes a runner-up result in the Forego on the course last time out. The gelded son of Cross Traffic has run well on the footing and will need only slight improvement to be the one on Saturday. The fact that the five-year-old often settles for minor awards is the main reason that I will limit his use to the vertical exotics, however. Fernando de la Cruz will take the reins.

Big Daddy Wagers

  • $30 win #5 Anaconda ($30)
  • $1 trifecta 5,8 with 3,5,8 with all ($28)