Horses to Watch: Week Ending 12-15

HORSES TO WATCH

Week Ending Sunday, December 15

The horses listed below ran well enough in their most recent races to indicate that they are sitting on solid future performances. Bet them under the terms listed at least twice or until they win and then drop.

NOTE: Horses To Watch has now expanded and will cover the winter’s meets on the Inner Dirt Track at Aqueduct, the All-Weather surface at Turfway Park, Gulfstream Park and Tampa Bay. Next week we will begin adding Fair Grounds and after the holidays Santa Anita.

(Recent Horses To Watch Runners)

Aqueduct

GEAUX METS – WON $16.80 – Won right back after showing promise with MSW tally in prior.
CROSS GATE – Out – Showed speed and tired in two-turn mid-level claimer. Play once more if sprinting vs 16K-20K claiming rivals.
NORTH OCEAN – 2nd - PLACE $4.20 – Just missed wiring entry level allowance/optional 25K claimers at one mile. Deserves another chance vs same.

Gulfstream Park

TAKEOFF YOUR HAT – WON $10.40 – Shipped down from Aqueduct and moved forward vs open maiden claimers after strong third vs good NYSB MSW turf field in prior.

Turfway Park

NIGHT VISION – 2nd – PLACE $9.60 – After doing so at Keeneland in prior got away slowly for second straight time and still finished strong. Deserves second chance sprinting vs 8-10K claimers.

HEZRO – Out – Flat fourth vs MSW foes in mile test was a regression. Drop now.

Tampa Bay

YOU’RE MY BUDDY – 2nd – PLACE $3.60 – Shipped here from Churchill and missed by a head. Deserves another chance sprinting at the 16K claiming level.

CLOUD SCAPES – WON $3.40 – Trainer Graham Motion couldn’t have found a softer spot following her second in entry level allowance at Keeneland in prior. But a win is a win is a win.

(Horses To Watch)

AQUEDUCT

BRENDAN G – The Chapel Royale juvenile made first start for trainer John Morrison and first in NY after shipping in from Penn National. Dropped from MSW to 50K maiden claimers he lost by a neck while 7 clear of the show horse. Breaks through next time.

CHASING MOONLIGHT – Checked in second at 26-1 in 20K starter allowance sprint in most recent. Back form shows liking for IDT (6-1-1-2.) Deserves a shot vs the same at a decent price.

CHILTON – Almost wired (lost by a neck) two-turn 12.5K claimers from outside post in last in good race time while well clear of show horse. Better post secures win vs same or slightly better.

DENZEL – The Lion Heart colt easily conquered NW2L 16K claimers in sprint last time and was haltered by sharp trainer Laura Perillo. Will handle slight bump up in class.

HENRY’S GAL – Trainer Nicholas Esler has had a hot start to IDT meet and put across this juvenile filly in 6 furlong 35K maiden claimer in debut in last. She was then claimed by best next out trainer David Jacobson so figures to keep winning.

INDY SEA – Primarily a two-turn turf runner for most of career the gelding switched to the main track two back and in last sprinted on IDT and showed vast improvement to grab place honors. Was claimed for 35K by Patrick Quick, which should give confidence for a breakthrough soon.

SANDCAT – Juvenile colt dug in gamely between rivals and dropped a nose decision racing between rivals after 3 wide move vs entry level NYSB allowance sprinters. Tops this group next time.

SOCIALSAUL – Haltered by new trainer Galluscio following easy two turn win in second level allowance/optional 25K claimer. Likes IDT, should keep winning vs open mid-level claimers.

THE BROTHERS RAP – Caught behind rivals before showing late interest along the rail in entry level NYSB allowance sprint in first start since last January. Needed the race and did well on IDT last winter so look for improvement…even if stretched out to two turns.

GULFSTREAM PARK

AL’S GAL – The 2-year old maiden turf claimer showed considerable improvement in second career start (first since 8/18 at SPA) in most recent when second to HTW Winner Takeoff Your hat in mile try. Breaks through with expected forward step in next.

ANA LUISA – Was only beaten a length and a half in 100K grassy 7 ½ furlong South Beach Stakes in last. It was first since June and first stateside after moving from Brazil to Todd Pletcher barn. Showed enough promise with 5 wide move after altering position to follow vs minor stakes or conditioned allowance foes…especially if given more ground.

K B BIORHYTHMS – The juvenile filly ran to her works and backing in winning a 32K maiden claiming sprint in 3rd career start and first off 10/31 halter by trainer Charles Dickey. Should improve off race and handle open winners at next stage.

QUAY – Lightly raced Tapit filly’s rally fell just short in 6 furlong entry level allowance/optional 25K claimer in last. Might need a bit more ground, but beats these soon.

RAISED FOR SPEED – High percentage trainer Jorge Navarro spotted this veteran sprinter perfectly vs low level 6.5K starter/optional claimers and got the easy win. They write a lot of these starter conditions at GP so look for this guy to keep winning.

ROOM SERVICE – Wayne Catalano trainee was probably bets in juvenile entry-level/75K optional claiming mile turf test in most recent. The filly broke a step slow, raced behind a wall entering the far turn and kicked out 4 wide mid-turn before rallying for the place. Beats the same soon.

TULIRA CASTLE – The war pass colt made his first start since March vs second level allowance/optional 62.5 claimers in last and remained protected in 6 furlong sprint. Despite a rough trip he finished a decent enough 4th after shifting position outside and inside and back outside again with wide move thrown in. It was a good prep and should set him up for improvement vs same in next…especially with more ground.

TURFWAY PARK

ANA PAVLOVA – Strong 5 wide rally in 6 furlong sprint vs entry level allowance/optional 20K claimers in first career all-weather synthetic try last time points her out. Wins vs the same next time.

BROTHER STUART – The veteran claiming gelding continued to show consistent enough form when second vs conditional NW4L low level rivals in 8 ½ furlong test last time. He is now 15-4-5-1 at the distance and should get another win competing at the 5-7.5K level.

CHAPEL DANCER – The veteran claiming mare ran her synthetic mark to 21-4-5-4 with a solid 4 wide move for second vs 5K rivals in 6 furlong test following a 3 month break.

EXULTANT – In first try of a two month break the William Martin trained gelding dug in well and got runner up honors despite travelling 5 wide vs entry level allowance/20K optional claimers in the 6 ½ furlong test. Probably wants two turns but will improve off the return and beat this kind soon for new trainer Matt Kordenbrock, who haltered her out of the race.

INCLUDE INDYCAT – The juvenile MSW gelding turned in a solid show finish behind the well-meant favorites in 6 furlong sprint when making his debut in last. He settled early, raced 6 wide into the lane and was carried out further when bumped by the runner-up yet still persevered. Breaks maiden soon.

KELLY’S LIGHT – Made first start since 9/23 in most recent and stayed within striking distance while 5 wide in 6 furlong 5K claimer. The 4-year old filly had a solid Presque Isle campaign and likes synthetic. Wins again soon.

SKYFALL – First try in Rusty Arnold barn and first since 8/28 at Saratoga in last was a decent third vs second level allowance/optional 40K claimers at 8 ½ furlongs. She made the early pace and weakened late so should be ready to conquer the same in next.

WEEKEND WILDCAT – Suffered a questionable DQ when he beat 15K claimers in a front running effort in 6 furlong sprint in most recent. He did drift out a bit in the lane but continued on and was well clear at the wire in the NW3L affair. Has now proven he can win at the level so bet him right back vs the same.

TAMPA BAY

ADVANTAGE PLEASE – The 3-year old claiming filly was no match for the 2-5 favorite in most recent but turned in a strong second place effort vs 16K rivals in the 6 furlong trial. It was her first start since mid-April and she set the early pace before giving way. Definitely needed the race and should be much tighter in next.

CANADIAN BOSS – The 3-year old gelding was no match for the big drop down odds-on winner in 8K claiming sprint in last but did well to secure the place in first start since 10/18. He set the early pace and stayed on to be 6 ¾ lengths clear of the show horse. His turn next time.

DEFOE STREET – Shipped in from CD and was very wide while closing for the place in 6 furlong MSW test in most recent. The 3-year old Carl Nafzger trained filly was well clear of the rest and should break through going 6-7 panels in next.

LIL ESCAPE ARTIST – The veteran claiming mare was close up early in 6.25K sprint in most recent and checked in second after shipping in following a win at Laurel. She gained a short lead in the stretch before giving way late to the 6-5 favorite and was haltered out of the race by high percentage win-off-the-claim conditioner Jamie Ness. Wins right back.

MISS DYNA LEE – The Jamie Ness trained turf filly couldn’t have been more competitive as she stretch out from four straight 5 ½ furlong sprints at Laurel and made all the pace in the entry level mile event before giving way to the odds-on HTW Winner Cloud Scapes. She did well to get the place, well clear of the show finisher and should do well racing against the same at the distance.

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