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Rick Lee's selections and analysis

by Rick Lee | March 21, 2021 at 2:50 a.m.

LEE'S LOCK James's Moonshine in the second

BEST BET Earner in the sixth

LONG SHOT Unbridled Twister in the 10th

SATURDAY'S RESULTS 2-11 (18.2 %)

MEET 77-245 (31.5 %)

* * * * confident choice

* * * plenty to like

* * things to like

* educated guess

1 Purse $28,000, 6 furlongs, fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up which have never won three races, claiming $10,000

* * *FLYING BUSINESS has moved into the red-hot barn of trainer Robertino Diodoro following a second-place finish at Santa Anita. ABRAMAX was forwardly placed in a fourth-place return from vacation time, and she finished a close third at a higher level last fall at Keeneland. VISUAL MAGIC is taking a significant drop in price for winning connections, and she figures to be contesting the pace.


6 Flying Business;Cohen;Diodoro;2-1

4 Abramax;Torres;Shorter;7-2

1 Visual Magic;Cabrera;Broberg;5-2

2 Summer Lovin;Loveberry;Riecken;4-1

5 La Paquita;Morales;McKnight;5-1

3 Napili;Gonzalez;Chleborad;15-1

2 Purse $29,000, 1 1/16 miles, 3-year-olds and up, Arkansas-bred, maiden claiming $20,000

* * * *JAMES'S MOONSHINE was a fast-closing second in a useful sprint tune-up, and he is back at his best distance. He consistently earns Beyer figures significantly faster than today's rivals. RIANTE SKY has finished with energy, after a poor start, in two sprint races at the meeting. He drew a favorable post and is wearing blinkers for the first time. ARLINGTON'S SHINE finished a non-threatening fifth over a muddy track in his local debut, but the beaten post-time favorite may rebound over a fast surface.


9 James's Moonshine;Tohill;Hartman;5-2

1 Riante Sky;Eramia;Milligan;5-1

7 Arlington's Shine;Cabrera;Ashauer;8-1

4 Random Affair;Arrieta;Morse;7-2

14 Jesse Jones;WDe La Cruz;Martin;8-1

11 Ghost Strategy;Court;Cates;8-1

2 Cyber Flame;Gonzalez;Gonzalez;6-1

3 Tuffy;Hamilton;Mason;12-1

6 Daddy Jack;WDe La Cruz;Petalino;15-1

5 Shine Jack's Dream;Fletcher;Loy;30-1

8 One Way Street;Morales;Martin;20-1

13 Unbridled Shoes;Hebert;Williams;30-1

10 Lime Tree Valley;Medina;Jackson;30-1

12 Will Red;Torres;Prather;20-1

3 Purse $29,000, 6 furlongs, fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up which have never won three races, claiming $16,000

* *BLINKERS was a clear front-running winner at Ellis when last running in a conditioned-claiming race, and she is taking a big drop in the third start of the season. LA ROSA DRIVE led into deep stretch in a strong third-pace finish at Houston, and she has been consistently competitive since moved to the barn of trainer Robertino Diodoro. PICK UP THE FONE raced competitively against better in Kentucky and New York in 2020, and she is taking a slight class hike after finishing second in her return to the races March 4.


6 Blinkers;Cabrera;Ortiz;5-2

4 La Rosa Drive;Cohen;Diodoro;6-1

1 Pick Up the Fone;Santana;Asmussen;7-2

3 Flatoya;Arrieta;Broberg;4-1

7 She's Fire and Ice;Camacho;Riecken;6-1

5 Beauty Day;Loveberry;Donaldson;5-1

2 Awesome Indra;WDe La Cruz;Puhl;8-1

4 Purse $27,000, 1 1/16 Miles, fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up, Arkansas-bred, Maiden Claiming $10,000

* *LONGNTALL has broke a step slow and raced wide in a pair of one-paced sprint races, but she is taking a huge drop in class. She is bred to improve at the distance. MARQUEE COWBOY raced close to a strong early pace in a deceptive fourth-place finish, and she likely needed the race after a long layoff. FEMININE ALLURE encountered traffic trouble on the turn in her seventh-place sprint tune-up, and she is stretching out after two useful sprint races.


1 Longntall;Cabrera;Ortiz;4-1

9 Marquee Cowboy;Harr;Rhea;6-1

3 Feminine Allure;WDe La Cruz;McBride;6-1

7 Backgate Belle;Court;Prather;3-1

2 Dee Likes This One;Camacho;Rhea;5-1

6 Ella's My Girl;Roman;Deatherage;8-1

8 Thursday Morning;Garcia;Medina;8-1

10 Danzig Star;Morales;McBride;8-1

4 Cyber Sneaker;Hamilton;Mason;20-1

5 Spot's Maine Girl;Fletcher;Fires;30-1

5 Purse $28,500, 6 furlongs, 3-year-olds and up which have never won two races, claiming $16,000

* *JACK VAN BERG contested a fast pace and dug in gamely in a tough-luck defeat March 6, and he recorded a bullet subsequent work for new connections. SOLDIER BOY has not raced well in two wet track races at the meeting, but his fast track races last season in California are good enough to win this race. CHANGE DIRECTION caught the top selection in the final stride two weeks back, but he did get a more favorable pace setup.


9 Jack Van Berg;Borel;Borel;3-1

3 Soldier Boy;Camacho;Vance;6-1

8 Change Direction;Loveberry;Holthus;4-1

2 Rogallo;WDe La Cruz;Puhl;6-1

7 Kickin' Kirby;FDe La Cruz;Zito;6-1

1 Its My Bag Baby;Cabrera;Garcia;5-1

6 Limbo's Promise;Canchari;Anderson;8-1

4 Perfect Mistake;Thompson;Dixon;8-1

5 Screen Star;Gonzalez;Moysey;15-1

6 Purse $37,000, 6 furlongs, 3-year-olds and up which have never won three races, claiming $30,000

* * *EARNER was a clear conditioned-claiming winner on opening weekend, and the speedy gelding is properly spotted after a pair of narrow defeats against better. SUBSTANTIAL won a $50,000 conditioned-claiming sprint at Keeneland, and he is back sprinting after three useful front-running route races. SACRED OATH has not raced since June, but he is another who won for $50,000 last spring at Churchill, and his 2021 workouts are encouraging.


7 Earner;Loveberry;Martin;3-1

4 Substantial;Talamo;Morse;5-2

1 Sacred Oath;Cohen;McKnight;6-1

3 Deflater;Harr;Cline;4-1

5 Lonely Private;Cabrera;Hawley;7-2

2 Take Charge Now;FDe La Cruz;Martin;8-1

6 Ship It Red;Bowen;Lund;8-1

7 Purse $33,000, 6 furlongs, 4-year-olds and up, claiming $16,000

* *STROLLING dominated a similar field of $16,000 claimers just two races back, and he is reunited with winning rider Ramon Vazquez. CAVE RUN finished second behind the top selection on opening day, but he did defeat him last fall at Churchill Downs. ACE DESTROYER has contested the pace in consecutive second-place finishes, and he may be able to open up on this field and just keep on going.


2 Strolling;Vazquez;Villafranco;3-1

9 Cave Run;Santana;Asmussen;9-5

6 Ace Destroyer;Bridgmohan;Barkley;8-1

5 Codetowin;FDe La Cruz;DiVito;5-1

1 Oro de Tejano;Cabrera;Ortiz;9-2

8 Coworker;Torres;Cox;10-1

3 Alexandros;Camacho;Vance;12-1

7 Something Super;Canchari;Riecken;12-1

4 Stormin Hongkong;Morales;Brennan;20-1

8 Purse $105,000, 1 1/2 miles, 4-year-olds and up, allowance optional claiming

* * *DARREN'S FORTUNE has been freshened since winning consecutive marathon races by a combined margin of nearly 39 lengths. He has early speed and picks up a leading rider. KNIGHT'S CROSS has been a determined winner of back-to-back races, while earning strong Beyer figures, but can he carry his speed this far? AMANI'S EAGLE has been good on fast tracks and poor on wet tracks, and the likely pacesetter will get his preferred footing and may go this far.


2 Darren's Fortune;Arrieta;Van Berg;10-1

8 Knight's Cross;Torres;Van Berg;5-2

1 Amani's Eagle;Santana;Asmussen;7-2

9 California Swing;Cabrera;Garcia;8-1

3 Stock Deal;Court;Lukas;3-1

4 Kentucky Summer;Tohill;Hartman;6-1

7 Changi;Harr;Dolan;15-1

6 Ucanthankmelater;Morales;Matthews;10-1

5 Take Charge d'Oro;Bridgmohan;Barkley;15-1

9 Purse $105,000, 6 furlongs, 3-year-olds, allowance optional claiming

* * *SAFFA'S DAY was a sharp career debut winner last fall at Keeneland. He is back sprinting and back on Lasix after tiring on a sloppy track in the Grade 3 Southwest. BOB'S EDGE has raced close to the lead in a pair of third-place finishes at the meeting, and he is consistent and talented enough to clear this condition. MOLTO VIVACE made a determined rally over wet footing in her first local race, and he was flattered when the runner-up came back to win.


5 Saffa's Day;Santana;Asmussen;3-1

6 Bob's Edge;Thompson;Jones;3-1

2 Molto Vivace;Talamo;Asmussen;5-2

8 Twirling Mamba;Torres;Ortiz;6-1

4 Chatter Box;Arrieta;Robertson;6-1

3 Edge to Edge;Tohill;Hartman;8-1

7 Xtreme Mayhem;Evans;Robertson;12-1

1 Cold as Hell;Cabrera;Lukas;12-1

10 Purse $93,000, 6 furlongs, fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up, Arkansas-bred, maiden special weight

* *UNBRIDLED TWISTER closed debut preparations with a rapid gate work just four days ago, and trainer Al Cates has a good record unveiling state-bred first-timers. DOLLY DIMPLE represents the powerful stable of trainer Brad Cox, and the unraced filly has a long string of good works and could go favored. HILLARY G broke last in a third-place debut effort at Houston. She learned from the experience and drops into a restricted race.


9 Unbridled Twister;Harr;Cates;15-1

1 Dolly Dimple;FDe La Cruz;Cox;6-1

3 Hillary G;Cabrera;Vance;15-1

8 Spurwink Lane;Santana;Villafranco;7-2

12 Hot Springs Bling;Arrieta;Amoss;9-2

7 Allofourdreams;Quinonez;Cangemi;12-1

2 Rachie Rach;Thompson;Dixon;5-1

10 Moonshine Princess;Tohill;Morse;8-1

5 Choctaw Charlie;Talamo;Prather;6-1

6 Little Burrito;Torres;Moysey;12-1

11 Flirtatious Smile;Mojica;Martin;15-1

4 Very Spicy;Court;Fires;12-1

13 Sweet Holiness;Fletcher;Loy;15-1

14 Jeri Dawn;Court;Fires;12-1

Exotic possibilities

James's Moonshine is a likely winner and I recommend putting him on top in second race trifecta's. I suggest spreading out in the middle, and using only three contenders in the show spot. The eighth race starts a Pick-3 and Darren's Fortune and Knight's Cross are the likeliest winners. The ninth appears a three-horse race, and the 10th brings a full field, but I refuse to spread and will use only Dolly Dimple and Unbridled Twister.


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