Today's Paper Latest Coronavirus The Article iPad Core Values Weather Newsletters Obits Puzzles Archive Story ideas

Rick Lee's Oaklawn selections and analysis

by Rick Lee | May 1, 2021 at 8:47 a.m.
FILE — Horses and jockeys break from the starting gate at Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort in Hot Springs. (Democrat-Gazette file photo)

LEE'S LOCK Thomas Shelby in the 10th

BEST BET Fulsome in the 11th

LONG SHOT Aqwaam in the seventh

FRIDAY'S RESULTS 5-11 (45.4%)

MEET 167-485 (34.4%)

••••confident choice

•••plenty to like

••things to like

•educated guess

1 Purse $29,000, 6 furlongs, fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up, Arkansas-bred, maiden claiming $20,000

••HOT SPRINGS BLING rallied to fifth in the $150,000 Rainbow Miss. The slow-starting filly is dropping into a maiden claiming race and should run this field down. RACY JAYCEE has been one-paced in a pair of fifth-place finishes, but she is dropping into a maiden claiming race for the first time and should show marked improvement. RUN FEARLESS has more speed than the top two fillies, and she is another dropping to get an elusive maiden win at Oaklawn.


5 Hot Springs Bling;Bridgmohan;Amoss;5-2

10 Racy Jaycee;Arrieta;Cox;7-2

8 Run Fearless;Harr;Fires;9-2

14 Seriously Sassy;Quinonez;Von Hemel;8-1

3 Little Burrito;Torres;Moysey;6-1

7 Moonshine Princess;Cabrera;Morse;6-1

11 Couverture;Thompson;Moquett;8-1

13 Daigle;Quinonez;McKellar;15-1

1 Wish for Candy;Lopez;Rhea;10-1

2 Special Angel;Morales;Smith;20-1

12 Miss Checkmark;Camacho;Martin;20-1

9 Thursday Morning;Canchari;Medina;30-1

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

6 Cyber Sneaker;Bowen;Mason;30-1

2 Purse $45,000, 1 1/16 miles, 4-year-olds and up, starter optional claiming

••LORD DRAGON is taking a slight jump in class following a clear front-running victory. He had a three-race winning streak in 2020, and he was claimed by a sharp stable. CHRIS AND DAVE is dropping a notch in class following a third-place finish, and he has strong Beyer figures and the best of connections. RULER OF THE NILE was a fast-closing second in his first route of the season, and he does have a strong career win record.


3 Lord Dragon;Vazquez;Richard;9-2

7 Chris and Dave;Cabrera;Asmussen;9-5

4 Ruler of the Nile;Torres;Sharp;8-1

1 Catdaddy;Garcia;Petalino;6-1

2 Gato Guapo;Arrieta;Diodoro;3-1

5 Incorrigible;Canchari;Esquivel;15-1

8 Kurilov;Quinonez;Shorter;8-1

6 Blueridge Traveler;Jimenez;Green;15-1

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

••GHOST STRATEGY has finished well after a slow start in both of his races, including a fourth-place finish in the $150,000 Rainbow, and he likely earns a diploma with a decent break from the gate. BELLAMYS ROAN has had to overcome a couple of sluggish starts when competing in stronger maiden races. He has early speed and may show it with an improved start. J'S LITTLE MAN has steadily climbing Beyer figures, and he is the speed drawn closest to the rail.


11 Ghost Strategy;Canchari;Chleborad;3-1

7 Bellamys Roan;Wales;Westermann;10-1

2 J's Little Man;WDe La Cruz;Martin;7-2

9 Lucky Break;Garcia;Martin;8-1

6 Max Bet;Morales;Witt;8-1

1 I Stan for Love;Vazquez;Martin;8-1

4 Traffic Control;Quinonez;Cangemi;5-1

10 Cats Gotta Chance;Camacho;Hewitt;30-1

8 Risky Situation;Harr;Cline;12-1

5 Ducktail;Hebert;Stuart;30-1

3 Mo Betta;Cabrera;Hartman;5-1

4 Purse $40,000, 6 furlongs, 3-year-olds and up, Arkansas-bred, claiming $25,000

••HERITAGE PARK has set a fast pace and maintained a safe lead to the wire in consecutive winning efforts, and he is realistically spotted to threepeat. J.E.'S HANDMEDOWN has competed well against better horses in two races at the meeting, while earning Beyer figures that make him a strong contender. BEBOP SHOES crossed the finish line only one position behind the second selection in the Nodouble Breeders', and he was a winner when last ridden by David Cabrera.


2 Heritage Park;WDe La Cruz;Smith;9-2

6 J.E.'s Handmedown;Arrieta;Lund;4-1

9 Bebop Shoes;Cabrera;Borel;3-1

5 Whenthedovescry;Canchari;Broberg;10-1

10 Reef's Destiny;Harr;Cline;12-1

8 Bogey;Quinonez;Witt;8-1

12 Young Bull;Torres;Broberg;6-1

11 Sir Brahms;Vazquez;Villafranco;8-1

7 Many Sweet Treats;Garcia;Sadler;10-1

4 Blanco Bronco;Camacho;Gonzalez;30-1

1 Hamazing Song;Borel;Gonzalez;12-1

3 Dark Ninja;Bowen;Swearingen;20-1

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

••HE'SMYHONEYBADGER set a moderate pace before kicking clear in a maiden allowance sprint victory, and the Brad Cox trainee has found her best distance following a pair of decent route races. BLAME J D was bet down to favoritism and did not disappoint winning the Rainbow by nearly 4 lengths, and notice the third-place finisher (Rolling Fork) came back to post a sharp win Thursday. UPSTRIKER tired inside the final furlong in his first race following a five-month vacation, and he possesses good early speed and switches to a leading rider.


6 He'smyhoneybadger;Garcia;Cox;3-1

5 Blame J D;Vazquez;Green;4-1

2 Upstriker;Cabrera;Moquett;10-1

9 Tycoon;Bowen;McKnight;6-1

1 Twirling Mamba;WDe La Cruz;Martin;6-1

7 Ultimate;Arrieta;Asmussen;5-2

4 Bluegrass Pharoah;Torres;Asmussen;10-1

3 Xtreme Mayhem;Canchari;Robertson;10-1

8 Edge to Edge;Quinonez;Hartman;12-1

6 Purse $93,000, 1 1/16 miles, 3-year-olds and up, maiden special weight

•••ANTIGRAVITY was beaten only a head, while 7 lengths clear of the third-place finisher, in a strong second-place finish, and he had a sharp subsequent 5-furlong breeze. VIOLENT GIGI is adding blinkers following two useful sprint races, and he is bred to carry his speed this far. HANKS has contested the pace in consecutive second-place route finishes, and his two-turn experience may allow him to move up and win.


7 Antigravity;Vazquez;Hollendorfer;3-1

9 Violent Gigi;Garcia;Hollendorfer;8-1

3 Hanks;WDe La Cruz;Martin;6-1

4 Caerus;Cabrera;Asmussen;4-1

6 Kid Shelleen;Torres;Contreras;9-2

10 Junesandra;Quinonez;Von Hemel;8-1

8 Americaredwhiteblu;Arrieta;Asmussen;6-1

1 Quality Run;Bridgmohan;Martin;12-1

2 Captain Fantastic;Bowen;Puhich;20-1

5 Heroic Song;Medina;Gladd;20-1

11 Mister Snickers;Morales;Rhea;30-1

7 Purse $30,000, 6 furlongs, 4-year-olds and up, starter allowance

••AQWAAM set a fast and contested pace in a deceptively good second-place finish, and he was claimed by a stable having a strong meeting. BEST YOU EVER SEEN has finished powerfully in three consecutive wins at the meeting, and he is sharp enough to handle a slight jump in class. HIDDEN RULER had to overcome a poor start in a fast-closing fourth-place finish, and he gets more ground and he has a license to show improvement.


5 Aqwaam;Vazquez;Green;8-1

4 Best You Ever Seen;Cabrera;Broberg;5-2

3 Hidden Ruler;WDe La Cruz;Martin;10-1

9 Ravens Reflection;Bowen;Swearingen;5-1

11 Aexandros;Camacho;Vance;4-1

1 New Flash;Arrieta;Barkley;8-1

12 You Split Tens;Canchari;Robertson;10-1

10 California Swing;Quinonez;Compton;8-1

8 Westfest;Torres;Asmussen;5-1

2 Paddy O'Dini;Thompson;Martin;20-1

14 Replete;Cabrera;Broberg;15-1

7 Tentwelvefourteen;Borel;Hewitt;20-1

6 Kitchen Fire;Lopez;Cox;20-1

13 Twobirdsonestone;Morales;Lauer;12-1

8 Purse $105,000, 1 1/16 miles, 3-year-olds, allowance optional claiming

•••MR. WIRELESS won a fast and key two-turn maiden race in his first start at Oaklawn, and he keeps top rider Ramon Vazquez. GASLIGHT wore blinkers for the first time and responded with a clear front-running maiden victory. He is another making only his third career start. COUSIN LARRY was beaten only a head at a similar condition two races back, and he is training smarty since a troubled sixth-place finish.


6 Mr. Wireless;Vazquez;Calhoun;5-2

2 Gaslight;FDe La Cruz;Cox;7-2

4 Cousin Larry;Torres;Jones;6-1

1 Red N Wild;Jimenez;Eoff;8-1

7 Stayin' Out Late;Cabrera;Asmussen;6-1

3 Bajan Rum;Arrieta;Asmussen;9-2

9 Riptide Rock;Garcia;Hollendorfer;6-1

5 Sound the Charge;Quinonez;Von Hemel;12-1

8 Navy Seal;Borel;Swearingen;15-1

9 Purse $106,000, 6 furlongs, 4-year-olds and up, allowance optional claiming

••GRIT AND CURIOSITY has not raced since November, but he was a clear winner following a similar layoff last season at Oaklawn. He is working well for a winning stable. JALEN JOURNEY did not fire in Dubai, but he had a two-race winning streak when he left Hot Springs, and the Steve Asmussen trainee has plenty of back class. ANCIENT WARRIOR has finished with energy in four consecutive in the money finishes, while earning Beyer figures faster than par for the level.


7 Grit and Curiosity;Cabrera;Miller;8-1

1 Jalen Journey;Vazquez;Asmussen;6-1

5 Ancient Warrior;Garcia;Hollendorfer;7-2

8 One for Richie;Arrieta;Contreras;5-1

3 Bank;Torres;Asmussen;3-1

2 Full Authority;FDe La Cruz;Fires;5-1

6 Nifty;Bowen;Hartman;8-1

10 Impressed;Bridgmohan;Mason;10-1

4 Home Base;WDe La Cruz;Contreras;12-1

9 Nuclear Option;Camacho;Mason;15-1

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

••••THOMAS SHELBY was pressured through rapid fractions and kept on running in a 3-length route victory, and he maybe able to steal away to an easier lead at this 9-furlong distance. KNIGHT'S CROSS had a two-race winning streak snapped when finishing third in a competitive marathon race. He is back at a preferred distance and may get a good tracking trip. LNGTERMRELATIONSHP won a key starter allowance race only two races back, and he is a good finisher in a race that is likely to produce an honest pace.


9 Thomas Shelby;Vazquez;Diodoro;3-1

2 Knight's Cross;Torres;Van Berg;8-1

11 Lngtermrelationshp;Cabrera;Moquett;9-2

14 Jumper;WDe La Cruz;Hartman;5-1

6 Kentucky Summer;WDe La Cruz;Hartman;4-1

1 Super Constitution;Canchari;Robertson;8-1

12 Amani's Eagle;Arrieta;Asmussen;8-1

10 Hit the Ticket;Bridgmohan;Amoss;8-1

13 Strike Me Down;Garcia;D'Amato;8-1

3 French Toast;Jimenez;Barkley;10-1

4 Paynter Party;Qunonez;Villafranco;12-1

5 Tapage;Thompson;Richard;15-1

8 Alex Joon;Bowen;Brennan;20-1

7 Botswana Taps;Borel;Medina;30-1

11 The Oaklawn. Purse $300,000, 1 1/8 miles, 3-year-olds

•••FULSOME stalked a moderate pace before quickly drawing off in his first race on dirt, and he has won at 9 furlongs and should be going best inside the final furlong. SCARRED is an experienced two-turn runner who exits a clear optional claiming victory, and he figures near the lead from the start. WARRANT has been forwardly placed in three competitive sprint races, and he is bred top and bottom to improve at two turns.


4 Fulsome;Garcia;Cox;3-1

1 Scarred;Cabrera;Asmussen;5-2

5 Warrant;FDe La Cruz;Cox;4-1

2 Causeway Jones;Bowen;Hollendorfer;9-2

3 Convention;Torres;Asmussen;5-1

7 Unanimously;Arrieta;Asmussen;9-2

6 Game Day Play;Vazquez;Diodoro;12-1

12 Purse $75,000, 1 3/4 miles, 3-year-olds and up, starter allowance.

•••DARREN'S FORTUNE has scored big wins in three previous races at marathon distances, and he sharpened his speed in a recent second-place finish at nine-furlongs. ORIGINAL INTENT has won marathon races on turf and dirt this season at Fair Grounds, and the late-running gelding carries 8 less pounds than the top choice. EXEMPLAR finished less than a length behind the top selection running 9 furlongs, and the 9-year-old has the best of connections.


9 Darren's Fortune;Arrieta;Van Berg;8-5

7 Original Intent;Vazquez;Combs;3-1

4 Exemplar;Cabrera;Asmussen;5-1

5 River Echo;Bowen;Broberg;8-1

8 Dealin' Stelen;Torres;Asmussen;12-1

6 Take Charge d'Oro;WDe La Cruz;Hartman;9-2

1 Calculated Risker;Canchari;Litfin;12-1

10 The Rogue Diesel;Jimenez;Cox;30-1

3 Tales of War;Camacho;Schlenk;15-1

2 Longntall;Lopez;Ortiz;20-1

Exotic possibilities

The seventh race drew a full field and I recommend playing a trifecta with upsetter Aqwaam on top. Since he will be a good price spreading out in the place and show spot is the way to go. The eighth race starts a Pick-5 and my top four selections need to be used. The ninth race is contentious and I like my top three. The 10th race has a single for me in Thomas Shelby. The 11th race has three runners with credentials to win. I'll close the wager with a single in Darren's Fortune.


Sponsor Content