There are nine tracks with cards on Friday in the US, while Woodbine has racing in Toronto as well. It’s a relatively quiet day for racing, but things are going to be turned up several notches on Saturday. The running of the $1,000,000 Haskell Stakes (Gr. 1) is set for Monmouth Park in New Jersey on Saturday.
Bob Baffert has had a frustrating couple of months, but he has the chance to smile if Authentic performs at Monmouth. A lot of people with no stake in the race will likely be against Baffert and Authentic. Just like the public doesn’t care too much for Houston Astros right now, a guy that got caught juicing a couple of his horses isn’t going to get much support.
I’m not in the business of being a fan of certain horses and trainers, though. Instead, I’m in the business of making money on the fastest horses. Yesterday was another profitable horse racing day. Delaware Park came to the rescue for us, with three successful selections for a sweep of our picks.
Just one winner at Saratoga would have been nice, but the first day of the summer meet didn’t work out too well. We went 0-2-1, so 3-0-0 at Delaware Park still provided a winning day. Hopefully a sweep can be said for Gulfstream Park on Friday. Head below for our free Gulfstream Park picks for July 17, 2020.
Post Time: 12:29 p.m. EST
Distance: 5 ½ Furlongs
Race 2 will be the starting point for us at Gulfstream Park on Friday. A nice purse is available in this one, with $55,000 on offer for the 5 ½ furlong event. The race will take part on the dirt, with two horses that are catching my attention. Canyouhearmenow and Tiger are likely going to be willing participants in Race 2. Canyouhearmenow is making his debut on Friday and is expected to have a solid career.
For just $30,000, Canyouhearmenow should provide a nice ROI for his connections throughout his career. If he were entered into an easier race than this out of the gate, then I would feel a little more confident in him winning today. Canyouhearmenow completed a couple of workouts in July, with a recorded time of 51.55 seconds over 4 furlongs, and 1:04.68.
He also ran 3 furlongs in an earlier workout in June with a time of 36.80 seconds. While this isn’t the easiest race Canyouhearmenow could have entered, it’s also not the most difficult. Other than Tiger, there isn’t super tough competition to be found in Race 2.
Tiger made his debut on June 24 and ran well as a rookie runner. He finished 2nd to place behind Son of a Best by ¾ lengths. Son of a Beast was the favorite, with Tiger highly regarded in that event. It was a race that could have gone in either direction. Tiger was closing in fast but was denied at the wire by Son of a Beast. That was over 5 furlongs. If Tiger had an extra half furlong to run, then we might be talking about a win for him in that one.
The young colt has been looking stronger than Canyouhearmenow in the morning. He recorded a time of 1:02.00 over 5 furlongs, 50.30 seconds over 4 furlongs, and 3 furlongs clocked at 35.87 seconds. Anything less than a win will be disappointing for Tiger on Friday afternoon in Florida. Consider a look at Tiger in Race 2 at Gulfstream on Friday.
Post Time: 1:29 p.m. EST
Distance:5 ½ Furlongs
Our next stop at Gulfstream takes us to Race 4, which will have a modest purse of $19,000. We stay on the dirt for this event. Expect bold bids out of Game Boy Benny and Northern. Both are more than worthy of competing in this class. Game Boy Benny is 3 for 14 in his career. His most recent win was on March 6. He won that event over Beau Trace by 1 ¾ lengths.
Game Boy Benny had a half length lead at the ½ pole and didn’t give up the lead from there. He was in complete control of the race. After that win, Game Boy Benny has finished 3rd, 7th, 2nd. Game Boy Benny was in good form in June to place 2nd. That was another $19,000 race. He finished 2 ¾ lengths behind Whyruawesome.
Game Boy Benny has finished in the top-3 in 4 of his previous 5 outings. He went on up in class for a May 31 race and immediately got dropped back down to $19,000. Game Boy Benny finished 7th in that higher class. Considering how well he was running it was worth a shot. However, that showed Game Boy Benny didn’t belong racing for $41,000. This should be another race within Game Boy Benny’s reach at $19,000.
Northern had had a success career thus far with 14 wins in 35 events. He even has a bit of stakes experience, having raced in the Claiming Crown Express Stakes. That didn’t go well, as Northern finished 8th on December 7, 2019. This was after Northern went 1st, 1st, 1st, 2nd, so the form was there, but not in a higher class. Northern is back down in class, and has finished 1st, 1st, 7th, 3rd, 1st in his previous five events.
He is coming off a win on June 27 over Kalu by a neck for a $19,000 purse. Northern had the lead at the ½ pole and blocked a late comeback bid at the wire. This is expected to be another tight race for Northern, but he should be able to edge out this field. He’s consistently produced in this class, and likely has a strong race in him on Friday.
Post Time: 3:37 p.m. EST
Race 8 is our final selection at Gulfstream Park on Friday. This is the second highest purse of the day, with $47,000 available on the turf. Heir Ball, Carolyn’s Smile, and Merseyside are good options today. Merseyside should get some good value by post time. She didn’t look particularly strong in her latest performance on July 10, though that was after going up in class.
That event was for $54,400. Merseyside placed 2nd, and then 5th thereafter in a higher class. She was 2nd on May 29 in a $41,000 race, but was outmatched against tougher company. Merseyside has proven to hang around near the front at this level and should compete again.
Carolyn’s Smile is coming off an impressive performance on May 21. She recorded the first win of her career after an inconsistent start. Leading up to that win, Carolyn’s Smile was 2nd, 3rd, 11th, 4th, 2nd, 6th. So, she was just about everywhere but no win. That changed following a win over Into Fancy by a neck on May 21.
The purse was only for $30,000, so in comparison to today, Carolyn’s Smile didn’t have as much competition. Her biggest threat is likely going to be Heir Ball who always seems to run well. If Heir Ball is entered into a race, it’s a good bet that she is going to be close.
Heir Ball has been finding a lot of consistency for nearly two years now. After winning at Hawthorne on October 17, 2019, Heir Ball has continued to be a tough opponent. She has finished in the top-3 in seven straight races, including finishing in the top-2 in 6 of 7 races.
Heir Ball has gone 2nd, 2nd, 1st in her previous three entries. She won over Precocious Peach by a neck on June 10 in a wire-to-wire victory. Heir Ball is going to be around the front once again on Friday. She’s one of the safest options in Race 8 at Gulfstream Park.