The spring meet wrapped up a couple of weeks or so ago at Santa Anita Park, so horse racing in California is slower at the moment. Santa Anita Park was ordered to stop racing on March 27, though they were able to return over a month later on May 15. That removed a significant portion of the schedule at Santa Anita.
There were a total of 17 confirmed positive cases of Covid-19 at the racetrack. No indications if any were severe infections, but no deaths were recorded. All the while, Los Alamitos Race Course continued racing just a short drive away. Los Alamitos isn’t located in the same county as Santa Anita, thus they were not part of the Health Department mandated shutdown.
Los Alamitos Race Course continues to race, and some big names that were regulars at Santa Anita Park are over at Los Alamitos now. Bob Baffert has trainees at Los Alamitos, which means you are likely going to find Drayden Van Dyke there as well, which you will. Del Mar opens for racing on July 10, so that’s a date on the calendar to circle. In the meantime, we have a few straight wagers at Los Alamitos in California on Friday. Head below for our free Los Alamitos Race Course picks for July 3, 2020.
Post Time: 1:28 p.m. PST
Distance: 5 ½ Furlongs
Race 2 at Los Alamitos features 5 ½ furlongs on the dirt for a $18,000 purse. There are just five horses registered to race in the event. Rick’s Dream and Fast Cotton are going to be two participants to be aware of today. Rick’s Dream is 5 for 25 in his career and was a regular at Santa Anita until getting the transfer to Los Alamitos.
He finished 5th, 9th, 8th, 2nd in four races, dropping a class too late into the schedule. His most recent win was on October 11, 2019 at Santa Anita Park. That was actually a brilliant stretch for Rick’s Dream, as he won back-to-back races at Del Mar and then Santa Anita. However, the results haven’t been there for him since then.
Rick’s Dream got back into form in his most recent outing on May 22. He placed 2nd to finish behind Short of Ez by 1 ¼ lengths, though did finish ahead of Fast Cotton by 1 ¼ lengths. Rick’s Dream has been in decent form in the morning in June, with workouts at 4 furlongs with a time of 48.20 seconds and 5 furlongs at 1:03.60. He’s worth some consideration to win here, but likely going to find Fast Cotton a tough opponent.
Fast Cotton hasn’t raced much since last summer. His connections are selective with his entries, having only raced three times since October. That October outing was a win at Santa Anita on October 24, 2019. He won over Desert General by 3 ½ lengths to earn the top prize of a $17,000 purse.
He went up slightly in class for his next two races and finished 3rd in both. Fast Cotton was running 1st for the majority of his last race, and had a 1 ½ length lead going into the stretch. That was at 6 furlongs, so 5 ½ furlongs should benefit him here. He will have to deal with Rick’s Dream again on Friday, but the shorter distance should help.
Post Time: 3:28 p.m. PST
We’ll go all the way to Race 6 for our second selection of the day at Los Alamitos Race Course. Race 6 is the feature event of the day with a $45,000 purse on offer in this one. Ava’s Charm and Mean Sophia, who are on opposite ends of the gate, are likely going to be serious contenders to win this one. Jockeyed by Flavien Prat, Mean Sophia is going to have a good go of it from the No. 1 post position.
Mean Sophia is 1 for 4 in her career, with a win at Keeneland in her debut on April 4, 2019. After that performance, Mean Sophia entered into the Kentucky Juvenile Stakes and Phone Chatter Stakes. Stakes racing isn’t her thing, as she finished 4th in both events. She dropped in class on May 29 at Santa Anita Park and finished 3rd for a $51,000 purse. Mean Sophia should have another run inside the top-3 on Friday.
Ava’s Charm has finished 9th, 1st, 2nd, 3rd in her career. The win was on December 29, 2019, with Drayden Van Dyke steering the Baffert trainee to a 3 ¼ length win in a $55,000 event. She aimed slightly higher after that, with Baffert going up to a $57,000 purse event on February 17. It was another bold run by Ava’s Charm, but she fell by 4 ¼ lengths to place 2nd. She tried another $57,000 race out on March 15 and the results were similar.
She is now down in class racing for a $45,000 purse, which on paper, is the easiest race of her career. Along with weaker horses, Ava’s Charm has looked good in the morning, with Baffert working her out to a tune of 1:00.60 over 5 furlongs on June 27. Friday should be a good day for Ava’s Charm.
Post Time: 3:58 p.m. PST
Distance:5 ½ Furlongs
This is the final race of the racecard on Friday at Los Alamitos Race Course. Eight horses are scheduled to arrive at the gate for 5 ½ furlongs of racing. Race 7 carries a purse worth $40,000. Clayton Delaney, Mamba Cool, and Rawhide Rawlins should be tough runners for the rest of the field. Clayton Delaney finished 9th in his debut run on May 24 at Santa Anita Park. He was expected to be much better than that and this is an easier assignment on Friday.
Clayton Delayney was in excellent form at 5 furlongs with times of 1:00.00 and 59.40 seconds in recent June workouts. I wouldn’t read too far into finishing 9th. This is a much better horse than that result suggests. Mamba Cool is making his debut on Friday and is expected to run well. Just like Clayton Delayney, the workouts have been promising in the morning. He’s kept up with Clayton Delayney’s times, with recorded times of 59.20, 1:00.00, and 59.40 seconds at 5 furlongs. There is some confidence in Mamba Cool running in excellent form as a first-time runner on Friday.
Rawhide Rawlins will be piloted by Drayden Van Dyke, as he hopes to make it back-to-back wins today. Rawhide Rawlins gets a class drop for Friday after finishing 3rd and 7th to open his career. He finished 3rd on May 30 in his debut after terrific kick in the stretch. Rawhide Rawlins might have had the win there if he started going earlier. He went from 9th at the top of the stretch to 3rd at the wire. Rawhide Rawlins targeted another $50,000 purse on June 12 and faltered for 7th. This is by far the easiest event that Rawhide Rawlins has entered in his career. A win is within reach for Rawhide Rawlins in Race 7.