A few of the big tracks return this week, and then more next week as we enter the spring season and get into the summer soon. BetOnline has eight racecourses available on Thursday, with Belmont Park, Pimlico, and Lone Star Park making their return this afternoon. Churchill Downs is coming up soon with the running of the Kentucky Derby.
I have an early prediction for the Kentucky Derby up this weekend, so be sure to pay attention for that. I already have an early position on Essential Quality that I locked in last month, so we’ll see if I feel the same after weeks have passed. The Road to the Kentucky Derby is complete, with just the Run for the Roses to be run on May 1.
We are in New York for the opening of the spring meet at Belmont Park with three selections. Along with Belmont, we’re interested in what’s going on at Pimlico in Maryland. Pimlico Race Course hosts the Preakness Stakes annually following the Kentucky Derby. Head below for our free Pimlico picks for April 22, 2021.
Post Time: 12:40 p.m. EST
Distance:1 1/16 Miles
We will start with the first race of the spring meet at Pimlico, with a 1 1/16 mile race on the dirt. Tale of Dixie and Imagining Winning should have a strong presence in this race. Tale of Dixie is a one-time winner in six attempts. He’s been a bit inconsistent, but if he can reach his full potential on Thursday, then a win certainly isn’t out of the equation.
Tale of Dixie was a winner on March 19 over Union Charm by ¾ lengths for a $19,980 purse. That was a nice run for Tale of Dixie. He has gone 7th, 4th, 3rd, 12th, 1st, 5th so far, so experiencing a little of everything. In his most recent attempt, Tale of Dixie finished 5th for a $19,980 purse. Same class, yet much different result. Tale of Dixie will dip down to a $15,000 assignment on Thursday.
Martini Lane is a one-time winner, with a victory on September 30 in a $10,000 event. That was an easy 6 ¼ length win and a little too easy. Martini Lane has finished in the top-3 in seven straight assignments, showing 3rd in his most recent on April 8 in a $20,394 event. Down to $15,000, the first race of the spring meet at Pimlico shouldn’t give him too many problems.
Post Time: 2:19 p.m. EST
Race 4 is for a $22,000 purse on the dirt at Pimlico covering 6 furlongs. Inject the Light and Zip the Lip should be involved in the stretch run. Inject the Light has been in good form through four races in his career, finishing 2nd, 3rd, 2nd, 2nd.
He’s going to get home eventually and it could be at Pimlico. In his last two outings, Inject the Light placed 2nd behind Count the Shells by 5 lengths in a $25,146 assignment. Then Inject the Light came back on March 24 to place 2nd behind Keepyourguardup by a head for a $21,834 purse.
Zip the Lip should have a strong chance of striking on these terms. He has finished 9th, 3rd, 9th, 4th, 3rd in his career. Zip the Line showed 3rd in his most recent performance on March 19 in a $29,781 race. Down in class, Zip the Line should be a big contender on these terms. I would back Zip the Line to get the win.
Post Time: 5:37 p.m. EST
Distance:1 1/16 Miles
Race 10 is a $15,000 event covering 1 1/16 miles on the dirt. Feature Act and Invest should have a strong presence in the stretch. Feature Act has finished in the top-3 in 11 straight performances. He pulled off a hat-trick from November 1 to January 2. In his most recent win, Feature Act defeated Settle Ric by 9 lengths in an impressive display for a $20,310 purse.
Since then, though, Feature Act has shown 3rd in three straight races. She finished 3rd on March 19 in a $16,545 event. The form has been lost for Feature Act in short order. In just two months, Feature Act hasn’t been running nearly as strong. It’s important to keep in mind that Feature Act was purchased for only $2,500. It’s hard to expect him to stay in the form he was in for an extended period.
Invest was bought for $240,000 in 2018. I can’t say he’s lived up to expectations, and is sliding down in class on Thursday. Overall, he’s gone 5 for 20 in his career. Invest was a winner in three of four races, most recently a win by a nose in a $18,540 event. Following that win, Invest finished 6th for a $49,266 purse and 8th in a $18,000 event. That was highly disappointing on April 11. He is much better than that, though, and going to a $15,000 event, one of the easiest races of his career, Invest should be good here.