Santa Anita Park is back to racing after returning on Friday. They were able to iron out a last-minute agreement on Wednesday to resume horse racing in Santa Anita, California. With the public already blocked from attending events, the Health Department believed that wasn’t enough and they halted racing completely in late March. A meeting a couple of weeks ago between city officials and track personnel apparently well because they received the green light. Santa Anita is going to fire off a couple of big stakes races today in Race 6 and Race 8.
The Eddie Echo will be up first in Race 6 and then Race 8 will feature the Evening Jewel at Santa Anita Park. Each event is offering a $150,000 purse for a nice payday for the winning team on Saturday. We’ll have picks for each race and the rest of the Rainbow Pick 6 card. You can also play the Pick 5 from Race 6 to Race 10. Let’s get started below with our Santa Anita Park Pick 5 and Rainbow Pick 6 selections for May 16, 2020.
Post Time: 2:35 p.m. PST
Distance: 1 Mile
Worthy Turk, Liberal, Go for a Ride, and Kris’ Wild Cat are going to have a good run at the top prize in Race 5. They will race a mile for a $22,000 purse in the lead in to the Eddie Echo Stakes in Race 6. Worthy Turk gets the No. 1 post and looks to make the most of it against a relatively easy field. He has a win in 10 races, with the win coming on July 26, 2018. Worthy Turk took a break for nearly two years before getting back out on the track this year. He returned on January 26 to finish 5th. It was an okay performance, but there was no kick in the stretch.
Worthy Turk was okay in his next outing as well. He finished 3rd, though there were only four other horses in the race. With that in mind, it wasn’t anything to get excited about. However, if those two races enabled Worthy Turk to shake off the rust, then he is going to be a contender in this one. Liberal, all the way from Ireland, is going to have to find his old form, too. He won about a year ago on May 18, 2019 at Golden Gate Fields, and then took a break. Ireland returned to the starting gate on March 7 to finish 7th. He showed improvement on March 29 to a strong enough bid for 4th.
Kris’ Wild Kat is coming off a layoff after placing on May 31, 2019. He finished a length behind Awesome Heights after a short burst near the wire. His most recent victory was on October 12, 2018 at Santa Anita. It was the first win of his career and he hasn’t won since. He’s a winner in 1 of 6 races. Go for a Ride takes a serious drop in class after racing in the San Luis Rays Stakes (Gr. 3). He was good for 7th in that race and proved that he didn’t belong in that class. He notched his first win on October 12, 2019 by a neck over Muskoka as the favorite. The results weren’t there after going up in class for 5th, 4th, 7th in his next three races, but rates well against this competition.
Race 6 – Eddie Echo Stakes
Post Time: 3:06 p.m. PST
6 furlongs to decide a winner in the Eddie Echo Stakes on Saturday. A sizable purse of $150,000 is being offered. Big Sweep and Phantom Boss are both horses to keep an eye on in this one. Bettor Trip Nick will likely play a role in the stretch as well, but you have to like Drayden Van Dyke on Phantom Boss. Bob Baffert’s go-to jockey, Van Dyke, will look to get the most out of Phantom Boss in this one.
Phantom Boss is a winner in 2 of 4 races, with back-to-back wins, including a win in his first stakes race on June 29, 2019 in the Bashford Manor Stakes (Gr. 3). He got the win by ¾ lengths over Rowdy Yates in that performance. However, Phantom Boss was not as fortunate in his next outing in the I’m Smokin Stakes on August 30, 2019. There was nothing to give in that one, as Phantom Boss struggled for 7th.
Bettor Trip Nick will have a strong run at the grand price in the Eddie Echo Stakes. He has won 4 of 6 races, and was on a three-race win streak before losing in the California Cup Derby for 3rd. In any event, Bettor Trip Nick won the Golden Nugget Stakes on November 9, 2019 and Gold Rush Stakes on December 7, 2019. Leading into the hat-trick, Bettor Trick Nick finished 1st in his debut and then 2nd before catching fire.
Speaking of horses on fire, Big Sweep needed just one race to get hot. He was a winner as a first-time starter in impressive form. Big Sweep was clear for a 2 ¼ length win over Lovely Finish. Trainer Mark Glatt saw enough and immediately entered him into the Eddie Echo Stakes. He must feel confident in Big Sweep after just one race to put him into this event. Fully capable of back-to-back wins to open his career and win in the Eddie Echo Stakes on Saturday.
Post Time: 3:37 p.m. PST
Sandwiched between the two stakes races is a 1-mile race for a tidy purse of $53,000. Dogtag, She’s Our Charm, and Strike At Dawn are good horses to shortlist for Race 7. She’s Our Charm heads into Saturday feeling good after winning 2 of 4 races to open her career. She’s Our Charm was a winner on August 18, 2019 by a neck over Haughty Girl. Following that race, she wasn’t as sharp on February 1 to finish 4th in her debut at Santa Anita Park, but fired back with a win on March 7 by 1 ¼ lengths over Dupioni. Don’t expect her to be invisible in this event.
Strike At Dawn should prove to be a willing contender in Race 7. She is coming off two tough assignments in the Autumn Miss Stakes (Gr. 3) and Red Carpet Handicap (Gr. 3) in October and November. Strike At Dawn didn’t have much to give in those stakes races, but will be back down a class in an area more to her liking. She’s a winner in 2 of 6 races in her career, with the most recent on July 19, 2019 at Del Mar. Likely to contend due to the drop in class for Saturday.
The field will likely be chasing Dogtag for the win in this one. Dogtag has entered into some elite races, including the Del Mar Oaks (Gr. 1) on August 17, 2019. That was too much, though, as Dogtag was unable to compete and went down a class in her most recent performance to place in 2nd behind Bodhicitta by 1 ½ lengths. 5 out of the 7 races that Dogtag has participated in has been stakes racing. She won the Hilltop Stakes on May 17, 2019 by 1 ¾ lengths over Nova Sol at Pimlico. Dogtag was also a winner in the P. G. Johnson Stakes in 2018. If she wants to run today, Dogtag should be able to win against beatable competition in Race 7.
Race 8 – Evening Jewel Stakes
Post Time: 4:08 p.m. PST
The second of two stakes racing at Santa Anita Park on Saturday is the Evening Jewel in Race 8. Another $150,000 purse will be offered for this event. Ten horses are signed up to race in this race, which would be a nice payday for the winning team. Bella Vita, Been Studying Her, Warren’s Showtime, and Bulletproof One can’t be ignored in this one. Bella Vita might provide some of the best value in the Evening Jewel. She has finished in the top-3 in all three of her races, finishing 2nd, 1st, and 3rd in her biggest race to date.
Bella Vita showed in that race for 3rd. She had a good edge at the ¾ pole by a length and hit the top of the stretch with the lead, but didn’t have it in her to complete the stretch. Bella Vita was ultimately beaten by a length. Tough competition like Been Studying Her and Warren’s Showtime will await Bella Vita in this event.
Been Studying Her has wins in the Generous Portion Stakes on August 29, 2019 and Golden State Juvenile Fillies Stakes on November 1, 2019. However, she faltered against better competition in the Chandelier Stakes (Gr. 1), Soviet Problem Stakes, and California Cup Oaks. In her latest outing, she was torched for 11th at Santa Anita in the California Cup Oaks. Her experience in big events should help here, though.
The way I see it, this is going to be a race between Warren’s Showtime and Bulletproof One. Warren’s Showtime is looking for the hat-trick after winning the California Cup Oaks and China Doll Stakes at Santa Anita Park. Overall, Warren’s Showtime has wins in 4 of 7 career starts. Bulletproof One is also coming off a hat-trick and has been in tremendous form. She won by 5 lengths for a wire-to-wire win on March 5, and then 3 lengths for another wire-to-wire win on March 27. Warren’s Showtime is likely going to be a problem for her and the rest, but I think Bulletproof One can edge her out by a length or so.
Post Time: 4:38 p.m. PST
A lot of upset possibilities in Race 9. If you’ve made it this far and have a perfect ticket, hold on tight because things are about to get really interesting. Capital Call, I’m Leaving You, Frasard, and Heywoods Beach are all good for the shortlist. Capital Call has the longest odds out of that group, but is likely going to have a good run Saturday. However, this race will likely come down to Frasard and Heywoods Beach. Both are heading into this one in solid form and Heywoods Beach has the potential to improve on his recent performance on March 8.
Heywoods Beach ran well enough to place in 2nd for a notable improvement in form from his first two races. He could have easily won that race too, but was narrowly beaten by a neck. Goalie was the heavy favorite in that race and performed as expected, though it shouldn’t have been that close. This was after Heywoods Beach finished 6th and 5th on Halloween and December 8, 2019. The improvement made from then to March was quite evident in that performance.
Frasard has finished in the top-3 in 3 out of 8 career races. She wasn’t overly impressive in her most recent outing to finish 4th on March 8. There were some expectations that she would improve after showing in 3rd on February 15, though it wasn’t present. Leprino might be a hotly bet item from the No. 4 post.
She hasn’t been able to show much in two career outings, though. Leprino has finished 7th and 4th, both at Sanita Park. I could see her doing one better than 4th to show in this one, but a win is asking a lot. Heywoods Beach enters this race in the best form off her most recent event on March 8. She had a terrific 5-furlong workout on May 10 to record a time of 1:00.80 with urging. That kind of form can result in a trip to the winner’s circle today.
Post Time: 5:08 p.m. PST
Distance:5 ½ Furlongs
A purse of $28,000 will close out the day on Saturday at Santa Anita Park. 12 horses will ride 5 ½ furlongs in another race that should be competitive. There isn’t much separating Desert Swarm and Sorriso in this race. I argue that Hoop Dream might have a case after off the inside rail from the No. 1 post as well. Hoop Dream finished 4th and 6th in the first two races of his career on January 5 and February 29. This will be the third event of his young career. This is a drop in class, so it might be within reason that he does one better than 4th.
Desert Swarm is doing the same after finishing 7th and 4th in his first two races. However, unlike Hoop Dream, Desert Swarm was able to show improvement from his first start. He went from 7th to 4th, while Desert Swam regressed. Expect a bold bid out of Sorriso in this event, who I think is getting value at +350. Sorriso will be a threat from the No. 5 post in this one. He is coming off the best performance of this group and is certainly capable of doing better than 3rd given his form from that outing. Sorriso was showed in 3rd in what was a rather impressive race as a first-time starter. He was able to hold 3rd after racing in 2nd from the ¼ pole to the the top of the stretch. Easier company awaits on Saturday in Race 10 at Santa Anita Park.