Sunday isn’t the biggest day for horse racing, as the NFL takes the spotlight again for the playoffs. There are three more NFL Wild Card Round games today after Saturday got the playoffs started with three matchups. Football isn’t for everybody, though, so fortunately there is NBA, college basketball, European football, and of course horse racing. The only day since March that there hasn’t been a card in the US was on Christmas Day.
Otherwise, horse racing hasn’t stopped for anything during this pandemic. That’s not to say some racecourses didn’t need to shut down or delay meets, but we’ve had at least two tracks running. During peak hysteria in the spring, Will Rogers Downs and Fonner Park carried the load during the week. Thank goodness for them or there would have been nothing except ping pong for betting.
We have two cards covered on Sunday, with Fair Grounds in New Orleans getting attention and Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California. If you are looking for a couple of more horse racing selections, check out what we have at Fair Grounds for Sunday. Head below if you want our free Santa Anita Park picks for January 10, 2021.
Post Time: 3:05 p.m. PST
Our first selection at Santa Anita Park on Sunday is a $42,000 event across 6 furlongs on the dirt. Italiano and Captain Scotty should be involved in the stretch run for the top prize in Race 6. Italiano is 5 for 30 in his career. In his most recent win, Italiano won on December 6, 2019 for a $25,000 purse.
He placed 2nd behind Self Taught by a neck for a $26,000 purse on December 10. Italiano went winless in nine straight performances, but hopes to finally get back in the winner’s circle today. It just might be too tough, though has looked much better in workouts recently and should run well in this one.
Captain Scotty is looking for a hat-trick after winning on October 31 and December 6. He won on Halloween over Horse Greedy by a half length for a $36,000 purse. Captain Scotty defeated Thanks Mr. Edison by a nose in a $48,000 event on December 6 in his most recent outing. That form would be more than enough for a winning run on Sunday.
Race 8 – Kalookan Queen Stakes
Post Time: 1:58 p.m. CST
Distance:6 ½ Furlongs
The Kalookan Queen Stakes is one of two stakes races in the US on Sunday. Race 8 is for a $75,000 purse on the dirt. We should have a good one between Amuse and Qahira for the win in the Kalookan Queen Stakes. Amuse is 2 for 10 in her career, having finished in the top-3 in 7 of 10 races.
There is nothing wrong with finishing in the money consistently. Amuse finished in the top-3 in his last two races, which were graded events in the $100,000 Rancho Bernando Handicap (Gr. 3) and $100,000 Chillingworth Stakes (Gr 3).
Amuse purt forth a good attempt in both of those entries, having shown 3rd behind the winner by ¾ lengths and a neck in his most recent race on September 25 in the Chillingworth Stakes . It’s frustrating to lose close races like that and only receive money, but it was a nice run nontheless.
Prior to that effort, Amuse did a spot before to place 2nd behind Sneaking Out by 3 ¾ lengths in the Rancho Bernando Handicap. Amuse was a big underdog in that race, so it was an unexpeted run. In the chillingworth Stakes, Amuse finished a neck behind the favorite, Qahira. They meet again on Sunday.
Qahira was prevented from winning four straight races on September 25, but still ran a solid race and beat Amuse. Qahira most recently won on August 16 over Proud Emma by 3 lengths for a $59,000 purse.
It made sense to jump up in class to a $100,000 event. That might have been just a smudge too difficult, but Qahira should be able to get back on a winning path and to the winner’s circle on Sunday at Santa Anita Park.