Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: International Racing Best Bets - Thursday 23 April 2020

International Racing Best Bets - Thursday 23 April 2020

Neil Morrice brings us all of his best bets and tips from Thursday's racing taking place at Gulfstream Park and Oaklawn Park.

Other international racing tips for Wednesday
Neil Morrice Tips

Gulfstream Park Best Bets 

Race 6 (Allowance Optional Claiming): No2 - UNTITLED
Trainer: Mark Casse - Jockey: Luis Saez

On a welcome return to the Hallandale Beach track, UNTITLED can stamp his authority on this to deliver for the second time in five outings. Having joined the Casse barn after a taking debut win before Christmas, the Khoisan colt has put in three board finishes, and if repeating his second to Gouverneur Morris at this level in February he would have the look of a good thing. That happened at Tampa, and he then filled the same position in a $190,000 contest at Aqueduct, making this, even more, his to throw away. ROMAN EMPIRE is a course and distance winner representing top connections and looks booked for an earning run, with ultra-consistent FIRST AND THREE the best value. However, it should be plain sailing for the main pick.

Prediction: 2-3-4

Race 7 (Starter Allowance): No9 - GRAND JOURNEY
Trainer: Ralph Nicks - Jockey: Chris Landeros

Value-wise GRAND JOURNEY makes most appeal in an open contest. His infrequent visits to the track since an impressive winning spree last summer are a slight cause for concern, but a recent midfield finish here should have done much to blow away any cobwebs. During his hat-trick sequence which started after a two-month break he attracted a welter of support, and the market could again be the guide to whether he’s ‘ready’. PHAT MAN took away a decent pot here in late January and went close in an even more valuable contest a month later, on which evidence he deserves to start favourite. QUENANE is chasing a four-timer but it’s unclear whether Luis Saez rides him or recent winner MOROCCO.

Prediction: 9-3-7

Race 8 (Starter Optional Claiming): No5 - BIRD MAP
Trainer: Saffie Joseph - Jockey: Edgard Zayas

BIRD MAP moves up a peg on the class ladder after breaking her maiden at the third attempt. Her new jockey has been firing at a 35% strike-rate over the past fortnight and with the stable also in form she could have all the bases covered. She landed some good bets earlier in the month and has taken that April 10 race in her stride. Opposing her off her own first career win and with a big chance is TOPO GRIGIO. First-time blinkers assisted her course and distance win and Luis Saez looks to have jumped off Bird Map to ride her. But I’m not going to let that sway me and will include ADDISON as the best value in the race.

Prediction: 5-4-1

Race 9 (Allowance Optional Claiming): No3 - OPRY
Trainer: Todd Pletcher - Jockey: Edgard Zayas

The last 18 months have proved a largely barren period for OPRY, who in that time has only contested two races. However, the four-year-old finished an excellent second in an allowance at Belmont, his only 2019 start last summer before stylishly landing a similar contest over this course and distance on the first day of March. That indicates the issues that kept him on the sidelines are now a thing of the past. A fascinating runner for the Christophe Clement stable is ARTHUR KITT, who after being unbeaten as a juvenile for Tom Dadcombe in Britain, finished fourth to Line Of Duty at the Churchill Downs Breeders’ Cup. The problem is that he’s not been seen for new connections since finishing out of the money in a stakes race at Woodbine last July. TEMPLE is another to consider for a top trainer/ jockey combo and after two near misses should be winning soon.

Prediction: 3-11-1

Oaklawn Park Best Bets 

Race 1 (Allowance): No1 - TURNSTONE
Trainer: William VanMeter - Jockey: 

The logical answer to the opener is TURNSTONE, who has posted a win and a second from three outings this year to rubber-stamp the fact that she’s trained on. JEWELED CROWN broke her maiden here at the end of February and though struggling in two subsequent allowances can raise her game to get into the money. Four race winner FLORIDA BIRD has hit the crossbar with three frame finishes this year and in current mood can also get into the act.

Prediction: 5-1-4

Race 4 (Starter Allowance): No10 - MOMENT
Trainer: Robertino Diodoro - Jockey: David Cohen

Although having to cope with a dubious slot in the gate, MOMENT can soon get onto the heels of the leaders and swoop to conquer in the home stretch. He’s put one onto the board this year to add to three successes as a three-year-old and has most of the bases covered. With a win and a second to his name from three outings this season, AROUND THE DIAL goes to post with similarly good stats behind him and should earn. FULL OF RUN knows how to win and has signalled he’s on the cusp of adding to his tally. He looks to offer some value.

Prediction: 10-1-3

Race 9 (Allowance Optional Claiming): No3 - RAGGEDY ANNIE
Trainer: Wayne Lukas - Jockey: David Cohen

As a late foal, RAGGEDY ANNIE was given plenty of time to develop and only reached the track in the late summer and fall of 2019. However, she showed promise with a near-miss in her second start at Saratoga and has made further progression physically through last winter. The daughter of Union Rags May have most to fear from LUCKY BETTY and SEATTLE SLANG. LUCKY BETTY has only three runs under her belt but as a winner, rates to show further improvement and sets the standard for the others to aim at.

Prediction: 3-1-2

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