Santa Anita’s racing week starts on Friday, May 22. Below, we study a couple of turf races and an awesome dirt event. Check out top plays and Horse Racing Odds from Santa Anita Park for Friday, May 22. You can also visit our Online Racebook to place your bets on active racetracks.
Santa Anita Park Horse Racing Picks
- When: Friday, May 22 at 3:30 pm ET
- Where: Arcadia, CA
- Weather: Partly Cloudy
Santa Anita Park Picks for Friday, May 22
Race 5 – 5:30 pm ET – 1 Mile Turf – $62,500 Allowance Optional Claiming
Hall-of-fame trainer Richard Mandella has a possible stakes horse in 5/2 on the morning line Odysseus. The 4-year-old Candy Ride sired colt broke its maiden last January racing 5 ½ furlongs on the lawn. Papa Mandella gave this one a break until March. No worries. Odysseus rolled to an easy 1-length score as an 11/1 long shot. Jockey Jorge Velez has some options breaking from post-position 1.
Jockey Mike Smith has a 4-0-3 record from 10 mounts since the reopening. Smith steps aboard King of Speed, the likely pace setter in this event. Expect Mikey to get this one to the front. If nobody goes with Smith, he could pull off the gate-to-wire upset.
Proud Pedro should get a nice spot right behind Odysseus and King of Speed. Flavien Prat won 6 races the other day. He’s got 10 wins from 27 mounts. Here’s another with a shot to grab win honors.
- Win: Odysseus
- Place: King of Speed
- Show: Proud Pedro
Race 8 – 7:00 pm ET – 1 Mile Dirt – $40,000 Allowance Optional Claiming
Santa Anita horseplayers know the name Brian Koriner. Koriner saddled his first horse in 1988. He’s never had a large barn. But he does well with what he has, which is why 8/1 on the morning line Take the One O One can pull off the upset. The 5-year-old horse goes back to dirt, his preferred surface, worked 4 furlongs in .47, the best of 42 on May 18, and gets excellent jock Jose Valdivia to ride.
Last year, Nolo Contesto had the look of a possible Kentucky Derby contender. A failed run in the Santa Anita Derby ended those dreams. Now a 4-year-old, Contesto goes turf to dirt for John Sadler. That’s a 25% winning move. The 6/1 odds are way overlaid on this talented son of Pioneerof the Nile.
Mandella could have a big day. He saddles favorite Tizamagician in this. The 2/1 morning line chalk has every right to take top honors. But at 2/1, we must pass for the win slot. Take the One O One, Nolo Contesto, El Huerfano, and Boogalute all have a shot to win. We’ll use on the bottom of exotics.
- Win: Take the One O One
- Place: Nolo Contesto
- Show: Tizamagician
Race 9 – 7:30 pm ET – 1 Mile Turf – $50,000 Maiden Special Weight
Trainer Mike Puype saddles a longshot with a chance in 20/1 on the morning line Bella D. The Decarchy sired runner has yet to go a route of ground. In her first couple of races, both 5 ½ furlong sprints, she failed big time. Bella D should get a nice stalking trip right off Creer.
Creer isn’t bred to get the distance. But her two races at a mile over S.A.’s grass were probably good enough to beat this field. She’ll go right to the front under jockey Aaron Gryder. If Assael doesn’t push with Bella D, she could win this.
On Mars won’t offer anything close to the 5/2 morning line. Paul D’Amato trains. Mike Smith rides. That alone makes the morning line favorite a 9/5 chalk at best. On Mars could show speed but it’s likely Mike pulls her off both Bella D and Creer. We like her chances to win. But we can’t endorse for the top spot at the expected odds.
- Win: Bella D
- Place: Creer
- Show: On Mars