Long shot “Miss Match” tops all in GI “Santa Margarita Invitational Stakes”!

Miss Match winning at the line!

In another shocker of an outcome today, 45/1 shot Miss Match nipped the favorite Switch at the line to win the GI $300k, going 1 1/8 mile for 4yo & up fillies and mares, Santa Margarita Invitational Stakes today at Santa Anita Park with Vision of Gold coming 3rd and St Trinians finishing 4th.

We had the 2nd, 3rd and 4th horses all picked out for you in our race preview but Miss Match winning here didn’t help our cause! This race did however illuminate something for us about this new Santa Anita dirt surface.

In year’s past on the poly surface here, at championship distances like 1 1/8 or 1 1/4 mile, horses like Switch, St Trinians and Always a Princess who were all brought up on the poly are starting to find that “dirt” is more demanding, especially in deep stretch at longer distances.

This race confirms last week’s Santa Anita Handicap outcome where Game on Dude with longer distance dirt experience held sway and Miss Match coming into her race today with a ton of east coast, longer distances, dirt experience just played well for her today against her polybred opponents.

So the So/Cal horses are going to have to learn to rate a little bit more in these longer route tests on dirt at Santa Anita or face more and more loses to east coast shippers who are coming out west to eat their lunch! See race replay below!

“Watch Me Go” wins a shocker in the “Tampa Bay Derby”!

"Watch Me Go"-winning the Tampa Bay Derby!

In a race reminiscent of last year’s shocking ending to the Florida Derby, this year’s Tampa Bay Derby ending may be even more shocking. The combination of a 43/1 winner in Watch Me Go and a 86/1 runner-up in Crimson Knight sent shock waves around the horse racing world today.

The 1/2 favorite Brethren here finished a tired 3rd back 6 lengths as he suffered the first defeat of his short career and maybe ending his derby hopes too.

What we have here are two 3yo’s who underwent what this old Handicapper calls “Explosive Growth” as sometimes happens with young 3yo’s who find they suddenly have more to give in a Big Time race like this one and it isn’t that rare of an event either. It is why wagering on untested 3yo’s can be very rewarding or very painful, depending on where you put your money.

So although we did have the winning horse and the 3rd place finisher among our early picks Crimson Knight wasn’t amongst them and at 86/1 why would he be. So “dear reader” that’s horse racing for you!    “See this shocking outcome replayed below”!

“Uncle Mo” rambles home the winner in the first ever “Timely Writer” Stakes!

Today at Gulf Stream Park, Uncle Mo (seen above) turned in a very workman-like effort in winning the first ever “Timely Writer” Stakes, going a 1-turn mile in 1:36 and 2 for a purse of $100k.

Uncle Mo did what the top 3yo prospect in the country was supposed to do here today. He toyed with this field on the backstretch, made it look interesting on the far turn then shut everyone down in the stretch run as he glided away to win handily in a wire to wire victory.

So Uncle Mo has shook off the winter blues here today with this win and will either make his way up to the “Big Apple” for the “Wood Memorial” at Aqueduct in early April or maybe the Florida Derby here at Gulf Stream park in about the same time frame on the road to Louisville and a Kentucky Derby date!

Oh and P.S. “Uncle Mo” covered the last 1/4 in 22:87 and did it with no urging at all from jockey Johny V. tells you all you need to know about him going forward!!!!

You got $2.10 across the board on Mo and pick up $11.60 on your Trifecta play, if you bother at all! Video replay below!

The”San Felipe” and “Santa Margarita” Stakes are both on tap at Santa Anita Saturday!

"And they are off" at Santa Anita!

Don’t want to spend your whole day in Florida horse racing heaven on Saturday then check out these two big Graded Stakes contests at Santa Anita Park.

Santa Anita Park is hosting two important Graded Stakes contests in the GII San Felipe Stakes for 3yo derby hopefuls and the GI Santa Margarita Invitational Stakes for 4yo and up fillies & Mares.

The San Felipe is an interesting 3yo test, going 1 1/16 mile, for $250k, with some top 3yo names running like Jaycito in his first run of the year, Comma on the Top, trying to make amends for that awful El Camino Derby start, up at Golden Gate Park last month. Some new names likes Albergatti and RunFlatOut will try their luck at the Graded Stakes level. Other favorites are, Awesome Patriot and Premier Pegasus in a field of 10!

Look for 1 of these 6 to take the win and we’d super these 6 in multiple trys as it might payoff handsomely in this big field!

The GI Santa Margarita Invitational Stakes is a big West Coast test for the older gals here on Saturday, going 1 1/8 mile, for a pot of $300k.

The favorite in this field of 7 is Switch at 1/1 is the heir-apparent to the Big Z, now with foal, in the Female Handicap Division out here. She can run all day and on just about any surface too and did give the Big Z a hard time down the stretch in the GI Ladys Secret last Oct. here at Santa Anita.

St Trinians at 3/1 also gave the Big Z a hard run in their only meet up last year that put St Trinians sidelines for the rest of 2010. She was a close 3rd last month in the 7f GII Santa Monica Stakes here as a first trip out for the year and look good in doing it, She’s going to factor in the decision here too.

Always a Princess at 3/1 ran the lights out here at Santa Anita last month in the GII La Canada Stakes. She was on the lead all the way that day, in sprint-like factions and still got the win. She’ll be there once again!

So these 3 in your exactas and trifectas then super up (if available) the final 4 runners here as one of them will finish 4th!

So there’s a big race day at Santa Anita Park as well this Saturday on a very busy race day country-wide!