11/16/2010 3:13PM

$99K carryover spices up Hollywood card

Benoit & Associates
Leothelion, Joe Talamo up, wins his maiden race at Santa Anita.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. – A pick six carryover just shy of $100,000 awaits players on Thursday at Hollywood Park, and the fresh money figures to be greater than normal for a single-day carryover, what with three dark days to replenish the bankroll, and plenty of time to pore over the past performances for Thursday’s races.

Only six horses are entered in the day’s featured fourth race, the $55,000 Nashville, but it’s a challenging race, with the runners having made their last starts at four different tracks. Plus, one of the likely longshots, Leothelion, could jump up with an improved performance, being as he has been gelded since his last start on Oct. 1, and is adding blinkers.

“I expect him to run better,” said Mike Puype, who trains Leothelion. “He was running in spots. He’d run, then decelerate on the turn. He was cheating. He’s trained better since he’s been gelded. This seemed like a better spot for him than a race this past Sunday. This race is at 7 1/2 furlongs, which is a better distance for him, and it’s against straight 3-year-olds.”

Leothelion is coming off a third-place finish in a first-level allowance. He will need to improve. The horse to beat could be Paris Vegas, a newcomer to this circuit who ran poorly in the Oklahoma Derby last time out at Remington but was a fast winner of a second-level allowance against older horses at Monmouth in his previous start.

Our Minesweeper ships in from Golden Gate, where he was an upset winner of the Oakland Stakes last time out. He has never run on the main track here.

THE INSIDE POST: Track the Thursday pick six with DRF's ontrack reporters

Gallant Gent has never finished worse than second in three starts around one turn on a synthetic surface, conditions he gets on Thursday for the first time since August 2009.

Indian Firewater has been stuck at the first allowance level for nine starts since defeating maidens. He has finished second in five of his 11 starts, including last time out here Oct. 15.

Thomas Baines has been idle since Del Mar, where he won twice.

The pick six encompasses races 3-8. It begins with a maiden sprint on turf in which the filly River’s Mambo takes on a seven males, including a pair of runners from Richard Mandella’s barn.

In the fifth race, Our Road Scholar dips into a conditioned claiming race after facing unrestricted company at the same $32,000 level in his last start. He is 0 for 15 this year, which is troubling, but does make him eligible for this softer condition. Ashee and Entabeni are exiting the same race. She’s Very Rare drops for her third start off a layoff.

Sweetsouthernqueen steps up off the claim for trainer Dean Greenman in the sixth race, for $12,500 claiming older females going long. She loves to win, having captured 13 of 30 lifetime. Twodollarstowin is seeking her second straight victory, too.

In the seventh, a first-level allowance for female turf runners going long, Kicken Off tries to repeat after defeating maidens on Oct. 10. Comebacking First Settler ran well here in the summer.

And in the final leg, for maiden-claiming 2-year-old fillies, Sean S, The Zapana, and class-dropper Miss Marsha Lee have what best constitutes proven form in a weak race where firsters, like Alexandria Marie and Poison Kiss, will deserve an extra look.