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A CLOSER LOOK at Hastings Park races on 9/29
Draws the rail in the first of many competitive events on Hastings' biggest card of racing of the season; gelding is looking for his first win of the year and the last time he drew the rail, he fared quite well; he has been racing evenly in recent starts but had a speedy workout on the 25th and Fuentes sticks with him; could break through.
Just Like Light
Seeks an end to lengthy winless streak and he has been on a good outing-bad outing pattern recently, suggesting this could be a good day for him; he made a mild mid-race move in his latest behind 'Bounty'; toss in exotics.
Gets his first start in 11 months and tumbles in class for the return; this appears to be the first mount for the 10-pound apprentice rider Wright and she may not be carrying a whip for this race (check for late changes); gelding has some back class and steady preps.
Shoo Fly Willie
Reunited with Krasner for his 10th race of the season and he looks for his first win; he tumbles in claiming price after a series of recent fringe placings and the class drop could lead to a wake up; consider.
Turned back in distance for his latest and dropped slightly inc lass and that resulted in his first win of the campaign; he accomplished that win with a well-timed rally under the apprentice but there doesn't appear to be a lot of speed in this slightly tougher field; should be rallying for a prize.
He's eligible for easier conditions but has early speed and that quality is lacking in this field; he was going quite fast on the lead in his latest and that took its toll in the stretch run but if he can distribute that early lick a bit better, he might be tough to catch.
Gelding gets full marks for trying but has to snap out of a 4-race runner-up streak and he has not won a race in a while; he ships in from Emerald where the opposition might be slightly tougher and he has been getting positive comments from his recent efforts; threat.
Old-timer still has lots of energy based on a nice win last time at the lowest claiming level; he gets a rider change for this event as Patzer is elsewhere and the wide post might make his trip a bit tougher; still, he's in good form and can't be eliminated.
We are working again without our beloved DRF past performances and stats which you will have at your disposal; he was a winner last time and he should at least be competitive if he can repeat that race from the inside post; hard to say whether or not the pace will be a little too fast for him, but the veteran has run races this year which match up well; a possibility.
Has tailed off or has not measured up with better since beating these kind three starts ago and he might have his hands full again if several of these were to run to their best of the year; shortens up but will still go with others today.
Has been running well at this level and will be one they must beat if he runs his race again; he could well get the kind of pace he needs to set up his late run and will be tough today with an interim 1/2-mile to keep him on edge; contender.
Is dropping to this level for the first time as he looks for his first win with open company and has found better too fast for him; he has failed to threaten in his last couple which is either because of the company or that he has tailed off a bit; that is the decision to make for today, though there is the drop to take into account; a possibility.
Won his first start this year and is dropped to a low having gone winless since then; he has been threatening at the distance and he could run better with the drop; can see him running well as he stretches out again but would want a little more than the 5-2 he has been offering in order to consider.
Was a winner in this classification in his penultimate but when forced to run with a faster pace against faster and better runners was completely spent after 6F and stopped to a walk; he could still be sharp enough and if he gets the pace trip he might well run a race very similar to that win dropping back; it may all be decided by the first quarter; interesting and if the lousy finish gets food odds...
Papa's Got Gin
Has been in good form of late and with a nice win last time; he was close in a similar spot two starts ago but he may not be in for so easy a pace trip from the outside and in this pace match up; it depends on the odds as he is in with open company, but 3-1 is too low.
With a few starts and improving form and the inside post she is one of the prime win prospects in this event as she exits as fast-paced event where she was close up throughout and then passed one; she should get a favorable trip and should have a chance to win with that.
Will take on winners for the first time as she was able to win her first from the inside last time; she will be under pressure early if she needs the lead and that may prove her undoing, but her debut race is one of the best on the page and she might be able to run closer to that today; a possibility.
Won her second race with Lasix and was no doubt aided by the slow early pace she was able to set all alone by the half; she then was able to rally in her first start with winners and she should be up to these if she can build on that with the time and a trio of interim works as she returns from some time away; she could also be an improved runner now; one to consider as possible as she returns from a layoff.
Whata Knight I Had
One of a couple coming over from Emerald looks to have her work cut out based on her recent efforts there; she has worked here but will still watch her first formal tour of the oval as this might pose a tough spot for her.
Was sent off as a long shot in her first trip here and after breaking in the air managed to pass one late; that race may not provide an accurate assessment of her abilities and with the experience she might be given another chance as she is in with conditioned runners this time.
Was a winner following a short break and she is a possible repeat threat if the pace comes up on the slow side; she is tractable and should be in position for the first part of it and if she can build on her latest will be in the hunt.
Marina Del Sol
Continues to experiment with changes and will race with blinkers for the first time today; she drops as well and was tracking a faster pace early in her last couple; would consider for the exotics and perhaps as a flyer as she has worked and could turn in a better performance than the printed page suggests; a live longshot!/?
Currently in poor form she will have her work cut out and with little reason to forecast improvement she does not seem promising for today.
Miss Fighting Fit
Was in at the bottom last time and was able to secure the lead and set a modest pace to lead throughout; she moves outside in the starting grid and is unlikely to get the easy trip; like others more in this one.
Her Little Majesty
Stretched out last time and with the lead to herself was able to go all the way; she has indicated some degree of tractability in the past but will have to show a lot more than she has in sprints if she is to share in the outcome.
AE moves over from Emerald where she has been struggling of late; she will have to run a big race and while her positional speed might come into play she will need a top effort to be competitive from the outside in her first start over the local racing strip.
Qualifies with his recent form and marathon win in Aug here and he is a threat with another good effort; this sets up as a contentious affair throughout but he should be in the thick of things at the level and going long; player.
Let's Go Rusty
Has been having a great season so far and his only recent defeat has come at the hands of the top runner when he got a wide trip; he got back on track last time and will certainly be a threat today; the weight may be a bit of a negative as he gives at least five pounds to all and was beaten under 124; an obvious contender but there are reasons to have some reservations on the weight issue and the odds issue too.
Distance-loving filly should relish the extra room and he has held her own against the males in two of her last three and is pulling significant weight from Rusty again; like the work tab and while the odds may be gone after her strong last race she has a big chance to upset the boys in here.
Ran decently in his recent longer test and will have to do a lot better to find a spot on the board versus some more experienced winners; it looks as if the 4-year-old is in too tough and may be going too far.
Gets the chance to run a new and longer distance but is stepping up a long way; if he was unable to beat the local maidens why should he be able to topple some of these many-time winners while he will be running farther than ever before; would be an unpredictable upset.
Stormin to Victory
Will run farther and with better as he goes in search of his first win this year; he has been competitive in most of his races at shorter distances but usually has trouble winning anyway; might get a spot on the board and is unlikely to upset the applecart here.
Looks as if there are several in here who are better marathoners than he and while there is a slight shift in the weights it may not be enough to turn the tables; will give the edge to the inside runners this time.
Bred for speed although his sire is below average with debut winners; this is a full brother to a winner and a 1/2 brother to a stakes placed 2yo; he had a bullet workout at this exact distance recently.
Aint No Connection
Shipped in from the Interior for his Hastings debut last time and added blinkers but he was outrun and wide and never threatened; he had some time off before that race so perhaps he needed the effort; still, others are a bit more appealing.
Sugar Ray Silver
Dropped in class for his latest and was wearing blinkers for the 2nd consecutive race and he made a nice mid-race move to chase the front runner before flattening out in the stretch; that was his best career outing and signals improving form; consider.
He's A Ringer
Kamloops winner came to this track again for his latest and he scampered away to a big lead down the backstretch but he couldn't hold that advantage in the stretch; note that he was well clear of the 3rd place finisher; at time of writing, Beyer Figures and other stats were not available but this gelding appears to be a contender.
On the Duece
Was over 100 to 1 on the odds board for his 3rd career start and he was in a stalking position early in the race but dropped back; has some work to do yet.
Cut back to this distance for his latest when dropping into a maiden claiming event for the first time and he improved nicely with a solid, wide rally; he drops in claiming price again and has the benefits of some good recent workout times; factor.
His sire is one of the leading stallions in the province but he is not known for siring a lot of debut winners; this is the first foal of the winning mare; his workout times have picked up in recent days.
Came off a short layoff for his latest but was racing at a tougher maiden level and he had some early trouble in that race; he was regularly picking up shares in previous outings for maiden claiming and he is one of several that can be considered.
She's won 3 of her last 4 starts and that has to be respected but she also moves up in class to a much tougher level and she has some fast ones to her outside; in addition, her regular rider leaves her for the speedy Perth Lassie, whose regular rider leaves her for Coastal Baby; lightly raced gal may be this good but would like generous odds on her to find out.
Kin To Royalty
Had a bad start when on the edges behind Perth Lassie 2 starts ago but she had a dull outing last time when upped in class; she is back down to the $15,000 level but that last performance is a concern.
Fast miss lines up beside speed rival Quins Return and those two gals dueled each other to defeat last time so it will be interesting to see what happens; both dip in class but both like to have the lead to themselves; for a share.
Galloped away to a nice win 2 starts ago when she got the lead to herself but she had to duel 'Lassie last time and both gals faded; a similar situation is on the horizon this time unless one lets the other go to the front.
Emerald shipper gets the services of former Hastings rider Olguin, who has been doing very well at Woodbine this year; this gal moves up in class but she's in good form and she hasn't run a bad race in a while; she has speed to chase and appears to fit in with this field.
7-year-old is lightly raced this year but seeking her first win; she ships in from the Interior where she has been fringe player in recent starts and this looks like a competitive field; outsider.
Consistently good mare is rounding back into top form after an unsettling outing 3 starts ago when he lost her rider; she had a fast pace to chase last time but Quins Return was not going to be reeled in that day; that runner has other speed to worry about this time and that should help the chances of 'Baby.
Won Forceful Lady
Powered to a win against slightly easier 2 starts ago, her 2nd win of the campaign, and she parlayed that into a mild effort against tougher last time; she might have a fast pace to chase again and can enter the exotics picture.
Rallied 3 wide behind Perth Lassie 2 starts ago and finished well but she was dull in her latest behind similar foes; she has been on a good race-bad race pattern recently so maybe this will be a good effort for her; she has a wide post to overcome.
Made just a single start this year and that was in April when she was overmatched by the likes of Point Guard and company; she has not been this low on the class scale recently but has a wide post against a sharp bunch; watch once.
Maiden miss jumps up in class and stretches out in distance for a short at the $40,000 purse and she showed some late run in her latest; still, she meets some of the best fillies on the grounds and this will be a monumental task.
Overcame a very wide post in the Sadie Diamond to win in comfortable fashion and she kept 'Stone well behind her that day; the added distance might not be a concern although her breeding suggests 7 furlongs and 1 mile may be her best trip; she has to be considered the filly to beat.
Left the tough California circuit for a shot at the Sadie Diamond and she had such appealing credentials, at least according to the horses she faced at Hollywood and Del Mar but she was a mysterious disappointment in her local debut; suddenly, she turned things around in a maiden race last time when she led throughout; she will try and stretch her speed a route distance; minor share.
Maiden filly has come close in her last 2 starts but she has been outfinished in both starts and now tries winners in a stakes race; she might be one of several who will be fighting for the early lead; prefer others.
Swing In Satin
Well traveled miss has won stakes races in Alberta and Manitoba and while Beyer Figures, etc. are not available at time of writing, she might have slightly lower numbers than some of the better gals in this field; she figures to be a pace threat as she stretches out.
Stakes winner beat 'Stranger in her big win but that one beat her in the Sadie Diamond as this gal fell too far behind in the early stages and tried to rally extremely wide; the added distance should be fine with her and she gets blinkers; a formidable factor.
Added Lasix for the Sadie Diamond and raced wide in the latter stages but was up for 3rd behind 'Stranger and the added distance will help this gal; she appears to have lots of improvement in her and if she can avoid a wide trip from this post, she can threaten.
Whew! Draws the rail in a wildly competitive renewal of the 'Derby and this guy is one of the more intriguing entrants because of his fantastic race record and his rivalry with Ontario-based Stage Classic; he turned the tables on that one last time in the Canadian Derby as the latter elected to go to the lead early and this guy had too much left in the stretch; both cut back in distance for Hastings' big event so both should be stalking what could be a hot pace; strong factor.
B.C.'s best sophomore tackles the best from the west (Fancy As) and one of the better ones from the east ('Classic); his winning streak came to an end, just barely, at Emerald last time as he made an early move into a hot pace but then could not hold off a tough foe; he gets his regular rider back as Ontario-based Olguin is visiting but is on Diglett, who was behind this guy last time; threat.
Del Mar maiden winner takes a big step up in class from the first allowance class to the 'Derby; he is an improving colt who comes off a solid outing at Fairplex last time but he appears to be one of several whoo will be pressing the early pace; minor share.
Beat I'm Free in the Klondike earlier this year and then won a prep race for the Emerald 'Derby 2 starts ago but in the big race itself, he was involved in a pace struggle a bit too soon in the race and he weakened; note that I'm Free was a bit better in 2nd place that day but sophomores appear to have a shot at least at a top three placing.
Improving fellow has won 2 of his last 3 and he conquered stakes company last time with a steady rally in the Richmond 'Trial; of course the two he beat that day will be longshots in this tough event but because he won the prep, he must be considered a player.
Was a lukewarm choice in the 'Dervy Trial but he faded after a after speed chase and that puts him on the outside looking in this tough event.
Ontario-based gelding goes for a hot barn and this consistently good runner beat Fancy As on Manitoba soil 2 starts ago but that one got his revenge on home turf last time; the shorter distance is probably better for 'Classic and a stalking trip behind what could be a fast pace is in order; contender.
Ships up from southern United States and has a pair of handy recent wins including a sizzling front running effort last time in an added-money race; he is one of several who appear to be front runners or pressers and he will have to avoid getting burned out early.
Took part in the Trial and he led for half the race before giving in to Paladdie and Keyron in the stretch; he goes farther in a tougher spot and a speed horse probably won't win this race.
Stretch runner lost the Trial but closed some ground behind Paladdie and he comes off another hard charging effort in allowance company; he'll be a longshot but has the style to win this race because there is a lot of speed types in the field; price play.
Four-time winner this year was gutsy in victory last time as he made an early move to the lead and then held on over a closing Keyron; his wide post and the fact that this field has some tough foes in the mix will make for a big test for him.