04/22/2017 10:39AM

King: Laurel Park pick four for Saturday, April 22


Fans of turf racing and multirace wagers get the best of both worlds with the late pick four at Laurel on Saturday, with the card’s final four races that make up the pick-four sequence all offering large fields racing on the grass. Now, let’s hope the weather will cooperate.

Race 8, Dahlia

One horse holds a clear advantage in this one-mile turf race for fillies and mares, Cambodia (8). She kept fine company in ungraded races at Fair Grounds this winter, running competitively against the likes of Believe in Bertie and Kitten’s Roar, while earning lofty Beyer Speed Figures in the upper 90s. So, the advice is to single her.

Race 9, maiden special weight

Again, the preference is to single – in this case, West Coast Bias (6). Twice on the board in as many starts, she rallied strongly going this race’s distance of 5 1/2 furlongs at Fair Grounds over the winter in her first start of 2017, and she figures to move forward off the race. She further benefits from catching inexperienced, unaccomplished rivals.

Race 10, Henry S. Clark

Rose Briar (7) is hard to fault on form, having performed at a high level in stakes in Florida in early winter, but with him not having started since a close fifth Jan. 14, I’m inclined to use a couple of other horses in Synchrony (10) and Ascend (8). The former ran well to overcome a troubled trip and win his turf debut and now steps up from a second-level allowance, and the latter is a horse who is ultra consistent and fast, though out of action since October.

Race 11, $7,500 claiming

Time to spread. This low-end claimer seems like a scramble, with many having shaky form or moving to turf after spending the winter running on dirt, not their preferred surface. I recommend using six horses in Workerbee (11), Kay War (5), Unspoken (7), Cursive (2), Shifra Magician (4), and Angel of Love (10). They’re listed in preferential order, but there is very little separating them.

The tickets

Playing the horses suggested above, a 50-cent pick four of 8 with 6 with 7,8,10 with 2,4,5,7,10,11 costs $9.