10/06/2009 11:00PM

Pick six: Updated analysis for Oct. 8


Race 3, first leg

The shortest price of the pick-six sequence is in the first leg, and bettors might sink or swim with 7-5 favorite MISS HEATHER LEE. If the race unfolds as expected, closer MISS HEATHER LEE should deliver in her first start since a private sale and trainer transfer to red-hot Bob Baffert. The 2-year-old filly won a maiden-100 at Del Mar with a big number that was validated when the third- and fifth-place finishers returned to win. Her closing style suits the pace scenario, and no trainer is hotter than Baffert. He won another race Wednesday, and is now 6-for-12 at the meet. LAURA'S PLEASURE is a speedster racing on a tough track for front-runners. The only way to win on the lead is by walking early. That is not the style of LAURA'S PLEASURE. She drops from the G3 Sorrento Stakes, a race that produced two next-out stakes winners, and she would be the choice on a traditional dirt surface. But speed did not win its fair share the first six days of the meet, and there is other speed in this field. Her runaway maiden win July 2 at Hollywood is the fastest race in this field. PUNCTUAL drops from the G1 Del Mar Debutante, the race from which runner-up Blind Luck and third place La Nez returned to win stakes. Trainer Peter Miller would love to see jockey Rafael Bejarano harness her speed, and from the outside box she might be able to do just that. Jerry Hollendorfer starts two; WASHINGTON BRIDGE is believed more highly regarded than CITY TO CITY.

Race 4, second leg

The 3-for-3 HOCKEYTHEHAYMAN is the 5-2 favorite to win this $50k turf claimer for 3-year-olds. He beat older Calbred N1X foes last out, and is aggressively dropped in class by trainer-owner-breeder Wesley Ward. The fastest, best horse in the field, he should love six and a half furlongs on the hill. The knock is he is for sale for "only" $50k. Meanwhile, RAINBOW GOOSE also is a serious contender and would give pick six bettors a chance to knock off the favorite with a 4-1 shot. RAINBOW GOOSE went too fast on the lead in a route last time (1:08.50), yet held fourth. The route-to-sprint angle is often effective on the downhill course. The pace figure he earned last time would make him tough to catch. RAINBOW GOOSE is scheduled to be ridden by Joel Rosario, who called in sick Wednesday and did not ride. CAPTAIN KALI is a legitimate upset candidate. He is up in class, first off the claim by Jeff Mullins. The class raise is a good sign, and the colt has a snappy five-furlong workout one week ago. CAPTAIN KALI is a "must-use." MR. MONKEY JONES ran poorly at the Fair, finishing a distant third without an apparent alibi in a $50k stake. His win one back makes him a fit, although he was sired by Black Mambo, whose offspring are just 1-for-29 first-time turf according to Thoro-Graph.

Race 5, third leg

The fastest horse in the field on numbers, and the 3-1 program favorite, is dropping off a claim. SUZIQCUTIE would crush if she showed up, but she was claimed for $25k last out by Jack Carava and is now entered for $12.5k in a nonwinners-of-two lifetime. Pick six bettors must use her, even if she is vulnerable on the claim and drop. This is not a winning pattern by Carava. Meanwhile, BEWITCHING GEM is in the right spot. She finished third last time against open (unrestricted) company. That makes her the proper choice based on class as she drops to N2L for the first time. SUBPOENA THE DRESS returns from a short layoff and also drops. Her maiden-40 victory one back puts her in the hunt, but her three other starts put her nowhere. Whatever she can do, she will do first start back. ANGEL BEFORE US won her debut, then got all keyed up and high strung in the paddock second time out, raced too close to the front, and cracked. She is a better filly than that race makes her look, and at odds of 8-1 she would be a good knockout.

Race 6, fourth leg

At a mile on turf, this maiden-40 starter could be the toughest race in the pick six. I SWEAR is the 5-2 favorite, but stuck on the also-eligible list and even if she does draw in he will be breaking from the far outside. If she scratches, LIVING OUR DREAM inherits morning-line favoritism at 3-1. She ran poorly last time in a main-track sprint, but her third-place effort one back is fast enough. The knock on that race is she was never in contention, lost by six lengths, and merely picked up the pieces behind a runway winner. The race might not be as good as it looks. But this does get any easier, and there are flaws on all the starters including CHURCH AVENUE and JUSTINCREDIBLE, stretching out from maiden sprint wins. A good maiden-40 win last out by CHURCH AVENUE makes her a contender. Her pressing style and ability to rally from behind (runner-up in her debut) suggest she can stay this one-mile distance. The second- and fourth-place finishers behind her returned to win. One of those was JUSTINCREDIBLE, who improved a ton second time out and scored a 12-1 sprint upset on the Polytrack at Del Mar. She is the first foal out of Centerofattention, a turf stakes winner in 2003 at Del Mar (Solana Beach Handicap). Grass should be fine. The filly that 'INCREDIBLE beat returned to win. BALLET RIBBONS won a maiden-32 sprint one start back that fits with this group.

Race 7, fifth leg

FREEDOM STAR is the 3-1 favorite, and she is vulnerable although dropping from the $100k Torrey Pines. She finished nowhere in that stake, and even her maiden win requires an asterisk. That is because runner-up Cherryblossommiss had a ton of trouble and probably was best. FREEDOM STAR has the hot Baffert barn in her corner, and she can win, but she might not be as good as she looks. DAVE'S REVENGE has spent a lot of time at the gate since being claimed by Jerry Hollendorfer for $25k. And the habitual slow starter returns in a N1X from which she cannot be claimed. That is a good sign, and DAVE'S REVENGE fits after a weird summer campaign. She was pulled up once, wheeled back for a win five days later, claimed, and then claimed again by Hollendorfer. Her $16k claiming victory one back is fast enough. AROMATHERAPY ran an improved race second time in the U.S., holding second in a main-track route on Polytrack at Del Mar. It makes her the front-end threat. She earned big numbers both U.S. starts. CERTAIN PROMISE has worked extremely well according to the clocker for Handicapper's Report. A bomber at 15-1, she is a longshot worth consideration.

Race 8, sixth leg

TEE OFF is never guaranteed to make the starting gate; she is a 5-year-old maiden in a career sprinkled with numerous layoff lines. However, she has never raced in a maiden-claimer, much less a maiden-25 such as this. Baffert and jockey Garrett Gomez are poised for a big day, TEE OFF is fast enough to win, and budget-conscious pick six bettors might consider singling the class-drop comebacker with hot connections. If she does not win, this race is practically impossible. BELLA BUBBLES has a good recent race under her belt, a runner-up finish at the Fair. At these lower-class levels at Oak Tree, horses with Fairplex form often do well. BIT OF A LADY drops to the bottom for the first time, and stretches to two turns for the first time. She exits the good Sep. 4 race that produced at least one next-out winner, and race-6 contender Justincredible. GINNY FITZ is improving and ready to stretch out, as is WITH RESPECT.