Laurel Saturday and Hutcheson Stakes Selections

February 11, 2012 | Gary Quill

Saturday at Laurel Park, Acting Happy, winner of the 2010 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes will attempt make her first trip to the Winners Circle since that victory on the third Friday in May at Pimlico. The 5 year old mare ships in from south Florida to take on four (4) rivals in the $100k Maryland Racing Media Stakes. It’s the 6th race on the Laurel Park card, to be contested at 1 1/8 miles.

On the national horse racing scene, this weekend is thin on Derby preps as there is only one, the $150k G2 Hutcheson Stakes at Gulfstream Park. IMHO, this is among the least affective tests as 3 year olds race to prove their worthiness for a chance to run in the Kentucky Derby on the first Saturday in May. The reason is the Hutcheson is run at a distance of 7 furlongs while the Derby is 10 furlongs (1¼ miles). A key attribute for a Derby contender is stamina. The ability to win a 7 furlong race proves nothing in the stamina department.

Only six 3 year olds have been entered in the Hutcheson Stakes with #3 – Thunder Moccasin the 7-5 Morning Line favorite. This son of Empire Maker made a dazzling career debut on Christmas Eve at Gulfstream Park, scoring a 2½ length victory going 6½ furlongs. Both the runner-up and third place finisher in that race have come back to break their maidens in impressive fashion. Another potential star is second choice #6 – Ever So Lucky (2-1) who was last seen at Churchill Downs in the G2 KY Jockey Club, running second to highly touted Gemologist. The way this race shapes up, there’s no shortage of early speed, so the one who has a good late foot can prevail, which points to #4 – Quick Wit (6-1).

Laurel Park in the snow
Here are my opinions for a sloppy surface at Laurel Park on Saturday, February 11th. 1st race post is 12:35pm EST.

1st race – $5,000 Claiming for fillies and mares – 7 furlongs
#6 – Cure Creation (7-5)
#2 – VooDoo’s Vision (9-5)
#3 – Rosiana (8-1)

2nd race – $16,000 Maiden Claiming for 3 yr old fillies – 5½ furlongs
#2 – Scat Miss (3-1)
#6 – Smoothe Landing (4-1)
#3 – Anamericanpatriot (8-1)

3rd race – $5,000 Claiming for fillies and mare NW3L – 6 furlongs
#1 – More Punch (12-1) $$$ LONGSHOT PICK $$$
#4 – Lilly Leggs (6-1)
#6 – Quiet Intent (8-5)

4th race – $15,000 Claiming for fillies and mare NW3L – 5½ furlongs
#5 – Offlee Classy (8-1)
#2 – Simsational (9-5)
#1 – Singita Cat (10-1)

5th race – $25,000 Claiming NW2L – 6 furlongs
#1 – Carolyn’s Moon (9-2) *** BEST BET ***
#4 – My Summation (7-5)
#7 – Issues And Answers (5-2)

6th race – $100,000 Marshua Stakes for fillies and mares– 1 1/8 miles
#3 – Lacie Slew (3-1)
#4 – Acting Happy (4-5)
#2 – Pilot Point Lady (6-1)

7th race – $5,000 Claiming – 6 furlongs
#1/1A – Let Me Be Frank / Wie Ein Stein (7-2)
#5 – Tripplite (3-1)
#3 – I. Turner (4-1)

8th race – $35,000 Allowance n1x – 6 furlongs
#4 – Key To A Cure (6-1)
#6 – Brush Creek (9-2)
#8 – Royal Straight (8-5)

9th race – $8,000 Maiden Claiming – 5½ furlongs
#4 – April’s Foil (8-5)
#2 – Rosemont Drive (6-1)
#6 – Stand Up Stan (9-2)

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