If you’re going to bet this summer’s Del Mar meet, proceed with caution. Wait and see how the new Polytrack plays before bringing out the large bills. One prominent trainer seems to believe that speed will be at a distinct disadvantage during this first week. We’ll see. I don’t know if anyone knows for sure how this track is going to play. But it’s a good idea to check the charts each morning and see how speed is holding up or whether the come-from-behinders have an advantage. And if there is a bias, it could change from week to week, so stay alert.
On today’s card, I like three races.
In the second, take a look at Special Smoke, a second-time starter for trainer T.R. Bell. The 3-year-old Free House filly raced five-wide into the stretch in her debut on June 16 and was beaten only 5 1/2 lengths in a 10-horse field. Bell has won with four of eight second-time starters this year, so you can expect improvement from Special Smoke, who is 7-2 on the morning line. Bell employs Jon Court, and that pair is very good together. A win-place wager is in order here at 3-1 or higher.
In the fifth, I like Our Papa Joe and Truckee Lite, the former of whom gets the services of the talented Joe Talamo and is taking a slight drop from $32,000 maiden claimers to $25,000. John Sadler trains this gelded son of Gold Alert, and Sadler and Talamo have won 25 percent of the time when they team up. Truckee Lite went off favored last time at 5-2 and today is 10-1 on the morning line. What gives? He was beaten only 5 3/4 lengths in a 14-horse field and deserves another shot today, especially at the more generous odds. I’d bet both to win at 5-1 or more.
Sabio, at 10-1, and Icanmakeitrain, 5-2, look good in the eighth, although I won’t bet Icanmakeitrain at that low of odds. Sabio deserves a small win bet at 5-1 or better, and you’re more than likely to get that.
Good luck today!!!