HOLLYWOOD PARK NOTEBOOK
MAY 9, 2012
by John Mucciolo
Two graded races highlighted the second week at Hollywood.
Mervyn Leroy H. (G2): Thoroughbred Legends Stable et al's MORNING LINE led soon after the start and held off a slew of tests en route to a half-length score for trainer John Shirreffs. The Grade 1 victor endured 1 1/16 miles on the Cushion surface in 1:42 2/5 with Joe Talamo in the saddle.
Senorita S. (G3): Haras Santa Maria de Araras' homebred BOBINA rallied bravely four-wide in the lane to get up late for conditioner A.C. Avila. The unbeaten Malibu Moon filly went one mile in 1:35 on the firm lawn under Victor Espinoza to finish a nose in front. (Sadly, the filly suffered a fatal fracture after crossing the wire).
From a total of 36 races held at the Inglewood, California, racetrack during the past week, favorites won at a 33 percent clip and the top two betting choices combined for 53 percent of the wins. From 25 frays contested on the Cushion oval, 10 animals won in wire-to-wire fashion (40 percent), while one of the 11 grassy tussles went all the way on the lead (9 percent).
The main oval seemed quite biased on Saturday, where six of the eight main-track winners led at every call, with the first four of those breaking from the rail. Sunday was opposite of that, with no winners leading early and a handful of the winners making up a decent amount of ground en route to win.
Handicapping the action on Saturday and Sunday was not for the faint of heart, as just two favorites came in from a total of 20 races (10 percent).
|FAVORITES:||23 (30 percent)|
|2ND CHOICES:||13 (17 percent)|
|TURF WIRE:||2 (14 percent)|
|CUSHION WIRE:||15 (17 percent)|
HORSES TO WATCH
4TH -- While we thought POTESTA would get the job done in this one, we could have never envisioned the Macho Uno filly rolling home by more than 11 lengths for trainer Mike Mitchell. The second time starter was never seriously asked in getting her final five-sixteenths in :31 and change, and could be any kind going forward.
3RD -- R DOUBLEDAY fell just a head and a nose shy of getting the job done at first asking for Thomas Bell, who is not known for his ability with debuting types. We'll tab this one for future success, possibly next time out.
6TH -- BOAT TRIP made us look good in winning his second straight for trainer Mike Pender. The talented sophomore has shown big improvement, and whether it was the move to the turf or addition of blinkers we're not sure, but it's done wonders. He'll be stakes bound next out one would imagine.
7TH -- Grade 1-placed RENEESGOTZIP shot to the front and never looked back in posting a solid, wire-to-wire score in this spot for Peter Miller. We thought this sophomore City Zip filly faced a strong field of elder types, and give her a ton of credit for the way she handled them.
1ST -- Trainer Jeff Bonde could have himself a nice prospect after UNUSUAL WAY led at every call en route to a win at first asking. The juvenile Unusual Heat filly overcame the rail and what we thought was a solid field, and should improve as the distances increase.
10TH -- Morning Line made good while debuting with Shirreffs, and also making his first run on an all weather oval. The five-year-old likely needed this race off the long break and should make a ton of noise in the handicap ranks on this circuit.
5TH -- POSITION A has endured some bad luck while running into some good ones in his recent runs, and the gelded six-year-old will surely break through soon with any luck. He was a game runner-up today.
8TH -- Grade 1 heroine TEDDY'S PROMISE showed her versatility with a closing, half-length win from off the pace in this one for conditioner Ron Ellis. The fleet four-year-old filly can run on virtually anything and should be stepping up in class next time.
A Look Ahead
Saturday's Grade 3, $100,000 Lazaro Barrera Memorial is the graded feature here this weekend.