The Grade I, $500,000 Santa Anita Gold Cup takes place this Saturday at Santa Anita Park. The 1 1/4-mile classic drew a field of seven that combines solid division leaders with some intriguing up-and-comers. The Gold Cup goes as the fifth of nine races on the day, and post time is 5:30 p.m. EST. Don’t forget to play FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game all weekend long!
#5 DR. DORR (5-2) ran to his favoritism when he romped in the Californian Stakes over this course last time. He took over at will at the top of the stretch from Soi Phet, who returned to win a turf stake in his next start. DR. DORR has now compiled three straight wins for Bob Baffert to start 2018, each looking better than the last. He should be able to get today’s added furlong based on pedigree, and he should receive a good setup outside the main speeds. Joe Talamo has the assignment.
#1 LITTLE SCOTTY (15-1) is spotted ambitiously but his 10-furlong allowance win last time out was effortless. He won’t have the weight break under apprentice Asa Espinoza in the Gold Cup, but he could still be dangerous at a big price if left unchecked up front.
#2 ACCELERATE (2-1) was only narrowly beaten by CITY OF LIGHT in the Oaklawn Handicap when last seen. Though he had the slightly better trip, he was gaining late on that rival. Stretching out to 1 1/4-miles should work in ACCELERATE’s favor based on his Santa Anita Handicap win two starts ago. Victor Espinoza maintains the assignment.
#4 CITY OF LIGHT (9-5, morning-line favorite) has never run this far but must be respected off three straight graded stakes wins, including the Oaklawn Handicap, which was his first start around two turns. His six-furlong work for this was sharp and Drayden Van Dyke remains in the saddle.
The play: $6 win 5, $2 win 1, $1 exacta box 1/5 ($10)
DFJ analysis: Joe Talamo has just three mounts on Saturday but has a good win chance in all of them. He’ll be on Phantom Proton (3-1) in Race 3, Rockin Ready (3-1) in Race 4, and DR. DORR in Race 5, the Santa Anita Gold Cup.
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