Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:51 AM

Sunday's Picks from Gulfstream Park and Santa Anita Park

The much anticipated showdown between Nashville and Charlatan in the Malibu (G1) on Saturday did not last as I long as I expected.

The Steve Asmussen trained Nashville had won his first three career starts by 24 ¾ lengths and he earned Beyers of 102 and 103 his last two starts.

The Bob Baffert trained Charlatan was making his first start since getting disqualified from the win in the Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park back in May for a drug positive.

I thought Nashville was quick enough to clear early and I thought Independence Hall might be the best option to try and break up a chalky exacta.

The two favorites battled early but Nashville tossed in the towel and weakened to finish fourth while Charlatan drew away to win by 4 ½ lengths and the margin could have been bigger.

Express Train rallied for second at 16-1 and completed a $2 exacta that paid $42.80.

We will head back out to Santa Anita on Sunday where the feature is the $100,000 Robert J. Frankel (G3) for fillies and mares going 1 1/8 miles on turf.

Trainer Michael McCarthy has a strong duo with Altea (5-1) and Rideforthecause (3-1), who are both making their first starts for the trainer.

Mucho Unusual is the 5-2 morning line favorite and looks to bounce back off a well beaten 12th in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1). She won the Rodeo Drive (G1) in her prior start, taking the field gate to wire.

I landed on Altea who makes her third start since arriving in the U.S. Her first two starts came for trainer Chad Brown.

My Best Plays Report for Sunday includes my nine strongest plays from Santa Anita and Gulfstream Park.

You can stream the action by using the TVG App. The horse betting company based in the U.S. is offering a 50% deposit match up to $250 .

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package. It gives you a month of Aqueduct Reports daily and my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday.

Here is the opener from Gulfstream Park to get the day off to a good start:

GULFSTREAM PARK RACE 1 ANALYSIS (12:05 P.M. ET)

Race 1 Md $20,000

  • #3 Beyond the Call   8-1
  • #8 Seize the Hay   2-1
  • #7 Unpopular Opinion   7-2
  • #11 Cuy   8-1

Analysis: Beyond the Call was bumped coming out of the gate last out off the bench, stalked the early pace and weakened to finish eighth for this tag going a mile. It was his first go off a nine-month layoff for the Ritvo barn. The gelding showed some ability with a runner up finish last December in his first trip on turf then ran second versus $32,000 foes. He should be tighter second off the bench here and not catching a very imposing looking group. He is out of an A.P. Indy mare that has dropped five winners including one turf winner and the extra furlong here should benefit him.

Seize the Hay is coming off a solid runner up finish last out off a three-month break. The Pletcher barn has been live at the meet hitting at a 30% clip. He was a good second here in his debut at nine furlongs back in March but then was eased in the slop and came up short versus tougher in two tries at the Spa. The obvious one to beat in this spot. 

GULFSTREAM PARK RACE 6 ANALYSIS (2:38 P.M. ET)

Race 6 Clm $16,000

  • #6 Real Doozie   12-1
  • #10 A Beautiful Day   4-1
  • #2 Hoponthebusgus   5-2
  • #11 Afficionado   8-1

Analysis: Real Doozie stretches back out to a route here after a sixth-place finish last out going five furlongs against state bred Alw-1 optional claimers at GP West Her last win came three back at today's distance where she beat $25,000 non-winners of three in a gate to wire score. The Breen barn is 22% winners moving runners form sprint to route. She drops in for $16,000 and the 12-1 morning line looks generous.

A Beautiful Day tracked the early pace while saving ground, came up the inside to take over the lead and did not have enough punch left late in a third-place finish for this tag as the beaten favorite. She was claimed out of the race, going to the David barn that is 36% winners (with a +ROI) first off the claim. She took her off the Lander barn that has racked up a 10 for 22 mark this year. Lopez sticks and she looks primed for a top effort in her third start off the break. 

SANTA ANITA RACE 8 ANALYSIS (5:17 P.M. ET)

Race 8 Md Sp Wt

  • #6 Hockey Dad   7-2
  • #4 Warrens Candy Man   3-1
  • #5 The Chosen Vron   4-1
  • #10 Big Story   4-1

Analysis: Hockey Dad is one of two first time starters in here sent out by the O'Neill barn that is 15% winners with first timers. This colt gets the barn's go to guy Gutierrez. He is by Nyquist out of a stakes placed Yankee Victor mare that has dropped five foals to race with four winners, top earner stakes winner Sprouts ($207,440). His last four works were all out of the gate and he looks ready to go.

Warrens Candy Man has a second and a third in four career starts, all on turf. Two back over the turf here he stalked the early pace and finished gamely to miss by just half-length. He was the beaten favorite last out in a fourth-place finish at Del mar, beaten just 3/4 of a length. The Lewis barn is 11% winners moving runners from turf to dirt. The gelding is out of the stakes winner Warren's Veneda ($932,112) who was better on dirt and has dropped one other foal to race, stakes winner Warren's Showtime ($539,251) who was second int eh state bred Better Grable on dirt in his last outing on Nov. 8 but is more accomplished on turf.

Good luck today!

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