This week in horse racing: spotlight on Santa Anita

By Jeremy Plonk  (Xpressbet Editor-in-chief) 

October 27, 2022 01:21 PM

The eyes of thoroughbred racing are on the final preparations for the more than 150 equine stars set to shine at Keeneland on Nov. 4-5 in the Breeders’ Cup. Morning workouts are abuzz with horses across all 14 divisions as handicappers try to get one last edge and piece of knowledge for the betting bonanza. The free Breeders’ Cup portal at XBTV provides a comprehensive library of the training sessions caught on video.

But before Keeneland rolls out its red carpet in a week’s time, there’s a stakes barrage this Saturday at Santa Anita to welcome players into the financial fray. Seven stakes races will be on the docket, led by the Grade 2 Twilight Derby and Grade 2 Goldikova Stakes on turf.

For those betting Santa Anita, here are the stats you need to know for local stakes races this year:

Percentage of Winning Favorites: 48% 

Average Win Odds: 3.7-1 

Hot Trainers: Phil D’Amato (21-81, 26%), Bob Baffert (14-44, 32%), John Sadler (7-40, 18%) 

Hot Jockeys: Juan Hernandez (25-94, 27%), Flavien Prat (14-50, 28%), Mike Smith (9-49, 18%), Ricardo Gonzalez (6-26, 23%)

What To Watch For This Week

Keeneland concludes its Fall Meeting on Saturday, before returning Nov. 4-5 to host the Breeders’ Cup. Churchill Downs opens its Fall Meeting on Sunday … The Belmont-at-Aqueduct meeting ends Sunday, but not before Saturday’s Grade 2 Kelso and Grade 3 Bold Ruler Stakes. The traditional Aqueduct Fall Meeting then opens next Friday … State-bred stakes showcase days this weekend include Best of Ohio at Mahoning Valley on Saturday, Empire Showcase Day for New York-breds on Sunday at Belmont-at-Aqueduct, and Sunday’s New Mexico Classic Day at Zia Park … Presque Isle Downs concludes its 2022 season on Thursday afternoon.

Friday Weekend Firestarter

Friday’s penultimate card of the Fall Meet at Keeneland features the Grade 3, $300,000 Valley View Stakes. A capacity field of 3-year-old fillies promises for a great betting race. The average winner of this race over the past 15 years has been 11-1 odds, so don’t be afraid to shop. Sparkle Blue was 31-1 runner-up in the Virginia Oaks last time, and that race has produced a couple of Keeneland winners. Her trainer, Graham Motion, won this race in 2016 and 2018 and is having a super Fall Meet. She’s the play.

1/ST BET App Top Handicapping Tracks of the Week

The free 1/ST BET app allows you to apply millions of data points across dozens of handicapping factors in mere seconds and immediately place your wagers. Here’s where the artificial intelligence was most dialed-in last week by win percentage:

45% Parx 

42% Finger Lakes 

38% Santa Anita 

35% Mountaineer 

35% Zia Park

Tracks With Most Reliable Favorites Last Week (By Win %) 

56% Charles Town 

54% Penn National 

48% Horseshoe Indianapolis 

48% Parx 

48% Hawthorne

Tracks That Were Longshot Havens Last Week (Most Winners 10-1 or More) 

6 Keeneland 

6 Delaware 

6 Belmont-at-Aqueduct 

5 Woodbine 

5 Santa Anita

America’s Hot Jockeys Last Week 

Vicente Del-Cid (9-25, 36%) // Delta Downs 

Paco Lopez (7-23, 30%) // Parx, Laurel, Meadowlands, Delaware 

Pablo Morales (6-23, 26%) // Presque Isle 

Javier Castellano (7-28, 25%) // Belmont-at-Aqueduct 

Jamie Rodriguez (7-28, 25%) // Laurel Park, Delaware

America’s Hot Trainers Last Week 

Jeff Mullins (5-10, 50%) // Santa Anita 

Martin Valdez-Cabral (5-11, 45%) // Zia Park 

Kevin Attard (5-14, 46%) // Woodbine 

Chris Englehart (5-15, 33%) // Finger Lakes, Belmont-at-Aqueduct 

Christophe Clement (7-24, 29%) // Belmont-at-Aqueduct, Delaware, Finger Lakes, Presque Isle, Woodbine

Breeders’ Cup Wager Guide Release Friday

With the pre-entries set for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships on Nov. 4-5 at Keeneland, the handicapping process has begun in earnest in anticipation of Monday’s post-position draw. Be sure to check out all the pertinent stats, trends, analysis and picks in the 1/ST BET Breeders’ Cup Wager Guide. The free digital Guide features handicappers like Eddie Olczyk, Jeff Siegel and Jeremy Plonk as well as racing analysts Millie Ball, Zoe Cadman and more. Get the Wager Guide HERE beginning Friday.

– Statistics courtesy Betmix 

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