Horses to Watch May 23 – by Rod Young Turfdom

BELLAMENTARY (May 19): Four year old filly for Phil D’Amato had not been to the post since last October and returned in Friday’s opener, a “salty” affair for the third allowance condition at a mile on the lawn. Off at 2/1 and the second choice in the wagering, she broke outward from the outside slot, but righted herself and went right to the lead setting good fractions of 23.11 and 46.26 for the half. She maintained the lead till the top of the stretch, was passed momentarily at the 1/8th pole, but dug deep and found another gear, and finished gamely on the inside to be beaten a length by a late runner. This was her first time on the grass and she ran a big race to some seasoned veterans. This gives D’Amato another way to go with this graded stakes place filly who had a runner up effort

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Horses to Watch May 16 – by Rod Young Turfdom

STOP THE VIOLENCE (May 12): Two year old colt for Peter Miller made his debut in Friday’s 2nd and drew the extreme outside post in this four and a half furlong dash. He broke to the outside at the start and didn’t have much speed. He fell six lengths off the pace, rallied very wide at the top of the stretch, then closed with a rush while racing quite greenly. He finished third and was beaten just a half and was the most visually impressed runner in the race. He won’t be a maiden very long for these connections who know how to win races on this circuit. ALGORHYTHMIC (May 12): Five year old mare made it two for two for trainer Mike Machowsky since he claimed her for $32K back on March 10th. She won the first Cal bred condition down the hill on Friday and completely annihilated her

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Horses to Watch May 9 – by Rod Young Turfdom

SIDEPOCKET RUN (May 5): We don’t often list an 8 year old running for $8000 on our Horses to Watch list, but this mare for Phil D’Amato is an exception. She had been off for 5 months, had good solid drills at Los Al, and came back running. She tracked an ordinary field by five down the back side, went to the lead on her own at the 3/8th pole, then won off by six under a hand ride by Pereira. She can handle a double jump in class up to $12,500 and get the job done again. Follow. SPIM ME A KISS (May 5): Three year old filly for Phil D’Amato made the third start of her young career in Friday’s 6th, a Cal bred maiden special weight down the hill for 3 and up. Off as the heavy 1 to 2 choice in a 9 horse field, she

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Horses to Watch May 2 – by Rod Young Turfdom

VIGILANTE (April 28): Five year old full horse for Phil D’Amato, who made just his 2nd start off a very long layoff in Friday’s opener, ran a bang up 2nd in a second condition allowance race at 10 furlongs on the lawn. Off at 7/1 in just a five horse field, he trailed throughout and was last down the back side six lengths behind the leaders. Yet he closed into some very soft fractions and was motoring late under Bejarano. He cam up a neck short of catching the favorite but it was a strong performance. His next race will be his 3rd off the layoff, often a horse’s best performance, and he sitting on a win. He is good anywhere from 9 to 10 furlongs on the grass. Be ready. OVER PAR (April 28): Five year old gelding for Doug O’Neill tried the first Cal bred allowance condition on

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Horses to Watch Apr. 25 – by Rod Young Turfdom

KLONDIKE CREEK (April 21): Four year old colt for Richard Mandella tried a mile and a half on the grass for the first allowance condition on Friday. Off as the 2/1 choice in a field of 8, he set all of the pace through fairly quick fractions for this distance of 23.38 and 46.49. He put all of the other speed away at the top of the lane, but couldn’t hold on against a perfect tripper from off the pace. He was beaten a little more than a length at the wire finishing second. This race sets him up perfectly for an 8 or 9 furlong route on the grass and he has never missed the board in five tries on the lawn. They don’t card many mile and a half races, but there are many mile and a quarter races for the first condition. Be ready. MARCKIE’S WATER (April

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Horses to Watch Apr. 18 – by Rod Young Turfdom

LOOKING AT THELAKE (April 14): Three year old filly for Billy Morey, was bought privately in Florida. Off as the even money choice and racing with Lasix for the first time, she broke awkwardly from the gate but was quickly righted by Pedroza. From the 8 hole, he sent her right to the rail to save ground into the clubhouse turn and was only about 3 lengths off the pace. She raced under a tight hold all the way down the back side, slipped through on the rail at the ¼ pole, then quickly opened up by 3 on the field. She cruised home under a hand ride to win by seven. She is now eligible for those starter allowance races non winners twice, and she should have no trouble with that condition. She has never missed the board in 5 trips to the post and was quickly claimed by

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Horses to Watch Apr. 11 – by Rod Young Turfdom

QUEEN BEE TO YOU (April 7): Three year old filly for Mike Pender had 7 starts on the dirt in sprints and hadn’t been able to break her maiden. On Friday, they stretched her out to a mile and put her on the turf for the first time and she found her calling. Off at 6/1 in an 8 horse field against older maiden special weights, all who are bred in California, she hopped at the start to be away last. She stayed there until the ¼ pole, and then Desormeaux swung her to the outside and she gobbled up the ground. She put her head in front at the 1/8th pole and then eased clear under a hand ride to win by a length and a half at the wire. She should have no trouble with the first condition as long as they keep her with state breds, and

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Horses to Watch Apr. 4 – by Rod Young Turfdom

SMOKEY IMAGE (March 31): Four year old colt for Carla Gaines, who had been off since July of last year, returned to the racing wars in the third allowance condition Friday against a pretty tough group. Off at 6/1 in this six and a half sprint on the main track, he broke running and vied for the early lead through quick fractions of 21.88 and 44.65 from between horses. He gave up some ground and dropped back to 4th at the ¼ pole, but then came back on again in the final sixteenth and galloped out fairly strong. He finished up third at the wire and was only beaten two lengths for all of it. Carla has lots of options with this Cal bred, as he can go short or long, turf or dirt, and can face Cal breds in a stakes as well. This was a fine comeback race

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Horses to Watch Mar. 28 – by Rod Young Turfdom

UTANA (March 24): Four year old filly for John Shirreffs and the “Zenyatta” connections made her debut in Friday’s second, a maiden special weight at six and a half on the main. Off at 6/1 in a small field of five due to late scratches, she got bumped on both sides at the break to get away last by five lengths. But Espinoza hustled her up the rail and she was in contention turning for home. She dove to the inside on what was probably the worst part of the track, and stayed there the entire length of the stretch fighting gamely. She got beat a “zop” at the wire and was probably best. This daughter of Curlin will do better as the furlongs increase and I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s not stretched out for start number two. She’s a soon winner for a very patient barn. KENDA (March

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Horses to Watch Mar. 21 – by Rod Young Turfdom

RIVER ECHO (March 17): Four year old gelding is a new horse since transferring into the Peter Miller barn from back East. After winning the first allowance condition in his last start, he tried the second condition on Friday and was best even though finishing second. Off at 7/2 in a strong field, he sat third in the early running with a rail trip just off the speed. Arroyo had a ton of horse turning for home but he had nowhere to run until a brief opening at the sixteenth pole. He burst through but it was too late as a perfect tripper from the outside got the jump on him. He now has two wins and a close second since joining the Miller barn and he wins this condition next out. BOTTLE SERVICE (March 18): Three year old gelding for Mike Machowsky was all over the place in Saturday’s

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