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USA Today (07/12/22)

The racing in the UK is woeful at the moment so I sat down this afternoon and had a proper look through tonight's card at Tampa. I've covered most of the races below and have also included a summary of what I will be backing. All prices were available with Bet365 when I posted my review on the Forum this afternoon.


R1 - $8,000 Claimer - 6 Furlongs - For 3yo+ who have never won more than two races.

This is proper low grade stuff and it is difficult to fancy anything strongly. The two horses at the head of the market are both deep closers which is a problem, because I personally can't see any sustained pace. With that in mind, I would be looking to chance a speculative EW play on, THEJIGISUP (8/1). Whilst this 3yo doesn't really have any noteworthy form, he's been inconvenienced by wide draws on his last three runs. He's drawn in stall 1 tonight with Suarez booked and my hope is that the Jockey will have the intelligence to go and get an early position. If he can go and sit 2nd or 3rd in the run then he may well get first run on the closers which should put him in the box seat to at least get a place.

Advised Bet: THEJIGISUP (8/1) - EW

Bet Confidence: ⭐️


R2 - $10,000 Claimer - 1m 1/16 - For 3yo+ non winners of a mile+ since November 7th.

Unlike in our first race, I think we should see plenty of early pace on here which should allow the closers to thrive. I would imagine that SUNNY SAINT, BANDITOFTHEPRAIRIE and SHOO SHINE will all want to get on with things early and it is the latter who is likely to be the speed of speed and will hold the lead coming into the final furlong. It will then come down to whether GHOST STALKER, CUZ and HARD LIGHTNING are in a position to strike. I'm not convinced that CUZ will have the stamina to hit the line the hard and GHOST STALKER can be a little wayward under pressure so that basically left me with HARD LIGHTNING as the play. On balance, he is probably short enough in the betting, especially as he was a recent vet scratch but he is the most likely winner if the pace develops as anticipated.

Advised Bet: HARD LIGHTNING (2/1) - WIN

Side Bet: HARD LIGHTNING + SHOO SHINE - Combo Forecast

Bet Confidence: ⭐️⭐️


R3 - $16,000 Maiden Claimer - 1m 1/16 - 2yo Turf

Betting in Maiden Claimers at any track is a quick way to blow your bank. The majority of horses in this contest probably won't be racing for much longer and all of them are well on their way to disappointing their owners already. If I was forced to have a bet then I would probably side with KHOZY BOY who is shipping down from Gulfstream. To date he's had two career starts and his last run at Gulfstream wasn't totally devoid of promise. He will however have to reverse prior form with ZONAL who finished a few lengths in front of him that day. That won't be impossible though, as he is bred to be a better horse on the turf.

Advised Bet: N/A

Bet Confidence: N/A


R4 - $5,000 Claimer - 5.5f - For 3yo+ that have not run a race since June 7th.

This is another really low grade contest and over this distance at Tampa, you need a lot to go right for you. On paper, I really can't see any significant speed which usually means the draw becomes absolutely crucial. Whilst I would usually be giving a race such as this a wide berth, I do think that PREFERRED OUTCOME (9/1) is potentially overpriced. His recent form isn't particularly inspiring (6th/4th/5th) but he's 2 from 2 over today's course and distance and on each of his wins, he was on the speed throughout and in general has performed well from low draws in his career. It is definitely a speculative punt but I like the jockey and I think he may just end up perfectly positioned in a slowly run contest.

Advised Bet: PREFERRED OUTCOME (9/1) - EW

Bet Confidence: ⭐️⭐️


R5 - $28,000 Allowance - 1m 1/16 - 3yo+ Turf

This is the best race on the card today. We are very likely to see a strong early pace as MID DAY IMAGE, MONTAUK SUMMER both like to get on with things. We are also likely to have pressing speed positioned in behind which should ensure an end to end gallop throughout. Whenever we see that kind of pace profile over this CD, you instantly look for midpack closers. On this occasion, the midpack closer who instantly drew my attention was BULLET FORCE. If the name sounds familiar, it's because he was previously with Karl Burke and is now in the care of Mr Delgado. Since moving to the US, the horse has had just the one run which came in a Stakes race at Gulfstream over the mile on the synthetic surface. He was readily outgunned that day, which wasn't surprising given the class of the opposition and his lack of match fitness. That outing should have put him straight for this contest tonight and the return to the turf should certainly suit as well. Providing the gallop materialises. and providing Camacho gives the horse time to get organised, he should have every chance especially if CREED flops once again.

Advised Bet: BULLET FORCE (9/2) - EW

Bet Confidence: ⭐️⭐️⭐️


R6 - $19,000 Starter Allowance - 7f - 3yo+ which have started for a claiming price of 8K or less in 2021-2022.

I'd usually be ready to get betting in a race such as this but having spent some time looking at the runners, the picture is just too complex to decipher. The biggest issue for me is the pace profile. We have multiple potential speed angles but the majority of them have their form over further which means you can never be entirely sure what the jockeys will do and you certainly can't be sure that the horses will have the gate speed to go and front run. If I were to take a stab at it, I would probably side with ANTIGONE (7/2) purely because I'm a huge fan or Morales and his mount would appear to have the ability to go long or short, depending on the pace in front of him.

Advised Bet: N/A

Bet Confidence: N/A


R8 - $16,000 Claimer - 6f - 3yo+ which have never won 2 races.

Everywhere you look you'll find speed in this contest. Whilst that's usually an indication of a pace collapse, you have to be very weary about backing deep closers who are devoid of early speed because they can get taken off their feet completely early on leaving the jockey with far too much to do in the finish. With that in mind, I would be looking to take on STYLE here and I would also be dodging IM A CUTIE who is likely to face sustained pace pressure from the wide draw. Having ruled those two out, I am basically left with CANDY ARCADE which isn't ideal because I hate backing LTO maiden claim winners. However, he should end up sitting 4th or 5th early on and he should have the speed to sustain the early gallop which should leave him perfectly positioned in the even of a pace collapse. This is certainly a race for very small stakes though as no outcome would surprise me.

Advised Bet: CANDY ARCARD (3/1) - WIN

Bet Confidence: ⭐️


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