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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Weekend Handicapping: Atlantic Hurricane hits Woodbine Today

The lesson learned yesterday in the Sixty Sails at Hawthorne is not to ignore Donnie Von Hemel horses! She's All In ran a great race  and we should have seen it.  In looking back at her PP's it was obvious she was ready to go, but I let the lack of distance cloud my judgement.  I even had Von Hemel, 27% stakes win circled and let it get away.  I won't say never again, for I know I will overlook them again and again, that's what makes handicapping so much fun.

Today, we go back to Woodbine and look at the 60th running of the Whimsical (G3) for fillies and mares 3YO and upwards going six furlongs on the synthetic for a purse of $150,000. We have a field of ten, most making their 2012 debuts and lot's of speed in this one.

Contenders:

#4 Atlantic Hurricane ML 2/1

She had a monster 4YO season here at Woodbine, winning six of eight, including the Bessbarian (G3) in her season finale.  Her last two races she went off at 3/1 and won both with 90+ Beyer's. Now she is ready to continue that season into her 5YO campaign.  Her workouts have been good and her running style fit's this group well. I've got two concerns, she is coming off a long layoff, and the only time that occurred she finished second, and a jockey switch from Ramsammy to Olguin. Not saying these issues should have a large impact, but they are something to consider.  Regardless, she is the one to beat.

#10 Roxy Gap ML 7/2

She started her 4YO campaign with a rough trip down at Gulfstream Park, having to be steadied and then bumped.  What is positive that it didn't knock her off for she finished third on turf.  Mark Casse brings her home where she has won three of four and two of those stakes races.  Casse has an excellent record on synthetic (21%) and turf/synthetic angle (24%). Her workouts have been solid and she will press the pace which put's her in good position with the speed here today. Lastly, Husbands is back in the irons and that is a big positive.

#2 Rock the Moon ML 12/1

This 4YO is another Mark Casse entry and I really like her chances in this race.  We know she likes the Woodbine synthetic winning four of seven, has flashed plus 90 Beyer's and can sprint.  Her workouts have been great and Casse puts his gunner Moreno (21%) on board.  No doubt she is moving up in class for this will be her first stakes/graded event but I suspect we are going to see a big improvement.  She'll gallop in the second flight and if the speed crumbles she will be there.

Dark Horse:

#1 Sweet Cassiopeia ML 6/1

This filly will be making her 4YO debut and she is the early foot in this event.  She won her last three here at Woodbine sprinting and increased her Beyer's each time. Her workouts have been outstanding, we should see a big improvement as she has matured and McAleney stays aboard.  She moved through her conditions after winning her maiden last year, and now takes a big step in her debut. If she builds off those last three races this season she could go wire to wire today.

Bombs Away:

#7 Moonlit Beauty ML 20/1

She has been more successful running on turf in her career at Woodbine, but she has posted three wins on synthetic.  Why I gravitate to  her is that she posted some sprint speed back when she was a 4YO, granted it was turf but I just have a feeling about her today. Her workouts have been good on synthetic, her connections put Da Silva back in the saddle and cutting her back a bit might help.  The other item is that she has won off a layoff in the Belle Geste ($100K) going seven furlongs. Maybe an overreach here but I like her the best of the rest.

Selections:  4 - 10 - 2

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