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ABRV - GAMBLING

Egg Drop (inside) will get some of Jose's money in the Buena Vista Stakes on Monday (Photo by Eclipse Sportswire).

A special holiday edition of Monday racing at Santa Anita Park features the running of the GII $200,000 Buena Vista Stakes at 1 mile on the turf. This race is for Fillies and Mares that are 4-years-old or older. Here’s how I will tackle with race with a $20 budget.

$1 Exacta : 1 with All (Total $9)

My pick to win the race is No.1 Miss Serendipity. She is making her second start in the U.S. after coming over from Argentina for the barn of Ron McAnally. In her first start in the States (about a month ago) she made the lead with a solid pace but got crossed over on the final turn and lacked room in the stretch. She showed run after getting room late in the race and looked to have more run past the wire.

Miss Serendipity has worked out four times since that race and looks to be coming into this race with good fitness. She returns to the turf (she was a Grade I winner on the turf in Argentina) and I think she will run much better with that first race under her belt. Leading jockey Rafael Bejarano has the call.

The odds on Miss Serendipity should be good, so I will play an Exacta with ‘All’ for second so if she wins I am guaranteed to cash a ticket.

$1 Trifecta: 1 with 2,4 with 2,4,5,7,9,10 (Total $10)

No.2 Egg Drop is the deserving favorite and the horse to beat. She brings a three-race win streak which includes two Grade 2s and a Grade 1 race. She has good early speed and I expect her to be on or near the lead.

No.4 Tapicat began her 2014 campaign with a stakes win at Gulfstream Park on New Year’s day. She has a record of 4-for-8 over the turf and that includes 2-for-3 over this distance. She arrives from the barn of Bill Mott and top jockey John Velazquez comes along for the ride. I think she has a big shot of hitting the board.

TAPICAT WON THE VOODOO DANCER STAKE TO START THE NEW YEAR

Jose Inside

Photo by Coglinese Photos/Leslie Martin

In addition to Egg Drop and Tapicat, my Trifecta play will also include No.5 Moone’s My Name (has fired efforts that fit with this group), No.7 Pontchatrain (has 3-race win streak and has won going two turns before), No.9 Stormy Lucy (missed by a nose in a Grade 3 over this course) and No.10 Customer Base (defeated Stormy Lucy and will be flying late from the back of the pack).

$1 Exacta: 2 with 1 (Total $1)

We have $1 dollar left so let’s play and Exacta with No.2 Egg Drop on top and No.1 Miss Serendipity for second just in case our choice gets beat by ultra-sharp Egg Drop. Turf races usually finish with a fast sprint to the wire in the last quarter-of-a-mile and this looks to be one of those races. It should be an exciting finish.

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Jose Contreras

Contreras was born and raised in Southern California and grew up going to the races at his home tracks. He has extensive handicapping experience and has shared his selections with the public on his blog before joining ABR. He also brings marketing experience from previously working with companies like Apple and Google. He studied at the Race Track Industry Program at the University of Arizona.

Image Description

Jose Contreras

Contreras was born and raised in Southern California and grew up going to the races at his home tracks. He has extensive handicapping experience and has shared his selections with the public on his blog before joining ABR. He also brings marketing experience from previously working with companies like Apple and Google. He studied at the Race Track Industry Program at the University of Arizona.

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