Oaklawn Park: Whitmore, Essex Stakes Saturday Analysis

By | March 18, 2022

Whitmore was one of the most beloved horses to come out of Oaklawn Park. On Thursday the race named for him will take place as race 7.

Whitmore

Whitmore was a fan favorite during his long racing career at Oaklawn Park
Whitmore wins the Forego at Saratoga. The runner spent much of his career as a fan favorite at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, AR. Image Courtesy of TVG.

Whitmore was everything that is right with horse racing. In 2021 he was retired as a 9 year old due to an injury. In a world where our best horses are ripped off the track after they turn 4, Whitmore had the chance to run over and over and over again.

During that time, which included several runs at Oaklawn Park, Whitmore ran 1st 15 times and hit the board in over 30 races. Of his 15 wins, 10 were in stakes company including grade 1 victories in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint and the Forego.

Although he failed to win a race in 2021, his longevity on the track and spunky personality earned him a massive following everywhere he went. These are the kinds of horses that can often create lifelong racing fans that grow this sport.

Whitmore Stakes Analysis

Oaklawn Park Race 7

Post: 4:04 PM CT; Purse: $200,000 Whitmore S., 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 9

  • #8 HEART RHYTHM (15-1) has a really good Oaklawn trainer and the track is known to have some really goofy results. I think this one could get a good trip and pull off a massive upset.
  • #9 HOLLIS (3-1) should be in the right spot early to give this horse a chance to get the job done.
  • #3 GREELEY AND BEN (9-2) is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & power rating.
  • #2 BOB’S EDGE (5-2) is proven as a good bet to at least hit the board under today’s distance and surface conditions.

Selections: 8-9-3-2

Saturday Undercard Analysis

Oaklawn Park Race 1

Post: 1:00 PM CT; Purse: $34,000 Maiden Claiming, 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 9

  • #4 MISS RITA (5-2) has a decent foundation and could use that the advantage here. Quinonez is a perennial player in the jockey standings.
  • #5 CHOCTAW CHARLIE (3-1) looks tough to beat here given the edge in a number of key categories including speed & class.
  • #2 LORI’S EYES (4-1) is proven as a good bet to at least hit the board under today’s distance and surface conditions.
  • #7 CATCH A WHIFF (7-2) gets David Cabrera in the saddle and that is always a positive.

Selections: 4-5-2-7

Oaklawn Park Race 2

Post: 1:29 PM CT; Purse: $37,000 Starter Optional Claiming, 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 7

  • #7 WIN WITH PRIDE (7-2) is worth a look here given edges in connections & power rating.
  • 6 STORM ADVISORY (4-1) should be competitive today based on the horse’s speed & form.
  • #2 ADMIRABLY (3-1) is sent out by Robertino Diodoro who is one of the top claiming trainers in the country.
  • #5 HONORARY DEGREE (7-2) is worth a look here given edges in record at the distance & early pace numbers.

Selections: 7-6-2-5

Oaklawn Park Race 3

Post: 2:02 PM CT; Purse: $30,000 Maiden Claiming, 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 13

  • #1 BRASKA (7-2) is worth a look here given edges in pace numbers & breeding.
  • #4 UCANTMAKETHISTUFUP (3-1) is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including having the best speed figures in the group.
  • #13 RISKY SITUATION (12-1) merits consideration in this spot given edges in stamina & class, but the outside post puts this one behind the 8 ball.
  • #10 OBVIOUSLY TOO (5-1) has put up speed figures good enough to compete with this bunch.

Selections: 1-4-13-10

Oaklawn Park Race 4

Post: 2:33 PM CT; Purse: $106,000 Allowance, 1 1/16 Miles on Dirt; Entries: 10

  • #3 PALACE COUP (3-1) should be competitive today based on the horse’s speed & power rating.
  • #6 PATS PROPERTY (5-1) is in with a great chance based on the horse’s recent form lines.
  • #4 EASTSIDE COOL (7-2) is worth a look here given edges in record at the distance. This one will be forward early and may be tough to track down late.
  • #2 MYOPIC (8-1) has solid connections and appears slightly undervalued.

Selections: 3-6-4-2

Oaklawn Park Race 5

Post: 3:03 PM CT; Purse: $33,000 Starter Allowance, 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 10

  • #1 JACK VAN BERG (2-1) is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & form.
  • #6 PETIT VERDOT (6-1) should be in the right spot early to give this horse a chance to get the job done.
  • #10 TAPPIN FORA DANCE (6-1) has shown well at these conditions in the past.
  • #5 SEAU (10-1) looks to have to have kept the best company in the previous starts.

Selections: 1-6-10-5

Oaklawn Park Race 6

Post: 3:33 PM CT; Purse: $90,000 Maiden Special Weight, 1 Mile on Dirt; Entries: 11

  • #8 BATTLE CALL (7-2) has experience and has hit the board at this mile distance in the past. That can be a huge advantage in this spot.
  • #1 MAASAI WARRIOR (2-1) goes out for Brad Cox with Florent Geroux in the irons. Leaving those two off tickets is the quickest way to the poor house.
  • #7 GENERAL STRIKE (3-1) has been running well and has some of the top speed figures in this group.
  • #4 PLAUSIBLE DENILE (10-1) will be toward the front early and that can often be the best way for long shots to win.

Selections: 8-1-7-4

Oaklawn Park Race 7

Post: 4:04 PM CT; Purse: $200,000 Whitmore S., 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 9

  • Whitmore Stakes analysis provided above.

Selections: 8-9-3-2

Oaklawn Park Race 8

Post: 4:39 PM CT; Purse: $90,000 Maiden Special Weight, 1 Mile on Dirt; Entries: 11

  • #5 LIFE ON THE NILE (2-1) is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & early pace numbers.
  • #2 FAST LANE (6-1) is worth a look here given edges in connections & breeding.
  • #4 EL GEMAR (5-1) has hit the board at this distance in the past.
  • #7 MAJOR CONTENDER (3-1) is a Brad Cox runner with Ricardo Santana Jr. up.

Selections: 5-2-4-7

Oaklawn Park Race 9

Post: 5:10 PM CT; Purse: $500,000 Essex H., 1 1/16 Miles on Dirt; Entries: 8

  • #4 PLAINSMAN (2-1) barring a horrible turn of racing luck, this one looks like about as much of a lock as they come.
  • #3 WARRIOR’S CHARGE (7-2) is a distance specialist and seems to like the Oaklawn oval.
  • #1 THOMAS SHELBY (7-2) has some back races that fit here, and will be forward early. The rail probably forces this one to go even a bit quicker early.
  • #7 BEAU LUMINARIE (8-1) will likely have the stamina to outlast these in the final jumps of the race.

Selections: 4-3-1-7 (Best Bet: #4 PLAINSMAN)

Oaklawn Park Race 10

Post: 5:40 PM CT; Purse: $106,000 Allowance, 1 Mile on Dirt; Entries: 11

  • #7 PHAROAH’S HEART (5-2) is a major contender given the edge in a number of key categories including speed & class.
  • #10 GUANA CAY (5-1) likes the mile distance.
  • #4 LET’S CRUISE (6-1) should be in the right spot early to give this horse a chance to get the job done.
  • #5 TROUVILLE (12-1) has some really solid recent speed figures that make this one a big player at a huge price in this one.

Selections: 7-10-4-5

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The post Oaklawn Park: Whitmore, Essex Stakes Saturday Analysis first appeared on Betting News.

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