Santa Anita Weekend Preview: Santa Ynez and Las Cienegas Stakes

By | January 7, 2022

While the East Coast gets pelted with snow, sunny skies will shine over Santa Anita. The track has two graded races on the docket with the Santa Ynez on Saturday and the Las Cienegas on Sunday. The latter will be contested on the famed downhill turf course which returned in 2021 after a 2 year hiatus.

Weekend Stakes Analysis

Saturday Race 8: Santa Ynez (G2)

Post: 4:06 PM PT; Purse: $200,000 Santa Ynez S., 7 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 6

Under the Stars is the morning line favorite in the Santa Ynez from Santa Anita
Under the Stars coasting to victory.

#1 UNDER THE STARS (8-5) is the morning line favorite and seems logical based on the overall power rating. #3 BIG SWITCH (9-5) is another competitive runner in this spot. Speed and pace figures suggest this one will give the favorite a run for the money. #5 AWAKE AT MIDNYTE (3-1) has been running extremely well and against some top class runners. With the top spots looking fairly chalky, I wanted to find a price to make things interesting. If things set up just right maybe #2 BIG SHAMROCK (20-1) could sneak into the number.

Selections: 1-3-5-2

Sunday Race 7: Las Cienegas (G3 Turf)

Post: 3:30 PM PT; Purse: $100,000 Las Cienegas S., About 6 1/2 Furlongs on Downhill turf; Entries: 8

Tapwater will look earn the first graded stakes win at Santa Anita on Sunday
Tapwater heading to the gate at Santa Anita.

As of the writing of this piece the morning line for Santa Anita’s Sunday card has not yet been released. When the morning line becomes available players can find it on the Equibase website.

#2 HEAR MY PRAYER is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & power rating. #3 CONSTANTIA goes out for good connections and has speed figures that are right there with the top pick. #1 TAPWATER looks competitive in a lot of key metrics as well, but hasn’t faired well in stakes tries thus far. #7 ZERO TOLERANCE rounds out the top 4 and looks to have a reasonable shot to at least hit the number.

Selections: 2-3-1-7

Santa Anita Friday Selections

  1. 2-6-1-5
  2. 4-1-3-2 (Top Play: #4)
  3. 9-7-5-4
  4. 4-7-5-8 (Top Play: #4)
  5. 7-2-4-1
  6. 6-5-4-1
  7. 8-5-3-6 (Top Play: #8)
  8. 1-3-4-2 (Top Play: #1)
  9. 2-3-11-4

Santa Anita Saturday Analysis

More than any other card on the weekend, Saturday’s card looks really tough to lock into any one horse. While this likely means a lower win percentage for the horseplayer, it often results in much higher ROI at the end of the day with money getting spread to all viable betting interests.

Santa Anita Race 1

Post: 12:30 PM PT; Purse: $39,000 Maiden Claiming, 1 Mile on Turf; Entries: 7

#5 SHE’S SO SHINY (3-1) is in with a major shot holding advantages in speed & class. #3 UNFAITHFUL WAYS (3-1) should be in the right spot early to give this horse a chance to get the job done. #2 BEACHGRASS (2-1) merits consideration in this spot given the potential race flow. #4 A CROWN FOR KITTEN (5-2) has some of the best turf breeding in the group.

Selections: 5-3-2-4

Santa Anita Race 2

Post: 1:00 PM PT; Purse: $67,000 Maiden Special Weight, 1 1/16 Miles on Dirt; Entries: 5

#2 INVISIBLE WAR (9-2) could spring a minor upset here. #1 SOY TAPATIO (9-5) has the speed figures, experience, and breeding to make this one a logical favorite. #5 MAGNIFICENT (3-1) is a major player in today’s race given the foundation from experience. #3 AMERICAN ADMIRAL (5-2) should be in the right spot early to give this horse a chance to get the job done.

Selections: 2-1-5-3

Santa Anita Race 3

Post: 1:34 PM PT; Purse: $40,000 Claiming, 1 1/8 Miles on Turf; Entries: 8

#1 BACCHANALIA (3-1) should be competitive today based on the horse’s speed & connections. #5 SUGARY (5-2) is worth a look here given the past record at the distance & pace numbers. #3 DUTCH PAINTING (4-1) has the top overall power rating in the group although that tends to mean less on grass. #4 SPANISH CHANNEL (30-1) is an interesting longshot who is in good form and could get the perfect setup here to squeeze into the exotics.

Selections: 1-5-3-4

Santa Anita Race 4

Post: 2:06 PM PT; Purse: $24,000 Maiden Claiming, 1 Mile on Dirt; Entries: 6

#4 STAR SAILOR (9-5) is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & power rating. This one seems logical in a race condition that often defies logic. #1 FUNKENSTEIN (2-1) has a great shot in the race given the connections. #3 INESPERADO (4-1) should be in the right spot early against a division that typically doesn’t love passing horses. #6 WHISKEY VISION (6-1) wouldn’t be a huge surprise in the winner’s circle.

Selections: 4-1-3-6

Santa Anita Race 5

Post: 2:36 PM PT; Purse: $40,000 Starter Allowance, 5 1/2 Furlongs on Turf; Entries: 10

#1 NEVER HAVE I EVER (5-1) is worth a look here given edges in record at the distance & power rating. #10 IAN GLASS (4-1) makes sense from a pace perspective as well. #2 VIA EGNATIA (7-2) looks to have to have kept the best company in the previous starts. #8 CASTLE (4-1) shouldn’t be disregarded either as the recent speed figures look good enough here.

Selections: 1-10-2-8

Santa Anita Race 6

Post: 3:06 PM PT; Purse: $69,000 Allowance Optional Claiming, 6 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 5

#5 YOUTEYOURHONOR (5-2) gets a bit of class relief and that may be enough to beat the top 2 choices. #4 SMILIN EVIE (9-5) is with a great chance based on the horse’s connections & pace numbers. #1 SUE ETTAS GHOST (10-1) is a major player at a price based on speed figures. #2 GIRL RANGER (8-5) will likely have the stamina to outlast these in the final jumps of the race.

Selections: 5-4-1-2

Santa Anita Race 7

Post: 3:36 PM PT; Purse: $67,000 Maiden Special Weight, 1 Mile on Turf; Entries: 9

#2 LA DEUXIEME ETOILE (3-1) is a major player in today’s race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & power rating. #7 EMERALD LAKE (6-1) has to be respected based on the connections. #5 BONNIE BRAE (5-2) should be competitive based on the turf breeding which has it tops in the group. #8 LOVERS ODYSSEY (7-2) should have the foundation to get the mile.

Selections: 2-7-5-8

Santa Anita Race 8

Post: 4:06 PM PT; Purse: $200,000 Santa Ynez S., 7 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 6

Analysis featured above.

Selections: 1-3-5-2

Santa Anita Race 9

Post: 4:36 PM PT; Purse: $67,000 Maiden Special Weight, 6 1/2 Furlongs on Turf; Entries: 12

The finale looks wide open. Look to the tote board to signal if any of the horses mentioned are live runners or in need of this start.

#2 ANNIE’S SONG (6-1) should be competitive based on the turf breeding which has it tops in the group. #7 KITTY KITANA (3-1) wouldn’t be a huge surprise in the winner’s circle either. #8 URBAN (7-2) is a major contender given the edge in a number of key categories including speed & class. #4 PRECOCIOUS TIMES (10-1) should be in the right spot early to give this horse a chance to get the job done.

Selections: 2-7-8-4

Santa Anita Sunday Selections

  1. 4-6-1-2
  2. 3-4-1-2 (Top Play: #3)
  3. 1-6-3-2
  4. 5-6-2-4 (Top Play: #1)
  5. 4-5-6-2
  6. 5-4-2-3 (Top Play: #5)
  7. 2-3-1-7
  8. 6-3-1-2 (Top Play: #6)
  9. 8-1-3-5

Betting News Weekend Coverage

Not playing Santa Anita this weekend? Not to worry. Betting News has you covered. Our AI Handicapping tools have selections from Gulfstream Park, Oaklawn Park, Aqueduct and more.

The post Santa Anita Weekend Preview: Santa Ynez and Las Cienegas Stakes first appeared on Betting News.

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