Friday's Free Horse Racing Picks: Late Pick 4 Predictions From Woodbine
Friday’s late Pick Four at Woodbine is a good one, and it starts on the fourth race of the eight-race program. As always with Woodbine, remember that the Pick Four minimum is 20 cents, not 50 cents. With that in mind, my suggested play comes out to just $9.60, and here’s how I’ve constructed it.
I thought this maiden race for older fillies and mares was the most wide-open race of the sequence. It drew an overflow field, and I’m going four-deep.
#4 LIMERICK LASSIE intrigues me at a bit of a price. She showed brief speed in her debut last July, but faded to last and hasn’t been seen since. However, she’s been working very quickly in the mornings and gets Lasix for the first time. Perhaps she’s a morning glory, but there’s also a chance she’s figured things out and has matured since the last time we saw her run.
#2 HIT AND RUN, #6 SPEEDY LYNN, and #12 JOKERS RUN are on my ticket as well. Speedy Lynn is the lukewarm 3-1 favorite on the morning line, but I’m not sure she’ll be favored come post time. This is an intriguing field, and if you have a strong opinion, you’re almost certain to get a square price.
We’ll head to the inner turf course for this one, and I’m inclined to agree with the morning line maker. The early odds project two horses to take most of the money, and I’m using them both.
#4 BETWIXTING is a consistent runner with nine top-three finishes in 12 career starts. Her lone effort at this route came last summer, when she was a good second despite a wide trip. She draws a decent post here, and she should sit an ideal stalking trip.
Despite a poor outside draw, I also can’t ignore #8 SWEET YARE N DINA. She went 3-for-3 at this route a season ago, and she ran up against some very tough turf sprinters at Gulfstream Park over the winter. Her recent works indicate she’s ready to run, and her best race is certainly good enough to win this.
We’ve got another big group lined up for this one, as a full field will go seven furlongs on the lawn. I’m going two-deep, and my top pick could be a pretty big price.
#9 MAKE NO MISTAKE won four of eight starts a season ago and has plenty of tactical speed. Her races two and three back were not good, but those came against far better groups, and the two-back effort came without Lasix. That’s back in her system here, and if she’s able to establish forward position early, I think she’s got a big chance.
I’ll also use #13 SPARKLE SAMMY, who didn’t run a poor race on turf all season last year. She’s another with plenty of early speed, and regular rider Patrick Husbands will be in the saddle. It’s a bit of a stretch-out from the last few races of her 2020 campaign, but she won going 7 1/2 furlongs, so if she’s right, the distance shouldn’t bother her.
The payoff leg is a starter handicap that’s drawn several hard-knockers from recognizable barns, and this is where I’ll take my stand against a short-priced favorite. #4 SAMURAI QUEEN is 7/5 on the morning line, and that’s just far too short. Her races don’t tower over those of the rest of this field, she won’t be alone on the front end, and this may be the best group she’s ever lined up against.
I’m going three-deep, and I prefer #1 HITTERS PARK on top. He didn’t fire in two starts at Fair Grounds, but he goes back to the barn of Martin Drexler, has been working well, and gets the services of top jockey Kazushi Kimura. Add in that the race shape could favor a horse with his ability to stalk and pounce, and I think there’s plenty to like.
#2 O’KRATOS and #6 BEN LOMOND are on my ticket as well. The former has significant back class and makes his first start for trainer Kevin Attard, while the latter is a late-runner that would certainly benefit from the speed duel that seems likely here. If we’re able to beat Samurai Queen, we’ll be in line to collect a nice chunk of change, and I hope that scenario materializes.