The San Felipe Stakes has been billed as a two-horse race by many people, and I believe that to be relatively accurate. However, I do believe one of the two horses that everyone is talking about it considerably better than the other at the moment. He may not be the better Kentucky Derby prospect, but I think Goldencents is going to be incredibly tough to beat in the San Felipe. In a race that came up pretty light on speed, Goldencents is the speed of the speed. Although Flashback’s effort in the Lewis was on the front end, I don’t believe that’s where he’ll be most comfortable/effective once he faces a saltier group. In the Lewis, Flashback had the race handed to him on the front end, coasting along through fractions of :24 for the opening quarter and :48 and 3 for the half. Conversely, Goldencents has had to work on the front end of a couple of his races, namely the Delta Jackpot (first quarter in :22 and 3, half in :46 and 1). He’s been firing off six furlong drills for over a month now, so he’s definitely fit and ready for the race. They’ll likely be only a point or two apart on the toteboard, vying for favoritism come post time, but I think Goldencents is the stronger horse of the two in tomorrow’s San Felipe Stakes.
Omega Star is a bit of an interesting longshot in the San Felipe. I think he hit the front end a bit too soon in his first effort going two turns last out, and a positive move forward tomorrow wouldn’t shock me at all.
Jerry Hollendorfer sends out the lightly raced Hear the Ghost with Corey Nakatani aboard tomorrow. This will be his first time stretching out to two turns, so he should be forwardly placed. In a race void of a ton of speed, he could throw a monkey wrench into the equation if he decides to get brave and mix it up with the two favorites up front.
I’ve always liked Carving, but I think it’s time to realize what caliber horse he is. Unless he does something miraculous tomorrow, it’s probably time to look for a nice overnight stake for him to run in. He’s been overmatched for the majority of his young racing career – get him into an easier spot and get some of his confidence back.
SELECTION: 3 – Goldencents, Kevin Krigger; ML 2-1