Wednesday is Opening Day at Del Mar, where the turf meets the surf. Del Mar remains one of the better legacies left by legendary crooner, Bing Crosby, along with the Pebble Beach Pro-Am, "White Christmas", and his "Road" pictures with Bob Hope. We will deviate slightly from the normal They Are Off schedule due to this and offer thoughts on the Opening Day feature: The $100,000 Oceanside Stakes:
There are several viable candidates with realistic opportunities to win this stakes race, but I will go with a 5-1 shot in #5 Hockley. The A.P. Indy product scored a nice win over an optional claiming field last time out at Hollywood on the turf on June 11. He has the second-best turf Tomlinson number in the race and David Flores will once again be in the saddle. For second, I will use the Bob Baffert trainee, #6 Macias. Macias led the Grade 3 Will Rogers at Hollywood last time out on June 20 until the stretch and this race on Wednesday is a sixteenth of a mile shorter. His two works since that last race have been outstanding, I might add. I saw #1 Face And An Ace win his last race on July 3 over the simulcast at Lincoln Race Course and he dug in to win in what appeared to be a tough spot. Brice Blanc rode that day and gets the call again here. All of this horses in-the-money results have come on the grass and he is 15-1 on the morning line. Finally, I will use the favorite as my fourth pick. #3 Twirling Candy is undefeated in two starts at Hollywood and has the top turf Tomlinson in the field. However, he has yet to go a mile and he has yet to race on the turf. There is just enough doubt here to make he think this horse is going to have to beat me out of it here. Here is the play for the $100,000 Oceanside Stakes:
$5 WP #5
$1 EX BOX 1-5-6
$1 TRI BOX 1-5-6
Remember, They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers placed in conjunction with these selections. They are merely suggestions. Tune in again tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!