The Grade 2, $200,000 Buena Vista has a field of 12 fillies and mares going a mile on the grass. The favorite on the morning line, at 7-2, is Stormy Lucy. The top bankroll in the field, now over $800,000, belongs to her.
According to the TimeformUS Pace Projector, Glory and Paulina’s Love will be engaged for the early lead at the opening half-mile. Keri Belle is a close third. The pace is projected to be neither fast nor slow.
The fastest Late Pace rating in the field, a 110, belongs to Stormy Lucy, who has a wicked late kick when she is on her game.
Our selection in the Buena Vista is the longshot Paulina’s Love.
Yes, she draws a tough post for a race at this distance, but the run to the first turn in one-mile turf races at Santa Anita is a bit longer than some people seem to think. She’s got the right rider, Gary Stevens, to work out a decent trip. She came into her own in her most recent start—a powerful performance in which she was choked down on the slow pace, accelerated away in style, and earned a powerful speed figure of 127. She has run well (without winning) at this level in the past. She goes for the ultra-sharp trainer Richard Baltas. He has proven himself to be adept off short layoffs of this sort, and so, for that matter, has his filly. On paper, at least, she looks to be training well for this. She makes her four-year-old debut today and retains more upside than many of these. She has shown herself capable of running well from on the lead or just off it. The big number that she ran at the end of the year may seem the type that could strip her a bit, but grass horses tend to absorb such performances better than dirt horses, and to us, Paulina’s Love has the look of a horse who can take that effort in stride. This is a tough field, to be sure, but if given odds like the 12-1 ML, we will give Paulina’s Love a chance to spring an upset here or, failing that, land in the trifecta somewhere.
The horse who scares us the most…well, a lot of horses in here scare us, but we will give pride of place to Stormy Lucy, a Grade 1 winner with consistently fast speed figures who figures to be awfully hard to deny if she gets a fast pace and any kind of a trip.
Kerri Belle draws well and is on the improve. We would certainly use her underneath.
Prize Exhibit is back doing what she ought to be doing and fits with these on her best.
Her Emmynency makes her first start off the layoff and her first start out of the Kristin Mulhall barn. Mulhall is not a layoff specialist, but she is capable off layoffs, and she gets an 83 rating with horses making their first start for her. The speed figure of 125 that Her Emmynency ran for Stidham at Keeneland leaves her right in the middle of this. Pace Projector shows her receiving a stalking trip. Dangerous filly.
Win bet on Paulina’s Love. Use both Paulina’s Love and Her Emmynency in multi-race wagers.