Race 1: 1-3-4
Welcome back to Ajax Downs! #1 TTT KELLYS REGAN makes his second start of the meet after getting beat a nose in a tougher class by a horse called Memories Times Six, who's been a very good Allowance/high Claiming horse for a few years. This gelding has only missed the board once in his six starts at Ajax and should be tough to beat on the class drop. #3 FEARGHAS was a very good looking Maiden winner here last fall before wintering at Hialeah Park. At Hialeah he managed to win a Derby trial and qualified to two Derbies, where he found himself a bit outclassed. The horses he raced against have been of good quality: Premier Ethics is a Grade 2 winner who is undefeated in six starts and Eat the Fish is a two-time Stakes placed runner. This horse should not be 10-1 come post time. #4 DEAL A FORTUNE made his Ajax debut two weeks ago with a win in a NW2 Allowance. He steps up to the NW3, but his speed figures say that he should be competitive with this group. Daily Double wagering is offered here.
Race 2: 6-3-5
This race kicks off the early Pick 3. #6 I LIKE CHICS made his career debut last year as a 5 year old, and raced very well against credible horses. He made six starts, got three wins, a second and a third. He finds himself eligible for this Speed Index condition, where he should be a major player. #3 DONTELLMEMYBUSINESS had a good 2014, with two wins and two more on-the-board finishes in eight starts. He made his 2015 debut in a Starter Allowance on opening day where he was a non-threatening third of five, but all things considered he raced pretty well. He drops into a more logical spot, and while he's been beaten by I Like Chics on two occasions, he could be a factor here. #5 FIRST PRIZE OSCAR was a rallying second in a Speed Index race two weeks back, where he was forced outwards near the wire. He makes his second start off the bench and hopes to be able to keep a straight path today.
Race 3: 4-2-7
#4 NOT STEPPIN DOWN raced in the QROOI Ontario Sired Maiden Overnight Stakes two weeks ago and had poor luck, stumbling at the start, then being forced out and having to check midway through the race. He showed some ability back in September when he finished second in a trial for the Ontario Sires Stakes Futurity. I expect to see some improvement today. #2 FASTAZEXPRESS faced a fairly tough Ontario Sired NW2 Allowance two weeks back, but was fractious in the gate and lost all chance when the rider lost his irons at the start. Her race on opening day wasn't too bad, and she has to improve off of that last start. #7 A LIKELY HERO took a few starts last year before he showed any ability, but he did end the season with a good second in an Ontario Sired Maiden. He posts a pretty solid work down in Michigan prepping for this start.
Race 4: 6-1-7
Race 4 is the start of the $.20 Pick 4. #6 THE FDD MAP really seems to outclass this field: his class rating is 14.2 points higher than the second highest in the field. He only won once in 2014, but he was first racing at Hialeah and then racing against horses like Country Boy Deluxe, Joltin Jess, First Down the Track, Piranhaaa, and What Ta Wear who all top horses. He's had two good works coming into this and should be able to win today. #1 JOHNNY GETTIN CASH has the best shot to upset The Fdd Map here. He makes his Ajax debut off of a win at Louisiana Downs. Renee Wilson takes over training duties. I still don't expect The Fdd Map to lose, but if something happens that screws his chances up, this gelding should be the one to inherit the win. #7 CHARTED BY DM makes his 2015 debut after an okay, albeit winless 2014. He also faced some very tough horses like Country Boy Deluxe, Jesskissmytexas and Reckless an Wild. If this field didn't include The Fdd Map, I would have to think this horse is the second choice behind Johnny Gettin Cash.
Pick 4 ticket: 6/6,8/ALL/1 $3.20 for $.20
Race 5: 6-8-5
#6 IMAFLYSMASHINGBABY exits a good second behind Deal A Fortune (Race 1 today) two weeks back with a speed figure of 65, strong for this group. He's not super consistent, but a good effort today will make him a big factor. #8 CC FIRE N ICE was an upset winner in a QROOI Ontario Sired Maiden Overnight Stakes on May 17. He was average as a two year old but based on his win he's likely improved significantly from two to three. #5 GEORGE IS DASHING won an Ontario Sires Stakes Futurity trial last year, but offered little in the final. He posted a good work prepping for his 2015 debut and could race well at a big price.
Race 6: 7-3-4
#7 MARTHAS JESS GOLD was a surprise winner two weeks back, but ended up being DQd to last for bothering a foe. If she stays straight and doesn't bother anyone today, she should be the best horse in this field. #3 TTT KELLYS COPPERTWO ended 2014 with a third behind Fearghas (Race 1 today) and Eyes That Tell, who was the winner of Marthas Jess Gold's last race by DQ. I suspect this filly could end up winning a couple of races this year, although I'm not sure today is the day. #4 CORONA STRAW exits the same race as Marthas Jess Gold, but was bothered at the start and couldn't get going. I certainly expect improvement off of that effort, and 8-1 is probably too high of a price on her. Use her in your exotics. The Late Pick 3 starts here.
Race 7: 1A-5-8
Today's feature is the $20,000 QROOI Overnight Series Fillies and Mares Open. Late Double wagering is offered here. #1A FIRST DOWN THE TRACK debuted in a trial for the Picov Maturity off of a great work; I thought she was a lock that day. However. she proved me wrong by rearing at the start, eliminating her chances. If she actually breaks today, she should be the best horse in this field. I'll give her a second chance. #5 VARSITY LACE dead-heated for third in the Picov Maturity last week, racing really well with a not so great trip. She's a horse who wouldn't need to improve very much to be a tough Stakes horse, and she's certainly worth a look here. #8 STORYTIME BLUE is realistically a nice Allowance/Starter Allowance/high Claiming horse, she's just not quite at Stakes level. On her best day. she is good enough to hit the board with mares like this, and I expect her to be higher than 4-1 at post time.
Race 8: 5-10-6
#5 SILK SHAKE raced in a Maiden on opening day, rallying to be third going 220. She gets an extra 80 yards to work wit today and is a 4 year old racing against mostly three year olds. At 15-1, I'll give her a chance. #10 BA LUCKY PENNY made her seasonal debut in a QROOI Ontario Sired Overnight Maiden Stakes, racing greenly but posting a good speed figure. She needs to keep straight today, but perhaps breaking from the outside and having a clear path will help her. #6 GRASSHOPPER FLATS finished a half length ahead of Ba Lucky Penny on May 17, finishing fourth after being forced inwards. He can certainly move forward in his second start off the bench.
Good luck to everyone playing today!