Best Horse Racing Bets for Thursday, May 6, 2021

| May 6, 2021 2:05 am PDT

Maybe it’s that Spring is in the air, or maybe it’s just co-inky-dink, but I’m finding deep underdogs at all the tracks I’m assessing this week.

Take the three I selected for Thursday’s picks; Belmont Park, Churchill Downs, and Thistledown Racino, where I found third and fourth-favored prospects. Can you say cha-CHING? I knew that you could.

Good luck!

My Thursday Picks at Belmont Park

My money is on one of the third-favored entries (two at 7/2) in race three: Our Man Mike. Veteran jockey John Velazquez will be aboard for this one-and-one-eighth mile main track race for New York-foaled three-year-olds.

The colt moneyed four of his five career starts. Interestingly, he placed second in two Black Type stakes races at Finger Lakes—the Aspirant Stakes and the New York Breeders’ Futurity Stakes—before breaking his maiden at Aqueduct in March.

Trainer for Our Man Mike is native Texan Horacio DePaz, who trained exclusively for Sagamore Farm for many years before branching out on his own.

For race seven, I’m going to take the morning line’s advice and buy a win ticket on the 8/5 favorite, Baby Boss, ridden by Manny Franco for this six-and-one-half furlong main-track race for fillies and mares.

This six-year-old moneyed 14 of her 25 career starts, winning six. She and her closest competitor in this race (Midtown Rose at 3/1) each have six stakes races on their records, but Baby Boss moneyed in three of those, while Midtown Rose finished in the money only once.

Rob Atras was an assistant to top-ranked trainer Robertino Diodoro until 2019, when he was asked to take over the training of a few of Diodoro’s horses. Since then, Atras’ earnings have surpassed $1.5 million every year.

Race eight is a six-furlong turf run for New York-foaled fillies and mares, and I believe the winner will be one of the fourth-favored entries (there are two at 6/1) in this race: The Important One, ridden by Jose L. Ortiz.

The Important One graduated on her first maiden run (despite an early stumble) in January 2020 at Aqueduct. She later took third in the New York Stallion Series Stakes (Black Type) at Belmont Park last September at Saratoga.

For the record, the Steve Asmussen-trained four-year-old filly moneyed four of her six career starts, winning two.

Thursday’s Picks for Churchill Downs

In race three – a five-furlong turf race for three-year-olds and up – I see the morning line’s turf choice, Searing Chase, in the winner’s circle. That is, as long as the race stays on turf. If the run switches to the main track, I have to change my recommendation and tout the 2/1 MTO favorite, Stage Left.

Sticking with the turf for the moment, Searing Chase – ridden in this race by Tyler Gaffalione – has moneyed two of his four career starts, winning one. Trainer Paulo Lobo won last year’s Shadwell Turf Mile Stakes (Grade I) with another of his horses, Ivar.

But if the race moves to the main track, then bet Stage Left, with Robby Albarado aboard to win. Under training with veteran Wesley A. Ward, Stage Left finished in the money for eight of his 14 career starts, winning four.

Race six is a one-mile turf run for three-year-old fillies, and as long as Cecile’s Chapter – the morning line’s 2/1 favorite – is in the race, bet her to win. Ridden by Tyler Gaffalione for this race, the Michael J. Maker-trained filly moneyed two of her four career starts, winning both.

If the race switches to the main track, but Cecile’s Chapter is not in the starting gate, then consider throwing your win bet behind the 5/2 also-eligible/MTO Hypernova, with James Graham in the irons.

Cecile’s Chapter moneyed four of her five career starts, winning both.

She is under training to veteran Thomas M. Amoss, who was among the top 25 trainers in both earnings and wins in 2020.

Race eight is another turf run, this time a one-and-one-eighth-mile competition for three-year-olds. My pick for this race is the fourth-favored (at 6/1) Oceans Map, with Florent Geroux in the irons.

Owned by and under training to Greg Sacco, Oceans Map finished in the money for seven of his 13 starts, winning three. This puts him at the head of the line in this field. Good recent workouts on turf and solid speed figures round out the list of good reasons to bet on Oceans Map for the win.

Thursday Picks for Thistledown Racino

I’m going with the third-favored entry (at 7/2) in race six: Latin Spice, with Yarmarie Correa aboard. In this five-and-one-half furlong race for three-year-olds, Latin Spice stands out with a solid record of eight money finishes in ten career starts, three of which were wins.

Latin Spice is under training to Jason DaCosta, son of longtime thoroughbred trainer Wayne DaCosta.

For race seven – a six-furlong main track run for three-year-olds and up – I agree with the morning line. I’m betting on the 9/5 favorite, Wicked Warrior. Veteran jockey Ricardo Feliciano is in the irons for this run. No surprise there, since Feliciano has been aboard for all of Wicked Warrior’s previous starts.

And they’ve had a good run so far. The pair finished in the money ten times out of eleven starts, winning five. Incidentally, Ricardo’s uncle, Miguel Feliciano, is the trainer for Wicked Warrior.

Race eight is a six-furlong main track run for Ohio-foaled three-year-olds and up, and I’m sticking with the 5/2 morning line favorite, Nick Can Fix. Ricardo Feliciano will be aboard for this run.

While the tight odds between the top four competitors make this look like a very tight race indeed, I don’t think it will be.

Nick Can Fix is leagues ahead of the others in terms of his record: 20 money finishes in 24 starts, 11 of those wins.

In comparison, the second-favored (at 3/1) Classic Mo moneyed 22 of his 39 starts and won 14.

While Luis Rivera has been aboard Nick Can Fix for his most recent runs, trainer Shane Meyers tapped Ricardo Feliciano to ride in this race.

J.W. Paine
J.W. Paine

J.W. Paine is one of the most experienced writers at He's written for television and the printed media, and is a published novelist (as Tom Elliott).

Paine loves writing about Las Vegas nearly as much he loves living here. An experienced gambler, he's especially familiar with thoroughbred horseracing, poker, blackjack, and slots.

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