Top Horse Racing Picks for Wednesday, February 16, 2022

| February 15, 2022 10:56 am PDT

Penn National Race Course yielded some good underdog moneymakers, but Sam Houston Race Park and Tampa Bay Downs both had 8/1 sleepers for our Wednesday horseracing enjoyment—or should I say winjoyment?

Probably not. I apologize. It won’t happen again.

In any case, remember to check the full race-cards for all three tracks at our top online racebooks.

Good luck!

Wednesday Picks for Penn National Race Course

We’ll begin on the main track with race one, a one mile and 70 yards allowance race for fillies and mares four years ole and upward. I buying a win ticket on the third-favored (at 7/2) Queen Rosemary, ridden by veteran jockey Tyler Conner.

The standout in this six-horse field, this five-year-old mare moneyed ten of her 17 career starts, winning four. While she struggled to graduate the maiden class until last June, since then she’s established herself as a contender, evidenced by her three-win streak at Penn National during the last two months of 2021.

Mark V. Salvaggio trains Queen Rosemary for owners Tribe Dawg LLC and Thomas Kline.

Race two is a one mile and 70 yards allowance race for Pennsylvania-bred four-year-olds and upward. I’m going to agree with the morning line and bet the 7/5 favorite, Trending Up, with Maicol J. Inirio in the irons.

This four-year-old gelding finished nine of his 12 career starts in the money, winning three, which gives him a comfortable statistical lead in this six-horse field.

Thirty-year horseracing veteran Timothy C. Kreiser trains Trending Up for owner James C. Wolf.

Race seven is a six-furlong claiming race for three-year-olds that have never won two races. I’m backing the fourth-favored (at 4/1) Stormy Bonnie, with Tyler Conner aboard.

This gelding moneyed one of his four career starts with the win of his second maiden graduation attempt last August. He then went on to finish sixth in a field of nine in the Dover Stakes at Delaware Park in late August, and sixth out of nine in the Mark McDermott Stakes (Black Type) at Presque Isle Downs in September.

In this inexperienced field of six, that makes Stormy Bonnie the right horse for the job.

With more than four decades in the horse racing business, James L. Lawrence, II trains Stormy Bonnie for owner Matthew Schera.

My Wednesday Picks for Sam Houston Race Park

Let’s start on the turf course with race five, a one-mile claiming run for four-year-olds and upward. My money’s on the 8/1 sleeper in this 12-horse field: Pasamonte Man, piloted by Freddy Jose Manrrique.

This six-year-old gelding finished 18 of his 37 career starts in the money, winning ten.

Austin Gustafson trains Pasamonte Man for owner Christopher K. Harrington.

If Pasamonte Man doesn’t make it to the starting gate, there’s no shame in betting the 5/2 favorite, Hard Attack, with Jose L. Alvarez in the irons.

Trained by Paul Duhon for owner Mark Kassouff, this eight-year-old gelding moneyed 13 of his 26 career starts, winning five.

We switch to the dirt track for race six, a 1-1/16 mile allowance optional claiming race for four-year-olds. I’m betting my two dollars on the 5/2 morning-line favorite, Vangilder, with veteran jockey Richard E. Eramia aboard.

One of the younger horses in this nine-horse field, the six-year-old Vanglider finished in the money 13 of his 28 career starts, winning six, including his two most recent. Just prior to those two wins, he finished sixth in the 11-horse Butch Gleason Classic Stakes at Arapahoe Park.

I know—finishing mid-pack in an ungraded stakes race isn’t exactly indisputable proof of a horse’s talents, but in comparison to the rest of the current field, it does say Vanglider’s the right pick.

Ranked among the top 100 trainers for wins and earning every year since 2013, Robertino Diodoro trains Vanglider for owner Richard L. Davis.

Let’s move back to the turf for race seven, a 1-1/16 miles allowance race for fillies and mares four years old and upward.

If the fourth-favored also-eligible/MTO Seeing Double enters the starting gate, bet him and his jockey, Freddy Jose Manrrique, to win.

Trained by M. Brent Davidson for owner-breeder P & D Racing Stables, the five-year-old Seeing Double moneyed 13 of her 22 career starts, winning five—three of those in the past 12 months. Against this field, that makes her the standout choice.

if Seeing Double isn’t in the race, go with the favorite, Daddymademedoit, ridden by Stewart Elliott for owner-trainer Steven M. Asmussen.

The six-year-old Daddymademedoit finished ten of her 21 career starts in the money, winning three, including her most recent, a claiming race here at Sam Houston last month.

Wednesday’s Picks for Tampa Bay Downs

Let’s start on the turf course with race five, a 1-1/16 miles allowance optional claiming race for three-year-old fillies. I’m betting my two dollars on the 4/1 third-favored Finery, with Jesus Lopez Castanon aboard.

This filly won her single career start last month, finishing a length and a half ahead of her nearest competitor in a nine-horse race. Castanon was in the irons for that victory.

Preakness and Breeders’ Cup veteran Arnaud Delacour trains Finery for owner-breeder Catherine M. Wills.

We move back to the dirt track for race eight, a six-furlong allowance optional claiming race for fillies and mares four years old and upward. My money’s on the 8/1 sleeper Bellarific, ridden by veteran jockey Fernando De La Cruz.

This five-year-old mare finished in the money for six of her ten career starts, winning three—including her two most recent. And yes, De La Cruz was in the irons for both of those victories.

Sure, a couple of the horses in this race have a smattering of stakes-level experience—but those races were too long ago and their finishes in them too unimpressive to make us risk a wager here.

A four-decade veteran of horse racing, Anthony J. Granitz trains Bellarific for Tri County Stables.

We’re back on the turf course for race nine, a one-mile claiming run for fillies and mares four years old and upward that have never won three races. I’m backing one of the second-favored entries (there are two at 4/1 in this race)—Musetta, with Jesus Lopez Castanon in the irons.

This four-year-old filly finished seven of her 12 career starts in the money, winning two, which gives her the best overall statistics in this otherwise unimpressive 14-horse field.

Jose H. Delgado trains Musetta for Carole Star Stables.

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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).

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