When you sign-up through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more >
Odds for the race taken from TVG. If you’re looking for a great horse racing betting app then TVG betting might be the option for you.
|R Santana Jr
|R A Vasquez
|RATED R SUPERSTAR
$5 Exacta Box – Plainsman, Promise Keeper and Lone Rock = $30
$5 Exacta Box – Plainsman, Promise Keeper and Silver Prospector = $30
If you’re playing only to win, go with my top pick Plainsman (7/2)
Known for his success going long, Lone Rock shortens up to 1 1/16 miles when he headlines a field of nine older males set for the $600,000 Razorback Handicap on Saturday at Oaklawn Park.
A winner of 7-of-9 starts last year, the 7-year-old Majestic Warrior gelding will use the test as a possible and lucrative prep for the riches of the Dubai World Cup next out, if all goes well on Saturday. Most recently, the Robertino Diodoro-trained veteran won the 9 furlong Tinsel Stakes at Oaklawn Park in his shortest race in some time.
Chief among his competition will be another 7-year-old, Plainsman. Trained by Brad Cox, he was an impressive winner of the Grade 3 Ack Ack Stakes at Churchill Downs in the fall. Most recently, the son of Flatter finished third in his last two starts in New York, including the Grade 1 Cigar Mile last time.
Another who should get plenty of support in the Grade 3 feature at Oaklawn Park, is the Toodd Pletcher-trained Promise Keeper. A promising 3-year-old last year, he has been away from the race for nearly eight months. Beaten just one length in the Grade 3 Ohio Derby when last seen, he earned his first stakes victory in the Grade 3 Peter Pan in the start before that.
After a sensational season last year which saw him win stakes races at five different tracks, his connections want to see if he can transition from a marathon specialist into a true threat for the Breeders’ Cup Classic. In his first attempt in cutting down in distance, he turned in a solid effort to beat his stablemate Thomas Shelby in the 9 furlong Tinsel Stakes. Now he cuts back another half-furlong and faces a much deeper cast on Saturday. Off his 2021 form, it would be easy to call him the horse to beat, but the distance is still a concern. Can he beat this quality of horses at 8 ½ furlongs? He is a big threat to do so, but will not be my top choice.
Like the morning line favorite, this one enjoyed his best season yet at the age of 6. Unlike Lone Rock, though, he is right at home at the 1 1/16-mile distance. A winner of an allowance race last time he ran at Oaklawn Park, he soon parlayed that victory into three stakes wins, and just missed a fourth. A similar performance to the one he turned in to win the Grade 3 Ack Ack three starts back is likely enough to win this. Coming in off a very solid third-place finish in the Grade 1 Cigar Mile, he looks like the horse to beat in here. He is the top pick.
Despite not having raced in nearly eight months, I do expect this son of Constitution to come back running on Saturday. There is no trainer in the game better than Todd Pletcher at having his horses ready off a layoff. The Hall of Fame trainer is also red-hot right now. This one showed plenty of promise last year, winning a powerful allowance race at Keeneland, before taking the Grade 3 Peter Pan at Belmont Park. This is no easy spot for his return, but working well for his return, and with good tactical speed, I think he can be a very good 4-year-old. If I’m right, he becomes a huge threat on Saturday.
Oaklawn Park was the site of his biggest career win, when he strongly won the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby last spring. As we now know, it wasn’t a strong field that afternoon, but still this son of Dialed In proved to be a good horse. After finishing way back in the Kentucky Derby, he did come back to win two more stakes races last year, and seems to have found his niche in races a cut below the best. Last time, I thought that he didn’t get the preferred trip of the winner when second in the Poinsettia. He can improve upon that effort and be in with a shot in the stretch of the Razorback.
At 9-years-old this old pro is showing no signs of slowing down with two-stakes wins in his last three starts. Last time was the time to get him when he rolled home late to win the Fifth Season at odds of 25-1. Very familiar with the track, he has finished first or second in 9-of-19 career starts at the Hot Springs oval. He is an obvious threat once again, but the main reason I will not be betting him in the Razorback is that he seems to have trouble stringing two big performances in a row. Still, that late kick of his scares me.
Trained by Dallas Stewart, this son of Malibu Moon broke through with his first career stakes win when he defeated Super Stock down the stretch of the Poinsettia Stakes. It was a nice performance and perhaps one that he can build off of, but I do wonder if that was a ceiling kind of win for the 4-year-old. This field has much more quality depth than the last one and he wasn’t able to do much last year in graded stakes at Oaklawn Park. Like every horse in the field, he cannot be thrown out, but I am siding with others on Saturday.
This hard-knocking son of Curlin finished in the money in 11-of-12 starts last year, including 7 victories. Most came against lesser, but in the last two, he proved that he belonged with stakes quality horses by finishing second to Lone Rock in the Tinsel and then third behind Rated R Superstar in the Fifth Season, and was competitive in both. He’s got good speed to be involved early, but this will certainly be the toughest field yet for the 6-year-old. He will not be one of my top picks, but it would come as no surprise if he once again proved a stubborn horse to pass in the stretch of the Razorback.
A last-out winner of the Jeffrey A. Hawk Memorial Stakes at Remington Park, this will be the first start in three months for the 8-year-old gelding. Well-traveled and very experienced, the California-bred enjoyed a solid season last year with four wins, two seconds and two thirds in 11 starts. Most of that came against cheaper, but he did defeat Rated R Superstar a few starts back. He’s a nice horse, who knows his way to the winner’s circle, but he has never before won anything like this. I can’t completely throw him out, but I do like others better.
The second from the Asmussen barn, this one will need to improve upon his recent fifth-place finish in the Fifth Season to have any chance against this deep field. There is some reason to believe he can do just that. Beaten 5 ½ lengths while wide on both turns, it was his first start in eight months. Looking back at their previous form at Oaklawn Park, he has a nice win in the Grade 3 Southwest Stakes two years ago, as well as a second-place finish in this race last year. Off recent form, he deserves to be a long shot, but this might be the spot where he turns in a much-improved effort.
|Razorback Handicap Race Information
|Razorback Handicap (Grade 3)
|Saturday, February 12 — 5:56 pm Eastern time
|How to Watch
Taken to the races at a very young age, Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Professionally, his work has been published on several leading industry sites. Brian served as the Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, where he still writes a regular column and hosts the popular weekly webcast HorseCenter.
Email: [email protected]
© Rebel Penguin ApS 2024 (a subsidiary of Gaming Innovation Group Inc.)
We support responsible gambling. 21+ Only. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-Gambler.
WSN.com is run by iGaming Cloud Inc (a Gaming Innovation Group Subsidiary) and is registered with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) under affiliate vendor ID 89744, with the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) under certificate of registration number SWR-000148, approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board as a gaming service provider, under certificate registration number 117656-1, possesses a Vendor Minor sports betting license from the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (account number 94414163), granted a vendor registration number VR007603-20-001 by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, an interim Sports Wagering Supplier license, under license number SWS 066, issued by the West Virginia Lottery Commission, a sports betting vendor registration, under registration number #100400, issued by the Director of Gaming Licensing and Investigations of the Virginia Lottery to operate in the State of Virginia, and a Vendor Registration issued by the Sports Wagering Committee of the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation.
Advertising disclosure: WSN contains links to online retailers on its website. When people click on our affiliate links and make purchases, WSN earns a commission from our partners, including ESPN and various sportsbooks.