January 28, 2023

Oaklawn Park Circles & Squares Analysis for April 15

OptixEQ Circles and Squares
OptixEQ Circles and Squares

RACE 4:

Looking at OptixPLOT, #1 SALADO sitting in Quad I above the Par Line could hold a massive pace advantage and look like a gift at the 5-2 morning line. Looking at his Past 3 Runlines and the “Red” NO_FINISH Keywords create some overall reservations even with the favorable Plot position. The “Yellow” PlotFit is also noted in this case and examines #8 MOUNT ATHOS as the other E horse on the OptixRPM. He is coded in “Red” on the OptixRPM, the RunStyleMatch as E types are generally in Quad I and Mount Athos is positioned in Quad II. That could change here as Mount Athos will make his first start back in 237 days. The four-year-old’s two sprint races were run early in his sophomore season and Mount Athos raced on the lead or up close to VF (Very Fast) early half-mile (O4S) race shapes at a higher allowance condition for his age group at the time. That suggests he could be closer to the pace today and applying pace pressure to Salado and taking away a potential pace advantage and opening up another NO_FINISH scenario for the favorite.

Should that battle up front take place and Salado lacks a finish as a result, the EP RunStyle, #2 BIG BOSS BEN could fall into a tracking position as a Standard Square in Quad I. This will be his first start off the claim and back at the N2L claiming condition he was picked up at back on Feb. 27 by trainer Joe Sharp. Big Boss Ben was favored in that race, though he was a vulnerable favorite in that spot returning in just 16 days off a HARD Keyword, a taxing effort with the place finish on Feb. 11. The rest time should benefit Big Boss Ben in today’s race and he holds the class (GRADES) to compete at this level going back to the races from last season along with form and speed (OptixFIG) in today’s OptixFIGRANGE (OFR) to compete at today’s condition.

#9 WINDCRACKER also figures to benefit from that potential pace battle from his Large tracking Square Standard position. As far as form he has run consistently this season, lacking any knocks (Red Keywords/Grades) in the Past 3 Runlines, but he has been on the lower end of a winning effort for the level with the C+ and B- OptixGRADES under similar class conditions. #3 AMONGST FRIENDS falls into a similar trip as Windcracker on Surface/Distance and similar class concerns with the C OptixGRADE under similar conditions on March 18. The distance change of today’s race is positive and reflected with that shift on the Plot cutting back to a sprint from that recent route race.

Even with the projection of Mount Athos shifting to Quad I, and including the softer OptixFIG runners, #5 VODKA N WATER and #7 RIDGEPOINTE trying to get involved early on, the lower Contention and SpeedRate could present a challenge on the win end for #4 HANKS and #6 OTTOMAN EMPIRE in Quad IV. Trip and pace becomes a concern as does value for that duo in this scenario as they are assigned the second and third choice role on the morning line.

RACE 7:

The race brings another “Yellow” PlotFit; a visual that at least on first glance has a more chaotic look than the Plot for Race 4. This is an interesting dynamic with seven of the nine runners in this field sharing the E or EP RunStyle making up the “Fire” Contention; however, there is still a lower SpeedRate that could favor a Quad I runner. That lower 12 SpeedRate is also shown visually with all except #2 NAME REJECTED positioned below the ParLine. That dynamic could upgrade Name Rejected in this scenario as he looks to rebound for the connections returning to the claiming level from the recent higher level allowance events, those races with a 100-92 OFR, and back to a reasonable condition for his abilities.

#6 BIG THORN, the lone P RunStyle, will find a lateral class change returning in what figures to be a positive change in distance back to a sprint. That change suggests an upgrade and is shown accordingly on the Plot, something that is tougher to see when just looking at his running lines alone. As far as speed/OptixFIG, others have recorded higher numbers this season; however, Big Thorn is the only runner in this group that has consistently run OptixFIG in RANGE shown highlighted in the Past 3 Runlines.

#8 SITTIN ON GO is not assigned a RunStyle in the OptixRPM as his form has shifted returning this season. That current form and pattern of slow starts (SLOG) suggest he will be running from off the pace as shown on the Plot in Quad IV. The “Fire” Contention could assist him in terms of trip and Sittin On Go does hold finishing ability (Square) as well as current OptixFIG in Range. His current form as well as that Closer-type trip are factors that should be assessed critically, with fair odds required in this case.