July 24, 2024

Oaklawn Park Circles & Squares Analysis for April 30

OptixEQ Circles and Squares
OptixEQ Circles and Squares


This is a compact and competitive field of filly and mare sprinters with an interesting pace with all six sharing the EP RunStyle. This complexion can often create a “riders race” with the dynamics potentially more complex (Red PlotFit) than it appears on the Plot.

Looking at the Plot, #3 JOYFUL CADENCE could hold a pace edge based on the Quad I Square position. While capable and even with that advantage, form cycle could come into play. She recorded a season “top” figure, the 96 OptixFIG, on March 20. She has shown some regression off a similar top number in the past and that should be factored into the handicapping process and fair odds. Similar regression could also be in play for #1 SOUTHERN GRAYCE as she wheels back just two weeks following her season top 95 OptixFIG.

#6 PERFECT HAPPINESS is capable of sitting a favorable trip tracking behind rivals Southern Grayce and Joyful Cadence as shown on the Plot. Form could be of some concern as she will return from the NO_FINISH on March 20. Perfect Happiness must rebound with a top effort to win today, though therecould be a positive sign with the recent “bullet” workouts following the barn change as she makes her first start off the claim for Chris Hartman.

Trip could also favor #2 JOY’S ROCKET, one that has been holding her OptixFIG this season and making her third start of this form cycle. She is one that tends to need a favorable scenario to win and will have a rider change once again with Isaac Castillo taking over looking to find her that ideal trip.  

Both #4 HEADLAND (Quad III) and #5 SOMEONE SAID SO (Quad IV) prefer to race on or near the lead as shown with the EP RunStyle. They are highlighted in “Red” on OptixRPM as their RunStyle and Plot position are a mismatch.


#7 SPEED BIAS was a little green making his debut here April 2. In that race, he struggled to find his stride (NO_HANDLE) early on, though he made up ground (CLOSE) and continued to GALLOP+ out past the wire. That experience along with the added ground should assist him here in this second start. His B- OptixGRADE for that overall effort combined with the 85 OptixFIG puts him right in line with today’s race par (OFR) and against the others in this field as shown in the Past 3 Runlines.


Steve Asmussen has a strong hand in this race with the pair of #5 COGBURN and #3 CAIRAMA. The “Snowflake” Contention could benefit Cogburn as the lone runner in Quad I and create a pace advantage. He has benefited from that pace advantage as shown in the Past 3 Runlines with the favorable front end, uncontested trips.

The intent to run in this race was likely in play for Cogburn following his March 25 allowance win and given the 36-day gap on the calendar. The intention to run in this race might not have been the plan for Cairama as he will wheel right back for this stakes race in just two weeks. Cairama had upside from his races this season in the Derby Trail series and showed his class (B+ OptixGRADE) with the allowance win on April 10. Some positive intent could be in play off that strong effort to suggest Cairama came out of the race well and the connections see fit to run him here.