Rainbow 6 Leads to Gold
By John DeSantis
Legend has it that a pot of gold can be found at the end of each rainbow.
Really? Because I’ve looked and haven’t found one. Maybe I’m searching in the wrong places. How does one actually know where a rainbow begins and where it ends?
Well, whoever coined the whole pot-of-gold concept probably wasn’t thinking about Gulfstream Park’s 10-cent Rainbow 6 wager. Nevertheless, a pot of gold is waiting for those who successfully negotiate a six-race journey through the conclusion of Friday’s giant carryover—expected to start in the $2 million range.
If opinions are like noses in that everyone has one, that also must be true of Rainbow 6 tickets because even horseplayers who’ve never tried the wager will take a shot at this pot.
Because they must.
Friday is closing day at Gulfstream Park, ending a fantastic 90-day meeting. And since no one will be home in Hallandale until July, the entire pool must be dispersed to holders of winning tickets. Estimates of how large the final pool might be range from $5 to $8 million. That’s just too much moolah to ignore, and everyone knows this rainbow begins with Friday's eighth and ends with the 13th and final race of the winter meet.
In the interest of aiding horseplayers in the quest to reach the end of the 10-cent Rainbow 6 alive, here’s one man’s opinion of the races:
Rainbow Six Analysis
Maiden 3-year-old fillies face the starter in this opening stanza. Like all of the races in the sequence, at least 12 runners are entered to run. They’re not making this easy on anyone. Thank heaven tickets come in 10-cent multiples. At 10-cents-a-throw players can cover plenty of combinations.
- Sweet N Discreet – is trained by Todd Pletcher and hasn’t been out since July when a well-beaten second. Pletcher long ago this meeting locked up his 10th consecutive Gulfstream training title. In Todd We Trust!
- Carnival Court is a first-time starter from the strong Kiaran McLaughlin stable. She boasts several quick half-mile works and a solid five-eighths in a minute at Palm Meadows. The trainer wins at 15% first out and sire Street Sense runners score at 9% in debuts.
- Fame and Fortune hails from the Chad Brown outfit and, while the trainer is not known for popping at first asking (7%) he wins too often to be ignored. This filly has been working at Palm Meadows and has a few quick half-miles.
- Velvet La Sha is a first-timer from a low-profile barn with some quick works at Gulfstream and a five-pound apprentice allowance. We’re guessing she’s got some speed.
Here’s one of those maiden $35,000 races for 3-year-olds and upward at one mile on the turf that have made grown men weep this season at Gulfstream. Class droppers, distance, surface and equipment changes, and general racing luck play havoc with handicappers in these events on a regular basis.
- King Khalifa had a troubled trip first out at this level, but kept trying. He returned for $50,000 and showed good speed on the main track. Back to the turf today for trainer Ralph Nicks (26% this meeting) this one seems on his game.
- Third Martini dropped out of the maiden allowance level to be second here for this tag last out. He hadn’t been out since July, so he might have needed the race. Leading rider Javier Castellano takes over for trainer Linda Rice, who’s had a slow meeting by her standards with just two wins in 28 starts.
- Macho Spaces is a bit of a reach for a low-profile barn. He has some good dirt sprints, but hasn’t taken to the green stuff yet. A drop in class helps.
- Withalottalove makes his first start for new trainer Marcus Vitali—a guy who’s good with runners coming from other barns. This one drops in class and gets a weight break with jockey Hugo Sanchez. This New York-bred hasn’t stepped up yet, but the trainer change, drop and first-time turf could wake him up at a price. This one’s a reach, for sure.
This $6,250 claimer at seven furlongs might have you scratching your head. You are not alone. We dug a bald spot on our noggin’ while sorting it out.
- Morality hails from the win-crazy Peter Walder (30% this meet) outfit. He’s got the leading rider up and together the pair makes sweeter music than Lennon and McCartney. Morality has enough speed to be close up and seven furlongs won’t matter if he’s on his game. He dropped to this level last out and failed as the odds-on favorite under second-leading rider Joel Rosario. You can’t live without this one, but there are some question marks.
- Jordan’s Image was claimed back by low-profile trainer Angel Quiroz last out for this price. Quiroz got him to win at this level and distance the time before that. He appears to be tailing off, but he likes Gulfstream (3-10) and is 5-25 overall. Probably need to use this one.
- Monroe Court won recently at this level and distance, is 5-14 overall and 2-4 at Gulfstream. In short, he fits. Can he repeat that strong effort right back? Guess you’d better keep him around in case he does.
From here on there are a variety of ways to go with pros and cons for several other runners. For example:
- Positive Action was third to Monroe Court last out after racing wide, but he’s just 1-11 at Gulfstream and 1-19 at the distance. His trainer has started just eight runners at the current meet and only nine all last year.
- Running Wildcat hails from the Marcus Vitali stable and was bumped at the start in his last race—a five and one-half furlong sprint. Before that he was competitive going a mile and has two thirds at this distance in two tries. He’s just 1-9 at Gulfstream and 4-25 lifetime.
This test for 3-year-old maiden allowance runners at six furlongs seems harmless on the surface, but we know better.
- Fogonazo was off slowly in his debut here sprinting at nearly 20-1 and finished fourth. The race’s figure came back strong and trainer Wes Ward is potent with second-time out starters (23%). The meets leading money-winning jockey John Velazquez takes over. A repeat of that last race would be difficult to beat.
- Trinni Heart is a reach, but he has dangerous speed. He ran with impressive winner Zaikov (Pletcher) last out and ultimately was whipped by a pole. If there’s no one like Zaikov in here (and we doubt that there is) he will be around on the lead for a while. He also has apprentice Hugo Sanchez in his corner and that five-pound weight allowance.
- Best Man makes his second career start for trainer Allen Iwinski. First out was a heartbreaker as he just missed at nearly 15-1 going five furlongs on the turf. Improvement second-time out will find him in the thick of things.
- Silver Lining John is a first-time starter from the powerful Todd Pletcher stable. He’s got a bullet (best of 36) half-mile from the gate at Palm Meadows on his resume. You don’t want leave him off your ticket because you would feel very badly if the meet’s leading trainer was the one to knock you out of the Rainbow Six.
Races like this non-winners of two at a mile and one-sixteenth on the grass are why the racing gods created the ‘All’ button. There are so many different ways to go it makes your head spin and your ticket tab grow like a weed. Don’t be shy. Use as many of these as you can.
- Diez is interesting. He will make his second start for trainer Marty Wolfson and that’s a good thing. Marty’s had a strong meeting (23%) and he lures top jock Castellano to ride. This one had serious trouble last out and could be much better than that race indicates. His previous form is not impressive, but that pre-Marty. Note a bullet blowout at Calder since the last race.
- Coexist makes his first start since October at Belmont. He has races in his running lines that are good enough to win this. Is he ready to do his best for trainer John Kimmel? We have no idea, but if so his best is good enough.
- Crafty Union faced 3-y-o stakes foes on turf last season at Monmouth. He seems to lack a finishing kick and hasn’t been out since September. Still, he has speed, is inside and should get a ground-saving journey. He’s not out of it. Trainer Dennis Manning didn’t win a race last year (0-9) and hasn’t had a horse hit the board at the current meeting in seven starts.
- Film Making is a 5-year-old still in this condition (1-19). Usually that’s not a positive. Trainer James Baker has just one win from 33 starts this meet and he was 0-26 last year. Not good. However, this one has been close recently—third in his last three out of four races. Oh, and he did help to fill the Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap against Point of Entry and Animal Kingdom in his next-to-last start.
Note: Runners drawn to the outside in these mile and one-sixteenth turf routes at Gulfstream are at a distinct disadvantage as far as winning is concerned. They can do it…but they’re up against it.
The Rainbow Six and the entire Gulfstream meeting comes to a close with a wide-open maiden $35,000 claiming turf test for 3-year-old fillies. All meeting long these card-closing finales have been challenging events for handicappers. Why should the final day be any different?
If you reach the Rainbow Six finale still alive, great! Good luck in the last leg. If you win don’t forget who helped you get the candy. On the way out tip your waiters, waitresses and touts.
On the other hand, if your Rainbow 6 ticket happens to be as dead as Julius Caesar, don’t blame us. What did you expect for free?
- Nora’s Song is as likely a winner as there is on this card. She finished second first-time out at this distance and level. She’s ridden by the meet’s top jock, Javier Castellano, and is trained by Brian Lynch, who’s had a solid meeting. She has enough speed to be close early and out of the mayhem that usually develops mid-pack in these races. Her post position is fine and her competition is not overwhelming. Go ahead and show some courage and single her on your ticket.
On second thought…do you really want to go into the last race with just one live horse based on the advice of some handicapper? If you don’t single Nora’s Song you might consider the following:
- Sweet Gator Girl drops in class for this and has some good races, but they came a while ago.
- How Cheeky dropped to this level, was a lukewarm favorite and had early trouble. Blinks go on for new trainer Kelly Breen.
- Bahia de Oro is 0-10 but didn’t run too badly in last two. Gets five pounds off with apprentice Hugo Sanchez.
- Gran Sabana gets five pounds off for this and was competitive with better at one time.
That’s all I got. Good luck in the 10-cent Rainbow 6.
Hopefully, we’ll all take handfuls of gold from that pot at the end of the rainbow.