Emily Gullikson analyzes the Oaklawn Park April 11 card and provides her OptixEQ analysis.
#6 JOY IN THE JOURNEY looks well-placed this afternoon back at the claiming condition as she makes her second start off the claim for these connections and trainer Randy Matthews. She is cycling forward with each start coming back from the 197-day layoff with improving OptixFIG as shown in the Past 3 Runlines. A pace advantage also could be in play here based in her position on OptixPLOT in Quad I, a position that could have her the horse to catch on the front end. #5 PROUD VICTORIA presents value over likely race favorite #4 MANY SWEET TREATS and as shown on OptixPLOT, there is not much between the pair as they look to take that first run the pacesetters. Proud Victoria also deserves a strong look as she is moving forward in her form cycle well-placed as well in this spot with the changes. This will be her third start of the form cycle as well and first start at the claiming condition. This type of drop can often be seen as a negative though in this case, is what she needs at this point to compete designated by the DROP Projection from the TROUBLE trip on March 12th.
#8 GRAVITRON is very logical as a favorite in this spot as she makes her second start off the claim for Ortiz and back in with maiden claiming company. That class edge can be seen on OptixPLOT based on her Plot position as a Square in Quad I above the Par Line.
Not quite as “obvious” though hold some upside off their races this season, #1 FOREVER HOME and #3 KOWGIRL KIRBY, capable to step forward and show more than their current position on the Plot. Forever Home, has improved her OptixFIG with each start and shows some positive intent today with the blinker addition and rider change with Arrieta taking over. Kowgirl Kirby was given a look off her February 27th debut when showing run in spot and projecting a move forward off that initial experience. While she did not have any real “excuse,” the trip from the rail was subtle and in terms of race shape was even as the top two finishers set the pace and maintained that order to the wire.
#5 WRAPPER RULE is deserving of a mention here as she was disqualified on a controversial call in my opinion. Speed figure wise, her OptixFIG from the Fair Grounds races this season (shown in the Past 3 Runlines) fit in RANGE for this race. The timing and the effort with that HARD Keyword designation has to be considered as she wheels right back in this event with only that 14-day rest.