Del Mar Picks: Opening Day's a beach on July 22

It's time ... The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club once again hosts a summer meet that you cannot miss. With picture perfect weather, it will make for some excellent betting opportunities. Welcome to Opening Day!
It's time ... The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club once again hosts a summer meet that you cannot miss. With picture perfect weather, it will make for some excellent betting opportunities. Welcome to Opening Day!

Del Mar Opening Day Picks: Friday, July 22, 2022

  • Race 1: 7-10-2-4
  • Race 2: 2-4-10-8
  • Race 3: 2-7-4-1
  • Race 4: 6-1-8-7
  • Race 5: 4-6-9-5
  • Race 6: 4-2-7-9
  • Race 7: 9-10-2-11
  • Race 8: 13-1-14-6
  • Race 9: 6-12-10-9
  • Race 10: 9-2-11-8
  • Most Likely Winner: Recall And Reload #6 (Race 9)
  • Best Value: Heaven Street #13 (Race 8)

The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club is ready for another summer by the surf … and we know precisely what to expect on the nearby turf. Situated near Solana Beach, California, the Del Mar Meet brings together the very best of SoCal racing. With picks and analysis through Labor Day, it should be a rousing good time ... Some of the highlights include the San Diego Handicap and the forthcoming TVG Pacific Classic. Stay tuned … it is going to be another fabulous time at Del Mar!

At we have you covered, including all of the action! It is a good time for some of the best that North American racing has to offer. Stay tuned! If you're looking for picks elsewhere around the country this Friday be sure to check out our free Horse Racing Picks via the gold button below. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter ... Horseracing_USA !!!

Horse Racing Picks

Late Pick 4 … Races 7-10

Race 7: Dirt, 6F, MSW80k, F&M 3+

The first Late Pick 4 sequence of the DMR Meet is ready to exit the gate. A sprint on the Main Track, it is interesting that all 11 of these runners are 3-yr-old fillies despite the condition. Richard Mandella’s Infinite Empire #2 will probably end up taking significant money not only because she is well-bred by Empire Maker, but also since MyRacehorse is involved. Those folks like to do some wagering on their runners, and that always drives down the price. JJ Hernandez had a strong ’21, and should do so again … he gets the call. After rewatching her debut at Del Mar last year (only race to-date), there is promise … but the layoff is a concern. I will use her, but when it comes to a top selection, I am intrigued by Mike Puype’s Too Bossy #9. After a pair of MSW Co. races, she comes to Del Mar with some excellent early foot. Little Red Feather makes some excellent investments, and this filly by Street Boss is a true sprinter. When you have young and inexperienced runners, it helps to back ones in shorter races that are drawn towards the outside. This is a particular angle that works well in spots like this one. That’s why I also want to include Mark Glatt’s Keychain Girl #10 and Simon Callaghan’s Belle Cherie #11. Both of these fillies have 3 races under their saddle already. Let’s go 4 Deep … moving right along …

Leg 1: 2/9/10/11 (4-Deep)

Wagering Recommendation: $25/$50 WP #9


Race 8: Turf, 1 Mile, Oceanside S. $100k, 3

Probably the toughest race to handicap across the country is this standard on the Del Mar Opening Day calendar. The Oceanside always sports a large field, and when it comes to prices … they are copious. With a capacity field of 14 ready, you can go in a number of directions. It is probably a distinct possibility that Doug O’Neill’s entry, Mackinnon #1 will serve as the race time favorite. That is probably deserved, especially considering the duel he had with Bob Baffert’s Blackadder in the El Camino Real Derby $100k back in February. The son of American Pharoah was nipped at the wire … losing the race by only a neck. He has not been seen since, but O’Neill planned all along to target this race. Ridden by JJ Hernandez, it is hard to leave him off of any ticket. His Del Mar turf record is impressive, famously ending up 3rd … ur … 2nd … in the BC Juvenile Turf (G1) last November. Based on my budget, I have a couple of other squares open, so it is time to daub … I am interested in just how Brendan Walsh’s Heaven Street #13 will ship out to SoCal. This is a former Christophe Clement trainee that won the salty Columbia S. $75 back at Tampa in March. The son of Street Sense has taken on some tough company, and he could be a fabulous price when it comes time to load. Drayden Van Dyke has not had the best time of it over the last few years, but now, it is time to start anew. Speaking of jockeys, I also want to see how Florent Geroux handles the switch to Del Mar. He is shifting his tack from Kentucky, and will be competing at the Meet all summer long. Sydney Street #14 is a UK import that makes his U.S. debut for John Sadler. Geroux is crafty and always a threat on the grass. Let’s use him too, just-in-case O’Neill’s ace doesn’t make the grade. Here is the plan …

Leg 2: 1/13/14 (3-Deep)

Wagering Recommendation: $2 Trifecta Box, 1/13/14


Race 9: Dirt, 6½F, OC40kn1x, 3+

We all know that Bob Baffert has a long history when it comes to hegemony in SoCal, and he is back after serving that 90-day suspension. With an uncoupled entry in this race, going 6½ on the Main Track, I am sure that either Recall and Reload #6 or Murray #12 will end up the favorite. Between these colts, I much prefer the former. A 3-yr-old by Tapizar, this speedster made his debut at Santa Anita under the tutelage of Sean McCarthy. That win was quite impressive, despite being challenged near the top of the lane. Abel Cedillo takes over for Flavien Prat, who departed to NYRA. He will be handling many of Baffert runners. With that early speed, and coupled with Del Mar’s longer stretch, he could be ready to romp once again. For those reasons, I am inclined to “Single,” saving my spots for what is shaping up to be a tough finale.

Leg 3: 6 (Single)

Wagering Recommendation: $2 Exacta Cold, 6/12


Race 10: Turf, 1 Mile, MSW80k, 3+

Turning back to the Del Mar Jimmy Durante Turf Course, it is going to be a 2-turn extravaganza for these 12 male runners. With a pair of AEs on the form too, it is going to be wild and wooly by the time this one goes off. The tote will be very interesting to watch. Looking at who has the best shot to be the favorite, I am sure Mike McCarthy’s Admiralty Place #11 is as good a candidate as any. The gelding by Territories (IRE) has some strong Irish connections after running at such celebrated “green” courses as The Curragh (IRE) and Naas (IRE). He comes to SoCal with much promise, but is quite untested. I am not sure how he will respond, even with Juan Hernandez at the controls. A glance elsewhere makes me much more confident in the exploits of John Shirreffs’ son of Uncle Mo. Clutch Hitter #9 should be just that because this sire’s offspring really takes to the blades. Victor Espinoza doesn’t get all that many chances to ride on this surface, but when he does, he makes the most of it. A pedigree play in a field like this one isn’t that outlandish, and I like the fact that he gets “blinkers” too. I have in mind 2 others that will help round out this ticket … they include Peter Eurton’s Kazuhiko #8 and Richard Mandella’s Man Among Men #2. Both these have connections to Mandella (#8 former Mandella runner). While Eurton’s has a ton of grass experience, Mandella’s entry is a 1st time starter by War Front. He could make a smashing debut … his price tag at the Keeneland September 2020 Sale was $360k. This quad should get us a win, and help us cash a nice ticket. What a Del Mar opening … full fields … tough puzzles … we are back!

Leg 4: 2/8/9/11 (4-Deep)

Wagering Recommendation: $100 Bankroll, Graduated Wager, WPS #9 ($10-W, $15-P, $75-S)


Ticket: 2-9-10-11 / 1-13-14 / 6 / 2-8-9-11

.50 LP4 Cost: $24.00

Enjoy where the “Surf Meets the Turf!” Best of Luck on another run at Del Mar! Be sure to follow us on Twitter … Horseracing_USA !!!