Oaklawn Park Picks: Arkansas Derby Day LP5 ticket on April 2

It's Oaklawn's big day! The Arkansas Derby is a Grade 1 affair that is sure to be a highlight to the weekend! Why, you ask? Read on ...
It's Oaklawn's big day! The Arkansas Derby is a Grade 1 affair that is sure to be a highlight to the weekend! Why, you ask? Read on ...

Oaklawn Park Picks - Saturday, April 2, 2022

  • Race 1: 6-3-7-4
  • Race 2: 5-2-4-7
  • Race 3: 8-6-4-5
  • Race 4: 6-2-8-4
  • Race 5: 2-4-5-1
  • Race 6: 7-4-1-8
  • Race 7: 6-4-5-8
  • Race 8: 9-5-10-1
  • Race 9: 6-4-9-8
  • Race 10: 9-7-6-4
  • Race 11: 5-6-8-1
  • Race 12: 6-3-1-9
  • Race 13: 12-6-8-9
  • **Most Likely: Secret Oath #6 (Race 12)**
  • **Best Value: Silver Prospector #6 (Race 9)**

Oaklawn Park is nestled in the "university town" of Hot Springs ... a university town of horse racing that is ...

The southern hamlet is playing host to an extended festival with their customary welcome! Betting options are the best in the country! The celebrated home of Arkansas Thoroughbred culture has its own Derby Day ... with a Kentucky Derby "Points" race, this card is chock full of options. Turfwriter J.N. Campbell, who regularly covers the Meet, has a Late Pick 5 ticket that is long on value ... check it out! 

At Horseracing.net/us we have the sport blanketed, 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 Saturday 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



LEG 1: (Race 9: Dirt, 1 Mile, Oaklawn Mile (G3), $400k, 4+)

On this beautiful Super Saturday at glorious Oaklawn Park, we have one of my favorite races of the Meet. The OP Mile $400k normally brings together a great group of older males, and this is a banner moment because the race is finally a “graded” race … Huzzah! It’s about bloody time! This time around we have layoff runners … class risers … class droppers … horse-for-the-courses … and of course, if that weren’t enough, a Bob Baffert entry … oh my! Speaking of the beleaguered HOF conditioner, he sends Cezanne #4 into Hot Springs off a win in the San Carlos (G2) last time out at Santa Anita. In 6 career starts, this will be the son of Curlin’s 1st attempt to race outside of California. Regular rider Flavien Prat is in-town (he will be shifting his tack to NYRA soon), and he is going to make this field keep up with him in the end. If Baffert’s charge shipped well, then he could be the one to beat. I do not like the idea of “keying” this one because it is clear that others in here have a great shot to score too. When it comes to a top pick, I am quite partial to Steve Asmussen’s Silver Prospector #6. This pro is by Declaration of War, and every time he takes to the track, he really gives it his best. I know he hasn’t won in sometime, but he is in-form right now, which makes him very dangerous. I was surprised to see Jose Lezcano come in from Aqueduct, and that is an interesting decision. He is going to be a good price, after running 2nd to Olympiad last time down at the Fair Grounds in the Mineshaft (G3). Others that are worth considering include, Brad Cox’s Fulsome #8, Chris Hartman’s Necker Island #9, and Mike McCarthy’s Law Professor #10. This is an eclectic mix of experience and style … Including a Juddmonte runner making his debut ’22 … a good form, OP winner last out at the OC80k … and finally, a well-bred son of Constitution making a surface switch with Johnny V aboard, all offer diversity and make sense. Let’s move on …

Selections: 4/6/8/9/10 (5-Deep)


LEG 2: (Race 10: Dirt, 1 1/16th, Fantasy S. (G3), $600k, 3F)

The filly version of the “Derby” is up next, and KYOaks “Points” are available, plus a major purse. I was very much against Bob Baffert’s ace that ships in from Southern California. I do not have to worry about Eda #5 because she sadly developed a fever this past week, and did not ship. So ... I like both of Brad Cox’s entries … Mariah’s Fortune #6 and Bubble Rock #9. The former, from Steve Landers Racing, is a well-bred filly by Classic Empire who ran nicely in the slop at Oaklawn 2 races back. Even though she failed to get to the winner’s circle at the Fair Grounds in an OC50kn1x back on 18 Feb., she has some dangerous early speed. As for the latter Cox-ian, it will be interesting to see the Shortleaf homebred make the switch from turf/AW to dirt. She won the Cincy Trophy at Turfway last time out, and I think she is very talented. Cox has a way of spotting that is just second-to-none, and I would not count this one out at all. The services of Ricardo Santana are being utilized to the fullest too. One other entry that deserves to be included is from Rudy Brisset’s keep. Yuugiri #7 is a daughter of Shackleford, and she competed against Secret Oath and Ice Orchid in the Grade 3 Honeybee S. back on 26 Feb. I like her early gait, and with Florent Geroux aboard, she should be very competitive in this race. The choice to go 3-deep helps us save some cash because what is coming is going to be very difficult. Wait till you see the finale!

Selections: 6/7/9 (3-Deep)


LEG 3: (Race 11: Dirt, 6F, AOC50kn2x, 4+)

We are taking a brief respite from the stakes action, and bringing you a tough OC50kn2x contest. We have a local celeb that is entered, in a gelding by Bernardini … Johnny Oritz’s Gar Hole #5. You have to understand what a big deal this is … Arkansas bred runners rarely make the jump into open company, and this is the chance for the Shortleaf homebred to show his mettle. Arky breds, represent! With 4 wins to his credit, and the riding ability of Ricardo Santana, I would expect this one to be pretty game for his open company bow. Just in case something happens to his detriment, I also like the Jimmy DiVito entry, Absolute Chaos #6. He might not look like much, but with Mineshaft at his fetlock, he could be a nice price at 10/1 .. or higher. I like DiVito runners because they run like the dickens, and are usually overlays. He can flat out train … Let’s go 2-deep in this spot, and head to the highlight of the day with our head held high.

Selections: 5/6 (2-Deep)


LEG 4: (Race 12: Dirt, 1 1/8th, Arkansas Derby (G1), $1.25 million, 3)

It’s on … the Arkansas Derby, a G1 race with major KYD148 “Points” (100-40-20-10) has arrived. The storyline could include a one-eyed wonder, a former Baffert runner, or a young upstart, but at the end of the day, it is about the filly … D. Wayne Lukas’ Secret Oath #6. The legendary conditioner with HOF credentials is looking to turn the tables on the boys this year, and it is nothing short of pure, unadulterated excitement. This is just what horse racing needs. A filly by now-deceased Arrogate, her speed figs are above par, and then some. Lukas is once again … ala Gary Stevens and Winning Colors … going with a jockey that needs a big break. Luis Contreras is just the man for the job, and the hard scrabble rider from Mexico City is looking to make a splash in what could be the race of the year. I think he wins aboard the filly, and that makes this pick a “Single” for me. My prediction … no one can hold a candle to Lukas’ Secret Oath #6.

Selections: 6 (Single)


LEG 5: (Race 13: Dirt, 6F, OC20kn1x, 4+, Arky Breds)

We end up with Arky-types … and that is the way this is going to go … We must go as deep as possible, and that means pushing the envelope as far as possible. I think I can afford 6 in this spot, and that should get us home! My top selection in this race is Tammy Hornsby’s Goodnight Archie #12. This gelding by Archaracharch has experience at this class level, and has run against the likes of Gar Hole … that is enough for me. The best news is that one of the best riders in the colony gets aboard for the 1st time .., Fran Arrieta … At 10/1, this could be one of the plays of the day. I want to use this one, but let’s also think about the merits of Carl Deville’s You Vee Cee #2, Norm Ashauer’s Super Geek #6, Ron Westermann’s Bellamys Roan #7, Tim Martin’s Data Storm #8, and Randy Morse’s Mahomey #9. That should do the trick, and help us cash this ticket … what a day it is going to be!

Selections: 2/6/7/8/9/12 (6-Deep)


Ticket: 4-6-8-9-10 / 6-7-9 / 5-6 / 6 / 2-6-7-8-9-12

.50 P5 TICKET COST: $90.00

Enjoy another fab Arkansas Derby Day trackside! Best of luck on another run at Oaklawn Park! Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter … Horseracing_USA !!!

Kentucky Derby 2022