Mandatory Rainbow 6 Payout Set for Sunday
Total Pool Could Swell to More than $5 million
Championship Meet Concludes with 11-Race Card
Royal Palm Meet Gets Underway Thursday
Ortiz Brothers Had a Day
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – The Championship Meet at Gulfstream Park will conclude Sunday with an 11-race program featuring a mandatory payout of the 20-cent Rainbow 6 Pool.
The popular multi-race wager went unsolved Saturday for the 19th consecutive racing day following a March 5 mandatory payout, leaving a jackpot carryover pool of $955,872 heading into Sunday. The Rainbow 6 pool could swell to more than $5 million.
On mandatory-payout days, the entire Rainbow 6 jackpot pool is paid out to the bettor or bettors with the most winners in the wager’s six-race sequence. The carryover jackpot is usually only paid out when there is a single unique ticket sold with all six winners. On days when there is no unique ticket, 70 percent of that day’s pool usually goes back to those bettors holding tickets with the most winners, while 30 percent is carried over to the jackpot pool.
Sunday’s Rainbow 6 sequence will span Races 6-11, kicked off by an optional claiming allowance for Florida-bred fillies and mares in Race 6. The 7 ½-furlong turf contest drew an evenly balanced field of eight that will encourage many handicappers to ‘spread’ a bit on their tickets. Riveting Spirit, the 7-2 favorite trained by Carlos David, won at this level two starts back before failing against open company. Steve Klesaris-trained Z First, a convincing winner for a $35,000 claiming price last time out, is rated second at 4-1. Roy Lerman-trained Any Port and Jose D’Angelo-trained Mia Camila, who finished a nose and neck behind Riveting Spirit, respectively, are also contenders.
Fly the W, a 7-year-old gelding who know how to win, is rated as the 2-1 morning-line favorite for Race 7, a 1 1/16-mile optional claiming starter allowance on Tapeta for older horses. The Bobby Dibona trainee finished third on turf last time out after winning three in a row on Tapeta. Martin Drexler-trained Conglomerate is rated second at 7-2 after finishing second behind the favorite in their last meeting; Wicked Finn, who is coming off a starter handicap win; and Souper Energizer, a winner of two of his last three; appear to be players in the race.
A solid field of turf sprinters has been assembled for Race 8, an $87,000 optional claiming allowance for older horses going five-furlongs on turf. Kerri Raven-trained Chess Master, who won the Turf Dash at Tampa two back; Todd Pletcher-trained Meetmeinkingston, who has found his niche on turf in recent starts; and Nick Gonzalez-trained Silent Poet, a Grade 1 stakes winner who is set to make his 2023 debut; are among the top candidates.
Race 9, a six-furlong sprint for $8,000 claiming fillies and mares, is likely to be a popular ‘spread’ event. Drexler-trained Chasing Joy, who has finished first or second in nine off 16 career starts, is the 7-2 morning-line favorite in the 11-horse field on the drop from $10,000 claiming company. Rapidly improving Sophia’s Storm, who ran out her lifetime conditions with strong back-to-back wins with Chantal Sutherland aboard, tries open company.
Mark Casse-trained Get Smokin is the strongest morning-line favorite of the Rainbow 6 sequence at 8-5 in Race 10, an $87,000 optional claiming allowance on turf for older horses. The 6-year-old graded-stakes winner drops from graded company to make his 2023 debut, but he will have to beat 11 rivals to prevail victoriously. Single? Or Spread?
Not a whole lot of information on the runners in Race 11, a five-furlong $84,000 maiden special weight race for 3-year-old fillies on turf that drew a field of 12 with seven first-time starters. Trainers Wesley Ward, Todd Pletcher, Mark Casse (2), Jonathan Thomas, Brendan Walsh and Guadalupe Preciado will be represented by debuters.
After the curtain closes on the Championship Meet Sunday, live Thoroughbred racing at Gulfstream Park will resume Thursday with a 12:40 p.m. first-race post time. Racing will be conducted four days a week, Thursday through Sunday.
Who’s Hot: The Ortiz Brothers had a day.
Leading jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. won six races, while Jose Ortiz rode four winners.
In addition to providing Forte with a spectacularly executed winning ride in the Florida Derby to cap his day, Irad Ortiz Jr. scored natural triple aboard Bright Future in Race 4, Therapist ($11) in Race 5, the G2 Pan American, and Get Your Kicks ($6) in Race 6, before capturing the Sand Springs in Race 10 with Marketsegmentation ($3.40) and taking down the Appleton in Race 13 with Steady On ($5.80).
Brother Jose Ortiz, who started the Florida Derby Day program with a victory aboard Spansive ($6) in Race 1, kicked off the stakes portion of Saturday’s card with a winning ride aboard Behind Enemy Lines ($6.40) in the Cutler Bay in Race 3. He came back to guide Weyburn ($6.40) for a victory in the Sir Shackleton in Race 9 and Breath Away ($7.20) in the Sanibel Island in Race 11.
Trainer Christophe Clement sent out a pair of stakes winners: Amazing Grace ($4) in the Orchid (G3) in Race 8 and Breath Away in the Sanibel Island.
Owner Mike Repole and Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher, who celebrated Forte’s Florida Derby win, got off to a fast start Saturday visiting the winners circle with Spansive in Race 1 and Bright Future ($4.20) after his victory in Race 4 before teaming for a win with Steady On in the Appleton in Race 13. Repole and St. Elias Stable are partners in the ownership of Bright Fortune and Steady On, as well as Saturday’s hero Forte.