Sunday picks

Las Palmas

8th Santa Anita

Distance: 1 1/8ths miles on the grass

Purse: $175,000

For: Fillies & mares, 3-year-olds
& upward

Grade II

Happyanunoit, a multiple Grade I winner, was defeated at odds-on
in the Flower Bowl at Belmont, but returns to her home turf and looks to
rebound. There was no obvious excuse for her Flower Bowl defeat, but she
has trained well since returning to California and might like this distance
better. Follow the Money shipped East for trainer David Hofmans
to win the Grade III

Violet Handicap in her last start, sports a bullet work since and could
win this if the favorite falters again. New Story was third in her
American debut against males in the Del Mar Derby then rebounded to win
a local allowance at today's distance. Trained by Neil Drysdale. Must respect.

Picks Summary: 1. Happyanunoit
2. Follow the Money 3. New Story

The River City Handicap

9th Churchill Downs

Distance: 1 1/8th miles on the turf

Purse: $150,000

For: 3-year-olds & upward

Grade III

Brahms faced the likes of Giants Causeway and Distant Music last
year in Europe, where he was among the better 2-year-olds in training.
He's been patiently handled by trainer Elliott Walden this year and should
be ready for a peak effort after successive wins off the layoff in easier
spots. In a race void of early speed, Vergennes should have an edge
here. The clear speed of the race and a former Grade I winner, he will
be tough if allowed to get a good trip. Might be rounding back into top
form in his third start off a layoff. Super Quercus was once considered
a top threat for the Breeders' Cup Mile but showed little in the Keeneland
Turf Mile in his first start off a 10-month layoff. He should improve off
that race and is a logical contender.

Picks Summary: 1. Brahms
2. Vergennes 3. Super Quercus

The Tempted

8th Aqueduct

Distance: One mile

Purse: $100,000

For: 2-year-old fillies

Grade III

Salty You moves into the barn of Hall of Famer Phil Johnson after
winning a Canadian Grade I Stakes at Woodbine. The daughter of Salt Lake
has made a major improvement since getting Lasix and blinkers. Celtic
looked terrific beating up on maidens in his last. Sent off
at 20-1 that day and going just six furlongs, it's questionable whether
that race was for real,

but if he can duplicate that performance he is a major contender. Shows
a bullet four furlong workout since his last start. Trial Fighter
comes off a 7 1/4-length win in a stakes race at Delaware Park, but got
loose on the lead that day and was able to set a slow pace. Two Item Limit
may have a class edge after racing in Grade I events.

Picks Summary: 1. Salty You
2. Celtic Melody 3. Trial Fighter

The Nashua

9th Aqueduct

Distance: One mile

Purse: $100,000

For: 2-year-olds

Grade III

Dayton Flyer hung in there until the final yards against some
monsters in A P Valentine and Point Given in the Champagne. His two best
races have come at a mile or longer, making him one of the few established
distance horses in this field. Fistfite looms the main threat after
his win in the Cowdin. He's got plenty of talent, but must prove he can
go beyond 6 * furlongs. Light of Justice showed a lot of promise
earlier in the year but floundered in the Flash and Tremont. Trainer Mark
Hennig gave him a rest and he responded with a good effort to finish fourth
in the Cowdin. Might be on the upswing and gets Jerry Bailey for this assignment.

Picks Summary: 1. Dayton
Flyer 2. Fistfite 3. Light of Justice