RACE 6: Post 3:30 PT. Grade: BUse: 4-Super Duper Cooper; 7-Route Six SixForecast: Route Six Six is improving with racing, breaking his maiden with a sharp number in game style. He has enough early speed to secure a favorable pace-stalking spot in a race that projects to be run at a moderate pace, at best. Super Duper Cooper is strictly the one to beat and is a “must use” as well in rolling exotic play. He’s a first-off-the-claim for Baltas and has every right to improve; however, he’s zero-for-12 lifetime over the Santa Anita main track. Both should be included in rolling exotic play; we’ll have a few extra tickets keying Route Six Six on top. RACE 5: Post 3:00 PT. Grade: B+Single: 7-RafalForecast: Rafal has trained like an excellent prospect for Baffert and should be a short price to graduate at first asking. Everything he’s done in the morning suggests he’ll beat this field, so we’ll make the New York-bred son of Alpha a no-value rolling exotic single. RACE 8: Post 4:30 PT. Grade: C+Use: 1-Raggy Rocks; 7-OutlawForecast: Outlaw once was well regarded and drops to his lowest level ever. He has numbers that will beat this field, but he’s already failed three times as the favorite, so he’s hardly one to trust. Raggy Rocks hasn’t yet mastered the art of breaking from the gate, but if he ever decides to leave with his field he might be quite competitive in this league. Maybe the addition of blinkers today will help. We’ll try to get by using just these two but if you can afford to go deeper, feel free to spread. RACE 2: Post 1:30 PT. Grade: B-Use: 2-Madaket Sunset; 5-Take a Leap; 6-Tiny TinaForecast: Tiny Tina is winless in five starts over the local lawn, but she has a good recent runner-up effort down the hill at this starter’s allowance level and won at this trip last summer at Del Mar. She has good early speed but might be most effective if held up early and allowed to run late. Madaket Sunset is probably more effective sprinting than routing but if she can make the lead without pressure she’ll take this group a long way. Take a Leap closed a gap sprinting in the same race Tiny Tina exits and stretches out today to her preferred trip. She has two prior wins over this course and distance and with only nine career starts probably has room for some improvement. RACE 7: Post 4:00 PT. Grade: B+Use: 1-Epical; 4-Beach ViewForecast: Beach View is a proven marathoner and always has been genuine and consistent. The son of Giant’s Causeway should draft into a comfortable stalking position and then have every chance when the pressure gets turned on in the final furlong. Epical, second in the same race Beach View exits, is the one to fear most. If they hand him the front end, the Cassidy-trained gelding may never look back. Both should be used in rolling exotic play; Beach View probably will be the better price of the two, so we’ll press with him on top. RACE 4: Post 2:30 PT. Grade: B-Use: 4-Holy Moses; 7-Swirling; 8-Dahlia AzulForecast: This grass grab bag down the hill has several possibilities, among them Dahlia Azul, a route-to-spread play from the Bay Area dropping to a realistic level and landing the cozy outside post. She appears more comfortable routing than sprinting, but over this unique course she might be able to produce the last run. Swirling won a five-furlong turf sprint over the flat course in February with a strong late kick; similar tactics likely will be employed today. She has prior numbers that would bury this group but following a win she’s raised only one notch on the class ladder, so the barn clearly isn’t in love with her. Holy Moses has decent recent Phoenix form and has run well here in the past. She should be prominent throughout under Pedroza. The selections contained within are geared to rolling exotic players. The basic strategy is to isolate those horses that should be included in rolling daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and pick-6.It is recommended that Jeff’s selections be used to augment the reader’s own personal handicapping, though excellent results can be achieved by applying the exact rolling exotic strategy specified by Jeff’s analysis. Jeff’s recommended plays are intended for players with a moderate budget; however, readers are encouraged to adjust Jeff’s wagering strategy to fit their preferred investment level.Unless otherwise noted, all horses listed in the analysis should be used in rolling exotic play. Usually there will no more than three horses listed; occasionally, Jeff will go four-deep in his rolling exotic play and on a very rare occasion he will recommend a “buy the race” strategy.The selections are available every racing day after 9 a.m. (PST). For updates, please follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.Top selection indicated in bold-face. A=Highest degree of confidence.B=Solid Play.C=Least preferred, or pass.X=likely winner but odds are not likely to offer wagering value.SANTA ANITAFriday, March 29, 2019RACE 1: Post 1:00 PT. Grade: CUse: 3-Ride Out the Storm; 4-Lily Con; 7-Tick TockForecast: The opener is a bottom-rung maiden claiming miler for sophomore fillies. Tick Tock has failed as the choice in her last pair but adds blinkers, is relatively strong in the speed figure department and has hit the board in each of her three career starts. She rates top billing, but at 2-1 on the morning line offers little value. Lily Con drops to the bottom and has the kind of early speed that could make her dangerous. The break in the weights with the switch to bug boy Diaz certainly won’t hurt. Ride Out the Storm is another class dropper likely to improve against this group. She has the two-sprints-and-a-stretch out pattern and a pedigree that should allow her to handle a route. RACE 3: Post 2:00 PT. Grade: C+Use: 2-Buck Duane; 4-Giddymeister; 5-Iron CurtainForecast: This is another wide-open affair that requires a spread in rolling exotic play. We’ll go three-deep but not with a huge degree of confidence. Iron Curtain is racing in solid form and has a good stalking style that should provide him every chance from the top of the lane to the wire. He’s a fit based on speed figures and Quinonez knows him well. Buck Duane has the blinkers off angle that we like but was a voided claim in his last start. He’s also winless in seven starts over the local main track but has finished in the money in his last pair and should at least get a piece of it again today. Giddymeister is re-equipped with blinkers and has a few prior races that could make him dangerous. He broke his maiden over this main track about a year ago, so there’s that.
Three Thrilling Hours Away from the CrowdWhile the Los Angeles Auto Show captures the attention of thousands of automotive journalists with press conferences, parties and special events, we’re happiest if those events include some time behind the wheel. Ford gave us that opportunity. It included time with the Ford Mustang GT and a special section of road in the LA area.Mention Angeles Crest Highway to car enthusiasts in Southern California and their eyes will light up. This iconic mountain route, known for short straights breaking-up one tight turn after another, has cornering speed limit signs that are looked at as mere suggestions. Annually many thousands of sports and performance car and motorcycle owners take on the challenge of “The Crest.” Conquering is not the goal. Pushing the limits and surviving, is.There were no bad choicesFord invited a small group of automotive press to drive the 2018 Mustang GT on the Angeles Crest Highway. Their unstated goal was to put the Mustang GT in the hands of people that drive for a living, and then sit back and listen. At the lunch break, Ford got what they wanted, as it was one tale after another of acceleration, braking, grip and thrills.The 2018 Mustang GT we drove is pretty much a carry-over for the 2019 model, with a few changes in body colors and a new sound system. Our Mustang GT came in a brilliant Orange Fury Metallic that we are told is not available on the 2019 model. So, if you like your cars to make a statement, check-out the 2018 Mustang GT. Our car had a base price of $39,095 and $9,275 in optional packages, for a total of $48,370. Add on $900 for the delivery fee.Pony Car Power and PerformanceThe rear-wheel drive Mustang GT comes with a naturally aspirated Coyote 5.0-liter V8, producing a very usable and wonderful 480 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. The engine is smooth, predictable and responsive, easily moving the 3,705-pound GT without needing more power. Pushing the V8 hard found its sweet spot with peak performance around 4,600 rpm, well below an impressive 7,400 rpm redline. The engine note is a throaty cackle that filled the car with a sweet, satisfying sound. During hard deceleration and downshifting, it had a machine gun cadence. A guttural growl is heard and felt when cruising around town, with the full symphony just waiting for a pedal-to-the-metal moment. Muscle Car perfect.This is the car. This is the road. A perfect match.As much as I liked the engine, I was less thrilled with the 10-speed SelectShift automatic that was always looking for the right gear, even on the highway. With paddle shifters and driver-selectable drive modes of Normal, Sport+, Drag Strip, Track or Snow/Wet, our time was spent in either Normal or Sport+. Where the transmission really displayed gear hunting was on hard, on-and-off the accelerator and brakes, and when diving into and out of tight corners.To say the least it was a real hindrance to get the maximum performance of the Mustang GT when the transmission was not in the right gear entering a corner, and then held a gear far too long when exiting onto a straight stretch. Opting to put the transmission in manual, and then use the steering wheel mounted paddle shifters, was not the solution, as there too was a delay getting into the desired gear.Perception ≠ RealitySometimes in life it is a good feeling to have a preconception be proven wrong. I was not familiar with the Ford Mustang GT in general or, specifically, the Angeles Crest Highway in a Mustang GT. The learning curve took several miles of experimenting with the weight balance and learning how the rear end would react when pushed hard into very tight corners. Finding the balance between maximum grip and maximum control is key on a road like this.NASCAR will see Mustang bodies next yearThe steering feel was not anything at all like an AWD or FWD car, where it is more like, aim and be there. On the Mustang GT, the perception was the front end was way out front, producing an initial feeling of low control. Boy, was that not the case! Once armed with a full understanding of the car’s handling attributes, the cornering was precise, with the ability to aim to a spot, but know that is exactly where the Mustang GT would end up. Out on the twisties is where the Mustang GT surprised and pleased.To make the handling as good as it was, our test car came with two very desirable performance handling packages. If you are even considering this car, then they are a must-have. The GT Performance Package ($3,995) added Brembo front brakes, a beefier rear sway bar and reworked front springs, a Torsen limited-slip differential and 19-inch black-painted aluminum wheels. Shod with Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires, that were staggered with 225/40R 19 up front, and 275/40R 19 on the rear, the grip was never questioned. The second optional package included the MagneRide adaptive damping system where the suspension automatically adjusts damping rates on all four corners. At $1,695, this is worth the investment.Observations: 2018 Ford Mustang GTI had a 1965 Mustang Fastback GT, 289 V8, four-speed manual, for a summer between my sophomore and junior years of high school. What a blast to drive and be seen in. Fast forward these many years later and much of that same feeling came back when climbing into the 2018 Mustang GT. Yes, the new version was far more powerful, but the sensation was the same. Fun and exhilaration.The Pony Car segment saw tough times not too long ago, but between the Mustang, Challenger and Camaro, it is hot once again. And with Ford switching to Mustangs from Fusions (that never made any sense!) in NASCAR starting in 2019, the Mustang will be receiving its due as the true performance car it has been and remains.Ed note: Another reason to experience the Ford Mustang this year is ch-ch-changes are coming to the storied brand. The Mustang is slated to become Ford’s main car brand with much of the rest of the focus of the company in America on trucks and SUVs. In addition, Ford has already teased an electrified Mustang variation in the near future. Expect to hear more on that at the Detroit Auto Show in January.With most of the power & more MPG–the EcoBoost Mustang is an optionEd Note2: While the Ford Mustang GT is a blast, its fuel economy tops out around 25 mpg—and you’ll only get close to that by not driving like John did on the Angeles Crest, which is a challenge with such a fun and powerful car. Earlier, we also had the chance to try out an option that’s more accessible (starting almost $10,000 less than the GT)—the Mustang EcoBoost. You lose that sweet exhaust note and head-snapping V8 brute force, but the handling is still crisp, the turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine can be mated with a six-speed manual to avoid the “hunting” issue and with 310 horsepower, you won’t feel underpowered. Finally, it’s easy to nail 30+ mpg out on the highway. Choice is king! – Michael Coates Whatever you end up buying, enjoy your new car, and Happy Driving!Related Stories You Might Enjoy–Other LA Auto Show News2020 Toyota Corolla DebutsRivian Electric Pickup/SUV Revealed2019 Toytoa Prius AWD DebutsVW Shows Cargo EV, Cargo e-BikeNissan Leaf Long Range Delayed Due To Scandal2019 Kia Niro EV Crossover Debut2020 Kia Soul EV ShownDisclosure:Clean Fleet Report is loaned free test vehicles from automakers to evaluate, typically for a week at a time. Our road tests are based on this one-week drive of a new vehicle. Because of this we don’t address issues such as long-term reliability or total cost of ownership. In addition, we are often invited to manufacturer events highlighting new vehicles or technology. As part of these events we may be offered free transportation, lodging or meals. We do our best to present our unvarnished evaluations of vehicles and news irrespective of these inducements.Our focus is on vehicles that offer the best fuel economy in their class, which leads us to emphasize electric cars, plug-in hybrids, hybrids and diesels. We also feature those efficient gas-powered vehicles that are among the top mpg vehicles in their class. In addition, we aim to offer reviews and news on advanced technology and the alternative fuel vehicle market. We welcome any feedback from vehicle owners and are dedicated to providing a forum for alternative viewpoints. Please let us know your views at email@example.com.The post LA Auto Show: 2018 Ford Mustang GT Flash Drive appeared first on Clean Fleet Report. Source: Electric, Hybrid, Clean Diesel & High-MPG Vehicles