I’m a bit late with this post, so I’ll keep it uncharacteristically brief.
Belmont, Race 1: Starter Optional Claiming $16,000 at six furlongs
Haverhill (#3) chased three-wide off the gold rail last time and never really had any chance to make an impact thereafter. He has dirt races back at Gulstream and Santa Anita that would make him very tough in here and I expect a much improved effort today.
$15 Win 3 (WINNER; Payout: $135.00)
Belmont, Race 2: Maiden Claiming $35,000 at one mile on the turf for two year-old fillies
Dramatize (#2) is clearly the horse to beat and I’ll use her over my crazy long shot, Miss Lilian Taylor (#6), in the exacta. Miss Lilian Taylor on the surface does not appear to have much turf pedigree, but her sire, U S Ranger, only raced on turf while winning a couple of stakes in France and Ireland before finishing second in the Group 1 July Cup. You have to dig a bit deeper into Miss Lilian Taylor’s female family to find the turf influences, but they are there. Her second dam, Lady of Wicklow, is a full-sister to Man From Wicklow, a Grade 1 winning turfer who earned over $600,000, and is a half-sister to Wild Heart Dancing, also a multiple graded stakes winner on turf. I honestly have no idea if she has any ability, but I think it’s a good sign that top jockeys have gotten on her back in each of her career starts and Andrew Lakeman is certainly capable.
$10 Win 6
$5 Exacta 2-6
Belmont, Race 4: Optional Claiming $35,000/N2X at 1 1/16 miles for NY-bred fillies and mares
Caribean Beat (#8) tried to make a wide rally last time in a race that was dominated by horses who rode the gold rail on the turf at Saratoga. Prior to that she had put in a string of very strong efforts and I think she may still be in that good form. I’ll bet her to win and use her with Funny Money (#5), who was also compromised by the turf bias last time. They both should get some pace help up front.
$10 Win 8
$5 Exacta Box 5/8
Belmont, Race 8: Optional Claiming $35,000/N2X at 6 1/2 furlongs for NY-bred filles and mares
I’ve always been a fan of Newbie (#1) and I think she may have found an ideal spot today. This distance is perfect for her and there’s a chance that she could play out to be the primary inside speed, which would greatly help her cause. She’s not the most reliable winning sort, but she’ll be a price in a very evenly matched field. I’ll bet her to win and use her under a slew of other contenders in the exacta.
$10 Win 1
$2 Exacta 3/4/5/7/10 with 1