Wednesday, September 23
Race 1: Claiming $35,000N3L at 6 furlongs
3 – Regal Minister
I just don’t want the horses that ran at this level at Saratoga. Forest Boy’s last was okay, but I don’t really trust him to run it back, Be a Hero was very disappointing last time, and Groupthink just never wins. Plus, I see a viable alternative.
Regal Minister (#3) runs for a tag for the first time today, but it’s not as if this is any kind of alarming drop. He’s probably not going to be winning NY-bred stakes any time soon. I think you can basically draw a line through Regal Minister’s last race. He was out of position early, raced wide on the turn, and was basically never asked for serious run once Velazquez sensed he was beaten. Regal Minister runs his best races when he’s ridden up close dueling for the lead and I think that will be the plan here as he gets blinkers for this start. I’m looking for around 6/1.
$15 Win/Place 3
Race 2: Allowance N1X at 1 1/4 miles on the turf for NY-breds
7 – Barton Holt
Born in Brooklyn is going to take a lot of money, but I can’t shake the feeling that his last race was pretty phony. I have trouble getting past Barton Holt (#7), who will probably be sent to the front again, and has no problem with the distance. His last race was good. It’s not as if he was totally crawling early and he responded and was actually fighting back when East Bay Lodge collared him.
$20 Win 7
Race 3: Maiden Special Weight at 6 1/2 furlongs
7 – Marking
Marking (#7) was perhaps the most highly-touted firster of the Saratoga meet before getting scratched at the gate last. He appears to be none the worse for wear since he came back to breeze a half in 46-flat just 2 days later. I’m not trying to beat him, though I will use the two horses who were involved in that hotly contested pace on August 21: Dannie’s Deceiver (#3), who hung on well in his first start off the layoff, and Imslopokerodriguez (#8), who didn’t hang on so well, but had previously shown promise.
$25 Win 7 (Payout: $45.00)
$15 Exacta 7-3 (Payout: $102.00)
$10 Exacta 7-8
Race 8: Allowance N1X at 1 1/8 miles on the turf for NY-bred fillies and mares
7 – Serious Happiness
This race came up pretty weak for the level. Smilingsundae and Jc’s Shooting Star are okay and can certainly win, but I have a long shot idea. Serious Happiness (#7) made her turf debut last time at Parx against a field that was lightyears better than the one she meets today. That day she was allowed to drop WAY back, and then came with an eye-catching run before getting spun out off the turn. She’s going to have to be placed closer to the pace this time, but at least she has more upside (on turf) than most in here and she should be a price.
$10 Win/Place 7
$2 Exacta Key Box 7 with 3,4,5,6
Race 9: Maiden Claiming $40,000 at 7 furlongs on the turf for NY-breds
10 – Risky Sour
I can’t resist trying Risky Sour (#10) one more time. There aren’t any superstars in this race and Risky Sour has subtly run a lot better on turf than his published running lines would have you believe. If this rider keeps him out of trouble and makes one run into what should be an honest pace, he can definitely win this at a big price.
$15 Win/Place 10
$4 Exacta Key Box 10 with 6,7