John Pricci

HorseRaceInsider.com executive editor John Pricci has over three decades of experience as a thoroughbred racing public handicapper and was an award-winning journalist while at New York Newsday for 18 years.

John has covered 14 Kentucky Derbies and Preaknesses, all but three Breeders' Cups since its inception in 1984, and has seen all but two Belmont Stakes live since 1969.

Currently John is a contributing racing writer to MSNBC.com, an analyst on the Capital Off-Track Betting television network, and co-hosts numerous handicapping seminars. He resides in Saratoga Springs, New York.

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Friday, August 19, 2016


Saratoga Late Pick 4, Roll Tide


Exclusively for http://www.123BET.com, reprinted via promotional agreement

RACE 9 GRADE 1 FOURSTARDAVE 1 MILE INNER TURF

1-King Kreesa (12-1)
won the Forbidden Apple after getting loose in soft fractions on a speed-kind course…but these are Grade 1 rivals.

2-Grand Arch (6-1) returns to what might be his favorite course--over which he won this race last year. A four-time winner at the trip, returns with profitable spacing for Lynch barn that’s come alive recently. Nicely drawn, sheds 6 pounds and ML odds offers value.

3-Reporting Star (20-1) four of five lifetime wins have come at this trip, sheds six pounds, and won G3 Appleton at the distance three back. In top hands but this is a different level.

4-Force the Pass (8-1) just missed catching ‘Kreesa’ after chasing the loose leader in the Forbidden Apple. Has enough versatility to adapt to dynamics, well drawn and three of four lifetime wins at today’s distance. Excellent value on early line.

5-Blacktype (10-1)
won the Oceanport when Jersey Joe took advantage of demanding course and timed his late run perfectly. Meeting tougher, obviously, and at his best with a little more ground.

6-Ring Weekend (3-1) handles any type of footing, has won at G1 level, and just missed in G2 Dixie making first start in 14 months. Loves tis course, working bullets at Fair Hill base and goes very well for Johnny.

7-A Lot (10-1) drops significant weight exiting two rapidly run sprints, gets switch to Javier. Has run very well on this course but this is a different level and had better inside draw in last week’s canceled renewal.

8-Tourist (5-2) won his lone start on this course, three of four at this trip lifetime and exits long series of G1 event. Has enough tactical gas to overcome wide draw and reunites with winning rider Rosario. Worthy favorite.

9-Takeover Target (9-2) would have preferred last week’s softer ground but likes Spa turf. Freshened awaiting this, sheds five pounds but loses Rosario to Tourist. Chad white hot, has good spacing, but this a tough spot.


RACE 10 GRADE 1 ALABAMA 3YO FILLIES 1-1/4 MILES


1-Dark Nile (20-1) intriguing filly has won four of five lifetime for Delacour having a simply super season. Has versatility, Bravo, is pole sitting, but leaps to G1 level against the Princess with solid, purposeful workline. Interesting price shot.

2-Weep No More (15-1) had trouble at the start of CCA Oaks vs. Songbird here, losing any chance whatsoever. G1 Ashland winner would need that kind of perfect dueling setup…and then some. Reunites with winning rider Lanerie.

3-Going for Broke (10-1) obviously, Chad is en fuego and this filly has benefit of winning 9 furlongs over the track. Only loss sprinting in debut over speed-kind strip. Bred for the trip with Irad on the re-ride and will be running in the lane.

4-Go Maggie Go (8-1) is a dual G2 winner and is of Grade 1 quality. Had tough trip chasing three-wide on speed-favoring Belmont in Acorn mile, which produced two wins from three subsequent starters. Will appreciate stretching around two turns again and looms favorite's toughest challenger.

5-Family Tree (10-1) has been collecting second-tier G2s while touring the Midwest now ships in for toughest test off strong works at Keeneland base and bred both sides for added distance. Acid test.

6-Songbird (1-5) is 9-for-9 lifetime and needs no introduction. Biggest hurdle figures to be today’s trip but did drew out in final furlong winning CCA Oaks here at 9 furlongs July 24. Has continued to train well over the strip.

7-Flora Dora (20-1)
was a good third in CCAO in Sa debut and has been working bullets in her new blinkers subsequently.


RACE 11 ALLOWANCES 1-1/16 MILES INNER TURF

1-Orino (10-1) has never been entered this cheaply but draws in with salty NY-Bred group. Barn’s horses always live here, draws pole and attracts Johnny; wakeup potential.

2-Sanctify (10-1) returns to state-bred competition and is entered for a tag again. Last two victories came beneath Franco, is 1-for-2 at trip and laudable (2) 1-1-0 on Spa grass. Very good value on early line.

3-Converge (2-1) has been class tested in five straight open graded stakes now drops back in with New Yorkers for Chad with switch to Castellano; extremely formidable here despite meeting elders for first time.

4-Powerful Instinct (9-2) came to hand for these connections at Belmont summer meet after leaving Florida but barn winless in 23 attempts at this meet through Wednesday racing. Five-time trip winner gets J Ortiz on the re-ride.

5-Vincento (8-1) was beaten less than 3 lengths by ‘Instinct’ following bobbled beginning in Belmont finale. Meets elders once again with Irad taking the return call.

6-Dream Doctor (8-1) has won two of last three and beaten less than two lengths while chasing the pace wide in Belmont finale. Back around two turns with switch to Saez.

7-Memories of Peter (20-1) chased the pace from wide post on tiring course last out on Long Island after adding front bandages but Lezcano on the re-ride for top state-bred owner-breeder. Not impossible at huge price.

8-Tizquick (20-1) returns to winning level and reunites with winning rider Arroyo (took off Dream Doctor). Has solid, purposeful workline but barn still winless at meet.

9-Ocala Jim (5-1) just missed to Powerful Instinct last out, all six lifetime wins at today’s trip (plus three placings) and is (4) 1-1-0 on Spa grass. Potential value on early line.

10-Front (12-1) chased the pace in that same race from wide post, understandably tiring late. Crafty claiming outfit switching to Santana but has shown no affinity for Spa turf (5) 0-0-0.

11-AE With Exultation (4-1) makes first start at reduced level since claimed, raced well in troubled Spa turf return, had sharp blowout for this with switch to Bravo. Very live in this spot if draws in.

12-AE Make a Decision (5-1) has been raced into condition, turns back from longer grass routes and returns to level of claim. Rice barn has come alive and 4 of 5 lifetime wins came at this trip; likes course, a big wakeup candidate.

13-Jet Black (5-2) MAIN TRACK ONLY


RACE 12 ALLOWANCES NY-BRED 5-1/2 FURLONGS TURF


1-Lakeview Lady (15-1) showed improved speed in two recent starts now draws pole with tactical speed and big switch to Joel; anticipate further improvement at sizable odds.

2-Celestial Sighting (10-1) goes off long layup for leading owner returning to the surface of both lifetime best performances. Prepared at Fair Hill and shipped to Spa early awaiting this. Obviously well-meant here.

3-Day After Day (15-1)
has been showing high speed on tiring courses in three career starts. Loses Irad to ‘Celestial’ but picks up turf ace DeCarlo.

4-Laura’s Patriot (12-1) was a very willing fourth going 7/8s in Belmont finale and appears well suited by the turnback; getting weight for all and apprentice, struggling here, has ability.

5-True Charm (12-1) comes off comprehensive open lengths score in recent off-turfer here and has run very competitively in two of three turf starts; threat to repeat with Lezcano on the re-ride.

6-Sabrina Ballerina (12-1) owns high early speed and not particularly well meant for turf; on bounce-rebound pattern and aggressive Carmouche sticks.

7-Wantagh Queen (20-1)
raced wide in one of these, her Spa turf return, following maiden-claiming Belmont win. Second at this trip last year now gets switch to Geroux; surprise package?

8-Somerset Sandy (6-1) was a willing third in course return with Santana. Has improved in recent starts since adding Lasix and now gets blinkers. Second to ‘Celestial’ here in 2015; dangerous rival and value on line.

9-Esther the Queen (8-1)
chased strong pace throughout her last in turf-sprint this-distance debut. Loses Carmouche but is reunited with Franco; improvement expected.

10-Lulu’s Blues (4-1)
might have moved prematurely when second in course and distance debut here August 4. Well-bred New Yorker will benefit from effort and gets Castellano takes the re-ride. Formidable.

11-Cosmic Tale (7-2) placed gamely in last and was awarded the win via DQ following third to recent repeat winner. Switches to Johnny for Baker, batting otherworldly 43 percent at meet through Wednesday.

12-I Hope You Dance (8-1) made mid-race move then finished evenly in 3YO debut July 8, her first start following Linda Rice claim. Barn 33% effective in LAY-2 long layoff scenarios and Jose takes the return call.

13 AE-Woodford Tea (15-1)
certainly has the needed conditioning turning back from recent turf routes, her last on tiring ground. Maker barn going well here but this a tough task given wide draw.

14 AE-Queeb (20-1) is also turning back from turf routes but is 1-for-1 at today’s trip and ships in for top Delaware Valley outfit attracting Santana; very interesting price shot coming into this off bullet drill at home base, 2nd fastest of 14 peers week of Aug. 2.

15-AE-Silver Vixen (15-1)
will find this a very tough go given wide draw for first start in turf sprint.

16-Sing for Beauty (9-2) MAIN TRACK ONLY

See Saturday's Feature Race Analysis Section for On-the-Record Selections




Written by John Pricci

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Friday, August 05, 2016


Great Talent and Future Stars on Display Whitney Day


SARATOGA RACE COURSE LATE PICK 4 RESULTS JULY 30, 2016

By John Pricci, exclusively for http://www.123BET.com


Comments from July 30 P4 at SARATOGA, notable winners & money finishers
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

SARATOGA LATE PICK 4 JULY, 30, 2016


RACE 8 ALLOWANCES 1-3/16 MILES MELLON TURF


5-Ray’s The Bar (3-1) showed high promise in first two starts as 2015 juvenile but so far has failed to show added development at 3. Chad 24% in LAY-3 scenario, may come around reuniting with Javier. (WON: $8.60 )
3-Idiosyncratic (6-1) finished well after the fact last time out, his first start since 2014, but was away again since April appearance. Chad 27% effective with 90-days+ layups and Irad a profitable 30% for this barn last two months, winning with 4 of last 11 rides. (2ND, EX: $53.00)

RACE 9: Grade 1 VANDERBILT HANDICAP 3&UP 6 FURLONGS

4-A.P. Indian (5-1) comes off consecutive sharp scores going seven-eighths, including G3 Belmont Sprint Championship. Sharp blowout for streaking Delacour barn having career season and Bravo, looking to make it three straight, on board. (WON: 11.40 )
5-Holy Boss (9-2) is effective when patiently handled but has proven inconsistent sort. True North third gets Johnny on the re-ride, loves the Spa and Asmussen has been live at meet thus far; nicely posted. (EX: 58.00)

RACE 10 Grade 2 JIM DANDY STAKES 3YO 1-1/8 MILES

2-Laoban (20-1) had fastest recent blowout of 130 peers last week on this surface. Given that, and switch to Jose Ortiz, Guillot appears intent on the lead. Still winless in seven lifetime starts. (WON: 56.00)
5-Governor Malibu (9-2)
has steadily improving PERs since taking state-bred stakes on Aqueduct Inner this winter. Good-finish Peter Pan runnerup was victimized by tough trip in Belmont. Has worked his way—literally—into this race and gets along well with Joel. (EX: 269.50)

RACE 11 Maiden Claiming F & M 1-16 MILES INNER TURF

4-Newcomb (8-1) drops into claimer for the first time for Proctor, a 23% angle, has trained steadily (missing work Jul 19?) at Fair Hill base and picks up Geroux; Looks like live ship-in. (WON: 8.80)
1-Smile Big (3-1) never has raced this cheaply for Chad, whose dropdowns have been hot and colt at meet thus far. Showed improved early speed when adding blinkers for MTH finale; drop and switch to Irad for logical, formidable early favorite. (EX: 29.40)

============================================================================

SARATOGA LATE PICK 4 WHITNEY DAY AUGUST 6, 2016



RACE 8: Grade 1 TEST STAKES 3YO F 7 FURLONGS


1-Poala Queen (20-1) tried the G1 Kentucky Oaks and Acorn to no avail in last two starts and while likely appreciating the cut back, this group appears to too tough for breakthrough performance.
2-One True Kiss (15-1) has come close in G3 sprints recently but lacks Spa experience. Would take a Hall of Fame miracle in this spot.
3-Kareena (9-5) is a very exciting prospect, barn taking exact Jersey Girl Stakes prep route that was successful with Cavorting in 2015. Co-fastest Thoro-Graph figures and owns top Pricci Energy Rating. Visually impressive and likely to make the Grade here.
4-Malibu Stacy (15-1) has improved this summer, just missing when beaten a neck in G3 Victory Ride following maiden score. Weaver barn going well at meet and filly can earn minors with continued improvement.
5-Lightstream (8-1) earned field’s co-fastest figure breaking maiden at the trip in GP debut followed by win in 7F G3 Beaumont at KEE. Third in recent G1 Mother Goose, Lynch barn profitable with turnbacks and is major threat with a return to winter-spring form.
6-Lewis Bay (9-2) is not as fast as these but is multiple G2 winner and recently toughened in G1s. Chad profitable at otherworldly 44% rate with his turnbacks given sizable sample and Irad fits perfectly.
7-Off the Tracks (8-5) won G3 Schuylerville here at 2 and Todd 25% efficient in LAY-3 scenarios. Mother Goose winner carefully managed into this spot and is well posted at this trip; formidable rival.
8-Kinsley Kisses (15-1) is the uncoupled Todd in this matchup and a specialist at the trip (3) 2-0-1. Reunites with Johnny but this a very tall order meeting faster despite adding blinkers on the turnback.
RACE 9: Grade 3 WAYA STAKES F&M 1-1/2 MILES INNER TURF

1-Photo Call (8-1) this is Todd in a LAY-3 situation again, owns tactical speed, and is pole sitting with switch to aggressive turf ace Carmouche. Lacks figures but dynamics a big help.
2-Achnaha (12-1) has been very competitive in recent starts but has been unable to handle many of today’s rivals previously; solid Spa turf work around dogs July 25.
3-Suffused (7-2) has improved with each of three starts for Mott, breaking through to win latest at even longer marathon trip. Carefully pointed to this with Jose Ortiz re-riding.
4-Real Smart (6-1) has won two of three U.S. starts for Motion who has gotten off to a hot start this meet. Up from Fair Hill base reuniting with Johnny for toughest test to date.
5-Vielsam (20-1) ran a flat race behind Real Smart in Dick Memorial after just missing three back in Pimlico’s G3 Gallorette. Forrest Boyce 1-for-1 shipping in, but barn is 0-for-40 in that scenario.
6-Guapaza (5-2) has been highly competitive on T-G scale in three New York appearances, albeit not so much on PER scale. Chad 28% effective with potential repeaters and winning rider Javier takes the return call.
7-Ball Dancing (12-1) showed high promise last year as 4YO but has yet to run back to that form this season. Showed very good late life in latest at WO and Julien’s on the re-ride; further improvement very possible.
8-Al’s Gal (20-1) earned top PER when fast-closing, tough-trip second in G3 Bewitch three back and was third again in G3 Modesty at AP last out. Highly competitive on both T-G and PER scales and looms stark overlay at early line odds.
9-Trophee (6-1) was able to pair-up lifetime best performance figure despite laughably slow pace in Belmont finale. Likes this course (3) 1-0-1 but needs a little help up front; fair value on early line.
8-Desiree Clary (8-1) was able to overcome moderate pace while winning U.S. debut at Belmont July 8. Stabled in Saratoga since May and late runner gets switch to Irad; needs improvement but appears live here.

RACE 10: The Grade 1 WHITNEY STAKES 3 & UP 1-1/8 MILES


1-El Kabeir (20-1)
has been pointed to this and has been training very well. Dynamics suit, but not necessarily the competition; very tall order.
2-Comfort (8-1) hails from Todd barn that has very good record in this race. Rapidly improving 4YO is straight forward on figures, is nicely drawn with Johnny, and rates a puncher’s chance. Need at least early odds vs. this group.
3-Upstart (10-1) is another that’s been working well and loves Saratoga, winning here twice at 2. Remains winless in four tries at this trip, however.
4-Frosted (3-5) earned the highest figure ever recorded, according to Thoro-Graph’s Jerry Brown and must regress off that effort. But despite weight assignment (124 pounds), there’s plenty of wiggle room. Returns with good spacing, loves the trip (4) 2-2-0 and highly competitive albeit winless on this surface.
5-Noble Bird (10-1) was inappropriately placed in Met Mile following huge two-turn score in G3 1-3/16 miles Pimlico Special in prior. Freshened and working strongly, returns to favorable two-turn dynamics but like choice shoulders top weight.
6-Effinex (7-2) (also 124) makes difficult turnback from G2 10 furlongs to G1 nine-panel trip, but has laudable (7) 3-1-0 slate at this distance and three latest wins were beneath Smith.

RACE 11: DE LA ROSE STAKES F&M 1 MILE INNER TURF


1-Roca Rojo (4-1) demonstrated huge turn of foot going 7 furlongs in U.S. debut for Chad in fast, visually impressive winning performance. Well spotted for advance into listed stakes company with Johnny on the re-ride; formidable rival.
2-Industrial Policy (20-1) made some ground too late following roughed start when out-posted in WO’s G2 Dance Smartly. Better placement here and switches to hot riding, strong finishing Santana.
3-Stormy Victoria (6-1) gamely won torrid stretch battle last out, her second U.S. victory at 7 furlongs now is up in class and distance. Good enough—if good enough—and picks up Irad.
4-Lady Lara (8-1) has always been promising turf mare but has disappointed often; finished willingly in rapidly run G1 Just A Game and drop just might be what Mott ordered.
5-Mayla (30-1) could have found a softer spot for turf debut; may be rain dancing in here.
6-Call Thirty Seven (20-1) has excellent early speed--which has been holding fairly well on this course--is working strongly at Monmouth base, reunites with winning rider Alvarado and is 3-for-4 at the trip--1-for-9 all others. Solid overlay on early line.
7-Excilly (12-1) has been Group placed in Europe and makes U.S. debut for Dascombe barn that’s 1-for-1 shipping to U.S. for listed stakes; attracts Julien and goes firs-Lasix. Intriguing dark horse.
8-Akatea (12-1) made solid, very wide rally to beat weaker in Belmont finale after being humbled by Tepin—no disgrace. Like Clement, looking to find out more today.
9-Robillard (6-1) is developing nicely at 4 for Kiaran, 27% effective and profitable in non-graded competition. Winless in two Spa starts but is 1-for-1 at the distance. Winning Carmouche aboard for the re-ride.
10-Zindaya (3-1) drew off impressively late to win strongly run Intercontinental for Chad in Belmont finale. Profitable spacing into this (28%), is (2) 1-1-0 on Spa turf and Javier on the re-ride. Barn appears to have this group surrounded top and bottom.
11-My Sweet Girl (10-1) owns Spa win and a victory at the trip but recent win came over yielding ground. Franco takes the re-ride but filly has something to prove vs. these.
12-Bitty Kitty (30-1) apparently moved prematurely, from far back, taking lead into stretch before understandably tiring late in listed stakes at the Pea Patch last out. Class rise and wide drawn certainly doesn’t enhance chances.

See Saturday's Feature Race Analysis for On-the-Record Selections


Written by John Pricci

Comments (0)

 
 

Friday, July 29, 2016


All-Entrants Look at Spa Saturday Late Pick 4


By John Pricci, exclusively for 123GAMING.com

Comments from July 23 P4 at SARATOGA, notable winners & money finishers



RACE 8 Allowance Optional Claiming 1 Mile INNER TURF


2-Our Way (6-1) ran well in recent salty spots after being victimized by a series of bad trips dating back to January at GP. Has some tactical speed and pole position with switch to Jose Ortiz indicates switch to close-range tactics. (Win: $22.00)
3-Tizzarunner (12-1) was a tough trip second in turf debut this winter, a listed stakes, indicative of confidence from Casse shed. Takes meaningful for barn that’s profitable 21% effective with second-time turfers. (Ex: $150.00)
9-Hockey School (8-1) raced wide following troubled start in last after breaking maiden by open lengths previously over yielding ground. Has five works since his last, switches to Rosario, and bred to improve given today’s two-turn dynamic. (Tri: $1,776)

RACE 9 Allowances 3 & UP 1-1/8 MILES


5-Tale of Verve (12-1)
finally showed some life in last following series of dull efforts. This still requires act of fact even if reuniting with winning pilot Rosario. (Win, 37.40)
4-My Man Sam (8-5) returns from the Triple Crown scene following game placing behind lone quality speed Matt King Coal this winter, following up with wild-horse-finish placing in the Blue Grass and deceptively good horror trip in the Derby. Freshened since, pointed to this meet; best figures and looms formidable favorite despite spotting weight to elders. (Ex: 94.00)

RACE 10 Grade 1 DIANA STAKES F & M 1-1/8 Miles MELLON TURF

6-Dacita (5-1) flashed excellent turn of foot to win G2 New York in final strides, drawing out late. Drops four pounds for this, retains Irad, and enters off series of very sharp drills. T-G pattern very healthy and earned co-high lifetime best on Spa grass in 2015. (Win: 10.20)
7-Recepta (9-2) has been extremely competitive despite spate of tough trips in series of G1s, retains Johnny, is favorable weighted and finally gets away from inside posts which have compromised her position early. Reported training well and is 1-for-1 at Spa. (Ex: 95.50)
9-Rainha Da Bateria (20-1) entered stretch extremely wide in rapid Just A Game, losing all chance, but made up deficit late, closing into wild late pace coming for last of 12. Working bullets recently, attracts Leparoux and has puncher’s chance at big price. (Tri: 1,217.00)

RACE 11 Claiming 3 & UP 1-1/16 Miles INNER TURF

4-Procurement (8-1) has never raced this cheaply for turf ace Maker or anyone else. Javier on a return call. Lacks Spa turf experience and winless in six starts at the distance. (Win: 14.60)
10-Dream Man (6-1) beat similar in Belmont finale, dropdowns notwithstanding, earning excellent performance figures and three of four career wins have come at the trip. Indeed, all recent tries have been competitive and gelded 8YO retains Alvarado. (Ex: 92.50)
======================================================================

SARATOGA LATE PICK 4 JULY, 30, 2016


Reprinted via promotional arragement http://www.123BET.com

RACE 8 ALLOWANCES 1-3/16 MILES MELLON TURF

1-Captain Moss (10-1) comes from sharp score over $50K starters following narrow defeat at this level in prior. Well drawn with tactical speed, has won half his six turf starts and Franco was aboard for three most recent wins. Brilliant work Jul 21; value on early line.
2-Alexahente (20-1) placed gamely in first start for Elizabeth Voss--whose dad always prepped at Delaware before shipping to Spa—beating a next-out winner. Another tactical runner with position; attracts Carmouche.
3-Idiosyncratic (6-1)
finished well after the fact last time out, his first start since 2014, but was away again since April appearance. Chad 27% effective with 90-days+ layups and Irad a profitable 30% for this barn last two months, winning with 4 of last 11 rides.
4-Muhaawer (8-1) has been away since last year’s key event (3 next-out wins) but Kiaran en fuego with many winners coming off layups, validating 23% profitability with 90-days+ returnees. Crisp works at Greentree Center and Santana 1-for-1 for this barn recently.
5-Ray’s The Bar (3-1) showed high promise in first two starts as 2015 juvenile but so far has failed to show added development at 3. Chad 24% in LAY-3 scenario and is reuniting with Javier.
6-Circus Performer (9-2) exits two better-than-it-looks performances at Belmont for Todd—his latest from post 10 on Belmont Inner--earning excellent Pricci Energy Rating. Better position here and returning in Joel's hands.
7-Hunter O’ Riley (8-1) raced as if in need of 3YO debut in first start for Toner after impressing with late-run potential at 2. Barn’s horses improve in second start, gets switch to Recepta’s rider, and showed some affinity for Spa turf in 2015 racing debut.

8-Harpoon (20-1)
was a good second on this course last year but handled only Monmouth claimers successfully in subsequent starts.
9-Bingo Kitten (12-1) made very solid mid-race move from wide post in Churchill spring finale, understandably tiring late off a 5-month layup. Ramsey/Maker team coming alive and Julien taking the return call.
10-Joe Star (12-1) Group 1-placed in Brazil and getting first-Lasix for crafty owner and trainer. Boasts sharp works at SA, then three longer and softer here, including 7-furlong turf breeze around dogs followed by a one-mile conditioner; gets Lezcano.
11-King’s Obsession (20-1), winless since Gulfstream maiden-breaker, finished one-paced at Suffolk, an apparent prep, now makes Spa debut for Sheppard with switch to Geroux following local breeze; intriguing…
12-Tiz Town (12-1) finished well late for third in quickly run turf-route Belmont finale after being beaten by 3-1/2 lengths in CD Grade 3 Louisville ‘Cap. Turn-back in distance suits here, Saez sticks, and owner/trainer won here last week.


RACE 9: Grade 1 VANDERBILT HANDICAP 3&UP 6 FURLONGS


1-Anchor Down (5-2) chased the pace throughout rapidly run G1 Met Mile, placing very gamely behind freaking Frosted. Todd can be deadly with turnbacks but 4YO meets swift group here breaking from the rail. Underlay on early line.
2-Catalina Red (5-1), on bounce-rebound pattern, was used up chasing hot pace in G2 True North last out but is more effective as tactical speedster than on the chase. Good spacing into this, but loses Javier to Respite. Value at early line odds.
3-Delta Bluesman (3-1), the second of three Navarro’s in here (#s 2 & 6), has been showing marked improvement to win last three. Recent MTH work 2nd fastest of 72 peers to work that week. Brilliant talent Jaramillo up from SoFla for the re-ride.
4-A.P. Indian (5-1) comes off consecutive sharp scores going seven-eighths, including G3 Belmont Sprint Championship. Sharp blowout for streaking Delacour barn having career season and Bravo, looking to make it three straight, on board.
5-Holy Boss (9-2) is effective when patiently handled but has proven inconsistent sort. True North third gets Johnny on the re-ride and Asmussen has been live at meet thus far; nicely posted and loves the Spa
6-Chublicious (12-1) is 2-for-2 since barn switch to super trainer Navarro, is well posted with a style suiting today’s dynamics. Hot-riding Gallardo up from Jersey Shore looking for third straight score; price shot off excellent Thoro-Graph figure last out..
7-Requite (12-1) has been freshened and pointed for this coming off career-best score over weaker in GP listed stakes, his 2016 debut. Weaver profitable with this spacing and Javier, second on him over this track in 2015 G2 Amsterdam.
8-All Star Red (20-1) makes mini-turnback to most effective distance but is very ambitiously placed vs. this group.


RACE 10 Grade 2 JIM DANDY STAKES 3YO 1-1/8 MILES


1-Creator (3-1) is versatile and very classy, winning 9-furlong G1 Arkansas Derby and Test of the Champion at a mile and a half, under pluperfect Irad handling. Reported training well but this appears a very likely prep; mixed signals.
2-Laoban (20-1) had fastest recent blowout of 130 peers last week on this surface. Given that, and switch to Jose Ortiz, Guillot appears intent on the lead. Still winless in seven lifetime starts.
3-Mohaymen (9-5) has been freshened since very good fourth place in tough trip Derby try. Training strongly at Greentree Center, rates to have preferred stalking trip off Laoban, getting first run on two high-class rivals.
4-Destin (2-1) just missed, unlucky to lose the Belmont after stalking the pace throughout. Multiple graded winner will appreciate shorter trip here but also is likely to be more interested in using this as a bridge to Travers. Looms favorite’s main rival.
5-Governor Malibu (9-2) has steadily improving PERs since taking state-bred stakes on Aqueduct Inner this winter. Good-finish Peter Pan runnerup was victimized by tough trip in Belmont. Has worked his way—literally—into this race and gets along well with Joel.
6-Race Me Home (15-1) was a good second to Economic Model in listed Easy Goer following maiden score. From mare that’s produced five winners from as many starters and his recent blowout for this 3rd fastest of 130 peers this week through Thursday. Straight forward on both T-G and PER scales; money prospects.


RACE 11 Maiden Claiming F & M 1-16 MILES INNER TURF

1-Smile Big (3-1) never has raced this cheaply for Chad, whose dropdowns have been hot and colt at meet thus far. Showed improved early speed when adding blinkers for MTH finale; drop and switch to Irad for logical, formidable early favorite.
2-Antebellum (9-2) has raced one-paced in three recent starts at this level but Kiaran having freaky Spa, saddling eight winners through Thursday. Profitable on turf and going sprint to route, the switch to Jose Ortiz indicates front-running tack here.
3-Rain in Spain (20-1) gets another free square vs. maidens after being DQ’d following win two back. Kimmel’s horses outrunning their odds this season and is 20% effective in LAY-3 scenario; money prospects at big early line quote.
4-Newcomb (8-1) drops into claimer for the first time for Proctor, a 23% angle, has trained steadily (missing work Jul 19?) at Fair Hill base, and picks up Geroux; Looks live.
5-La Dama de Hierro (30-1) has hit the board only once since Nov. 2014 and has not threatened seriously at high odds recently. Did have tough start vs. state-bred special-weights in season’s debut, however.
6-Bellamy Torch (20-1) was eliminated at the start when dropped to this level in turf debut sprinting. Mott 20% effective with second-time Lasix runners and pedigree says the longer the better. Wake-up potential for long-time clients.
7-Glory to Kitten (5-1) was off slowly in special-weights turf debut, rallied wide into lane (see replay) while finishing well too late. Ramsey/Maker team trying claimers for first time and Julien sticks. Sports two Saratoga works and could vie for favoritism here.
8-Back Road Bellamy (20-1) had some improved speed in second start now drops into claimer for the first time getting big rider switch to Joel. Sharp breeze at Oklahoma TT on Monday and looms potential overlay on early line.
9-Mo’s Ginny (12-1) flashed improved lick when dropped to this level last out before finishing evenly. Albertrani profitable with his maiden claimers and Franco takes the return call. Fits with this kind.
10-Double Dose (4-1) earned top PER when dropped to this level sprinting last out. Todd 25% effective with LAY-3 runners and adding blinkers with Johnny on the re-ride. Spotted well and added distance rates to help chances; strong contender.
11-Globleza (20-1) was outrun in two cheaper sprints at SA now makes Spa and turf debut on the rise for crafty barn profitable with turf debut types, albeit a small sample. Blinkers off and low profile rider adds to intrigue.
12-Dean’s Ticket (30-1) set pressured pace while under wraps, holding gamely for place in Belmont same-level finale. Contessa horses running well at meet and gets Carmouche, losing Irad to Chad runner.
13-AE City Section (20-1) was covered up, shook clear after straightening away into stretch after angling out and finished with a rush late. Six sibs have won grass and gets Javier for effective Bush barn; potential overlay on early line if in.

See Saturday's Feature Race Analysis for On-the-Record selections


Written by John Pricci

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