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, July 01, 2016


Summit of Speed Late Pick 4 Ell-Entrants Analysis


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

Comments from June 25 PICK 4 winners and notable money finishers

RACE 7: 3-Tiz Twice (5-2) showed marked improvement with early speed when dropped to this level and stretched to route last out. Bred for distance both sides, dam’s five winners include three on turf, and Alvarado on the re-ride. Sharp blowout, very solid contender (won @ $8.80). 4-Say Cin Cin (12-1) drops into claimer for first time since November 2015 and raced competitively despite rough trip in lone grass try; switch to Luis Saez. (2nd 7-1, 149.60 ex).
RACE 8: 6-Zennor (6-1) showed marked improvement switching to grass and adding Lasix for last two as Spa 2YO. Reported first-gelding makes season’s debut for McLaughlin, 23% profitable with 90 days + layups, Irad sticks and strong upstate works. Could prove key. 9-Ice Cutter (10-1) earned competitive PER for Clement, 21% effective going dirt to turf. Makes season’s debut off very solid and steady workline.
RACE 9: 5-The Imposter (5-1) remains at proper level after just missing in 6F Belmont return. Reunites with winning rider Saez and is good value at early line odds. Bullet in holster for this. (won 11.60). 11-U S Citizen (5-2) drops to winning level and suitable, slightly longer trip after gamely third chasing pace throughout rapidly run 6F Belmont turf debut. Gelded 7YO switches to leading rider Ortiz for Jacobson, 27% effective with beaten favorites. Formidable favorite. (2nd exacta 56.00).
RACE 10:: 2-Stormin Saratoga (4-1) had some gate issues in off-turf debut going 7F, chasing the pace then stopping late. Todd 26% with second-time starters and gets Javier. More mixed signals. (won 13.80). 10-Alyssa and a Lisa (8-1) drops into maiden claimer for first time in season’s debut, returning for Contessa, profitable with 90-days + layups. Purposeful workouts returning for barn having a solid meet. (2nd exacta 149.00).



RACE 10 Grade 2 SMILE SPRINT 6 FURLONGS


1-Delta Bluesman (5-2) is the latest Navarro miracle. Seeking third straight and will be very tough out if runs back to either of last two; layover figures on the Pricci Energy Rating scale.

2-Eighty Three (3-1) makes third start of freshening for Jacobson, 23% effective with shippers. Stalk and kick style nicely suits race dynamics.

3-Limousine Liberal (2-1)
, still seeking first graded win, has been highly competitive in graded company. Worthy (5) 2-2-0 slate at the trip, has competititve Thoro-Graph figures but lacks Gulfstream experience; mixed signals.

4-Storming Inti (30-1), reported first-time gelding, makes only second start at this trip on dirt from 24 lifetime starts and steps up from claimers. Seriously overmatched.

5-Chief Lion (7-2), earned excellent PER at SA three back, competitive with uncoupled mate Eighty Three, will be part of the pace along with ‘Bluesman’. Either capable of wiring without the other…

6-More Applause (20-1), another stalk and pounce type, doesn’t finish all that well and meets very tough group here.

7-Copingaway (30-1)
goes turf to dirt for low percentage barn that’s profitable in that scenario but is up against it class-wide. Reunites with winning rider Castro, turns back (profitable angle) and owns GP and a win at the trip. Gimmicks surprise?


RACE 11 Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint 5 FURLONGS


1-Starship Wildcat (15-1) raced wide in prep for this but has left higher percentage outfit, gives away class edge but does get switch to aggressive and hot Rafael Hernandez.

2-Successful Native (9-5) won aforementioned prep off a March freshening and has earned highly competitive PERs with similar. Specialist is a 5-time course and distance winner. Owns fastest last race on the Thoro-Graph scale; worthy favorite.

3-Shadow Rock (5-1) earned a winning figure on this course at the trip four starts back and was claimed from last by claiming turf ace Mike Maker. Might have beaten similar in recent Churchill finale, attracts Luis Saez and may provide value; note.

4-Speechify (4-1) goes off the layup for Nicks, profitable with 90-days+ returnees, is graded stakes placed on main track and was second on this course at trip last fall; Javier Castellano down from New York for today’s card.

5-Besame (20-1) is not quite fast enough, classy enough or profiles classy enough on this surface to be taken very seriously in this spot.

6-Moonstricking (30-1)
escaped from maiden claiming ranks last time out. Seriously?

7-Doctor J Dub (15-1) battled on the pace in overnighter won by ‘Successful’ before tiring then given conditioner going longer with blinkers off in last. Back to sensible trip with blinkers back on switching to Gaffalione.

8-Daring Kathy (7-2) is meeting males for second straight time after finishing second in the Bonita last out. Stakes-toughened 5YO fits the dynamics and is very worthy (6) 3-1-0 on this course. Well spotted, Cornelio sticks, poised for forward move; main danger.

9-Do the Roar (8-1)
is yet another that was hard used early in the Bonita and stayed very well until late stretch [see replay]. May enjoy good stalking trip from outside beneath re-riding Caraballo; money prospects at early line odds.


RACE 12 Grade 2 PRINCESS ROONEY F & M 7 FURLONGS


1-Cali Star (9-2), clearly pointed to this, is very well suited to dynamics—one turn mid-distance sprint, comes into this off a series of bullets for Wolfson, 25% effective with his beaten favorites. Cornelio batting 22% since returning to SoFla.

2-Be Mind Phil (30-1)
showed marked improvement winning optional allowances last out, earning career best PER, is a three-time winner at the trip and (2) 1-1-0 on this course. Goes well for Samy Camacho and looms price money-shot at early line odds.

3-Willow Hills (10-1) has strong, purposeful workline returning from a lengthy layup for capable outfit, is 1-for-1 at the trip and owns figure from last spring capable of upsetting this. Needs career best to do so, however.

4-Birdatthewire (8-5), consistently fastest on PER and T-G scale, is a classy multiple graded winner, including G1 La Brea at the trip. Pointed to this ‘win-and-in’ B Cup race. Loves the distance (2-for-4) and GP (3) 2-1-0. Romans/Gaffalione a good team this winter. No excuses.

5-Concealedwithakiss (20-1)
will be part of the pace, is unproven at the distance and not nearly close to this level on paper; extremely tall order.

6-My Miss Valenzuela (15-1)
earned excellent PER when third at this trip last fall, has made good development from 3 to 4 and won recent 6F prep for this. Might shake loose for aggressive Hernandez and worth a serious look at anything near early line odds.

7-Spelling Again (3-1) ships south for upper trainer Cox, profitable in graded stakes and with ship-ins, including (3) 1-1-0 slate this meet. Grade 2 winner was good third two back in G2 Ruffian behind freaking Cavorting--repeated in G1 Phipps beneath L Saez, taking a return call here.

8-Kiss to Remember (5-1)
has yet to regain 2015 form but is cycling back to tops going turf to dirt for Wolfson (20%) and getting switch to Jaramillo, (3) 2-1-0 for this barn of late. Will need pace meltdown to be most effective.


RACE 13 Maiden Special Weight 2 YOs 5 furlongs


1-Awesome Bay (20-1) debuts in a tough spot but by 12% first-out sire and dam has two winners from as many starters. But this race appears loaded, barn not known for FTS effectiveness and draws pole position.

2-Sweetontheladies (15-1) is going off mixed signals here with steady workline for 18% debut sire but barn is 1-for-21 with its recent newcomers.

3-Hidden Journey (4-1)
earned competitive first-out PER, continuing gamely for third following wide rally. But pedigree on the light side and barn 0-for-46 thus far in 2016. Tough read for us.

4-Leverkusen (20-1) more mixed signals here as dam’s first foal for barn batting 4% on the year but is by 18% debut sire.

5-Epic Drama (7-2) Queen homebred is working on schedule—strongly and rapidly--for debut for Fawkes, having a strong meet. Dam’s first foal by capable debut sire (14%). Attracts Castro, riding at 18% for this outfit from large sample.

6-In Sum Fun (20-1)
was virtually eliminated at the start of his debut for low profile barn that does well with its babies overall and gets Panici on the re-ride. Improves, but enough to compete here??

7-Awesome Standard (12-1) made brief run along the inside before tiring in debut now returns for Casse, 22% profitable with its second-time starters and worked purposeful 5F, presumably in his new blinkers. Value on early line.

8-Unbridled Holiday (6-1) debuts for Biancone, long known for his effectiveness with debuting 2YOs. Woke up work-wise in recent blowout for this and attracts hot-riding Raffy Hernandez; live newcomer.

9-How Time Flies (10-1)
has nature and nurture with capable first-out connections, strong debut pedigree—20% first-out sire; dam has two winners from as many starters, including a stakes winner. Attracts Cornelio; another live firster.

10-Brave Rooster (8-1)
owns sharp, short workline and debuts for 25% first-out sire for barn profitable with its newcomers from a small sample and having profitable 2016. Live apprentice Cruz takes the call; interesting as potential value play.

11-Knockout Ranger (9-2) earned top PER in debut, went to turf, now returns to main tracks with experience for barn profitable turf-to-dirt, with special-weight maidens and with its beaten favorites. Want more? Pilotti names Javier.

12-Science to Win (30-1)
has virtually unknown pedigree on both sides and barn, while profitable 9%, not generally known for first-out effectiveness.

13AE-Legacy Azteca (20-1)
, adding blinkers, trailed after bearing out from wide post in debut, a common affliction for juvenile newcomers. Had purposeful work from gate and could improve quickly here. Interesting at early line odds.

See Saturday's Feature Race Analysis for On-the-Record Selections and 8-Year Running Totals



Written by John Pricci

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Friday, June 24, 2016


Belmont Park Late Pick 4 All-Entrants Analysis


Underwritten by Promotional Arrangement with http://www.123BET.com

Listed by Program Number with Morning Line Odds

***

RACE 7 ALLOWANCES 3 & UP 1-1/8 MILES INNER TURF

1-Yowl (5-1), troubled in last, is bred bottom side of pedigree for added ground, has been highly competitive at this level in last two starts, loses Ortiz but picks up Lezcano. Dynamics suit well.
2-Freifan (8-1), first-time reported gelding, is not especially fast on the Pricci Energy Scale, failed in lone start at this trip and lacks true route pedigree on both sides.
3-Lotta Gold (20-1) jumped up in first start on turf going 1-1/16 miles June 4 on this course, has route pedigree dam’s side, Tagg effective with recent maiden graduates and L Saez takes return call.
4-Verger (3-1) gets Rosario, 6-for-18 recently for Cannizzo, has not earned competitive PERs since winning turf debut at Spa last year and barn only 8% with new acquisitions, underlay on early line.
5-Tizacinch (15-1) has PERs that have been improving incrementally, coming into his own as gelded 5YO. Loses Saez to Lotta Gold but picks up hot-riding Alvarado and dam’s three winners all won on grass. Looms live price shot.
6-Cody’s News (12-1) is on a bounce-rebound pattern, earning excellent PER two starts back coming from last going shorter and bred bottom side for added trip, at which he’s 1-for-1. Barn profitable on grass but this is dam’s only winner of six on turf.
7-Rooftop View (20-1) jumped up to break maiden on Belmont lawn when dropped to this level last out, earning excellent PER, and gets strong finishing Arroyo for barn profitable with its turf horses. Certainly not impossible.
8-Gracious Plenty (6-1) showed improvement vs. open 40K claimers last out and is better placed with these going longer with appropriate pedigree; worked thrice since last and picks up leading rider Ortiz.
9-Captain Moss (2-1) showed much improvement after getting back on Belmont turf two back; earned superior PER beating allowance types last out but qualifies for return to starters’ claiming company; worthy favorite repeats with similar effort. Thoro-Graph figures lays over.
10-Sandy Strikes (5-2) MAIN TRACK ONLY


RACE 8 ALLOWANCES 3 & UP 1-1/8 MILES

1-Lost Iron (5-1) drops from G2 Peter Pan following maiden score at trip in Aqueduct two-turner. Lack of competitive PERs to date a concern; Alvarado takes re-ride for Mott.
2-Derby Glass (15-1) won first start for Jacobson following claim on this ground but steps up significantly in this spot and loses J Ortiz to another rival.
3-Conviction (6-1) comes up to this nicely after graduating distances following two-turn score at Monmouth last out. Uncoupled Pletcher runner attracts Saez, is bred topside for this trip. Tricky read for us.
4-Realm (6-5) has run well in all four starts, earning good figures including career best in last when chasing the pace, finishing second to highly regarded Chad runner Gift Box. Tagg’s horses running well this meet and Ortiz lands here. Worthy favorite.
5-Caderyn (5-1) was eliminated n first turn of Pimlico’s Sir Barton following maiden break on Aqueduct winner in February. Blinkers have helped and makes proper-level drop here; excellent PER two back.
6-Sea Raven (10-1) is winless at Belmont but is (6) 2-1-0 at this trip and (15) 1-4-3 at all others. Lifetime best PER came at today’s distance, was good figure third to Rally Cry last out and returns with profitable spacing for this outfit.
7-Mister Monolo (15-1) has generally disappointing profile but has run some good ones and now goes LAY-3 with switch to Lezcano; tough read, but interesting at early line odds.
8-Ready Dancer (8-1) is second off the layup for Pletcher returning at appropriately longer trip. Has been victimized by series of tough trips and gets switch to Rosario while getting weight as 3YO vs. elders; solid contender.


RACE 9: G3 BED O’ROSES HANDICAP F & M 4 & UP 7 FURLONGS


1-By the Moon (6-1) makes second start following lengthy layoff and just missed in G1 Acorn going a mile on this strip last season. Toughened in G1s, she appeared in need of recent G3 Distaff now reunites with J Ortiz. Gets six pounds from ML fave and has been working purposefully for two months; value on early line for live filly.
2-Wavell Avenue (6-5) is the obvious fave as winner of the BC Filly and Mare upsetter last year and raced evenly late at G1 level in both starts this year. Chad winning everything in sight but gives weight to all and looms underlay given early line quote.
3-Bar of Gold (4-1) gained conditioning beating state-breds in recent 8F Critical Eye but has been highly competitive in open G2 previously. Alvarado fits her very well and turns back to what should be optimum trip; upset prospects.
4-West Coast Chick (3-1) placed gamely in G3 Vagrancy prepping for this following key race allowance score at KEE in prior. Unknown quantity at added sixteenth and barn 0-for-31 this meet. Underlay on early line.
5-Mayla (15-1) will be tested for class big time here seeking her fourth straight score but has promising record for this: (2) 1-1-0 @ BEL and (4) 2-1-0 at trip; surprise package?
6-Pangburn (15-1) has not been competitive at the graded level since G3 Iowa Derby going two turns last year. T. Dutrow 21% off the layup but 4YO lacks experience at BEL of the trip.


RACE 10: Maiden Claiming 3 & UP 7 FURLONGS WIDENER TURF


1-Freedom Seven (12-1) raced well without threatening in turf/racing debut, finishing well too late, and hasn’t been back in a turf sprint since. Lifetime best at this trip on wet track two back now picks up Franco; wakeup potential here.
2-Bluff Harbor (30-1) goes first-time Contessa, profitable with new acquisitions and gelding is working well. But he hasn’t come close and dam’s had no turf winners from 7 winning sibs.
3-Brett the Jet (4-1) goes second-time for Gary Gullo, having profitable 23% year and similarly 24% profitable with second-time runners and profitable overall in LAY-2 scenarios. Has mile figure on this course that’s plenty good enough to win this.
4-Take Me Away (12-1) showed improved speed in second start after adding blinkers, his turf debut going longer last out and barn is profitable with its turnbacks but this still requires leap of faith.
5-The Undersheriff (3-1) chased very hot pace on very fast ground last out going 6F now drops into claimer for the first time on the stretchout and eligible to shake very loose. Potential bounce-rebounder goes for J Englehart, 26% dropping into MCL and profitable in third start off the layup and Saez sticks
6-Cuckoo’s Saloon (8-1) was a good second in ordinary time in only turf start at this level two back, showed much improved speed vs. MSWs in second start without blinkers in BEL debut. Returns to proper level switching to Alvarado for barn 18% profitable in LAY-3 scenarios. Dam’s had two offspring sib winners and is excellent value on early line.
7-Majority (6-1) was a good third after opening long lead going a route last out behind recent repeat winner. Barn having solid meet but this is a tricky read.
8-Colonel Andy (20-1), first time vs. maiden claimers, trailed throughout in turf/racing debut at 95-1 June 4 but Sciacca, having strong meet, is profitable with turf and second-out runners.
9-Lucky Town (20-1) showed improvement in third lifetime start after dropping to this level and getting first Lasix. Ubilio profitable with in LAY-2 scenario and switches to promising 7-pound bug boy Torres (winner yesterday).
10-Let It Go Phil (15-1) NY home-bred is working steadily for open claiming debut. Topside pedigree slightly better than average but dam’s two winners winless on turf.
11-Without Fear (50-1) hasn’t come close at long odds for a very long time.
12-Southern Union (5-1) showed improvement when turned back to this distance despite having heels clipped by trailing rival early last out. Brown barn profitable with its maiden claimers and J Ortiz takes return call.
13AE-Vino Blanco (5-1) is a reported first-time gelding and drops into claimer for the first time for Bush, more than capable with layups. Dam’s lone winner won on turf; attracts L Saez. Live if in.
14AE-Street Fightin Man (6-1) earned a winning PER going long on BEL turf last fall. Obviously hasn’t won but is a tryer attracting Rosario for Esler, 22% effective in LAY-2 scenarios and trip might suit perfectly.
15AE-Space Ranger (15-1), adding blinkers, had tough trip to this level after being beaten by weaker in Florida this winter. Dam’s had two turf winners from three sibs that have run.
16AE-Slapstick (5-2) comes off series of excellent PERs for this level and drops in with maiden claimers for the first time with scheduled switch to Rosario. Turns back to most effective distance which earned lifetime best figure; worthy favorite if draws in.

***

Comments from June 18 P4; winners and notable money finishers

RACE 7: 3-Tiz Twice (5-2) showed marked improvement with early speed when dropped to this level and stretched to route last out. Bred for distance both sides, dam’s five winners include three on turf, and Alvarado on the re-ride. Sharp blowout, very solid contender. (won @ $8.80)
4-Say Cin Cin (12-1) drops into claimer for first time since November 2015 and raced competitively despite rough trip in lone grass try; switch to Luis Saez. (2nd 7-1, 149.60 ex)

RACE 8: 6-Zennor (6-1) showed marked improvement switching to grass and adding Lasix for last two as Spa 2YO. Reported first-gelding makes season’s debut for McLaughlin, 23% profitable with 90 days + layups, Irad sticks and strong upstate works. Could prove key.
9-Ice Cutter (10-1) earned competitive PER for Clement, 21% effective going dirt to turf. Makes season’s debut off very solid and steady workline.

RACE 9:

5-The Imposter (5-1) remains at proper level after just missing in 6F Belmont return. Reunites with winning rider Saez and is good value at early line odds. Bullet in holster for this. (won 11.60)
11-U S Citizen (5-2) drops to winning level and suitable, slightly longer trip after gamely third chasing pace throughout rapidly run 6F Belmont turf debut. Gelded 7YO switches to leading rider Ortiz for Jacobson, 27% effective with beaten favorites. Formidable favorite. (2nd exacta 56.00)

RACE 10:

2-Stormin Saratoga (4-1) had some gate issues in off-turf debut going 7F, chasing the pace then stopping late. Todd 26% with second-time starters and gets Javier. More mixed signals. (won 13.80)
10-Alyssa and a Lisa (8-1) drops into maiden claimer for first time in season’s debut, returning for Contessa, profitable with 90-days + layups. Purposeful workouts returning for barn having a solid meet. (2nd exacta 149.00)

***

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



Written by John Pricci

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Friday, June 17, 2016


BELMONT PARK LATE PICK 4 ALL-ENTRANT ANALYSIS


Analysis Via Promotional Arrangement with http://www.123BET.com


RACE 7 MAIDEN CLAIMING F & M 3 & UP 1 MILE WIDENER TURF

1-Fired Up Sensation (3-1) owns highly competitive Pricci Energy Ratings, drops into maiden claimer for first time (Clement 29%, profitable) with switch to Leading rider Ortiz and first-Lasix (28%, profitable. Obvious strong contender.
2-Truly Bound (12-1) drops into claimer first time for Tony Dutrow (24%, profitable). Outrun lone turf start and one of dam’s two winners have won on grass. Switches to Irad.
3-Tiz Twice (5-2) showed marked improvement with early speed when dropped to this level and stretched to route last out. Bred for distance both sides, dam’s five winners include three on turf, and Alvarado on the re-ride. Sharp blowout, very solid contender.
4-Say Cin Cin (12-1) drops into claimer for first time since November 2015and raced competitively despite rough trip in lone grass try; switch to Luis Saez
5-French Dressing (15-1) placed twice in four turf starts, two on this course; last raced in claimer October 2015; goes first-time for Gyarmati (20%, profitable) and gets switch to Lezcano; viable price shot on early line.
6-Mo’s Ginny (6-1) was a good second in lone start under similar conditions at two now returns to that level in a LAY-2 situation for Albertrani, profitable when dropping in with maiden claimers; switch to Javier augurs well.
7-Charlotte’s Hope (30-1), the other Albertrani, makes second with serviceable pedigree and takes confident class rise after being non-threat in turf/racing debut; interesting.
8-More Than a Legend (8-1) drops into maiden claimer for first time but deep closer compromised with late run style and wide draw. Nevertheless, Kimmel 25% profitable on this type of drop.
9-Laquesta (4-1) had wide trip from wide post going 6F now drops into maiden claimer for the first time getting second Lasix (Ribaudo profitable) with distance pedigree on top side; obvious solid contender must overcome wide post.


RACE 8 ALLOWANCES 3 & UP 1-1/6 MILES INNER TURF


1-Eucalyptus (5-1) earned excellent PER winning turf/racing debut going 7 furlongs, gamely withstanding late stretch battle. Ortiz re-rides and nicely drawn for Hushion, profitable with both recent maiden winners (25%) and first-time long (28%).
2-Mark My Style (20-1) raced one-paced vs. open rivals last out earning field’s top PER winning New York-bred NW 2 allowances previously; 3-for-11 on turf and 1-for-7 doing anything else. Drawn inside with strong-finishing Arroyo; live price shot.
3- Security Risk (12-1) has disappointing profile given pedigree and connections but goes first-time 4YO for Shug, 23% efficient with 90-days+ layups.
4-Brother O’Connell (10-1)earned field's best Thoro-Graph figure last out, a lifetime best, is 3-for-8 on grass and goes for barn that’s profitable with its allowance types, but PERs lacking vs. this group. Mixed Signals.
5-Liberty Holiday (6-1) was Group 1 placed in native Argentina and should benefit from both U.S. starts this spring. Mott adds blinkers, Lezcano sticks; improvement expected here.
6-Zennor (6-1) showed marked improvement switching to grass and adding Lasix for last two as Spa 2YO. Reported first-gelding makes season’s debut for McLaughlin, 23% profitable with 90 days + layups, Irad sticks and strong upstate works. Could prove key.
7-Lost Iron (7-2) MAIN TRACK ONLY
8-Araquel (3-1) has been rallying too late for Chad going longer and could benefit greatly from turnback to shorter route; purposeful recent works and Castellano sticks.
9-Ice Cutter (10-1) earned competitive PER for Clement, 21% effective going dirt to turf. Makes season’s debut off very solid and steady workline.
10-Big Rock (10-1) was used hard in pace battle after brushed start in last over yielding ground following two excellent tries for Clement on firmer ground this winter. Switch to aggressive Carmouche suits Rock’s style.
11-Circus Performer (8-1) beat half the field after roughed start and wide trip in last for Todd, earning lifetime best PER, co-second fastest among today’s rivals.
12-Cadeyrn (4-1) MAIN TRACK ONLY
13-Mister Monolo (6-1) MAIN TRACK ONLY


RACE 9 CLAIMING 3 & UP 7 FURLONGS WIDENER TURF


1-Special Selections (12-1)
was a willing third in season’s debut despite wide trip and should benefit in return at winning level;c4-for-32 on turf, 1-for-25 on dirt. Reunites with Irad and Bruce Brown has small profit with LAY-2 runners; viable price shot.
2-City Steel (20-1) one third in three life starts on turf and dam’s three foals yet to produce turf winner. Popular at claim box; haltered four times in last six starts.
3-Street Shark (8-1) has shown affinity earning highly competitive and strong PERs in last two on turf. Takes significant drop for capable Chatterpaul and Arroyo sticks. Early line quote is fair.
4-Liberal Spin (4-1) drops to suitable level after beating half the field following stumbling start in recent Monmouth route. Highly likely to improve cutting back into sprint but looms underlay on early line.
5-The Imposter (5-1) remains at proper level after just missing in 6F Belmont return. Reunites with winning rider Saez and is good value at early line odds. Bullet in holster for this.
6-Regulus (6-1) MAIN TRACK ONLY
7-Dendrite (15-1) reunites with Carmouche who won two straight on gelded 7YO last fall, including one on this course. Lacks winning profile but is properly spotted with this group with sharp recent works and rates price shot chance here.
8-Frazil (20-1) venerable 10YO gelding hung late in rapidly run 6F My 21 now makes the mini-stretch to trip at which he’s 1-for-1 and is 1-for-2 on Belmont lawn. Switch to Franco augurs well and another likely price shot here.
9-Rapscallion (20-1) showed improvement despite trouble with re-addition of blinkers and return to turf last out for low profile barn profitable with its turf runners and in LAY-2 scenarios. Switch to Rosario augurs well; live price shot.
10-Midnight Notes (10-1) earned highly competitive PERs in last three starts, beaten 3/4s with belated, very wide rally. Drops a notch, switches to Lezcano for barn profitable with turfers and turnbacks; yet another viable price player here.
11-U S Citizen (5-2) drops to winning level and suitable, slightly longer trip after gamely third chasing pace throughout rapidly run 6F Belmont turf debut. Gelded 7YO switches to leading rider Ortiz for Jacobson, 27% effective with beaten favorites. Formidable favorite.
12-Thomas Hill (6-1) showed returned to best form last October on Belmont turf but has been away since. Contessa 13% but profitable with 90-days + layups and attracts Javier with sharp 5F work for this.
13-Tairneach (3-1) MAIN TRACK ONLY
14-Inca Saint (4-1) MAIN TRACK ONLY


RACE 10 MAIDEN CLAIMING F & M 3 & UP 6 FURLONGS INNER TURF


1-Great Lady (10-1) finished with a bit of interest at wire in debut at 2 and away since. Barn profitable with turf debut types but both of dam’s winners winless on grass. Solid steady workline, drops into maiden claimer and Alvarado sticks. Tricky read.
2-Stormin Saratoga (4-1) had some gate issues in off-turf debut going 7F, chasing the pace then stopping late. Todd 26% with second-time starters and gets Javier. More mixed signals.
3-Midaswellswings (20-1) showed some improved speed going 6F at huge odds in latest but is up against despite talent-challenged group.
4-Champagne Therapy (10-1) is uncoupled mate of ‘Lady’ also making turf debut for Schosberg. Dam’s four winners all winless on turf but gets switch to Ortiz; another guessing game.
5-U Do That (20-1) has shown improved early lick in both starts at 3 but hasn’t hit the board in five career turf starts.
6-Mary’s in Utopia (15-1) 5YO maiden has several races on his card that can win this, takes confident class ride with Arroyo on the re-ride. Zero for 19 but takes confident rise here.
7-Irish Actor (5-1) made promising season’s debut in 4th career start, had sharp blowout since and mare has produced four turf winners from five to win. Rice having profitable 2016 and switches to stable rider, Belmont leading J Ortiz. Good value on early line.
8-Rescue Cat (6-1) showed improvement in second lifetime start in course debut as 2015 juvenile now makes 3YO debut dropping into maiden claimer and getting Lasix for the first time. Weaver effective in LAY-2 scenarios.
9-Maybry’s Conquest (3-1) improved sharply in second start, her first on Belmont turf while making class rise. Uncoupled Weaver favorite earned field’s top PER on 3YO debut, showing good development. Saez tapped for the re-re-ride and looms worthy favorite.
10-Alyssa and a Lisa (8-1) drops into maiden claimer for first time in season’s debut, returning for Contessa, profitable with 90-days + layups. Purposeful workouts returning for barn having a solid meet.
11-Mind That Diamond (30-1) had tough trip but still tired badly late, lacking pedigree for barn winless at current meet.
12-Night Night Kitty (50-1) dam's produced a turf winner among three offspring to win and low-profile barn is 1-for-1 at meet and beaten off in four lifetime runs.
13AE-Double Mane (30-1) raced wide in turf debut two back then trailed following troubled start in last at big odds; extremely unlikely.

See Saturday's FRA for On-the-Record Selections

Handicapping sketches of last week’s Pick 4 winners/notable money finishers

JUST A GAME
8-Celestine (12-1) earned excellent Pricci Energy Rating winning G2 Honey Fox last out, showing good development at 4, is 2-for-2 on Belmont lawn and 3-for-4 at trip; value on early line.
MET MILE:
5-Frosted (7-2) was classy runnerup in last year’s Belmont and 1-for-1 at the trip. Given plenty of recovery after Dubai, working strongly at Greentree upstate, pace scenario and distance should suit and reunites with Rosario.
*12-Anchor Down (12-1) showed a new dimension winning G3 Westchester, confirming affinity for Belmont (5) 2-1-0 and earning excellent T-G and PER figures. Leading rider Ortiz sticks; value on early line quote.
MANHATTAN
10-Flintshire (8-5) was headed to United Nations but June 4 BEL work convinced Chad to stay home for this G1. Extremely high-class 6YO Euro world traveler has banked $7.3 million. Goes first-time Chad (30% profitable) with first Lasix and Javier; worthy favorite.
BELMONT
13-CREATOR (10-1) Rebel third and Arkansas Derby winner was completely eliminated by horrendous trip in the Derby. Also owns good turn of foot when called upon and all the pedigree that’s needed but as a deep closer, his style works against the grain of Belmont Stakes dynamics. Wide draw most likely will not hurt this deep rallier.
*2nd at 12-1

Written by John Pricci

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