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 26, 2016


Travers Day All-Grade 1 Pick 4


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

LAST WEEK’S RESULTS


Posted comments on winners with notable money finishers

RACE 9 GRADE 1 FOURSTARDAVE 1 MILE INNER TURF

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.
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.

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

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.
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.

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.

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


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; live threat to repeat with Lezcano on the re-ride.
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.
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?

**************************************************************************************************************


TRAVERS DAY LATE PICK 4 AUGUST 27, 2016



RACE 8 Grade 1 KING’S BISHOP 3 YO 7 FURLONGS

1-Economic Model (6-1) placed gamely after making mid-race run into stretch in G3 Dwyer. Broke maiden here in 2015 and second to rapid Awesome Banner at trip in Swale. Training strongly in blinkers.
2-Fish Trappe Road (8-1) has improved markedly since turned back into sprint this spring, beating ‘Model’ in latest. Loves this trip (3) 2-1-0 and owns tactical speed and kick; fair value on early line.
3-Summer Revolution (6-1) has been visually impressive in two rapidly run starts at today’s trip, including Spa debut. Extremely fast figures on both Thoro-Graph and Pricci Energy Rating scales but takes substantial rise here. Intriguing.
4-Tail of S’avall (30-1) was third behind ‘Model’ and ‘Road’ in Dwyer and did make maiden here in debut at 2. Tough draw given his style and dynamics in bulky field.
5-Bird Song (30-1) has been developing nicely this summer for Wilkes and jumped up to win Spa debut July 24. Distance should suit, Jose Ortiz re-rides, but makes significant class rise here.
6-Mohaymen (5-1) has been toughened at the highest levels all season long and is 2-for-2 in career rounding one turn. Suited by dynamics, style and distance but has not shown development since leaving Gulfstream. Mixed signals.
7-Star Hill (20-1) earned lifetime best figure on T-G scale with benefit of bias two back at Belmont. Rallied very wide in Indiana Derby entering stretch last out now turns back suitably and adds blinkers. Money prospects at big price.
8-Mind Your Biscuits (15-1) Regressed badly last out after lifetime best score in prior yet still won the G2 Amsterdam. Two-for-two since adding blinkers; loses Rosario but picks up Johnny.
9-Jazzy Times (8-1) Jumped up to win Del Mar debut @ 6-1/2 furlongs now ships in for Baffert shedding 4 pounds and nicely drawn outside. BB 31% effective removing blinkers, reunites with Bejarano. and Aug. 22 work 2nd fastest of 272 peers last week at SoCal base. Live price shot.
10-Rated R Superstar (20-1) Found his niche sprinting while taking G3 Carry Back at this trip with strong, late, wide rally at GP July 2. Carefully pointed here since and Cornelio up from SoFla for the re-ride.
11-Noholdingback Bear (10-1) Certainly is fast enough on performance figures to compete but is 4-for-5 on synthetics and 0-for-4 on dirt. Da Silva shipping down for the ride; decidedly mixed signals.
12-Tom’s Ready (12-1) had table set and roared home on closer’s track despite altering course deep stretch to win G2 W. Stephens, earning lifetime best figure. Has won 2 of 3 at trip, speedy dynamics aid and retains Rosario. Freshened for this; live price shot.
13-Drefong (4-1) has continued his march forward in two runs for Bullet Bob at 3, winning both starts while very impressive visually. Has good spacing, worked bullets since, and gets Mike Smith on the re-ride. Wide draw is the good and bad news.


RACE 9 Grade 1 FOREGO 3 & UP 7 FURLONGS


1-Catalina Red (8-1) Hails from Navarro barn that’s 33% effective with sprinters and chestnut 4YO is 3-for-3 this trip. Has tactical speed and kick and may trip out assuming clean break. Willing 3rd despite rough break in G1 Vanderbilt, his Spa debut.
2-Chief Lion (10-1) Placed gamely after mid-race move on closer’s track August 12, his Spa debut, but has failed to hit the board in two surface starts. Picks up Geroux.
3-Limousine Liberal (15-1) Was a very good second to Runhappy here in G1 King’s Bishop at 3. Second in G2 Smile Sprint at GP July 4, has been working strongly since at KEE base, and attracts Castellano. Stern pace pressure likely, however.
4-The Truth Or Else (30-1) Lost all chance making wide rally in recent Spa debut and was a game second in lone start at this trip. This event is a different animal, however.
5-Anchor Dawn (10-1) Freaked winning G3 Westchester three back then placed gamely in Frosted’s Met Mile before suffering tough trip in Vanderbilt here. Has shown little affinity for surface and may be over the top.
6-Tamarkuz (15-1) Raced dully in lone start this year, the Met Mile. Non-competitive in this race at 5 and expecting more of same today despite attracting Smith.
7-Schivarelli (20-1) Likes the trip (5) 2-2-1 and strip (2) 1-0-1, but this is toughest test to date. Picks up Bejarano but is up against it in this spot.
8-Stallwalkin’ Dude (8-1) Paired lifetime best T-G figures winning bias-aided Tale of the Cat here August 12. Now 2-for-2 at the Spa and a winner of 3 of 9 at today’s trip. Nicely drawn, suited by dynamics and attracts Irad.
9-Ready for Rye (10-1) Freshened awaiting this, was second in lone dirt start here and has never finished off the board in five starts at 7F. Rallied very wide when third vs. two favorites here. Working purposefully, nicely posted and attracts JR.
10-Donnie’s Deceiver (30-1) On a bounce-rebound pattern, has an effort two back that’s fast enough to compete, sheds six pounds, picks up Franco, and is nicely positioned. Not the worst 30-1 chance we’ve ever seen.
11-A.P. Indian (3-1) Has won three straight, earning excellent PER and T-G ratings last out, owns tactical speed and kick and is positioned nicely to trip out. Knock is picking up six pounds as 124-pound highweight. Worthy favorite, however.
12-Marking (4-1) Suffered through wide trip when narrowly beaten by ‘Indian’ in the G3 Belmont Sprint, a key race producing two next-out winners. Enjoys 4-pound shift with favorite, draws favorably outside that rival, and gets positive switch to Rosario.


RACE 10 Grade 1 SWORD DANCER 1-1/2 MILES INNER TURF

1-Grand Tito (8-1) Placed gamely behind Flintshire in G2 Bowling Green after being rated very stoutly throughout. Gets favorable two pound switch, Jose Ortiz sticks, is pole sitting, but likely to be pace-engaged by Roman Approval.
2-Money Multiplier (8-1) Has come to hand for Chad in last two starts, won recent Spa return impressively and drops six pounds. Loses Castellano but picks up Irad and has shown affinity for this course.
3-Roman Approval (20-1) Was no match for ‘Money’ when second last out, a promising course debut, but is winless in three tries at the trip and figures are lacking vs. this group.
4-Twilight Eclipse (10-1) Hard hitting old pro went well when third to favorite in Belmont finale after encountering trouble at the start. Likely to find good position but appears unlikely to handle the choice.
5-Inordinate (30-1) Apparently overmatched, is likely to be employed as a rabbit for Juddmonte’s champion.
6-Flintshire (1-5) Two-for-two at the Spa, may be world’s best turf marathoner. Showed his class to win Bowling Green off splits of 53 and 1:19.40. Pace likely to be more realistic here. Loom’s everyone’s P4 single.
7-Applicator (30-1) Both lifetime wins came over Gulfstream turf, his May 29 effort on a speed-favoring course. Little chance here.


RACE 11 Grade 1 TRAVERS 3YO 1-1/4 MILES

1-Arrogate (10-1) Has been extremely impressive visually in all two-turn starts this year, beating his elders in each of three appearances. Has speed, kick, the pole, and picks up Mike Smith. Up in class, distance and weight scale (all tote 126).
2-American Freedom (6-1) Was an excellent second to Exaggerator on tiring sloppy track in the Haskell. Bejarano had his choice and sticks here. Has blinkers removed, a 31% Baffert tack.
3-My Man Sam (20-1) Appeared in need of the effort when narrowly beaten in Spa debut at 9 furlongs while also paced compromised following rough start. Blue Grass runnerup not without a puncher’s chance at big price.
4-Governor Malibu (12-1) Always runs well but always seems to find some trouble in the lane. Blinkers have helped, had beneficial local prep when pace compromised behind Laoban in Jim Dandy. Offers early line value.
5-Forever d’Oro (30-1) Made willing finish when third over speed-favoring Spa oval July 29, showing development, but remains eligible for preliminary allowances.
6-Anaximandrop (50-1) Fourth in W Virginia Derby, his stakes debut--so what’s he doing in here?
7-Exaggerator (3-1) Three of four lifetime Grade 1s have come on sloppy tracks but did win Saratoga Special in fast footing at 2. Haskell score was a lifetime best tour de force and he’s worked very well here since. Easily the most accomplished; horse to beat.
8-Destin (10-1) Got back to his lifetime best despite relatively dull finish when third in the Jim Dandy following nose defeat in the Belmont. Should benefit, added furlong suits, and Castellano seeking sixth Travers score. Value on early line.
9-Gift Box (12-1) was a very good second returning from layup when pace compromised and unable to beat speedy stablemate Connect on speed-kind oval. Loses Castellano to Destin but has money prospects at a square price.
10-Connect (4-1) Very promising winner of three straight and highly regarded by connections, but had everything his own way in the Curlin, hardly the case here. Underlay at early line odds.
11-Majesto (30-1) Hails from top Florida outfit and had zero chance while wide throughout the Curlin. Florida Derby runnerup adds blinkers and attracts hot-riding Santana. Potential price shot for bottom of super-exotics.
12-Creator (15-1) Belmont winner raced dully on cuppy Spa oval in Jim Dandy, his first start since winning the Belmont. Added distance helps as does the promise of solid pace. Will be running late beneath Irad and offers good value on early line.
13-Laoban (15-1) looms the speed of the speed but was killed by wide draw. Trainer says he doesn’t need lead but Guillot blows a lot of smoke. Underrated colt worked bullet since Jim Dandy, 2nd fastest of 43 peers here last week.
14-Gun Runner (10-1) had it rough on sloppy track in Haskell after winning the G3 Matt Winn by daylight at a mile returning from third-place Derby finish. Has worked thrice since but will need extreme luck from extreme outside slip.

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







Written by John Pricci

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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
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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

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