EDITED NYRA RELEASE – The New York Racing Association Inc. (NYRA) will host a Cross Country Pick 5 encompassing all graded stakes with racing action from historic Saratoga Race Course and Arlington Park on Saturday. The sequence will include four Grade 1 contests and a Grade 2 event.
Free Equibase past performances for the Cross Country Pick 5 sequence are now available for download at https://www.nyra.com/saratoga/racing/cross-country-wagers.
Juveniles will take centerstage to start it off as a 12-horse field will compete in the Grade 2, $200,000 Saratoga Special presented by Miller Lite in Race 9 at 5:39 p.m. Eastern. The 6 1/2-furlong sprint for 2-year-olds will see Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen saddle a pair of talented Winchell Thoroughbred homebreds – and sons of 2017 Horse of the Year Gun Runner – in Gunite and Red Run. Trainer Rudy Rodriguez will see if Doctor Jeff, who won a first-out six-furlong sprint at Belmont Park last month, can handle the step up in stakes company, while Hall of Famer Todd Pletcher will have two contenders as well with Midnight Worker, who won at Saratoga already in July, and Double Thunder, who won the Bashford Manor last out in June at Churchill Downs.
Action then shifts to Arlington, located in Arlington Heights, Illinois, for the Grade 1, $400,000 Beverly D. for fillies and mares 3-years-old and up going 1 3/16 miles on the turf in Race 7 at 5:49 p.m. Trainer Chad Brown, a six-time Beverly D.-winner who has won the last five editions of this race, will look to extend his streak by sending out the Irish-bred Lemista, who will look to rebound off an eight-place finish in the Grade 1 Diana on July 17 at Saratoga. Lemista, listed at 5-1 on the morning line, will face a strong seven-horse field that includes 9-5 morning-line favorite Mean Mary for trainer Graham Motion. Santa Barbara, conditioned by renowned international trainer Aidan O’Brien, is 2-1.
Saratoga’s featured race, the Grade 1, $500,000 Fourstardave for 3-year-olds and up going one mile on the inner turf, will go off in Race 10 at 6:13 p.m. Brown will have another strong contender in this prestigious turf race as well, with Raging Bull facing an all-graded stakes winning field as he looks to take the next step in a race in which he ran second in 2019 and fifth last year. Brown will be looking for his first career victory in the Fourstardave, which is a “Win And You’re In” event for the Grade 1, $2 million Breeders’ Cup Mile on November 6 at Del Mar. Mark Casse, inducted into the Hall of Fame last week, will send out Got Stormy, the winner of the 2019 Fourstardave, and she seeks to become the first dual Fourstardave winner since two-time Horse of the Year and recent Hall of Fame inductee Wise Dan [2012-13].
Arlington will close the sequence with two Grade 1s, starting with the $300,000 Bruce D. for 3-year-olds going one mile on the turf in Race 8 at 6:28 p.m. Trainer Jack Sisterson, who has amassed four Grade 1 wins since 2020, will look to sustain his run by sending out Tango Tango Tango. The race, formerly named the Secretariat, will see Tango Tango Tango, winner of the American Derby at the same track on July 17, face a field that includes Mystic Lake Derby-winner King of Miami and Like a Saltshaker.
Concluding the Cross Country Pick 5 will be the $600,000 Mr. D. for 3-year-olds and up going 1 1/4 miles on the turf in Race 9 at 7:13 p.m. Formerly the Arlington Million, the Mr. D. will see the O’Brien-trained Armory, under jockey Ryan Moore, look to parlay strong international efforts into success in North America. Armory was the runner-up in the Group 1 Cox Plate in Australia last year and third in the Group 1 Prince of Wales at Royal Ascot two months ago and fourth last out in the Group 2 York on July 24. Brown will have strong representation in this race as well, with Domestic Spending carrying a four-race winning streak into the weekend. Domestic Spending has won six of seven starts overall.
The minimum bet for the multi-track, multi-race wager is 50 cents. Wagering on the Cross Country Pick 5 is also available on ADW platforms and at simulcast facilities across the country. Every week will feature a mandatory payout of the net pool.
The Cross Country Pick 5 will continue each Saturday throughout the year. For more information, visit NYRABets.com.Cross Country Pick 5 – Saturday, August 14:Leg A: Saratoga – Race 9, G2 Saratoga Special presented by Miller Lite (5:39 p.m.)Leg B: Arlington – Race 7, Beverly D. (5:49 p.m.)Leg C: Saratoga – Race 10, G1 Fourstardave (6:13 p.m.)Leg D: Arlington – Race 8, Bruce D. (6:28 p.m.)Leg E: Arlington – Race 9, Mr. D. (7:13 p.m.)