At the Gate - Thursday
June 20, 2013
By Mike Dempsey
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There will be just a field of five for Saturday’s $300,000 Mother Goose (G1) at Belmont Park, but we will get a glimpse of Dreaming of Julia as she is back in action after her disappointing fourth place finish in the Kentucky Oaks (G1).
The Todd Pletcher filly caused quite a stir after her 21 ¼ length victory in the Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) on March 30, earning a 114 Beyer Speed Figure and off the chart numbers according to the sheets players.
I thought she was a play against in the Oaks at 3-2 in a field of ten and I was right, as she had a tough trip and made a mild late run to finish fourth. The only problem was I did not come up with the winner Princess of Sylmar, who paid $79.60. The winner was also trained by Pletcher.
She was installed as the 1-2 morning line favorite for the Mother Goose, facing just four foes, but there are a couple of very talented fillies she will face.
The Bill Mott trained Close Hatches is coming off a runner up finish in the Acorn (G1) on May 27 behind the Bob Baffert trained Midnight Lucky. The filly won her first three career starts including the Gazelle (G2) at the Big A going nine furlongs.
Marathon Lady is coming off a game neck loss in a runner up finish in the Black Eyed Susan (G2) to another Baffert runner Fiftyshadesofhay.
Completing the field is Black Eyed Susan third place finisher Toasting and longshot Sister Slate, who was outrun against first level optional claimers in her last outing and looks in over her head.
In addition to a good card at Belmont Park we have another “Downs After Dark” program at Churchill Downs on Saturday with a 6:00 ET post time.
The feature is the $100,000 Debutante for juvenile fillies that drew a wide open field of 11 that incudes runners that made their last starts at Mountaineer Park, Lone Star Park, Arlington Park, Will Rogers Downs, Pimlico, Indiana Downs, Churchill Downs and Monmouth Park. It’s a complete toss-up.
I will have my full card reports for both tracks available here on Friday.
Click here to purchase my full card report for Belmont Park for Thursday.
Here is today’s opening from Belmont Park to get the day off to a good start:
BEL Race 1 OClm $65,000SAL (1:05 ET)
9 Win for Kitten 7-2
5 Blossom's Trail 5-2
1 Al's Rosie 5-1
2 Eddy Gourmet 8-1
Analysis: Win for Kitten stalked the early pace and finished up well for the runner up spot last out over yielding turf at the Big A, beaten three lengths for the top spot behind a loose on the lead gate to wire winner. Two back the Chad Brown trainee beat $50,000 starter optional claimers with a good late run at Gulfstream Park. The break is no problem as the barn is strong with fresh runners and this gal has a solid turf pedigree, by Kitten's Joy out of a stakes placed Kris mare.
Blossom's Trail won both of her starts in Florida, last out beating $50,000 starter optional claimers after breaking her maiden for a $35,000 tag in her debut. She comes back here off nearly a three month break here for the Nicks barn that is 11% winners with runners coming back off a 61-180 day layoff. She has decent looking works over the Spa training track for her return and looks well spotted here.
WIN: #9 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 5,9 / 1,2,5,9
TRI: 5,9 / 1,2,5,9 / 1,2,5,7,9
Today's Featured Race of the Day from Belmont Park:
BEL Race 8 OClm $25,000N2X (4:45 ET)
9 Bake Shop 4-1
6 Most Happy Fella 5-1
7 Bigger Is Bettor 5-1
2 Swag Daddy 6-1
Analysis: Bake Shop invades from Maryland where in his last two starts here ran second and third at the open Alw-2 optional claiming level. He is back with state breds here and if he runs back to his solid runner up finish two back he is going to be tough here. Carrasco is in to ride for Vazquez. The gelding broke his maiden over the main track here last September for a $16,000 tag.
Most Happy Fella must be a happy fella as this guy has been claimed seven times in less than a year. He is coming off a win last out against $20,000 non-winners of three or a race since Nov. 19. He was claimed out of the race by the Imperio barn that is 21% winners (with a +ROI) first off the claim. He is back with state breds here and two back at the Big A he set the early fractions at this level before weakening to finish fourth. He is a three time winner over the main track here and the 5-1morning line looks fair enough to toss him in the mix.
WIN: #9 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 6,9 / 2,6,7,9
TRI: 6,9 / 2,6,7,9 / 2,5,6,7,9
These are price plays for exotic players looking to find a couple of extra contenders to use in their trifecta and superfecta wagers. Or for those with smaller bankrolls, you might want to get in a small win-place wager.
R1: #2 Eddy Gourmet 8-1
R5: #1 Milkyourway 8-1
R6: #2 Beautiful Risk 10-1
R6: #3 Silky Saint 8-1
R9: #8 Wild Frances 12-1
Good luck today!
HORSE RACING EXPERT
Mike covers the New York racing circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga) year round as well as Keeneland, Churchill Downs, the Triple Crown, and the Breeders’ Cup.
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