Entries for Saturday’s $600,000 Jim Dandy (G2) came out and Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Palace Malice will be back in action and is the 5-2 morning line favorite.
The Todd Pletcher trainee is using the race as a steppingstone to the $1 million Travers (G1) on Aug. 24 where he is expected to run into Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Orb as well as Preakness (G1) winner Oxbow.
Orb is training up to the Travers while Oxbow is running Sunday in the $1 million Haskell Invitational (G1) at Monmouth Park.
Palace Malice will face either eight or nine tomorrow in the Jim Dandy. Vyjack is entered, but may end up going Sunday in the Haskell.
His biggest threats appear to be Mylute (7-2) who was fifth in the Derby and third in the Preakness, and Freedom Child (4-1), who was badly outrun in the Belmont after a 13 ¼ length victory in the Peter Pan (G2).
There also are a couple of Grade 1 races on tap on Saturday at the Spa, the $300,000 Prioress for three-year-old fillies and the $600,000 Diana for fillies and mares on turf.
Kauai Katie is the even money favorite in the Prioress and is perfect in six starts at seven furlongs or shorter. The Pletcher trainee was third in the one mile Acorn (G1) in her last outing.
Pletcher is off to a fast start at the meeting, picking up seven wins from his first 19 starters.
The Diana drew a field of six including three for the Chad Brown barn. The Wayne Catalano trained Stephanie’s Kitten is the 8-5 morning line favorite.
The feature on Friday is the $100,000 Curlin which drew a field of eight three-year-olds and could produce a starter or two for the Travers.
The Kiaran McLaughlin trained entry of Transparent and Romansh is the 5-2 morning line favorite.
Here is opening race from Saratoga to get the day off to a good start:
SAR Race 1 OClm $100,000C (1:00 ET) 5 Doctor Chit 8-5 3 Currency Swap 5-2 2 Saturday's Charm 4-1 4 Jake N Elwood 5-1
Analysis: Doctor Chit put in a good effort in his first start off an 8 1/2 month layoff where the colt tracked the early pace and was unable to get by the gate to wire winner in the stretch in a runner up finish. The winner of the race was Immortal Eyes, who came back to win the Mr. Prospector in his next outing on July 7 at Monmouth Park by 7 1/4 lengths. This guy owns a solid pace profile throughout and looks like a good fit in this spot. The Pletcher barn is 29% winners with runners making their second start off a +180 day layoff.
Currency Swap is making his first start since last September where he was seventh in the Gallant Bob. He landed in the exacta in four of seven starts last year including winning the Amsterdam (G2) here last July. The Pompay barn is showing a 0 for 13 mark with runners coming back off a +180 day layoff dating back three years.
WIN: #5 to win at 8-5 or better.
EX: 3,5 / 2,3,5
TRI: no play
Today's Featured Race of the Day from Saratoga:
SAR Race 8 The Curlin (4:47 ET) 4 Midnight Taboo 6-1 7 Edge of Reality 4-1 6 Cerro 4-1 1 Transparent / 1a Romansh 5-2
Analysis: Midnight Taboo makes his first start since getting outrun in the Belmont Stakes (G1) which was a tough spot for him after just three starts and a runner up finish against Alw-1 optional claimers in his first go against winners. The fact Pletcher thought he could compete in that race and bringing him back here in an ungraded stake instead of heading toward another Alw-1 race seems to bode well. He is entered tomorrow but is a MTO entrant. The colt has decent looking works on the morning tab and he figures to bounce back with a better effort in this spot.
Edge of Reality looks primed for his stakes debut after a sharp win at Philly against Alw-2 optional claimers with only Transparent earning a higher last out speed fig. The runner up in that race was Piquant, who came back to beat Alw-2 optional claimers in his next outing on July 13 at Philly. The colt has enough pedigree to handle the stretch out, by Lawyer Ron out of a Touch Gold mare.
WIN: #4 to win at 7-2 or better.
EX: 4,7 / 1,4,6,7
TRI: 4,7 / 1,4,6,7 / 1,4,5,6,7
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.
Mike DempseyMike 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. The 2015 Triple Crown saw Mike correctly predict American Pharoah to win both the Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes. Mike nailed the Exacta and Trifecta in the Belmont Stakes. Mike had a solid 2014 Triple Crown race season, correctly picking the winning horse in 2 of 3 races. He selected I'll Have another to win The Preakness, and nailed Union Rags to win the Belmont Stakes as his top pick. Mike also had past succes in the Kentucky Derby, winning with Animal Kingdom in 2011 and rode his top picks, Super Saver and Street Sense, to the finish line in 2010 and 2007 respectively. No handicapper in the industry works harder to bring you analysis that produces profits at the track! Mike's Reports include his selections, detailed analysis, a fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for the entire card. Join Mike daily with top picks from Belmont. You can also get his Weekend Best Plays Report in his Multi-Track package or sit at the track with him for 30 Days with his Monthly Horse Package!
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Jerry SessaJerry "Shots" Sessa has been involved in horse racing for over 30 years. He now brings his meticulous handicapping style to VegasInsider.com. When Jerry posts picks you are getting his best bets...when you win, he wins. Jerry opened the 2016 Triple Crown season by hitting his Derby Day best bet, Nyquist. He also nailed the Derby exacta for a $30.60 payout. On 4/16/16 at Keeneland, Jerry hit an $819 exacta that led to a $38k Trifecta & a $300k Super.
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