We have four Grade 1 races on tap on Saturday afternoon, one at Saratoga and a trio as part of the Arlington Festival of Racing at Arlington Park.
The feature at the Spa is the $500,000 Fourstardave Handicap (G1) at one mile on turf, a key stepping stone toward the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) this fall at Del Mar.
We have a pair of Breeders’ Cup Challenge races at Arlington Park today—the $600,000 Beverly D. (G1) for the Filly & Mare Turf and the $1 million Arlington Million (G1) for the Turf. In addition, three-year-olds square off in the $400,000 Secretariat (G1) at 1 ¼ miles.
Scottish will not go in the Arlington Million, an early scratch after the gelding suffered a reoccurrence of a fetlock injury. The gelding was originally my third choice in the race.
That leaves a field of 12 and I landed on last year’s third place finisher Deauville, who ships back to the U.S. for the second time for trainer Aiden O’Brien.
His U.S. debut came in his victory in the Belmont Derby (G1) last July. The colt is the 7-2 morning line favorite and Ryan Moore is in to ride.
The best hope of the home team may be Kasaqui for trainer Ignacio Correas. The seven-year-old made a good late run to finish third in the Arlington Handicap (G3) the local prep for the Million. I liked his win in the Wise Dan (G2) two back at Churchill Downs and he should be a decent price.
With the Spa running six days a week, now would be a great time to take advantage of my Monthly Package for just $99.95 which includes daily Saratoga Reports and my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday.
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Here is the opening race from Saratoga to get the day off to a good start:
SAR Race 1 Clm $20,000 (1:00 ET) #4 Will Did It 4-1 #5 Scarly Charly 2-1 #2 Nominal Dollars 8-1 #1 At Guard 3-1
Analysis: Will Did It made a mild late run with the jock dropping his stick at the eighth pole, checking in third as the beaten favorite. The five-year-old was claimed out of the race by the Gullo barn that is 31% winners (with a +ROI) first off the claim. He was competitive versus tougher, third two back against Alw-2 optional claimers. he steps up for $20,000 and owns back numbers good enough to handle this spot.
Scarly Charly dueled for the early lead and weakened to finish sixth last out at Arlington Park against Alw-2 optional claimers. This guy beat Alw-2 foes here last summer and then ran a close up fourth versus Alw-3 optional claimers. He drops into an easier spot and drilled a bullet work on Aug. 3 over the main track here.
WIN: #4 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 4,5 / 1,2,4,5
TRI: 4,5 / 1,2,4,5 / 1,2,4,5,7
Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Saratoga:
SAR Race 10 The Fourstardave Hcp G1 (6:28 ET) #3 Time Test 8-5 #7 World Approval 9-2 #6 Disco Partner 2-1 #2 American Patriot 6-1
Analysis: Time Test makes his third start since landing with the Chad Brown barn. The five-year-old stalked the early pace and just missed in his U.S. debut two back in the Ft. Marcy (G3) where he was beaten a neck at nine furlongs over yielding ground. He then rallied to finish second in the Manhattan (G1) last out at 1 1/4 miles. He cuts back to a mile here which may suit him as Brown looks for his first win in this race.
World Approval tracked the early pace and did not have enough punch left late in a fifth-place finish in the Manhattan beaten 1 3/4 lengths. The gelding won the Dixie (G2) two back at Pimlico matching his career top. Last year he reeled off three triple digit Beyers in a row including winning the United Nations (G1). He looks back in track and has enough tactical speed to handle eh cut back to a mile.
WIN: #3 to win at 9-5 or better.
EX: 3,7 / 3,6,7
TRI: no play
Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Arlington Park:
AP Race 11 The Arlington Million G1 (6:19 CT) #5 Deauville 7-2 #8 Kasaqui 10-1 #12 Ascend 10-1 #13 Mekhtaal 9-2
Analysis: Deauville makes his second trip to the U.S. here for the Aiden O’Brien barn that has won this race twice and had Powerscourt DQ’d in 2004. Last summer the colt came across the pond as a three-year-old and won the Belmont Derby (G1) and instead of going in the Secretariat ran in this race where he was a game third, beaten a half-length at 8-1. He has won just a Group 3 in six starts this year but was a good third in the Queen Anne Stakes (G1) at Royal Ascot two back at a mile and was beaten just a head last out in the Meld Stakes (G3) at Leopardstown at nine furlongs. He has landed in the money in all six trips at today’s distance and looks primed for a top effort and good to See Ryan Moore in to ride this guy.
Kasaqui just missed in this race last year, beaten a neck at 12-1. He won the Arlington Handicap (G3) last year leading into this race and this year ran a close up third with a good late run that should set him up for a good effort here. He won the Wise Dan (G2) two back at Churchill Downs going 1 1/16 miles. He has been best at 1 ¼ miles, landing in the exacta in six of seven trips. His best puts him in the mix here and the 10-1 morning line looks more than fair.
Ascend wheels back pretty quick for the Motion barn. The gelding tracked the early pace and weakened to finish fourth in the Bowling Green (G2) on July 29. The gelding won the Manhattan (G1) two back earning a career top speed fig. He has landed in the exacta in 9 of his 13 career starts on turf and his best puts him in the mix here.
WIN: #5 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 5,8 / 5,8,12,13
TRI: 5,8 / 5,8,12,13 / 5,8,11,12,13
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 Nominal Dollars 8-1
R2: #1 Oskar Blues 12-1
R5: #2 ON Tap 20-1
R7: #4 Lone Sailor 12-1
R9: #3 Brimstone 10-1
R11: #2 Grand Valour 8-1
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 Saratoga or grab winners in the Weekend Best Plays Report in the horse racing Multi-Track package. Want more action? 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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