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At the Gate - Thursday
We are back in action in at Belmont Park on Thursday after a two-day break and my report is up a little early as I get to spend most of Wednesday staring The Weather Channel with Hurricane Michael bearing down on us here on the Gulf Coast of Florida.

The good news is it looks as if we are west of the storm by about 50 miles, and the forecast calls for us to get 50 mph winds and some rain, probably just enough to knock out my TVG on Direct TV. People east of us will get it far worse.

Wednesday’s Jessamine (G2) at Keeneland is the final Breeders’ Cup Challenge race of the year, and if you are reading this before post time on Wednesday here is a breakdown:

Keeneland Race 7 The J.P. Morgan Jessamine (G2) Post time 4:24 ET
#9 Moravia 4-1
#13 My Gal Betty 4-1
#10 Fierce Scarlett 7-2
#4 Concrete Rose 6-1

Analysis: Moravia is one of two in here sent out by the Jorge Abreu barn. The filly makes her U.S. debut here after checking in third in the JC of Turkey Silver Flash Stakes (G3) at Leopardstown. The filly stalked the early pace in the seven-furlong test over good ground and was just 1 ½ lengths back of the very talented Skitter Scatter, who came back to win the Debutante Stakes (G2) and then win the Moyglare Stud Stakes (G1) at the Curragh on Sept. 16. This gal is bred to handle the extra ground. She is out of the stakes winner Demeanour who has dropped two other turf winners. She is in fine hands with the former Chad Brown assistant Abreu and has been in the U.S. since July, purchased by her current connections shortly before her last start.

My Gal Betty was the beaten favorite in the Natalma (G1) last out at Woodbine where she rallied for the runner up spot, beaten a length for the top spot. She crossed the wire in front in each of her first three starts, getting DQ’d three back for bumping a foe in the stretch In the My Dear on Tapeta. The Roger Attfield trainee has shown improvement with each outing and she fits well here although she did draw a bum post. She has a solid pedigree, by Point of Entry out of a Mining mare that has dropped eight other winners, five turf winners and two other stakes winners, top earner America America ($403,050).

Fierce Scarlett was a good looking maiden winner in her second career start and first going long for the Brown barn, drawing off to win by 4 ½ lengths over yielding ground at Belmont Park. The $320,000 Ocala purchase is out of a West by West mare that has dropped three other turf winners. She looks as if she still has plenty of upside and won her last as if she still could have another big move forward in her. Brown won this race last year with Rushing Fall, who went on to win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) in her next start. She fits although with Brown calling the shots she may end up getting too much attention in the betting.

Wagering:
WIN: #9 to win at 7-2 or better.
EX: 9,13 / 4,9,10,13
TRI: 9,13 / 4,9,10,13 / 4,9,10,12,13

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Here is the opener from Belmont Park to get the day off to a good start:

BEL Race 1 Md $50,000 (1:30 ET)
#5 Girl of Tosconova 7-2
#2 Tropical Storm Em 5-2
#1 Rose of Dublin 3-1
#4 Alphabetting 10-1

Analysis: Girl of Tosconova debuts for the RRod barn that is 11% winners with first timers. The filly is by Boys At Tosconova (6% winners with debut runners) out of a Crimson Guard mare that has dropped five foals to race, all winners. Decent looking works and this looks like a weak spot.

Tropical Storm Em debuts for Pletcher who is 26% winners overall with firsters but with his juvie first timers over the past three months he is just 1 for 30 here in NY. The filly is by Scat Daddy out of the stakes winner Little Rocket ($213,584), her first foal to race. We have been fading the barn's firsters for months with great success but he is bound to turn things around sooner rather than later and this is such a slow looking group.

Wagering
WIN: #5 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 2,5 / 1,2,4,5
TRI: 2,5 / 1,2,4,5 / 1,2,3,4,5

Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Belmont Park:

BEL Race 8 Alw $77,000N1X (5:18 ET)
#11 Yummy Bear 8-1
#6 Dirty 5-2
#7 Bam Bam Blu 7-2
#10 Fast Boat 10-1

Analysis: Yummy Bear tracked the early pace while saving ground and finished up ell for a game third at this level going 5 1/2 on the turf at the Spa in his first start off the claim by the Abreu barn. The state bred was cutting back from a mile facing state bred Alw-2 optional claimers. He has come up short at this level a few too many times but is usually right in the mix including three runner up finishes in a row. He looks headed in the right direction and the former Brown assistant looks capable of moving this guy forward another length or two. He has a second and a third in his two trips on wet tracks so would still be a threat if this comes off the turf.

Dirty tracked the early pace and was no match for World of Trouble last out in a runner up finish in the Allied Forces going six furlongs over good ground He was more than a dozen lengths clear of the rest of the field in the effort. His last three numbers make him tough in this spot and he has won 3 of his 6 starts on turf. He ran a competitive number two back at the Spa over good going.

Wagering
WIN: #11 to win at 5-1 or better.
EX: 6,11 / 6,7,10,11
TRI: 6,11 / 6,7,10,11 / 6,7,9,10,11

Live Longshots:
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.

Belmont Park
R1: #4 Alphabetting 10-1
R2: #8 Angel Food 8-1
R3: #12 Tell Me Ma 10-1
R5: #1 Willing to Speed 15-1
R5: #2 Cotton House 12-1
R6: #4 Roziere 12-1
R8: #1 Yummy Bear 8-1
R8: #10 Fast Boat 10-1
R9: #8 Poshky 8-1
R9: #10 Indebted 8-1

Good luck today!

  
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