Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:04 AM

At the Gate - Friday

We are still a week away from the Preakness Stakes (G1), but we have some good racing coming up this Saturday including five stakes on the 11-race Belmont Park card including a prep race for the Belmont Stakes (G1).

Eight were entered in the $350,000 Peter Pan (G3) but the connections of Diamond King announced that the colt will be scratched in favor of running in the Preakness next week.

That leaves seven led by Core Beliefs, the 2-1 morning line favorite. The Peter Eurton trainee ran third in the Santa Anita Derby (G1) behind the winner Justify, who of course came back to win the Kentucky Derby (G1).

Blended Citizen was the also-eligible for the Kentucky Derby but did not draw into the field, The Doug O’Neill trainee is 6-1 on the morning line and after winning the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) at Turfway Park he was fifth in the Blue Grass (G2) at Keeneland in his last outing.

The Brad Cox trained High North (4-1) is coming off a victory in the Northern Spur and Just Whistle (5-1) is coming off an impressive maiden win.

Completing the Peter Pan field are Zing Zang (10-1), Gotta Go (15-1) and Transistor (15-1).

Also on Saturday’s card at Belmont Park is the $700,000 Man O’ War (G1), a 1 3/8 miles turf test that drew a field of 10. The Todd Pletcher trained Hi Happy, winner of the Pan American (G2) at Gulfstream Park in his last outing is the 2-1 morning line favorite.

The supporting features on the card include the $200,000 Beaugay (G3), $150,000 Runhappy and the $200,000 Vagrancy Handicap (G3).

I will have selections and analysis for the Peter Pan in tomorrow’s column.

To purchase my Belmont Park Report for Friday click here

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package, which will give you a full month of reports from Belmont Park, my Best Plays Report each weekend and my Black Eyed Susan and Preakness Day reports From Pimlico.

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

BEL Race 1 Md Sp Wt (1:30 ET)
#1 Pirelli Tower 9-2
#6 Blurred Line 1-1
#3 Zechariah 5-2
#7 Ten Eyck 8-1

Analysis: Pirelli Tower makes his debut for the Clement barn that is 9% winners with first timers. The colt is by Grade 1 turf winner Gio Ponti out of Marquetry mare that has dropped six winners and five of them have won on turf. A light work tab at Payson and two local drills since returning from Florida. Except for the chalk in her this is not a very imposing group of state breds.

Blurred Line returns off a two-month break and makes his first start for the Gargan barn that is 19% winners first off the claim. IN his last outing he tracked the early pace and did not have enough punch left late. The runner up Sentry came back to graduate in his next outing on April 20 at Aqueduct for a $40,000 tag. He is out of a Lion Heart mare that has dropped one turf winner. His third two back at Gulfstream Park against maiden special weight foes would be enough to trounce this group.

WIN: #1 to win at 7-2 or better.
EX: 1,6 / 1,3,6,7
TRI: 1,6 / 1,3,6,7 / 1,3,5,6,7

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

BEL Race 7 Clm $35,000N3L (4:46 ET)
#7 Midnight Mission 7-2
#5 Have Another 4-1
#1 More Front 3-1
#2 Lucky Town 4-1

Analysis: Midnight Mission cuts back to seven furlongs after setting the early fractions and tiring to finish fifth against state bred Alw-2 optional claimers going a mile. The runner up and fourth place finisher came out of that race to win next out. The Pletcher trainee won his first two starts, both on wet tracks and the cut back in distance should suit him. The barn is 22% winners moving runners from route to sprint.

Have Another stalked the early pace and made a mild late run while wide to check in fourth against $50,000 starter allowance foes going six furlongs in his first start off the claim by the Reynolds barn. His last win came three back where he beat non-winners of two at seven furlongs in the slop. He just needs to see some pace and gets a positive jock switch here from No Go to Castellano.

WIN: #7 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 5,7 / 1,2,5,7
TRI: 5,7 / 1,2,5,7 / 1,2,4,5,7

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: #7 Ten Eyck 8-1
R3: #7 Arewehavingfunyet 15-1
R6: #4 Her Latest Film 8-1
R8: #3 Dowse’s Beach 8-1

Good luck today!

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