Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 14:03 PM
At the Gate - Wednesday
Triple Crown winner Justify has made it safely home to Santa Anita after being honored at Churchill Downs on Saturday night, and now the question is when, where and if we see him race again.
Elliot Walden of WinStar said from Royal Ascot yesterday morning that the intention is to race the undefeated colt the remainder of the year, with the obvious target the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 3.
The most logical spot for the colt would be the Haskell Invitational (G1) at Monmouth Park on July 29, but is that enough of a break for the colt? He raced six-times in four short months to start his career.
His trainer Bob Baffert has won the Haskell a record eight time including in 2015 with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah.
American Pharoah then was upset in the Travers Stakes (G1) at Saratoga in his next start. That could be where Justify winds up, this year’s edition slated for Aug. 25, which would give the colt an extra month to freshen up.
I have a hunch we won’t see him race in both, but a lot of that depends on how the colt bounces back off his campaign and according to Walden the colt has only lost three pounds since the Triple Crown began.
It is off to Belmont Park today where we have a chalky start with a 2-5 favorite that looks tough, then the rest of the card looks good.
To purchase my Belmont Park Report for Wednesday click here .
Here is the opening race from Belmont Park to get the day off to a good start:
BEL Race 1 Md $30,000 (1:30 ET)
#6 Battle of Saratoga 2-5
#7 The Vow Is Lit 8-1
#4 Leading Storm 4-1
#1 Irish Marauder 10-1
Analysis: Battle of Saratoga drops in for a tag for the first time here after a sixth on turf last out off a four-month layoff. The colt showed some promise with a couple of thirds on dirt to start his career. If he runs back to those numbers he will be very tough to beat in this spot as he drops in for a $40,000 tag. The Motion barn is 21% winners moving runners from turf to dirt. He is a half to stakes winner Cleburne ($150,074).
The Vow Is Lit was bumped coming out of the gate in his debut, raced at the back of the pack early and finished up with some late interest for fourth, sent off at 14-1 in a field of nine going a mile. He returns off nearly a three month break here for the Baker barn. The gelding is out of a stakes placed Mt. Livermore mare that has dropped five winners and two are stakes winners, top earner Al's Deputy ($218,025).
WIN: #6 to win at 4-5 or better.
EX: 6,7 / 1,4,6,7
TRI: 6,7 / 1,4,6,7 / 1,3,4,6,7
Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Belmont Park:
BEL Race 8 OClm $80,000C (5:18 ET)
#4 Weekfair 3-1
#11 Blessed Silence 9-2
#9 Jc's Shooting Star 4-1
#3 Fire Key 9-5
Analysis: Weekfair stalked the early pace and finished gamely in a deadheat for second beaten a half-length in her first go off nearly a six-month layoff. The Clement trainee was making her U.S. debut after landing in the money in 10 of 15 starts in a busy '17 campaign. She should be tighter second off the bench for a trainer that is 24% winners with runners making their second start off a 45-180 day layoff.
Blessed Silence is also sent out by Clement. She was third in her U.S. debut at this condition and then was no match for Ultra Brat in a runner up finish in the Galorette (G3) over soft ground at Pimlico going 1 1/16 miles. The mare won at six furlongs back in '16 at Chantilly and looks rimed for a top effort here third off the shelf. The barn is 29% winners (with a +ROI) moving runners from route to sprint.
WIN: #4 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 4,11 / 3,4,9,11
TRI: 4,11 / 3,4,9,11 / 1,3,4,9,11
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: #7 The Vow Is Lit 8-1
R1: #1 Irish Marauder 10-1
R2: #5 Tiz Priceless 8-1
R3: #7 Light the Posse 10-1
R6: #4 Ruby Warrior 8-1
R9: #8 Lem Me Tel Ya 12-1
Good luck today!