Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:03 AM

At the Gate - Wednesday

It’s the Fourth of July and we have a good nine race betting card on tap at Belmont Park this afternoon, but around the country we no graded stakes, with most of the top action saved for this Saturday.

Saturday at Belmont Park is Stars & Stripes Day with five graded stakes including the $1.2 million Belmont Derby Invitational (G1) and the $1 million Belmont Oaks Invitational (G1), as well as a Breeders’ Cup Challenge race, the $350,000 Belmont Sprint Championship (G2).

I will likely venture out to Arlington Park on Saturday as well and include some of the Arlington Million Preview Day action in my Best Plays Report. There are five stakes, four graded.

The feature at Belmont Park this afternoon comes early on the card. The third race is the $100,000 Manila for three-year-olds going one mile on the turf which drew a field of six.

The Chad Brown trained Raging Bull makes his stakes debut and is the 6-5 morning line favorite. The colt won his first two starts, breaking his maiden on turf in his debut at Keeneland and then beating first level optional claimers at Belmont Park in his first go against winners.

His main rival appears to be Hangman (7-2), who was a good looking maiden winner in his second career start. The son of Scat Daddy is a half-brother to stakes winner Hangingbyathread.

Enjoy the holiday and if you plan on setting off fireworks, be careful. It is much easier to handicap when you have all 10 of your digits.

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 Sp Wt (1:30 ET)

4 Bonita Bay 2-1

1 Virginia Eloise 6-5

2 Brittas Bay 6-1

6 Slieve Mish 8-1

Analysis: Bonita Bay is a $235,000 Ocala purchase making her debut for the Lynch barn that is 9% winners with first timers. This gal is by Bernardini (11% winners with debut runners) out of a Storm Cat mare that has dropped nine foals to race with five winners. Solid looking works on the morning tab and Castellano takes the call.

Virginia Eloise debuts for Pletcher who is 28% winners with firsters. This filly is by Curlin out of an A.P. Indy mare that has dropped one other foal to race, no winners to date. She prepped at Palm Beach Downs and has good local drills since coming north including a good gate drill on June 17. The barn usually has them ready to go although they take a bit too much action most of the time.

WIN: #4 to win at 9-5 or better.
EX: 1,4 / 1,2,4
TRI: no play

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

BEL Race 8 OClm $80,000N2X (5:18 ET)

11 Golden Orb 6-1

1 Amertune 5-2

3 Data Dependent 4-1

7 Night Time Lady 8-1

Analysis: Golden Orb makes her second start off a 4 1/2 month break and drops out of stakes company after a sixth-place finish in the Boiling Springs last out at Monmouth Park. That race was won by Dark Artist, who came back to win the Open Mind in her next start on the Jersey Shore on June 23. She has been competitive in stakes company, only beaten a half-length in the Wait a While where she was third and placed fourth via a DQ. She is out of the stakes placed Day of Victory who has dropped two other winners including stakes winner Finleysluckycharm ($788,068). This looks like a good spot for Clement as she drops in to face Alw-2 foes here.

Amertune returns here off a three month break for the Pletcher barn that is 20% winners with runners coming back off a 61-180 day layoff. The filly broke her maiden in her debut on turf at Gulfstream Park and came back to run a good second in the Herecomesthebride (G3) in her first trip against winners. Last out she tracked the early pace and weakened to finish fifth in the Sanibel Island, beaten 1 3/4 lengths for the top spot. She looks like a good fit in this spot.

WIN: #11 to win at 4-1 or better.
EX: 1,11 / 1,3,7,11
TRI: 1,11 / 1,3,7,11 / 1,3,4,7,11

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: #6 Slieve Mish 8-1
R2: #2 She’s Delightful 8-1
R4: #3 Burkie 8-1
R5: #2 Lady Love 8-1
R6: #4 Snap Decision 8-1
R8: #7 Night Time Lady 8-1
R9: #2 Nazay 8-1

Good luck today!

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