Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:03 AM

At the Gate - Thursday

Entries were drawn for Saturday’s Stars & Stripes card at Belmont Park and there should be plenty of fireworks.

The headliner is the $1.2 million Belmont Derby (G1) which drew a field of nine including a pair of European shippers and a Kentucky Derby (G1) alumni.

Trainer Aiden O’Brien sends over Hunting Horn, winner of the Hampton Court Stakes (G3) at Royal Ascot in his last outing. Kingstar ships in for Pia Brandtad and has won two his three starts and makes his second start of the bench.

My Boy Jack, who was fifth in the Kentucky Derby returns to turf for the first time since running seventh in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) last fall at Del Mar.

2017 Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Tapwrit goes in the $700,000 Suburban (G2) and among his foes is the Bob Baffert trained Hoppertunity, who won the Brooklyn (G2) in his last outing. The seven-year-old has now earned $4.6 million in his career.

The $1 million Belmont Oaks (G1) drew 10 including three Euro invaders. O’Brien saddles Athena, who was third in the Pretty Polly Stakes (G3) in her last outing.

The $350,000 Belmont Sprint Championship (G2) is a Win and You’re In race for the Breeders’ Cup Championship (G2). True North (G2) runner up Whitmore and Met Mile (G1) third Limousine Liberal head the field.

The $300,000 Dwyer (G3) drew three alumni from the Run for the Roses including the O’Brien trained Mendelssohn, who was a disappointing 20th.

I will have my full card report for Saturday up Friday evening and my Best Plays Report will include the graded stakes action from Arlington Park. The stakes serve as preps for Arlington Million Day and drew competitive fields.

To purchase my Belmont Park Report for Thursday 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)
#2 She Will Rock 7-2
#1 Sue's Fortune 8-5
#4 Seven Jewels 5-2
#3 Miss Pugsley 10-1

Analysis: She Will Rock ducked inward coming out of the gate in her debut and did not show much in a sixth-place finish at Churchill Downs at 6-1. The runner up and fifth place finisher came back to graduate next out while the winner Shanghai Rain came back to run second in the Debutante on June 30. The $225,000 purchase is out of a Storm Cat mare that has dropped four winners and three are stakes winners, top earner Mark My Way ($286,969). She figures to move forward with a better break. Asmussen hits at a 18% winners with second out maidens.

Sue's Fortune makes her debut for the Englehart barn that is 14% winners (with a +ROI) with first timers. The filly is by Jump Start out of a Catienus mare that has dropped four foals to race with three winners. Sharp works on the morning tab.

Wagering
WIN: #2 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 1,2 / 1,2,3,4
TRI: 1,2 / 1,2,3,4 / 1,2,3,4,6

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

BEL Race 8 OClm $80,000C (5:18 ET)
#8 Get Jets 2-1
#1 Kharafa 4-1
#5 Blacktype 5-2
#3 Night Prowler 7-2

Analysis: Get Jets makes his first start since last November where the Dutrow trainee stalked the early pace while saving ground early and finished up well for a third-place finish in the Red Smith 'Cap (G3) at 1 3/8 miles, coming up a length behind the winner. He won the state bred Ashley T. Cole and West Point in his two previous starts. The barn has been very quiet this year with just one win from 16 starters and is showing a 0 for 8 mark with runners coming back off a +180-day layoff. However, if we go back five years Tony D. is 10 for 51 (20%) with runners coming back off a +180-day layoff. This looks like a good spot for his return.

Kharafa made a mild late bid after spending some time bottled up behind foes to finish third in the state bred Kingston last out over good ground here. He bounced back after fading to finish a well beaten 10th two back at seven furlongs off a seven-month layoff. The gelding has not won since taking the Cole in '16 but did lad in the money in five of his six starts this year. The nine-year-old has lost a step or two but his last was promising he still has something left in the tank.

Wagering
WIN: #8 to win at 2-1 or better.
EX: 1,8 / 1,3,5,8
TRI: 1,8 / 1,3,5,8 / 1,3,4,5,8

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: #3 Miss Pugsley 10-1
R3: #7 Giant’s Rubies 12-1
R4: #7 Midnight Tea Time 10-1
R6: #1 Have At It 10-1
R9: #6 Blinded Vision 10-1

Good luck today!

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