Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:02 AM
At the Gate - Friday
We have a pair of Breeders’ Cup Challenge races on tap at Keeneland on Friday and by the time Sunday evening rolls around we will have had seen 18 “Win and You’re In” races contested, nine of those at Keeneland.
I am not doing a daily report at Keeneland but will include all of the stakes action in my Best Plays Report each day including this afternoon. Friday’s feature is the $400,000 Darley Alcibiades (G1) for two-year-old fillies with a full field of 14 expected to go to the starting gate.
The winner earns a starting spot in the gate for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 2.
Trainer Ken McPeek seeks his fourth win in the race with 3-1 morning line favorite Restless Rider, who rallied to finish second in the Spinaway (G1) at Saratoga in his last outing going seven furlongs. Only four in the field have been a mile or beyond in their young careers.
I am going to seek a slightly better price with Lady T N T, who makes her stakes debut for the Joe Sharp barn. She has rolled to a couple of sharp scores in her last pair of starts, last out beating optional claimers at Churchill Downs by 6 ½ lengths.
The co-feature on the opening day card is the $250,000 Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (G2) at six furlongs with the winners gaining a berth in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1).
It is really tough to separate the top three contenders in Promises Fulfilled, Whitmore and Limousine Liberal, and I am not even sure which of the trio will go off as the betting favorite.
It may be the three-year-old Promises Fulfilled, who takes on older for the first time. He is the 8-5 morning line favorite off a win in the H. Allen Jerkens (G1) at Saratoga in his last outing.
Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package for just $99.95. It gives you a month of Belmont Park daily, my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday and my two-day Breeders’ Cup Report.
My Best Plays Report for Friday includes my eight strongest plays from Belmont Park and Keeneland.
To purchase my Belmont Park and Best Plays Reports for Friday click here.
Here is the opener from Belmont Park to get the day off to a good start:
BEL Race 1 Clm $40,000 (1:30 ET)
3 Ekhitbaar 5-2
4 Souperfast 9-5
7 Wake Forest 3-1
6 Roman Approval 8-1
Analysis: Ekhitbaar is sent out by the Brown barn after a win versus $50,000 non-winners of three in the slop at the Spa in a race washed off the turf. The five-year-old has just one start on turf, a fourth in his debut way back in the summer of '15. He is out of a Danzig mare that has dropped two other winners and they have both won on turf. The barn is 27% winners moving runners from dirt to turf. Looks like a god spot here tagged for $40,000.
Souperfast got off to an easy early lead and took the field gate to wire to beat $40,000 claimers last out for the RRod barn. He was claimed out of the race by the Reynolds barn that is 27% winners (with a +ROI) first off the claim. This guy has changed hands six times since last June. He comes right back for the same tag and he does not need to be on the lead. He looks sharp enough to win right back.
WIN: #3 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 3,4 / 3,4,7
TRI: no play
Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Belmont Park:
BEL Race 7 Alw $66,000N1X (4:46 ET)
9 Steelersfanforlife 6-1
2 Appealing Briefs 4-1
8 Collective Effort 5-2
12 Ides of Arch 8-1
Analysis: Steelersfanforlife raced last year, made a good move to take command heading for home and was run down late in a runner up finish over yielding ground last out at this condition at the Spa in his first go off the claim by the Gyarmati barn. Three back over the turf here this guy was a good second against $32,000 foe sin his first start against winners. He graduated over the turf here as well beating state bred $40,000 foes in his third career start. He makes his second start off the claim and still appears to have more upside than most of this group.
Appealing Briefs broke his maiden in his 14th career start and was claimed out of the race by the Abreu barn. He has come back with two solid efforts a at this level, a third in his first go for the former Brown assistant and last out he rallied for a solid second, beaten a length. He looks headed in the right direction he broke his maiden over the turf here three back. He draws a better post here than he did last out and a repeat of his last looks good enough to be a threat in this spot.
WIN: #9 to win at 4-1 or better.
EX: 2,9 / 2,8,9,12
TRI: 2,9 / 2,8,9,12 / 2,5,8,9,12
Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Keeneland:
KEE Race 9 The Darley Alcibiades G1 (5:30 ET)
8 Lady T N T 4-1
3 Restless Rider 3-1
7 Boujie Girl 6-1
5 Kim K 12-1
Analysis: Lady T N T takes on stakes company for the first time here after a pair of impressive looking wins. Last out the filly took the field gate to wire to beat Alw-2L optional claimers over the main track here at six furlongs just two weeks ago. Two back the filly graduated at the Spa over a we track, taking the field gate to wire over a racing strip that was playing to outside stalkers and closers that day. She was a $335,000 Ocala purchase, out of the stakes winner High Heeled Hope ($235,227) who ash dropped eight other winners, top earner stakes winner Sweet Hope ($251,209). She is in good hands with the Sharp barn that is 23% winners (with a +ROI) moving runners from sprint to route.
Restless Rider stalked the early pace and made a good late rally to finish in the runner up spot last out in the Spinaway (G1) at the Spa going seven furlongs. She won the Debutante two back in her stakes debut by 11 1/4 lengths over the main track here. The $150,000 Keeneland purchase has enough pedigree to handle two turns, by Distorted Humor out of a Unbridled's Song mare. The McPeek barn has won this race three times and has run second seven times with just 18 starters. Lasix is added to the mix here and she has come back with a couple of good works at Keeneland since her last effort.
Boujie Girl is one of two in here shipping in from the west coast for the Miller barn. This gal was no match for Bellafina in her last out two starts, thirds in the Sorrento (G2) at six furlongs and the Del mar Debutante (G1) at seven furlongs. Bellafina came back to win the Chandelier (G1) in her last outing last Saturday by 6 1/2 lengths. She is by Flashback out of a Closing Argument mare that has dropped one other winner. She looks capable of running faster than she showed last out.
WIN: #8 to win at 7-2 or better.
EX: 3,8 / 3,5,7,8
TRI: 3,8 / 3,5,7,8 / 3,5,6,7,8
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: #6 Roman Approval 8-1
R3: #4 Toughest ‘Ombre 8-1
R4: #7 Tied Up 12-1
R6: #6 Coal Truth 10-1
R7: #12 Ides of Arch 8-1
R9: #2 Stay Good 15-1
R9: #11 Crater Rim 8-1
Good luck today!