Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:53 AM

Friday's Picks from Saratoga

The Saratoga meeting got underway on Thursday and it was an up and down day. Our top pick in the opener got run down in the final strides, but then our top pick won three of the next four races.

The last couple of races were not kind to us with longshot Pecatonica pulling of the upset in the Schuylerville (G3), returning $25.00 to win.

We have a pair of stakes on Friday’s 10-race card. The $85,000 De La Rose drew eight with four entered by trainer Chad Brown. One of those, Blowout developed a fever on Thursday and reportedly will scratch.

That still leaves a tough trio in Catch a Bid (9-2), Noor Sahara (4-1) and Viadera (6-1). However, The Shug McGaughey trained Passing Out (7-2) may be able to stand up to the Brown group.

The co-feature is the $85,000 Shine Again which drew a field of 10 fillies and mares that will travel seven furlongs on the main track. The Brown trained Indian Pride is the 6-5 morning line favorite.

As you can see below, I am looking for more value with Please Flatter Me (8-1), sent out by the Steve Asmussen barn.

Coming up on Saturday we will head to the Jersey Shore for the $1 million Haskell (G1) at Monmouth Park. The race is not only a Road to the Kentucky Derby points race, it is also a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1).

We have a good card at Saratoga coming up on Saturday. The highlight is the $350,000 Coaching Club American Oaks (G1).

You can catch the action at Saratoga on Friday from 1:00 to 6:30 ET on FS2. In addition, you can stream the action using the TVG App. The horse betting company based in the U.S. is offering a risk free bet up to $300 for new players.

To purchase my Saratoga Report for Friday click here .

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package. It gives you a month of Saratoga Reports daily and my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday which will include all the major Road to the Kentucky Derby prep races.

Here is the second race (the opener is chalky) from Saratoga to get the day off to a good start:

Saratoga Race 2 Analysis - 7/17 (1:44 p.m. ET)

SAR Race 2 Md $25,000 (1:44 ET)
#10 Brunate 6-1
#1 Dawn's Early Light 2-1
#11 Imperio D 8-1
#7 Fridaybeers 6-1

Analysis: Brunate bobbled and was bumped coming out of the gate, raced mid pack and made a mild late rally to finish in the runner up spot last out at Belmont Park going 6 1/2 furlongs. The gelding caught a racing strip that was kind to inside speed and the winner went gate to wire. He was five clear of the rest of the field He ran into repeat winners two and three back. He looks headed in the right direction form wise and catches a pretty soft group of state breds here.

Dawn's Early Light was a decent fourth last out on turf off a three-month break against $40,000 state breds. The runner up Our Troubadour came back to graduate in his next outing on for $40,000 and two others also exited the race to win next out. He was a decent third two back in his last start on dirt. Gargan had a good meeting here last summer, hitting at a 27% clip. The barn is 36% winners (with a +ROI) moving runners from turf to dirt. He is the logical one to beat but his price is going to end up on the light side.

Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Saratoga:

Saratoga Race 9 Analysis - 7/17 (5:46 p.m. ET)

SAR Race 9 The Shine Again (5:46 ET)
#10 Please Flatter Me 8-1
#5 Indian Pride 6-5
#9 Blamed 7-2
#2 Risky Mandate 9-2

Analysis: Please Flatter Me made her first start for Asmussen last out off a 10-month layoff and she ran well, tracking the early pace and was no match for the winner in a runner up finish against Alw-3 optional claimers. The winner was the talented Guarana, who came back to win the Madison (G1) in her next start, her third Grade 1 victory. The fourth-place finisher Abounding Joy came back to win the Iowa Distaff at Prairie Meadows in her next outing on July 4. Se only made three starts last year, winning the Alma North at Laurel Park but then as outrun in the test (G1) here. She looks to be sitting on a good one here and her 8-1 morning line looks generous. She will not mind if there is still some moisture in the surface, she has a first and a second on wet tracks and a strong off track pedigree.

Indian Pride dueled for the early led and drew clear to beat Alw-1 foes last out in her first start off an eight-month layoff. She did it over a racing strip that was kind to speed. It was her first start since running third in last fall's Raven Run (G2) at Keeneland. That outing was her first start against winners after breaking her maiden in her debut here last summer by eight lengths. The Brown barn is 26% winners with runners making their second start off a +180-day layoff. This gal looks as if she has a ton of upside with the main knock her likely short price.

Blamed cuts back to seven furlongs here. She set the early fractions and weakened to finish fourth last out in the Ogden Phipps (G1). She beat optional claimers at 6 1/2 furlongs four back and won the Royal Delta (G3) last year going a one turn mile. She seems to show up every other race. The cut back should suit her.

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.

R2: #11 Imperio D 8-1
R3: #5 Ghost Game 10-1
R8: #5 Lady Worthington 8-1
R9: 10 Please Flatter Me 8-1
R10: #11 True Grace 8-1

Good luck today!

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