Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:50 AM

Thursday's Picks from Belmont Park

The field for the $1 million Preakness Stakes (G1) at Pimlico on May 15 is still very much in flux, but it does look likely to draw a field of between 10 and 12 for the second jewel of the Triple Crown.

Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Medina Spirit was back on the track at Churchill Downs on Wednesday morning for a jog and he seems to have come out of the race in good shape.

Among his foes will be stablemate Concert Tour who won the Rebel (G2) and was third in the Arkansas Derby (G1) I his most recent outing.

Trainer Chad Brown announced that Crowded Tale will run and that Risk Taking would be entered in Saturday’s $200,000 Peter Pan (G2) but might scratch to go in the Preakness.

Keepmeinmind is possible according to his trainer Robertino Diodoro and a decision would be made on Saturday.

Todd Pletcher said that Unbridled Honor would run in the Preakness. Brad Cox said Essential Quality is out but that Caddo River and Mandaloun are still being considered.

It looks as if we should have a clearer picture by Saturday, but it looks as if Medina Spirit is going to face a pretty solid field as he attempts to keep his Triple Crown hopes alive.

Note that we have a 3:05 ET first post at Belmont Park for this afternoon so feel free to sleep in.

‘America’s Day at the Races” on FS2 will cover the action on Thursday from Aqueduct from 3:00 to 8:30 ET. You can also stream the action from Belmont Park today on YouTube or by using the TVG App. The horse betting company TVG is offering new players a 50% deposit match up to $250 . In addition, AmWager is offering up to a $500 bonus for new horseplayers.

To purchase my Belmont Park Report for Thursday click here .

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package. It gives you a month of Belmont Park Reports daily and my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday and my Preakness Stakes Report.

Here is the opener from Belmont Park to get the day off to a good start:


Race 1 Clm $32,000

  • #3 Lucky Sitka 6-1
  • #7 Up Seventyfour 2-1
  • #6 Overdressed 5-2
  • #1 Dramatic Twist 6-1

Analysis: Lucky Sitka makes her first start since breaking her maiden in her debut last October in the slop for a $50,000 tag. She was sent off at 7-1 in a field of seven, pressing the early pace and finishing evenly to win by a half-length. The third-place finisher Suspended Campaign came back to gradate for a $40,000 tag in her next outing and then was third versus Alw-1 optional claimers here recently. Our top pick returns with lasix added for the Terranova barn that is 32% winners (with a +ROI) with runners coming back off a +180-day layoff dating back three years. She catches a good spot for her return here for a $32,000 tag.

Up Seventyfour graduated for a $40,000 tag two back and last out set the early fractions and could not go with the winner in a decent runner up finish at this tag. She was three clear of the rest of the field and returns with blinkers added. The Atras trainee owns the edge in early and mid pace numbers and with the hood and Carmouche she figures to be the one to catch here.


Race 6 Md Sp Wt

  • #10 Proven Innocent 8-1
  • #9 Connagh's Quay 7-2
  • #3 Royale 3-1
  • #2 Summer Silence 8-1

Analysis: Proven Innocent returns off a three month break here for Shug. This guy has three starts under his belt, his best effort coming last out in a fifth-place finish at Gulfstream park going 1 1/16 miles for a $50,000 tag. The third and eight place finishers came off that race to break their maidens next out. He steps back up into the maiden special ranks and he should be able to handle the added ground. He is by Blame out of the stakes placed Meghan's Joy who has dropped eight winners and six have won on turf and six are stakes winners including two that have earned over $1 million—Ironicus and On Leave. He is reportedly a first time gelding here and is going to end up a decent price.

Connagh's Quay is sent out by the Chad Brown barn for his fifth career start. His last two came at Tampa Bay Downs, last out tracking the early pace and finishing gamely in a runner up finish, beaten a length. The winner was sixth versus Alw-1 optional claimers in his next start. The colt has shown improvement with each start and is bred to handle more ground. He is by Flintshire out of an Empire Maker mare that has dropped three other foal to race, all winners, top earner G3 turf winner Tide of the Sea ($337,418) who won the William McKnight (G3) at Gulfstream Park in January at 1 1/2 miles. The barn is off to a quick start at the meeting, winning with 11 of 40 starters, another dozen running second or third.


These are price plays for exotic players looking to find a couple of extra contenders to use in their Pick 4 or Pick 5 wagers. Or for those with smaller bankrolls, you might want to get in a small win wager.

Belmont Park

  • R2: #2 Artyistheparty 12-1
  • R4: #1 After the Wire 10-1
  • R6: #10 Proven Innocent 8-1
  • R6: #2 Summer Silence 8-1
  • R7: #1 Awesome Alana 10-1
  • R9: #5 Day’s Humor 8-1

Good luck today!

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