Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:50 AM

Saturday's Picks from Belmont Park and Churchill Downs

We have a really good day of action on tap, and it is closing day at Churchill Downs which features seven stakes races and we have a pair of stakes at Belmont Park this afternoon.

I cover six of the stakes from Churchill Downs in my Best Plays Report for Saturday which includes a dozen races in total including the Ohio Derby (G3) from Thistledown.

There are two Breeders’ Cup Challenge races at Churchill Downs and they both feature 4-5 chalks. Letruska will be the heavy favorite in the $300,000 Fleur De Lis (G2) and Maxfield is the favorite in the $600,000 Stephen Foster (G2).

I am taking a stab we can beat them. The supporting stakes are the $300,000 Fleur de Lis (G2), $300,000 Wise Dan (G2), $150,000 Bashford Manor (G3), $150,000 Debutante, $150,000 Tepin and $150,000 War Chant.

The $250,000 Mother Goose (G2) is the highlight at Belmont Park on Saturday. The race drew a compact field of five with the Chad Brown trained Always Carina the even money favorite. She is another favorite I am going to try and beat.

The $100,000 Wild Applause is the co-feature at Belmont Park, and the race drew a competitive field of nine three-year-old fillies that will go one mile on turf.

And do not forget to look for the $500,000 Ohio Derby (G3) today at Thistledown. The race drew 11 three-year-olds and it is a solid group. Among the contenders are Lexington (G3) winner King Fury, Peter Pan (G3) winner Promise Keeper, the 2020 Breeders’ Futurity (G1) winner Keepmeinmind and Proxy, who was second in the Lecomte (G3) and Risen Star (G2) earlier this year at Fair Grounds.

“America’s Day at the Races” is on FS2 today 12:30 to 6:00 ET with the action from Belmont Park and Churchill Downs. TVG is offering new players up to a $300 Risk Free wager.  In addition, AmWager is offering up to a $500 bonus for new horseplayers.

To purchase my Belmont Park and Best Plays Reports for Saturday 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.

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


 Race 1 Md $40,000

  • #3 Perpetual Change 3-1
  • #6 Ghostman 4-5
  • #5 Trisaetum 15-1
  • #9 Artie's Lit 15-1

Analysis: Perpetual Change drops in for a tag for the first time here in his third career start while adding first time lasix. The gelding showed some ability in his debut last November at Aqueduct, coming with a good late rally to finish in the runner up spot. In his return off the bench last month he stalked the early pace and faded to finish a well beaten 10th. The class drop should suit as well as lasix. He is out of a Service Stripe who has dropped two winners including one turf winner.

Ghostman stalked the early pace and made a mild late bid to finish fourth last out, beaten a length. He was third two back and the runner up three back in his second career start. Decent numbers over his last three starts and now Irad is up, but he is certainly no big standout considering he is 4-5 on the morning line. He is out of a Medaglia d'Oro mare that has dropped two other foals to race with one dirt winner.


Race 8 The Debutante

  • #8 Ontheonesandtwos 5-2
  • #7 Behave Virginia 9-2
  • #1 Wicked Halo 4-1
  • #3 Tizplenty 4-1

Analysis: Ontheonesandtwos prompted the early pace and drew clear late to a good looking maiden win for the Casse barn going five furlongs over the main track here. The third place finisher Tizplenty came out of the race to wire the field in her next outing on June 4 and is in here. The barn has been very live at the meet, hitting at a 32% clip and does good wort with juvies. She is by Jimmy Creed out of a stakes placed Malibu Moon mare. She has worked smartly since her debut effort and looks like she can sit just off the pace and get the job done in the stretch.

Behave Virginia dueled for the early lead over a wet fast main track here and went on to score by 5 3/4 lengths over a field of seven in her debut. McPeek does not have big numbers with first timers and this gal figures to show more here with a race under her belt, The trainer won this race in 2017 with Ten City. She was a $115,000 Keeneland purchase by Unified out of a Mineshaft mare that has dropped two other foals to race, both winners.


 Race 9 The Wild Applause

  • #1 Alda 6-1
  • #2 Minaun 5-2
  • #6 Bubbles On Ice 8-1
  • #7 Bye Bye 9-2

Analysis: Alda stretched out to a mile last out for her second start off the bench and was a game winner of the Hilltop at Pimlico. She stalked the early pace, came with a good move to take over the lead and held on to win by a neck in a three way photo. She won the Catch a Glimpse last year and then was a game second in the Natalma (G1) when shipped to Woodbine. She did not fire in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) and hit the bench. She looks primed for a top effort here for the Motion barn in her third start off the sidelines and the 6-1 morning line looks fair enough in a very competitive race.

Minaun was a good looking winner over Alw-1 company in her U.S debut which was off a 10 month layoff. She ran second in her debut last June and broke her maiden by winning the Marble Hill Stakes (G3) at Cork in her second career start. She should have no problem getting the added ground here. She is by Zoffany out of a Green Desert mare that ash dropped two other turf winners. Brown is 24% winners moving runners from sprint to route.


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

Belmont Park

  • R1: #5 Trisaetum 15-1
  • R1: #9 Artie’s Lit 15-1
  • R2: #1 High Oak 8-1
  • R4: #1 Aristocratic 15-1
  • R4: #4 The Queen Jules 8-1
  • R5: #4 Jill’s a Hot Mess 10-1
  • R6: #1 Rosey’s Peach 12-1
  • R7: #1 Opry 10-1
  • R8: #4 Zaajel 12-1
  • R9: #6 Bubbles On Ice 8-1
  • R10: #7 Dame Time 10-1
  • R10: #4 Blue Lily 8-1

Good luck today!

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