Last Updated Sep 05, 2021, 11:00 PM

Monday's Picks from Saratoga

We have reached the final day at Saratoga on Monday, with a pair of graded stakes on tap on the 40th and last day of the meeting.

A dozen races this afternoon will close things out and then we have a nine day break before Belmont Park opens for their fall meeting on Thursday, Sept. 16.

The first stake today is the $200,000 Bernard Baruch Handicap (G2), which will go off as the third race with a compact field of five going 1 1/16 miles on the turf.

En Wye Cee is the 2-1 morning line favorite and gets the call as this guy got a pretty lousy ride from Joe Ortiz last out against third level optional claimers where he was third. The five-year-old was wrangled back early after breaking well and then got stuck down along the inside heading for home and got shut off.

He picks up the meet’s leading rider Luis Saez this afternoon which is a plus and he should be tighter for his second start off the layoff for trainer Todd Pletcher.

The feature today is the last of 20 Grade 1 races at the meeting, with a field of 11 two-year-olds lining up in the $300,000 Hopeful (G1).

Some in this field are hopeful they can parlay this race into a start into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) or perhaps a starting point toward heading down the Kentucky Derby trail next year.

The Pletcher trained Wit is the 7-5 morning line favorite and he has won his two races by a combined 14 lengths. He broke his maiden in his debut by six and then won the Sanford (G3) by eight lengths.

The Bill Mott trained High Oak (5-2) will take some action after a sharp win in the Saratoga Special (G2) in his last outing.

Wesley Ward sends out the Sanford runner up Headline Report (12-1) and this son of Gormley might be worth tossing in the mix. He was eight lengths back of Wit last out but he has some early zip and perhaps over a fast surface has a shot of turning the tables. At least he is going to offer a bit more bang for the buck than the two favorites.

“Saratoga Live” is on FS2 (and streaming on YouTube) from 12:30 to 5:00 ET this afternoon. Then it is FS1 from 5:00 to 6:00 and the finale will be back on FS2 at 6:00. Looking to play the ponies? 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 Saratoga Report for Monday click here .

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


  Race 1 Md Sp Wt

  • #4 I'm Perfect Too 5-1
  • #6 Big City Momma 5-2
  • #7 Someday Maybe 4-1
  • #1 Equal Pay 2-1

Analysis: I'm Perfect Too was off poorly when getting bumped and squeezed back coming out of the gate in her debut. She was last early and came with a good late rally to finish in the runner up spot at 7-1, beaten a half-length. The Albertrani barn rarely has them fully cranked first time out. She is out of a Pleasantly Perfect mare and will appreciate the extra furlong here. The barn is 17% winners (with a +ROI) with second out maidens. She should move forward off her debut effort and this is not a very deep looking group she runs into in this spot.

Big City Momma makes her third career start here for the Shug barn. She was third in her debut behind a 11 1/4 length winner and last out caught a muddy track where she was third again, this time behind a 6 1/2 length winner. The runner up Perfect Grace came back to graduate in her next outing on Aug. 21 here. She was a $700,000 Keeneland purchase, by Quality Road out of a stakes placed Big Brown mare that has dropped one winner. She picks up Saez and this gal looks as if she still has some upside.


Race 8 Md Sp Wt

  • #2 Consumer Spending 5-2
  • #6 Old School 5-1
  • #8 Popular Vote 12-1
  • #4 Dance for Gold 10-1

Analysis: Consumer Spending was away last in a field of eight and came with a good late rally to finish in the runner up spot behind her entrymate last out, the duo bet down to 4-5. She was 2 1/2 lengths clear of the rest of the field in the effort. The Brown barn is 25% winners with second out maidens. She was a $200,000 purchase, by More Than Ready out of a Scat Daddy mare that has dropped one other foal to race, no winners to date. She should move forward with a race under her belt and the barn has really caught fire, hitting at a 35% clip overall here over the past two weeks.

Old School debuts for the Pletcher barn that is 17% winners with first timers. Here at the Spa this meet the barn is 7 for 27 (26% with a +ROI) with debut juvies. This gal has a nice turf pedigree, by Frankel out of a stakes placed Montjeu mare. The morning works are not jumping off the page but this gal figures to be ready to go here at first asking for Bobby Flay who bred and owns this gal.


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. 


  • R6: #2 Sum Kinda Pretty 15-1
  • R7: #10 Pine Valley 8-1
  • R8: #8 Popular Vote 12-1
  • R8: #4 Dance for Gold 10-1
  • R10: #7 Headline Report 12-1
  • R10: #10 Power Agenda 10-1
  • R11: #9 Performing Arts 15-1
  • R11: #11 Alley Oops Johnny 12-1
  • R12: #10 Orma 8-1

Good luck today!

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