Last Updated Oct 30, 2021, 8:00 PM

Sunday's Picks from Belmont Park and Churchill Downs

We close out the week at Belmont Park with a solid card on Sunday that features three stakes and just two turf races, which may end up being moved to the main track.

We were off the turf on Saturday and more rain is in the forecast overnight. The rain should stop earlier enough we have a good shot of seeing a fast track by mid day.

Today is also opening day at Churchill Downs which is Stars of Tomorrow Day with all eleven races on the card for juveniles. The feature is the $200,000 Street Sense which drew a field of nine that will go 1 1/16 miles on the main track.

The co-feature is the $200,000 Rags to Riches, which drew just five. My Best Plays for today has four of the races including the Street Sense.

At Belmont Park the racing office split the $100,000 Pumpkin Pie and the first division is the sixth race with a field of seven and then the second division is the eighth race with eight going to the post.

Sandwiched between those races is the $200,000 Bold Ruler Handicap (G3) which drew a competitive field of seven.

I should have my Breeders’ Cup Reports available no later than Thursday afternoon. Next week is closing week at Belmont Park which will be running from Friday through Sunday.

My Best Plays Report for Sunday includes my nine strongest plays from Belmont Park and Churchill Downs.

“America’s Day at the Races” is on FS1 from 12:30 to 4:00 ET and then FS2 from 4:00 to 6:00 this afternoon 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 $250 bonus for new horseplayers.

To purchase my Belmont Park and Best Plays Report for Sunday click here.

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


Race 1 Clm $30,000N2L

  • #4 Scott Alaia 8-1
  • #1 Iaintfraidanoghost 1-1
  • #3 Targeted Return 3-1
  • #6 Matoula 4-1

Analysis: Scott Alaia did not fire last out against $25,000 non-winners of two in a fifth-place finish in her second start against winners. After graduating for a $30,000 tag here against state breds three back she ran well in her first start against winners, checking in third. The winner was Quasar, who came back to beat $35,000 non-winners of three here in her next outing on Sept. 24. Our top pick was claimed out of her last effort by the Hennig barn that does not hit the claim box often, just 2 for 5 first off the claim dating back three years. She looks capable of bouncing back with a better effort than we saw out of her last out and she likely would not mind if the track is still wet today to kick off the day.

Iaintfraidanoghost chased the early pace and weakened in the stretch to finish fourth last out going two turns at Monmouth Park against Alw-1 optional claimers. She graduated going a one turn mile at the Big A in the mud back in February and then was fifth beaten 5 1/4 lengths going seven furlongs off a four-month break in her first start against winners. The cut back to one turn will suit her and he drops into a softer spot here tagged for $30,000. She has a strong off track pedigree if there is still some moisture in the surface.


Race 6 The Pumpkin Pie

  • #1 Victim of Love 7-2
  • #2 Aunt Kat 8-5
  • #4 Starfront 4-1
  • #5 Truth Hurts 6-1

Analysis: Victim of Love returns off nearly a five month break here for the Penn based Beattie barn that is 15% winners (with a +ROI) with runners coming back off a 61–180-day layoff. Last out in the Bed of Roses (G3) she set the early fractions and weakened to finish fifth here in the slop. She won her first two trips over the main track her including the Vagrancy 'Cap (G3) here last June over a wet track. She has been working well for her return, draws the rail and owns the edge in early and mid pace numbers. She has run well on wet tracks and there still may be some moisture in the racing surface this afternoon. Aunt Kat dueled for the early lead and got run down by Bayerness in a runner up finish in the restricted.

Aunt Kat last out at the Spa going seven furlongs. She had won her three previous starts, beating Alw-1 and Alw-2 foes in her first tries over the main track here. Mott is 19% winners with runners coming back off a 61–180-day break. She looks dangerous here while our top pick is likely going to offer a bit more value for the top spot.


Race 10 The Street Sense

  • #4 Red Danger 7-2
  • #5 Kiss the Sky 3-1
  • #9 Red Knobs 5-1
  • #1 Guntown 8-1

Analysis: Red Danger returns to dirt here after getting bumped coming out of the gate, stalking the early pace, making a good move to get to the front but was unable to finish, checking in fourth in the Bourbon (G2) going 1 1/16 miles over good turf. He won the Juvenile Sprint two back at Kentucky Downs going 6 1/2 furlongs. By Orb out of a Distorted Humor mare he should be able to handle two turns on the main track. Lynch is 21% winners moving runners from turf to dirt

Kiss the Sky was a game second last out in the Kentucky Downs Turf Mile, beaten 3/4 of a length to Tiz the Bomb who came back to win the Bourbon. The Maker colt broke his maiden on turf in his second career start and handled dirt in his debut three back at Ellis Park in a runner up finish to Lucky Boss. He has shown improvement with each start and is bred to handle dirt. Maker is 21% winners moving runners from turf to dirt.


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: #4 Scott Alaia 8-1
  • R2: #3 Mia Bea Star 8-1
  • R5: #1 Hellman 8-1

Good luck today!

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