Specifically designed for the rolling exotic player, Jeff Siegel’s Daily Saratoga Handicapping Analysis, Wagering Strategies, and Workout Commentary identify those horses that should be included in daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and the pick-6.
For additional commentary, follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.
Grade A=Highest degree of confidence
Grade B=Solid Play.
Grade C=Least preferred or pass
Grade X=probable winner but likely at odds too short to play
RACE 1: Post: 1:10 ET Grade: B+
Main ticket: (in order of preference): 1-Positive Carry
Backups/Savers/Underneath: 4-Deep Conviction.
Forecast: Positive Carry, a smallish but athletic daughter of Sea the Moon, makes her debut in this middle distance inner turf event for maiden juvenile fillies and appears to have the kind of talent that can win a race like this at first asking. The Irish-bred filly, purchased as a yearling overseas for in excess of $200,000, should be quite fit based on her work tab for a barn that hits at a strong 22% with debut runners, and with Flavian Prat taking the call this well-regarded Irish-bred looks like a live item at 7/2 on the morning line. Let’s make her a win play and main push in the various rolling exotics.
RACE 2: Post: 1:44 ET Grade: B
Main ticket: (in order of preference): 1-Life Talk; 2-Rising Inflation
Forecast: We’ll double the second race, a main track miler for juvenile fillies. Life Talk has the benefit of a prior run, having finished a close second (beaten a head) in a maiden special weight sprint last month. The number was just okay, but we suspect the daughter of Gun Runner will step forward considerably with that race under her belt. Rising Inflation is a first timer with a decent series of workouts at Churchill Downs to have her fit and ready. She’s bred to be quick (Mtole), but we’ve haven’t seen her on video, so we’re largely guessing. Considering her connections, we’re compelled toss her in.
RACE 3: Post: 2:20 ET Grade: B-
Main ticket (in order of preference): Road to Remember; 6-Mz Big Bucks; 7-Road to Remember
Forecast: Road to Remember has a prior win over the local lawn and should fire a big shot fresh after being on vacation since mid-June. Now in the Raymond Handal barn, the daughter of Bellamy Road shows a steady recent work tab to have her plenty fit and back numbers that are good enough to win this second level, state-bred grass dash for fillies and mares. Mz Big Bucks is back sprinting where he probably belongs, and her New York stallion stakes win two races back at Belmont Park makes her a major player. She is quick enough to be on or near the lead throughout. Loom Cry is guaranteed a ground saving trip from her rail draw and is clearly most comfortable sprinting on grass. She’ll be the one they’ll all have to worry about the most from the furlong pole to the wire.
RACE 4: Post: 2:52 ET Grade: B+
Main ticket (in order of preference): 1-Pillbox/1a-Corner Kick; 6-Proud Foot.
Forecast: Pillbox arrives from Gulfstream Park for her first outing since March and has won fresh in the past, so we’re expecting this Saffie Joseph, Jr.-trained filly to be tough to deal with in this seven furlong main track affair for starter allowance ($50,000) fillies and mares. The local works are sharp, so it’s entirely possible that this daughter of We Miss Artie will return a better version of herself. Corner Kick, a first-off-the-claim play for Robertino Diodoro, crushed a maiden $40,000 field here last month and provides the entry with strong support. Proud Foot apparently lacks a winning punch (two wins from 21 starts with nine seconds and thirds) but she remains protected by Linda Rice and was more than five lengths clear of the rest when second as the favorite two weeks ago. She figures in the fray once again.
RACE 5: Post: 3:26 ET Grade: C+
Main ticket (in order of preference): 14-Screaming Uncle; 13-With Purpose; 1-Bargaining Power
Forecast: Screaming Uncle vans up from Monmouth Park and plummets from straight maiden company to the bottom-rung maiden $20,000 level in a move that clearly indicates he’s being culled from the stable. His runner-up effort two races back makes him a standout at this level, assuming he’s reasonably healthy. With Purpose, a fair third in his debut in a maiden $40,000 affair last February at Gulfstream Park, returns cheap for Brendan Walsh, hardly a sign of confidence for the former $140,000 yearling buy. However, with Irad Ortiz, Jr., taking the call, he should be a live item against this group. Bargaining Power earned a decent enough speed figure last time out when a distant third facing $40,000 foes to make him competitive with this group. With a good trip from the rail under Flavian Prat, the Chad Brown-trained son of Frosted should be a factor at 6-1 on the morning line.
RACE 6: Post: 4:00 ET Grade: C+
Main ticket (in order of preference): 8-Charging; 7-Billy’s Got Issues; 10-Ski Patrol
Forecast: Charging shows up in a seller for the first time after a pair of disappointing efforts facing stakes and allowance foes in his last pair. Three races back, the son of Candy Ride easily disposed of straight maiden foes at Keeneland and if he can run back to that race today the Brad Cox-trained colt can regain his winning form. Billy’s Got Issues, aptly named and a voided claim for this price last time out, turns back from a router and should be a late threat if he’s feeling up to it. Based on his maiden $40,000 win two races back at Belmont Park, he’s a fit with these. Ski Patrol is one of those Linda Rice droppers following a claim ($50,000 to $350,000). Some of them win, some of them don’t. He’s never sprinted, so it will be interesting to see if he can stay within contact during the first half mile.
RACE 7: Post: 4:34 ET Grade: B
Main ticket (in order of preference): 2-Spirit Prince; 8-Carson’s Run
Backups/Savers/Underneath: 1-Gala Brand.
Forecast: Spirit Prince missed in his debut when running a winning race over this course and distance facing maidens last month and returns in this year’s edition of the With Anticipation in a clear sign of confidence by his connections. The son of Cairo Prince adds blinkers and picks up Flavian Prat, so we’re expecting a big step forward in this fairly wide open event for juveniles. His Christophe Clement-trained stable mate, Carson’s Run, is the one to fear most. A maiden debut winner here last month on the same day (but in different race) that our top pick raced, the son of Cupid figures to settle in the second flight and then produce his late kick.
RACE 8: Post: 5:10 ET Grade: B-
Main ticket (in order of preference): 3-Cicciobello; 2-Bank Frenzy
Backups/Savers/Underneath: 4-Pineapple Man; 5-G Munning.
Forecast: Cicciobello was below form when unplaced in open company over this track and distance earlier this month but faces state bred foes today and can return to winning form. A repeat of his race before last, a big figure runner-up effort at this level while six lengths clear of a next out winner, is more than good enough to handle this task. Additionally, he’s reunited with “win rider” Javier Castellano. Bank Frenzy is lightly raced, improving, and the one to fear most. He missed by a neck at 21-1 in a New York Stallion Series event sprinting at Aqueduct in April and if he returns as well as he left the Lisa Lewis-trained Central Banker colt will be right in the thick of things. The presence of Irad Ortiz, Jr. in the saddle is an additional plus.
RACE 9: Post: 5:44 ET Grade: B-
Main ticket (in order of preference): 1-Inevtabl Connection; 5-Ice Road
Backups/Savers/Underneath: 4-Kunshan Bridge; 7-Giroovin.
Forecast: Inevtabl Connection, a solid runner-up in a similar recent starter’s allowance race, lands the rail and projects to be the best of the speed types. The fractions should be moderate at best, so if the son of Connect can break cleanly and establish the running he could take some catching. Ice Road, second in his last three starts, may lack a winning punch though if he repeats his career top speed figure earned when second in a similar affair last time out the son of Keen Ice could be hard to contain late.
RACE 10: Post: 6:18 ET Grade:
Main ticket (in order of preference): 10-Lady Hamilton; 5-Miss Bonnie T.
Backups/Savers/Underneath: 8-Miss M M.
Forecast: Lady Hamilton is stuck in the 10-hole but drops into a $35,000 claimer for the first time and at this level should be able to find a way to win. The Saffie Joseph, Jr.-trained filly has form at Gulfstream Park that is good enough to handle this level of competition on this circuit and picks up Irad Ortiz, Jr. Let’s hope she can get over and secure a nice stalking position before the field hits the first turn. Miss Bonnie T is another class dropper that should be a major player in this league. She has numbers that fit and good form over the local turf course but hasn’t been out since December. It’s hard to gauge what kind of shape she’s in.