Thursday, September 18, 2014
TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer
TimeformUS Analysis for the Racing at Belmont on Friday September 19th
Race 1: #2 Dr Disco brought a game challenge to repeat winner Pretension before settling for second-best two starts back, and came back 5 days later only to get hooked into a fast duel and tire late. Pace Projector puts him in charge of the proceedings early, and an effort similar to those last two will make him very tough on this group.
#5 Say Mr. Sandman drops back down to a more appropriate level after trying tougher recently, and he has enough positional speed to keep himself in range. #4 Indy Tune likes to sit it out early and run late, a style that may not play in this race, but he's been holding good form since turning back in distance earlier this summer, and his new trainer gets a solid 82 rating off the claim.
Race 2: Tough $25k claimer restricted to non-winners of two features eight well-matched runners. #7 Ice Wagon was chasing close to a fast pace last time before bouncing off the rail while trying to squeeze through inside in the stretch, and he took the worst of it on a four-wide chase at this level on June 29th. Has to stretch out, but 88 TFUS Speed Figure earned over this track and trip on June 4th is the top recent number in the field. #3 Maximus Mike was dropped down quickly by his previous connections, but he's run two of the fastest races in the field on dirt and figures to appreciate the turn-back in distance. #4 Master Yank is a logical contender, but he's had some soft trips up close to moderate paces recently and may face a sterner test this time.
Race 3: #5 Sunny Desert has run gamely through sloppy tracks in each of her first two starts back from a long layoff, and she spent the majority of her most recent race down on the rail, which didn't appear to be the place to be on August 21st at Saratoga . May appreciate catching a fast track for third start back, and her best race makes her a handful. #1 Girlaboutown has impressed since the unveiling on July 4th, and her last was her best yet, when overcoming a bad stumble at the start to close down the talented Blithely, who blew away a field here on Wednesday. #4 Carameaway is at her best when able to be part of the pace and figures to have a favorable scenario here according to Pace Projector.
Race 4: #8 Blue Collar Cat had an eventful 2yo season, more than once running well without winning, before eventually being tried in a couple of stakes races toward the end of the year. Returns on the drop with a trainer change, and can be tough on a field like this with routine improvement. #4 No Nukes has improved his speed figures since getting a trainer change to Jason Servis, but he has continued to settle for minor awards. Turn-back in distance for this race is viewed as a positive. #1 King Gettigan and #6 Mineral Water both ran well enough at this level on August 28th to be competitive, but, like No Nukes, both are running out of chances quickly. #7 Discreet Kaz is interesting, making his debut with a Breeding Rating of 91 for dirt sprints and a trainer who pulls a 94 rating with first-time starters.
Race 5: #4 Helm impressed putting up new career top TimeformUS Speed Figure of 100 when stretched back out over synthetic at Presque Isle two back, and raced on gamely after taking a wide trip behind front-running Silver Freak back on turf at Saratoga last time. #6 Monument Hill continues to hit hard at age 8, posting TFUS Speed Figures of 109-105-105 in his three starts this year. Tried gamely when forced to close into a moderate pace last time.
#7 Admiral Perry returns to turf after focusing on synthetic races for most of 2014, and he has back races that make him competitive. #9 Inchcape has had trouble finding the winner's circle so far, but he will appreciate the turn-back in distance for this race and may be an interesting price.
Race 6: #13 Gypsum Johnny gave the appearance of being a first-time starter who may not have been suited by a wet track in his debut as he dropped back early while in behind horses, but was racing on well through the stretch once out in the clear. Deserves another chance on a dry track. #7 Watergate was in a tricky spot contesting the pace between horses all the way in debut on the main track. Switched to turf for second start, but breeding rating of 82 for dirt, as opposed to just 69 for turf, suggests he may appreciate switching back. Interesting firsters abound in this race, which goes as the first leg of the late Pick 4. #9 Royal Asset has a Breeding Rating of 93 for dirt sprints and starts for a trainer who is adept at having his first-time starters ready to go. #11 Agent Van Alden brought $120k after working a furlong in 10 flat in March, and he's a half to Pegasus Diamond, who has banked over $200k sprinting on this circuit.
Race 7: Tough to knock the work #10 Ziptronic has been doing this year, and he'll drop back down here looking for four in a row. He's the horse to beat, and one of his competitors will either have to step it up or re-find prior good form to defeat him. Not sure what happened with #5 Isn'tlovejustgrand last time as he showed zero early speed and was left with far too much to do through the stretch. He raced on, and galloped out, but he must stay in contact early today. #6 Hear the Footsteps also failed to establish early position in his last race upstate, and wound up rallying without threat behind a wire-to-wire winner. Drops in class and is very dangerous in this field with something approaching his best race.
Race 8: One final chance for #10 Mills, who gets a trainer change to Bill Mott for this after an apparent private purchase. Began his career with much promise before tailing off, so the change of scenery may do him some good, and he was way up against it last time when wide behind a wire-to-wire winner. #4 Middleburg has settled for second-best in three straight, but he's run well each time and has the tactical speed to pull the right trip in a race projected to favor runners on or near the lead. #9 Tigah is an interesting new face in a race where most of the entrants are impossible to trust. Has run some very big races in the past in California, but will need some pace to develop. #6 Brickyard Kitten has run well in both starts since getting a trainer change to Tony Dutrow, and #3 Battle Force, third back from a layoff, is looking to re-find his prior good form.
Race 9: Both #3 Ocean Foam and #6 My Senses exit strong maiden races at Saratoga behind the highly promising Lady Eli, and they are clearly eligible to improve for the experience, but neither did so much running (after good trips) in that spot that we can't look around for alternatives. #7 Path had no speed in muddy track sprint debut, but dam was a better turf/synth horse, so this switch may work for her. #9 Neilinger made a promising debut without a very good trip at Saratoga before trying a stakes race in NJ last time. Stretches out for third career start with an 87 Breeding Rating for turf routes and may be an interesting price.