Saturday, September 06, 2014
TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer
TimeformUS Analysis for racing at Belmont on Sunday September 6th
>Go To PPs for the Races
Race 1: #2 Golden Rule is a new face to this group, and her typical dirt race out of town makes her competitive in this spot. Drops in class for a good trainer, and her lone race in NY to this point resulted in a blowout maiden win. #6 Allie Sweet is cut back in distance for new trainer who gets an 88 rating off the claim. Has posted 2 wins and a second in last three races around one turn. #1 Rettalfa has consistently been hampered by gate issues, and she was slow away once again when second best last time. Put up a win when away with the field two starts back, but that was a slow race.
Race 2: #8 Stay in Front returns from long layoff here with a drop in class, but she is unlikely to find a much better spot than this one, and if she can run as well today as she did in her debut last summer, she is going to be very tough to beat. #4 Lochan drops in for a tag for the first time while cutting back to a sprint, and her new trainer gets a strong 98 rating with turf sprinters and a perfect 100 with runners switching from a route to a sprint.
Race 3: #5 Katie's Garden arrives here looking for four in a row, and her last was her best yet, as she overpowered allowance foes off the layoff with a new top figure of 100. Drew perfectly on the outside and projects to be in a perfect trip tracking up close in a race that favors runners up close to the pace.
#1 Tahoe Tigress bombed as the favorite vs. NY-breds at Saratoga, but she was pushing her limits over nine furlongs up there, and she is at her best around one turn on this track. #4 Toasting is an in-and-outer, but she is capable of a big effort when in the mood, and she also appreciates the elongated one-turn races around here.
Race 4: Turf sprint carrying a $100k purse is set to go with a short field, and there are plenty of question marks. #4 Za Approval is the ML favorite, and his best race would be plenty good enough should he run it, but he's appeared to be off form so far this year. If he bounces back, he wins, but we can't trust him. Pace Projector indicates that the frontrunners may have the advantage, but we don't want #6 Joe Tess, and would be surprised if #2 Fredericksburg and/or #1A Strong Impact allowed him to get too comfortable early. For all of that, we'll hope at least a fair pace develops and take a shot with #7 West Hills Giant. He handles turf as well as dirt, and he has run very well while against paces that held together in his last two starts on the main track.
Race 5: #3 Clark Kent is the horse to beat off of his debut, in which he was second best to Embellishing Bob with an 88 TFUS Speed Figure. We didn't think he did that much running in there and have to wonder where he's been for the last 162 days. To us the most interesting new face is #7 Lord Cashel. He starts for a trainer who has been making all the right moves all summer long, and pulls a strong 88 Breeding Rating for dirt sprints.
Race 6: #7 Eskenformoney was bumped and squeezed back early and then had little chance to kick on with an impressive debut winner when stretched out last time. Still finished well in there to clearly best the rest, and is the horse to beat in this spot.
Main threat may come from one of the first-time starters, and the most likely candidates are #2 Miss Chatelaine and #9 Breach of Duty. Miss Chatelaine has an 86 Breeding Rating for turf routes, and debuts for Clement (100 Trainer Rating with first-time starters in turf routes). Breach of Duty has an 81 Breeding Rating for turf routes, and debuts for Chad Brown (100 Trainer Rating with first-time starters in turf routes).
Race 7: #2 Leroy Jr. returned running from the layoff and dropped a close decision while hanging up a 100 TFUS Speed Figure. A repeat of that one makes him very tough to beat, and Pace Projector indicates that he holds all the cards early. #9 Sunlover broke his maiden in first turf sprint attempt back at the end of his 2yo season, and he endured a tough trip when returned from the layoff over this track/trip last summer. Spent the rest of the year going longer, but this may be his best game. #3 Archer Hill has proven a handful for his riders, but he sprinted effectively over this track during the spring/summer meet and figures to benefit from this cut-back in distance.
Race 8: #1 Birkenhead appeared to be getting a prep run in during sprint debut upstate as she was rated back under a strong hold early and asked to run a little in the stretch. Faces field full of first-time starters and may be able to use her experience to her advantage. #8 Profess has also had a start, and she was out-paced right from the start while sprinting over a sloppy track at Monmouth. Has the pedigree to handle the surface switch (87 Breeding Rating) and trainer tends to give his 2yos a race. #3 Fila Primera has the pedigree (91 rating) and debuts for Chad Brown, who was, as usual, very live with first-time starters on turf at Saratoga. Be interesting to see if he can keep it going down here.
Race 9: #1 Crafty Dreamer ran a strong race when last seen over this track back in July. He was part of a strong pace that day in a race that ultimately fell to closers and he projects to encounter a different scenario today. #6 Waco took a lot of money and then ran a remarkable race at Saratoga on August 16. He earned a 101 TFUS Speed Figure for that effort, and he earned it while contesting a fast pace the entire way before succumbing late to a perfect-trip closer. Don't know if he can run that race again, but he's the horse to beat if he does.
Race 10: #3 Loon River and #10 Bad Girl Phase are the only runners with experience, and they exit the same race from August 11 upstate. Loon River came away a narrow loser that day, but we aren't sure we want anyone out of that race, which leaves us to guess with first-time starters. #2 Courageisamajority and #11 Detail are the well-bred, well-connected, logical, ones, but we'll also include #8 Madison Blues, who is a sister to a pair of turf winners and debuts for a trainer who knows how to win with a firster.