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TimeformUS Analysis for September 17

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Analysis for Wednesday September 17th at Belmont
 
Race 1:  Short field in the opener, which is set for one mile on grass with only five entered for turf.  #6 Kenzadargent is heavily favored on the ML after overpowering a solid field at Saratoga in her stateside debut for Chad Brown, and she's likely to be a solid single for most in the early Pick 5 and Pick 3.  #4 Image of Anna made her turf debut in much too tough of a spot, and she was racing on gamely through the stretch after steadying back to last at the start.  
 
Selections:  6-4-2-1
 
Race 2:  #1 Invasion Point projects to be on a clear early lead as he switches back to dirt and drops in class, which may be enough in a field lacking much in the way of current form. Lone start sprinting on dirt came in debut, vs. much better horses.  
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#9 Artemus Paperboy has run the best race to date, but that came a year ago at Churchill Downs, and he hasn't had much to offer since arriving in NY.  Drops back down to the level of the claim for a barn off to a hot start at the meet.  #7 Royalty Reigns has done little running to this point, but he was away slowly in his debut, and his trainer has solid ratings with runners switching from turf to dirt (92) and with older maiden claimers on dirt (100).    
 
Selections:  1-9-7-4
 
Race 3:  #9 Blisstering Strike has made only one start on turf, which we will view as a positive in this field, and she ran very well that day to gun down a loose leader with a game finish.  Has speed in a race that is projected to favor runners on or near the early lead.  #2 Stage Name should also be up close, and she drops in class while getting a turn-back in distance, which may suit her.  #3 Dattts Da Boss has continued to run well recently without winning, as have #4 Saratoga Karaoke and #10 Malibu Queen.  
 
Selections:  9-2-3-10
 
Race 4:  Guessing to be done in field full of 2yo first-time starters set to sprint six furlongs.  #4 R Y Squadron goes for reliable debut trainer Chad Brown (100 rating with 2yo first-time starters) and she pulls a strong Breeding Rating of 95 for turf sprints.  #9 Hot Like Hepburn brought $230k earlier this year and is also well-bred for turf sprints (93 rating).  #3 Pink Freud Live is another daughter of Freud with a strong Breeding Rating for these races (90) and her trainer is dangerous with first-time starters.  #8 Light Years Away is a full to turf stakes winner In Te Domine.  
 
Selections:  4-9-3-8
 
Race 5:  With plenty of speed signed on to this route for $20k claimers, we'll take a shot with #3 Lure of the South, hoping he can close into a setup late.  He's third back from a layoff today while dropping in class and switching from turf to dirt (85 rating for this trainer), and we've always liked him better as a dirt horse anyway.  #4 North Ocean has been in questionable form recently, and it's hardly inspiring to find him cut in half for his first start off the claim.  He's the best horse in the field; just not sure we'll see his best race.  #2 M J Plus drops back down for trainer off to a fast start at the meet after landing in a paceless race vs. tougher last week.  
 
Selections:  3-4-2-5
 
Race 6:  #8 Boss Man finally picked up long overdue first win on the drop at Saratoga last month, and returns in the right kind of spot for first start with winners.  Versatility an asset in race projected to be run at a fast early pace.  Expected pace may work against #7 Broadway Zen, who is dropping back down in class after facing much tougher competition recently (Race Ratings of 100 and 99 for last two starts, as compared to today's 89).  #3 Forever Thing is back to turf off the claim after becoming a disappointment on dirt.  Went well enough on grass early in his career.
 
Selections:  8-7-3-2
 
Race 7:  #2 Skye Saratoga starts back as a 3yo while trying her available condition for the first time since impressive maiden score last November with an 83 TFUS Speed Figure.  2014-09-17_08-56-09Has run exclusively in stakes company since, and is eligible to move forward quickly.  #7 Blithely has perhaps been a little lucky so far, as she rode a gold rail to impressive maiden win last September, and was almost able to upset heavily favored Girlaboutown after that one stumbled very badly at the start last time.  On the other hand, she has shown plenty of potential to start her career, improving her figures from start to start (71-88-92), and may be set for best yet in second start back from the layoff.  We can be against her if she's a short price, or with her if she's not.  #8 My Girl Madison is also lightly raced with upside, and is herself making her second start back from a layoff.  Has speed in a race that is projected to favor frontrunners.  #1A Very Accomplished also has speed, and she will appreciate the little cut-back she gets today.  
 
Selections:  2-7-8-1A
 
Race 8:  Now-or-never time for #8 Blue Pigeon, who has had legitimate excuses in each of his two starts this year (too close to fast pace on July 26, buried in traffic on August 23).  #10 Balderdash has failed to build upon solid start to his career on turf as a 2yo, but he took a step in the right direction last time when taking the first run while wide through the second turn before flattening out late.  #3 Charity Reins has improved off the claim for this trainer, and he also had trouble on August 23rd behind several of these.  #2 Salisbury Knight has been a disappointment on dirt but is a half to a pair of stakes winners on grass, so perhaps the surface switch will wake him up.  
 
Selections:  8-10-4-5
 
Race 9:  #5 Boston Strong has run well in both starts to begin his career (as well as the three favorites on the ML have, in our opinion), so we'll take him on top in competitive NY-bred maiden race.  #9 Tiger D has been narrowly defeated in first two starts and feels like the horse to beat, but he exits a no-excuse loss after getting control in a race that was slow early and fast late.  #4 Talladega is a logical contender off of his first two starts.  #6 Luv Dakota Skye makes 3yo debut with a trainer change to George Weaver (99 rating), who will take the blinkers off (100 rating); eligible to improve quickly.  
 
Selections:  5-9-6-3
 
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TimeformUS Analysis for September 14

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Analysis for Racing at Belmont on Sunday September 14th

Race 1:  Competitive but compact group of five fillies will sprint in the opener.  Pace Projector favors the runners up close, but we'll hope that #5 Equilateral can use her late pace advantage (Late Pace rating of 94 is far superior to her rivals) to overcome the dynamics.  She has sprinted only once in her career, and that came over a muddy, sealed track in her debut, but she impressed that day in posting a 100 TFUS Speed Figure win.  Like her turning back to a sprint for the first time since then after failing to take to turf at Saratoga.  #4 Shayjolie has run speed figures of 98-95-97 on dirt and may play out to be her main rival.  #3 Snowbell has been at her best at Saratoga so far, and she exits a much-the-best win up there last month with a new top figure.  This is tougher. 
 
Selections:  5-4-3-2
 
Race 2:  Lone runner with experience in this $75k maiden claimer for 2yo fillies is #1 Sunnysammi.  She showed good speed in that debut to make a fast pace and bring a clear lead into the stretch before stopping suddenly.  Speed like that is always dangerous in a race like this, but she'll need to finish this time.  Of the firsters, most interesting to us is #7 May Flowers.  She seems to be entered at the right level after bringing $70k in April (she worked two furlongs in 21 flat), and her dam is a half-sister to graded stakes winning sprinters Apriority and Bahamian Squall.  #6 Betamerica Babe is bred for speed on both sides of her pedigree (90 rating for dirt sprints) and is a half to the Grade 2 winning 2yo Vexor.  #4 Grandpa's Princess has good works and is the first foal from her dam, who is a sister to the Grade 1 winning sprinter Friendly Michelle. 
 
Selections:  7-6-1-4
 
Race 3:  #3 Brilliant Jewel is the horse to beat, but that's been said more than once before, and she continues to run to her competition.  We can't take her, and will instead try #5 Remarkable.  Remarkable dueled on a fast pace over an off track in her debut and tired in the stretch.  Similar show of speed in this field could make her tough.
 
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Clement saddles two first-time starters in #2 Royale Rose and #4 Savvy Sassy, and they both have something to recommend them.  Royale Rose (100 Breeding Rating for dirt sprints) is a half-sister to three graded stakes winners, including Woke up Dreamin, who won multiple Grade 2s sprinting on dirt.  Savvy Sassy is a half to the multiple graded stakes winner Southdale, who did his damage over synthetic at Woodbine. 
 
Selections:  5-3-2-4
 
Race 4:  Top NY-bred turf horses #3 Lubash, #4 Kharafa and #7 King Kreesa will go at it again in the $125k Ashley T. Cole over 1 1/8 miles.  King Kreesa has gotten the best of his hard-hitting rivals recently, and it was nice to see him return from the layoff in fine form upstate.  His margin for error is pretty slim, but he's the one to beat, and his speed is a valuable asset over this trip on the inner turf.  Kharafa threw in a bit of a clunker at Saratoga last time, but he's better than that.  Defending champ loves this track and can pull the right trip.  Lubash hits hard every time and just gave dead-game chase to King Kreesa at Saratoga.  
 
Selections:  7-4-3-5
 
Race 5:  #6 Make It Gold was up against it when wired by Glowing Ember two back, and he ran very well despite an impossible trip behind repeater Shining Copper last time.  Enough speed signed on to this race for him to rate and run.  #9 Tiz Yankee would have won last time but for his rider losing an iron in deep stretch while on a clear lead.  Put up 93 TFUS Speed Figures for each of last two turf starts, but may have to deal with #12 Wind of Bosphorus early.  That one drops back down in class after trying a much tougher spot first off the claim.
 
Selections:  6-12-9-5
 
Race 6:  #2 Summer Sunset is a question mark in current form, but he's dropping down in class here after facing much tougher in first three starts off the long layoff, and he has back form to get to that makes him very tough.  
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#5 Street Shark has brought improved form to NY, and he impressed when rolling into a fast pace off the re-claim on turf upstate.  #3 Coolusive also drops after facing tougher since the claim back in May.  Needs to re-find his good form to be competitive.  We're against the Jacobson entry of #1 Be Bullish and #1A Back Forty if they both go, but this barn has been heating up and we could give Back Forty another go if he starts alone.  He had a perfect trip when winning easily on the drop last time, but is another with faster back races to get to.
 
Selections:  2-5-3-1A
 
Race 7:  #8 Throckmorton is everyone's trip horse from the Saratoga meet, so don't expect much value, but his trouble was legitimate and he ran very well despite it.  #4 Day Six was just behind #6 King of Bay when they met at Saratoga, but he got out from behind horses later and was closing gamely at the end.  Neither of them was flattered by the performance of Breakeven Analysis on Saturday.  #9 Kato also ran into traffic behind Throckmorton on July 30th, but he's had prior chances that fail to inspire.
 
Selections:  8-4-5-9
 
Race 8:  #11 Old Harbor gets the right turn-back here after trying two turns upstate in last two starts.  Better fit with these horses and at this distance, and her only start over 7 furlongs resulted in an impressive score.  #4 Image of Noon has also been at her best in these elongated one-turn races at Belmont, and she has come back in improved form as a 4yo.  #5 One Time Only is logical with her versatility and with the cut-back in distance, and she has run several recent TFUS Speed Figures in the 90s, a level most of her competition has not been able to attain on grass to this point.  #2 My Jopia has run some of the fastest turf races in the field and is a threat if she can get back to that level in this spot.  
 
Selections:  11-4-5-2
 
Race 9:  #6 Effie Trinket handles this trip and is the clear horse to beat with her best race.  0-for-5 so far this year, but she's been in some tough spots and was ridden too conservatively when behind a pair of Grade 1 winners in the Yaddo.  #1A Dreaming of Cara never wins, but she's better than she looks on paper and may appreciate this distance more than some of her rivals.  #8 Mah Jong Maddnes once again failed to run up to her top level at Saratoga, but she loves the bigger courses down here and had been in career best form this year before heading north.  Distance the big question for her.  #2 Frosty Bay will need some help to come out on top, but she's an underrated performer who will be able to save all the ground and come running late if she can catch some pace in front of her.
 
Selections:  6-1A-8-2
 
Race 10:  #6 Chief Kitten was a clear second best to winning stablemate, and subsequent Grade 2 winner, Startup Nation on debut at Saratoga.  Similar run makes him the horse to beat in here.  
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#1 Gear Jammer was far back and allowed to finish up on his own in his sprint debut and now stretches out.  Eligible to show much more in second start.  #4 Brother O'Connell was racing on late when behind Chief Kitten last time.  Can improve for the experience, but Clement generally has them cranked up first time out.  
 
Selections:  6-1-4-7

 

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TimeformUS Analysis for September 13

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Analysis for Racing at Belmont Park on Saturday

 

Race 1:  #1 Breakeven Analysis showed potential at 2, and he overcame a bit of a trip to win his 3yo debut at Saratoga.  May have to do a little better than that, but he hasn't found the toughest N1x out there, and his trainer keeps them going in the right direction (97 rating off of maiden wins).  His mate, #1A Financial Mogul, is interesting switching to turf for the first time and doing so with pedigree.  We haven't been fans of his on dirt, and there's no point in liking him as part of an entry with Breakeven Analysis, but if that horse were to scratch, we'd be interested.  #4 Santa Elf has improved recently, and he showed upstate that he can handle grass.  He was badly compromised in a paceless race behind #9 Cashmere Cat last time.   
 
 
Selections:  1/1A-4-9-7
 
 
Race 2:  #4 Cali Star tried a four-wide run through the second turn going longer upstate, and faded late after failing to carry her run all the way.  Turn-back figures to work for her.  #2 Strum was slow from the gate and a bit green when a no-factor 4th on debut, but that was a good field and she's eligible to come forward.  Trainer change to Pletcher will draw some money her way, and she has to stretch out, whereas Cali Star is cutting back.  #5 Garzoni is also eligible for better as a 3yo.  She didn't set the world on fire last year, and having to get a mile off the layoff isn't ideal, but the 84 TFUS Speed Figure earned for her last start is already competitive with this field.
 
 
Selections:  4-5-2-7
 
 
Race 3:  Not a bad race for a new face, and either of #1 Hadrian or #6 Pisco Bliss could fit the bill as they make their respective 3yo debuts.  Of the two, we'd be more willing to give Hadrian another go, as she had little to offer first time out and was not being asked for much by her rider.  They went back to the drawing board after that, and we may see a different horse this time.  #8 Bold Runner exits the best last effort and is tough with a similar performance today.  Has speed and a rider who knows how to use it.  We will use #9 Tree Fire somewhere, as his last start at this level, on July 11, was an OK effort while up against a slow pace.  He was in too tough last time.  
 
 
Selections:  1-8-11-9
 
 
Race 4:  Race may all come down to what we get from #7 Moonluck.  He was a promising horse as a late 3yo before missing time and being offered up for $20k upon his return.  Not sure how much we found out about his current state in that facile win after tracking a slow pace, but he has talent and is brought back in a spot where his new connections can't lose him.  #1 Giant Fox ran well twice over off tracks at Saratoga and will appreciate any pace that develops in front of him here.  #6 Whyprolongtheagony dropped down at Monmouth last time and put in a solid four-wide run through the turn after a couple of pace horses who weren't coming back.  He will also appreciate having some pace, and there's enough of it in here.
 
 
Selections:  7-1-6-5
 
 
Race 5:  #11 Blazing Truth showed some potential despite being shut off at the break and then racing greenly in sprint debut here back in June.  Cuts back with lasix on after failing to stretch out upstate, and faces a field full of first-time starters.
 
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#3 Red Guard is a half-brother to Storm Front, a multiple graded stakes winner on grass with over $870k in the bank.  #4 Night Prowler debuts for Chad Brown, and his dam was a multiple graded stakes winner on grass.  
 
 
Selections:  11-4-3-9
 
 
Race 6:  #11 Giant Jo ran well in both turf starts as a 2yo, and he looked good when returned on the drop back in June as a new gelding.   Forget the dirt race at Saratoga; he's eligible to improve further, and there is not much other speed signed on in this spot.  #5 Aheadofthecurve put in a lackluster effort on this track back in May, but he rebounded off of a short break to post his maiden win, and he's been washed off to dirt since then.  #10 Dominate endured a tough trip two back, then failed to fire after being carried out early last time.  Not sure we can trust him, but he has improved since returning to turf earlier this year and is very tough in here with his good race. 
 
 
Selections:  11-10-5-4
 
 
Race 7:  Late Pick 4 kicks off with a pair of graded stakes on the turf, beginning with the Grade 3 Noble Damsel over one mile.  #5 Tokyo Time has finally started to deliver on her early promise, and enters here off of back-to-back wins.  She was able to close down a field from the back two starts back, and then took control and wired a field with ease at Saratoga last time.  #6 Annecdote is a dangerous import adding lasix for Clement.  She progressed nicely as a 3yo, and ran very well first time back from the layoff this year.
 
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 #9 Baffle Me is better than she's been able to show recently after a pair of tough trips.  Can be a threat in here if able to use her speed this time.  
 
 
Selections:  5-6-9-1
 
 
Race 8: Wide-open Sands Point drew a talented field of nine 3yo fillies for turf.  We'll try #4 Walk Close at a price as our top pick.  She has run well every time,  and she acquitted herself well in a tough spot last time despite not getting clear to run until the late stages. French imports #1 Xcellence and #10 Ball Dancing are dangerous for Chad Brown, but we're not sure how much of an edge they have on this field, if they have one at all.  
 
 
Selections:  4-5-6-1
 
 
Race 9:  Tough race to play through, with seven first-time starters among the nine 2yos entered.  Of the firsters, we're most interested in #8 Because I'm Happy.  He has a strong Breeding Rating of 89 for dirt sprints and starts for a dangerous trainer.  #4 Daredevil and #5 Leave the Light On are both well-connected and eligible to be runners.  #6 Breezy My Way has valuable experience, and he put in a run in his debut before flattening out at the end.
 
 
Selections:  8-6-4-5
 
 
Race 10:  Doesn't get any easier, with a full field of evenly matched NY-breds on grass.  Seven of them are returning from Saratoga's 9th race on August 16th, and of those, we want #12 Hurry Up Alan.  He encountered major traffic in that race and can do better here if able to work a trip from his outside post.  #6 Campogiovanni is competitive with these with his best effort and he'll be a big price.  #10 Sneaky Kitten is tough to take on top, having posted nine second-place finishes since his last win, but is also clearly a contender.
 
Selections:  12-6-10-9
 
 

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Forbes’ Firsters for Saturday, September 13, 2014

Jon Forbes

Forbes’ Firsters for Saturday, September 13, 2014

Race 5, All 2-year-olds, seven furlongs, turf, 3:09 p.m.

RED GUARD (bay colt, Bernardini—Rose of Summer, by El Prado) is a half-brother to Laragh, who won the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet over a synthetic surface and two listed stakes on the grass; and Summer Front, whose accomplishments include wins on the turf in the Grade 2 Fort Lauderdale and three other graded stakes and Grade 1 placings in the Shoemaker Mile, Eddie Read, Secretariat, and Jamaica Handicap. Roses of Summer has produced five starters, and four have won, all on the grass. Rose of Summer is an unraced half-sister to Grade 1 Hollywood Futurity victor Siphonic and listed stakes winner Mountain Girl.

Owner: Lane’s End Racing

Trainer: Claude McGaughey III

Jockey: Jose Lezcano

 

NIGHT PROWLER (chestnut gelding, Giant’s Causeway—Mary’s Follies, by More Than Ready) is the first foal out of his dam, who won the Grade 2 Mrs. Revere and Grade 3 Boiling Springs on the turf.

Owner: Paul Pompa, Jr.

Trainer: Chad Brown

Jockey: Javier Castellano

 

EBREEQ (bay colt, More Than Ready—Grande Annee, by Gone West) is the first foal out of his dam, who won three races in England. Grand Annee is a half-sister to Friesan Fire, who took the Grade 2 Louisiana Derby and three other graded stakes. Ebreeq’s second dam, Bollinger, won the Group 1 Coolmore Classic in Australia.

Owner: Shadwell Stable

Trainer: Kiaran McLaughlin

Jockey: Luis Saez

Sales history: $270,000 Keeneland September yearling

 

HIGH NOON RIDER (bay colt, Distorted Humor—Modesty Blaise, by A.P. Indy) is a half-brother to Poupee Flash, who won a listed stakes and was Group 3 placed in France. Their dam is a placed full-sister to Tomisue’s Indy, a listed stakes winner at Hawthorne; and a half-sister to Aldebaran, who won three Grade 1 races and was named Champion Sprinter; Good Journey, who garnered the Grade 1 Atto Mile on the grass; and Sea of Showers, victorious in the Grade 3 Jenny Wiley over the spinach. High Noon Rider’s second dam, Chimes of Freedom, was a highweight filly in Europe who won Group 1 races in England and Ireland.

Owner: R A Hill Stable

Trainer: George Weaver

Jockey: Manuel Franco

Sales history: $400,000 Keeneland September yearling

 

Race 9, All 2-year-olds, six furlongs, dirt, 5:17 p.m.

BOW TIE BOSS (bay colt, Candy Ride—Sweet Thoughts, by A.P. Indy) is set to become the first starter out of his dam, who had a runner-up finish and a pair of thirds in five starts. Bow Tie Boss’ second dam is Sweet Catomine, who was named Champion Two-Year-Old Filly after winning the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, Grade 1 Del Mar Debutante, and Grade 2 Oak Leaf. At 3, Sweet Catomine won the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks and Grade 3 Santa Ysabel. Sweet Catomine is a full-sister to Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Distaff winner Life Is Sweet and listed stakes winner/multiple Grade 2-placed runner Calimonco.

Owner: Emily Wygod

Trainer: James Jerkens

Jockey: Javier Castellano

 

MIZUMI (dark bay or brown colt, Harlan’s Holiday—Glory and Grace, by Coronado’s Quest) is a half-brother to Bear’s Prospector, third in a listed stakes on Woodbine’s synthetic surface. Their dam is an unraced half-sister to Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks heroine On a Soapbox.

Owner: Regis Racing

Trainer: Steven Asmussen

Jockey: Joel Rosario

Sales history: $290,000 Keeneland November weanling

 

MANDOLIN WINS (bay colt, Bluegrass Cat—Quiet Kim, by Real Quiet) is a half-brother to Fiftyshadesofhay, who has won four graded stakes, including the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan and Grade 2 Ruffian Handicap. Fiftyshadesofhay also has placed in four Grade 1 events. Their dam, who has produced two winners from as many starters, was second in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks.

Owner: Alifyfe Racing

Trainer: David Donk

Jockey: Manuel Franco

Sales history: $60,000 OBS April 2-year-old (one furlong in 10 1/5 seconds, video)

 

DAREDEVIL (chestnut colt, More Than Ready—Chasethewildwind, by Forty Niner) is a half-brother to Albertus Maximus, who won the Grade 1 Donn Handicap on the dirt and the Breeders’ Cup Dirt mile on a synthetic surface. All five foals of racing age out of their dam, a three-time winner, have won. Daredevil’s second dam, Race the Wild Win, annexed the Grade 1 Santa Maria Handicap and three other graded stakes before going on to produce King Charlemagne, named highweight 3-year-old colt in France after winning the Group 1 Prix Maurice de Gheest; and Meshaheer, a Group 3 winner in England who was Group 1 placed in France.

Owner: Let’s Go Stable

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Jockey: John Velazquez

Sales history: $260,000 Keeneland September yearling

 

WILD DYNAFORMER (dark bay or brown colt, Dynaformer—Wild Vision, by Wild Again) is a half-brother to Pyro, whose accomplishments include a win in the Grade 1 Forego and three other graded stakes and a second in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile; War Echo, who garnered the Grade 3 Silverbulletday; and Longview Drive, who has won three stakes at Northern California fairs and placed in a trio of graded stakes. Their dam won a single race, has produced six winners from seven starters, and is a half-sister to three-time graded stakes winner Wild Wonder.

Owner: Live Oak Plantation

Trainer: Thomas Albertrani

Jockey: Jose Lezcano

Sales history: $375,000 Keeneland September yearling

 

FORBES’ FIRSTERS ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

To be eligible for Forbes’ Firsters, a first-time starter running in a non-statebred race must meet at least one of the following criteria:

* Is out of a graded-stakes-winning mare

* Is a sibling to a graded-stakes winner

* Is out of a Grade 1-placed mare

* Is a sibling to a Grade 1-placed runner

* Is out of a black-type earning mare who earned at least $300,000

* Is a sibling to a black-type earner who has earned at least $300,000

* Has a second dam who was a Grade 1 winner

* Has a second dam who produced a Grade 1 winner

* Sold for at least $300,000 at auction