Saturday, September 13, 2014
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
#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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
#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.