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TimeformUS Race Analysis



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TimeformUS Analysis Monday July 28

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Analysis For Monday July 28

Race 1:  We'll see what happens with the grass races Monday, as we're off the turf Sunday and there is a sketchy forecast for the immediate future.  With that in mind, we will cover a couple of bases at the same time in the opener by going to #2 Point Hope, who ran well enough going a longer route on turf last time while contesting a pace that
came apart late. He has plenty of dirt in his pedigree.  #7 Are We Not Men has run well in all three turf starts, and done so despite a couple of very tough trips.  He starts for a dangerous trainer and will appreciate the slight class drop.
Selections:  2-7-5-4
Race 2:  First-time starters scheduled to sprint 5.5 furlongs on grass. As a starting point,
#3 Coastal Zip is a City Zip and a half-brother to three turf winners.  #4 Banana Thief is bred long but debuts short with a fast recent gate work showing.  #7 Amazing Anne has several winning siblings and is from a female family full of versatile runners, so surface may not be much of an issue for him.  If we're off the grass, MTO #10 Good Luck Gus made a promising debut and would be very hard to beat.
Selections:  10-3-4-7
Race 3:  Seems like a good spot for #5 Southern Blessing to get back on track, assuming he catches fast dirt, which would be the first time he's had that footing while sprinting vs. non-graded stakes company since his winning debut.  #6 Indian Nobility should also benefit from the class relief, and he ran a couple of competitive figures last summer before coming up here and finding some tougher spots.  #2 Mr. O'Leary ran a trio of TFUS Speed Figures earlier in the year that make him something of a layover in here, and Pace Projector indicates that he'll be at an early advantage in this race, but he's a very short price on the ML, and just isn't that good.
Selections:  5-6-2-1
Race 4:   #1 Bold Runner gets a major upgrade in rider, which is unlikely to go unnoticed in here, but he was burned off by very fast paces in each of his turf starts downstate and may be quite a bit better than he looks.  #11 Delta Warrior caught traffic at a crucial point when closing into a fast pace last time out, and continued on with a good finish to get second once finally clear.  Can be given another chance. #10 Secret Ops has excuses for both of his dirt races (something to keep in mind should we be off the turf), and he had runoff speed in his turf debut before trouble at the start last time. 
Race 5:  #5 Citizen Wells has scratched a couple times downstate recently, and now shows up for a $20k tag, which isn't necessarily the greatest sign in the world for him. He likes the distance and likes this track. His trainer is a going concern at Saratoga, but we will tread lightly.  For the purposes of this Pick 3 sequence, we will also cover #1 Village Warrior and #2 Best Play, as they figure to have no issues with the trip.
Selections:  5-1-3-4



Race 6:  #3 Forest Boy figures dangerous as the fastest horse on our speed figures (he's earned TFUS Speed Figures of 98 and 100 sprinting in California), and the combination of class drop/trainer change won't hurt.  #5 Pulpit's Legacy is a bit of a wildcard as he returns from a long layoff after losing all chance at the start of loaded debut race here last summer.  #2 Pecorino figures over-bet as the Pletcher class dropper in the field, but he hasn't proven to be that good after catching a couple of tough fields here as a 2yo.
Selections:  3-5-2-6
Race 7:  #7 Father Johns Pride kicked on gamely in a good field when sprinting on the turf for the first time last month; will be tough with a similar effort in here.  #12 Casa Creek was rated into submission behind a front-running winner on turf last time, and that came on the heels of a much-the-best win after dueling on synthetic.  Has other speed to deal with, but he's drawn outside.  If we're off the turf, #5 Spartiatis is at his best playing that game, which he has only gotten to do once.
Selections:  7-12-6-1
Race 8:  Plenty of speed signed on to this strong edition of the Grade 2 Honorable Miss, including the horse to beat, #1 La Verdad.  She's very quick early and has posted a couple of 120+ TFUS Speed Figures recently, which make her the clear horse to beat. She also figures to be under pressure from speedy rivals like #3 R Free Roll and, perhaps, #4 Red Velvet.  #7 My Wandy's Girl defeated La Verdad on the square in the Barbara Fritchie over 7 furlongs back in February, and she took a tough beat after doing all of the heavy lifting in the Grade 2 Ruffian last time.  Six furlongs could make the difference, but she will be tough to hold off.  #2 Speedinthruthecity is 5-for-7 as a dirt
sprinter in her career, and also figures to benefit if a contested pace develops.
Selections:  7-2-1-5
Race 9:  #9 Romancing the Gold was embroiled in a fast pace duel when defeated by the closing #6 Mr. Espresso and #8 Bedouin Now in his first start off the Jacobson claim, and he got back to a good race last time.  Won over this distance here last summer, and that came over a wet track.  #3 Zoebear and #5 Rap d'Oro seem the most dangerous rivals, but distance is more of a concern for them.
Selections:  9-5-3-8



TimeformUS Analysis For July 27

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Saratoga Analysis for Sunday, July 27

Race 1:  2yos will go long on turf in the first leg of the Pick 5. There are several interesting pedigrees in this well-connected group.  #1 Sunday Sonnet has valuable experience earned during a solid try in a strong dirt sprint. And she has pedigree to go with it. She's a half to Pianist, a multiple graded stakes winner on grass who earned almost $500k in her career.  #3 Miss Always Ready is a full sister to Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf winner More Than Real, who was also trained by Todd Pletcher.  #6 Bebop Raindrop (out of a sister to Grade 1-winning turfer Cloudy's Knight) and #7 Skinner Box (dam is a half-sister to a Breeders' Cup Turf winner) are NY-breds debuting in open company. 
Selections:  1-6-3-7
Race 2:  #5 Hit Squad endured back-to-back tough trips out of town before coming to NY to post a much-the-best win over a weak field at the end of May.  Faced a much tougher crew last time (race rating of 95, vs. today's 84) but fits better here.  
#6 Flamingo Lane has gone back to back since switching over to grass recently; continues her climb.  #8 Edie has also won two in a row, with the benefit of perfect trips. She defeated a few of these on the square last time.
Selections:  5-6-8-1
Race 3:  More 2yos lining up here, several of them first-time starters.  #5 High Dollar Woman has valuable experience after running in a strongly rated race downstate. (Winner Angele Renee, a full sister to multiple Grade 1 winner To Honor and Serve, earned a 93 TFUS Speed Figure.)  Her trainer excels with second-time starters (99 trainer rating).  Pletcher has entered a pair, and they would be difficult to leave out of any multi-race play, as he tends to send them out ready.  #2 Skipalute also has a race under her belt, and her trainer is another who gets them to come forward off of a race (100 rating with second-time starters).  #3 Paulassilverlining is a half to Grade 1 sprinter Dads Caps, and her trainer has already sent out a winning 2yo first-time starter at the meet.
Selections:  5-2-4-3
Race 4:  #4 De Facto is a lightly raced colt who has been improving from start to start for his Hall of Fame trainer.  Went long on dirt last time and could be only second-best to an odds-on favorite, but won't need to go forward much further to be a big player in this field, and he holds a strong pedigree rating for this distance on turf.  #3 Decisive Edge and #5 Social Affair are the two logical horses in this field, and they have run well enough without winning to this point and don't figure to struggle with the distance.  
Selections:  4-5-3-1
Race 5:  #5 First Whippoorwill drops again after finishing gamely to be second-best when first off the layoff last time, and figures to be the one to beat.  
#4 Swakopmund is also dropping, and is a very dangerous horse for First Whippoorwill to have to run against in this spot.  She has run well on turf vs. much better horses throughout her career and will be a better price in this spot.  #1 Lady Candidate is back to grass off the claim, but she's been at her best on synthetic to this point, and she did not run well when last seen while dropping in for $20k.
Selections:  5-4-1-8
Race 6:  This race goes directly through #5 Dyker Beach, who has run the fastest races, and earned a TFUS Speed Figure for his last that stands out in this field.  On the other hand, he is a horse who has lacked the killer instinct at crunch time and is a difficult horse to support at any short price.  As an alternative, we'll take #6 Charitable to post a mild upset.  Charitable was dropping in class last time in a race that was scheduled for turf before being moved to the main track.  He was very surprisingly bet down to a short price in there, and then went out and made the $5.10 payout look like a gift as he rolled through the stretch to win by over seven lengths.  
Selections:  6-5-1-8
Race 7:  No one to trust in this $25k claimer restricted to non-winners of two races lifetime.  The12 entered for turf have combined to make 103 starts over this surface while posting only 9 wins total.  #1 My Four Rewards makes her third start off the layoff, and exits a race last time that was won in wire-to-wire fashion.  Ran well in a much tougher claimer here last summer, which is good enough for us.  We liked the turf debut of #4 Outer Orbit last time, as she made a legitimate pace all the way and stayed gamely to the end.  Pace Projector indicates that this pace scenario may be tough for her if trying similar tactics.  
We have tried both #6 Dramatize and #9 Eurokay by Me in the past, and have not been rewarded.  Still, they are supposed to be competitive in here.  #7 Sultry Warrior and #11 Tacones are the class-droppers to consider very seriously in a field like this.
Selections:  1-7-6-9
Race 8:  #1 Night Maneuver has some fast back races to get to and has proven recently that he can still race competitively at a high level.  Think he may have been hindered by rating inside last time on a day when being on the rail may not have been ideal.  #2 River Rocks posted a new top TFUS Speed Figure when forced to chase a fast pace in his NY debut.  #8 Eastwood is the horse to beat from a good draw for Pletcher, but he's been a bust since being purchased for a big ticket upon winning his first two career starts.  He exits a fast race, but he had absolutely no excuse in there.
Selections:  1-8-2-4
Race 9:  #2 Flashy American goes well over this track and trip, and she ran very well to be second-best in this race last year despite getting no pace to run into.  May have been unlucky two back when stuck wide throughout as the winner rode the rail to victory.  #5 Stanwyck goes for a suddenly hot barn, and she has been facing the best company overall recently.  She loomed boldly at the top of the stretch of the Grade 1 Apple Blossom before flattening out behind a pair of multiple Grade 1 winners.  #3 Antipathy earned a big 112 TimeformUS Speed Figure for her excellent third place finish in a very tough edition of the Ogden Phipps on Belmont Stakes day.  She's unlikely to lose if running as well again, but we'll make her do it as she picks up more ground and a second turn here.
Selections:  2-5-3-4
Race 10:  #9 Chrysolite went evenly while down inside all the way in a race dominated by outside closers last time, and she came with a big run to close down maidens two starts back.  Still think she has upside in a field lacking many horses that can boast the same.  #3 Thatza Wrap is clearly a better horse on turf, and is another who can capitalize on her upside in this spot.  She was conservatively ridden in her last start and wound up getting shuffled back out of position at a crucial point.
Selections:  9-3-4-10

TimeformUS Analysis for July 26

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Saratoga Analysis for Saturday, July 26
Race 1:  #5 Rapid Repair hasn't run on turf in five months, when she was unable to get forward position and wound up stuck behind a moderate pace.  She has improved her form on the main track since returning from a short layoff, and her new-found speed on that surface could serve her well here after scratching from a much tougher spot on Friday's card to await this.  #6 Engaginglee has blown a trio of very good trips on turf already, all of them at short prices; tries again.  #8 Smart Ashley has a similar profile to Engaginglee, as she has settled for minor awards so far while taking some play.  
Selections:  5-6-1-8
Race 2:  #2 Blue Pigeon may be the horse to beat in this entry-level allowance for NY-breds, as he hinted at potential last year at two for Christophe Clement.  A much-the-best winner over this track in his debut, he went straight into stakes company from there.
#3 Macagone is an interesting alternative to the likely favorite, as he has excuses for his first three starts, and took no prisoners in a convincing maiden score last time.  #1 Sanctify began his career in good form on the dirt, but his pedigree suggests turf may be better for him, and he ran well over a shorter distance on this surface downstate.  #7 Hidden Vow has the fastest races to get to, and if he runs the same race today that he ran two back, he's a likely winner, but he's just 1-for-22 lifetime and was a total no-show last time.  
Selections:  3-2-1-7
Race 3:  Loaded baby race will be an interesting race to keep tabs on for future reference, no matter who wins.  For the purposes of making picks, we'll put #8 Aldrin, a $1 million 3/4 brother to Tapit, on top.  #9 Competitive Edge has been mentioned as a runner for Pletcher, but he needs to draw in off the AE list.  Both #3 Today's Agenda (a $180k Monba?) and #5 Captain Moss (by Quality Road and out of a strong female family) have things to recommend them as well.  
Selections:  8-9-5-3
Race 4:  This is not the kind of race you want to be taking a short price in, as these horses have already blown too many chances.  #1 Vecino is a logical kind of horse, and he didn't run badly at Pimlico two starts back, but we can't love him from a wagering perspective at projected low odds.  If we were to take a shot at a price, it would be with #2 Sir Maurice, who is best as a turf sprinter and ran the best last race of any of these.  
Selections:  2-1-4-6
Race 5:  #2 Rocket Time is very lightly raced and has to stretch out a bit here, but he has flashed real potential and is an interesting horse in a race where the others have already been exposed for the most part.  He raced very greenly in his debut after breaking slowly, and was within a length of #3 C J's Awesome at the finish despite trying to get in all the way through the stretch.  He looked a little better last time when taking it to maidens in a powerful front-running performance, but was still a little immature in the stretch.  #1 Rankhasprivileges has kept good company and has the two fastest recent races, which makes him the horse to beat.  #4 Golden Soul hasn't gone forward since parlaying a perfect inside run (and a monumental pace meltdown) into a runner-up finish in the 2013 Kentucky Derby, and will likely be an underlay with all of those Grade 1 running lines still appearing in his pps.
Selections:  2-1-5-4
Race 6:  Tough turf marathon for $35k claimers.  We are going to try #4 Knights Nation here on the class drop, as things just didn't go well for him once he didn't get his customary spot up on or near the lead last time.  He has already won over this distance on dirt, and he may also have been best in his lone try over this trip on grass.  #1 Capitan Futuro will need to be fit to go this far directly off of a long layoff, but he's proven to be a true stayer since arriving stateside, and he's faced much better competition than this.  
Selections:  4-1-2-5
Race 7:  Entry-level allowance for older sprinters has no shortage of speed signed on, which we hope plays to the advantage of #5 Rich 'n' Tuck.  He got untracked too late last time, when closing strongly with too far to come in the stretch, but he has been a dead-game closer in his three dirt sprints on this circuit, and he may get the right set-up today.  #10 Fabulous Kid is a dangerous horse getting back to what may be his best game today after trying routes and turf lately.  Sprint debut was fast, and he drew well on the outside.  
Selections:  5-10-1-3
Race 8:  Late Pick 4 with a $300k guarantee kicks off here with the Grade 2 Amsterdam. #4 Coup de Grace is the horse to beat after running down a pair of speedy rivals in Delaware prep for new trainer.  He had less-than-perfect trips in each of his two NY graded stakes tries and still managed to win one of those, but doesn't have much margin for error. We think that #8 Captain Serious poses a real threat to him ,however, and will take him on top at what should be a better price.  He has put his handy speed to work through three sprint starts to this point, traveling well from off of a fast pace in his debut, then stalking a more moderate pace in start number two, before taking control up front in the Mike Lee and pouring it on late in a convincing win.  105 speed figure for his excellent runner-up performance going longer last time is better than anything Coup de Grace has earned so far.  
Selections:  8-4-6-3
Race 9:  Both #1 Run to Mama and #2 Palace Dreams are returning from layoffs here, but they both flashed real ability last year at three, and are going to be big factors in here if ready to go right off the bench.  Palace Dreams has more speed, and Pace Projector places her on the early lead, but Run to Mama will likely be a much better price.  
#5 Distorted Beauty may be the most talented of this bunch.  She's lightly raced and will stretch out for the first time today in a tough spot, but it will be no surprise if she is this good.  
Selections:  1-2-5-6
Race 10: The strength of this Jim Dandy field is drawn to the outside, with Belmont winner #4 Tonalist, the improving #5 Kid Cruz, and #7 Wicked Strong the major players. Tonalist has long felt like the up-and-comer in this division, and he scored back-to-back impressive victories once back to the races following a setback earlier in the year, including that Belmont Stakes upset when losing a lot of ground.  Wicked Strong was unlucky in the Derby, and he figures to appreciate this shorter distance after racing on gamely late over the 1 1/2 miles last time.  Kid Cruz isn't fully committed to running as of this writing, and faces a stern test should they elect to run him.  
Selections:  4-7-5-6
Race 11:  #11 Tapitation got the wrong ride in his turf debut back in May, and actually did quite well to finish second that day.  He deserves another chance on this surface, though post 11 is no bargain.  #6 Elroi has come back in improved form this year and will appreciate the cut-back from a longer route.  #9 Birchwood Road will be looking for firm ground for the first time since convincing maiden score at the end of last year, and he gets an interesting trainer change for this. 
Selections:  11-6-9-2

Forbes’ Firsters for Sunday, July 27, 2014

Jon Forbes


Forbes’ Firsters for Sunday, July 27, 2014

Race 1, 2-year-old fillies, 1 1/16 miles, turf, 1 p.m.

MISS ALWAYS READY (dark bay or brown filly, More Than Ready—Miss Seffens, by Dehere) is a full-sister to More Than Real, who won the Grade 2 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf and was third in the Grade 1 Garden City. Their dam was a sprinter who won stakes at Turfway Park, Oaklawn, Prairie Meadows, Ellis Park, and Keeneland. She was unplaced in her lone turf start. Miss Seffens has produced two winners from four starters, with More Than Ready being her only turf winner.

Owner: Three Chimneys Farm

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Jockey: John Velazquez

Sales history: $400,000 Keeneland April 2-year-old (one furlong in 9 3/5 seconds, video)


SKINNER BOX (dark bay or brown filly, Freud—Talkin Indian, by Indian Charlie) looks to become the first winner out of her dam, who won a pair of turf races and is a half-sister to Better Talk Now, whose five Grade 1 wins included a score in the Breeders’ Cup Turf. Talkin Indian also is a half-sister to turfer B.A. Way, who won a listed stakes at Delaware Park and was third in the Grade 3 Belmont Breeders’ Cup Handicap. Talkin Indian’s only previous starter was unplaced in one start.

Owner: Patsy Symons

Trainer: Richard Violette, Jr.

Jockey: Julien Leparoux

Sales history: $190,000 OBS April 2-year-old (one furlong in 10 1/5 seconds, video)


HAIL CORNELL (bay filly, All American—Cayuga’s Waters, by Langfuhr) is a half-sister to Glorious View, who won the Grade 2 Vagrancy Handicap on the dirt; Cascadilla Falls, who took the Lucy Scribner on the turf; and Highball, third in this year’s Grade 3 American Derby on the grass. Their dam won four races, including an off-the-turf edition of the Pebbles at Belmont.

Owner: Laue Ranch

Trainer: William Mott

Jockey: Manuel Franco



CALAMITY KATE(bay filly, Yes It’s True—Justmeandmyshadow, by Tiznow) is the first foal out of her dam, an unplaced half-sister to Grade 1 Champagne winner Officer. Calamity Kate’s second dam, St. Helens Shadow, won a listed stakes at Ruidoso.

Owner: George & Lori Hall

Trainer: Kelly Breen

Jockey: Paco Lopez


Race 3, 2-year-old fillies, six furlongs, dirt, 2:02 p.m.

PAULASSILVERLINING (bay filly, Ghostzapper—Seeking the Silver, by Grindstone) is a half-sister to this year’s Grade 1 Carter Handicap winner Dads Caps and stakes-placed sprinter Liza Too. Their dam is a winning half-sister to Charles Town stakes victor Choctaw Ridge.

Owner: Vincent Scuderi

Trainer: Michelle Nevin

Jockey: Jose Ortiz


HEADMISTRESS (bay filly, Bernardini—Headline, by Machiavellian) is a half-sister to Jilbab, who won the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks, and Ancient World, who took the Group 1 Premio Vittorio di Capua in Italy and Group 3 Winter Hill in England. Jilbab is by A.P. Indy, the sire of Bernardini. Their dam is an unraced half-sister to Group 1 William Hill Futurity winner Dunbeath and Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity hero Saratoga Six.

Owner: Darley Stable

Trainer: Thomas Albertrani

Jockey: Rajiv Maragh


HOPEFAITHJOY (bay filly, Lookin At Lucky—R Lady Joy, Vicar) is out of a mare who won the Grade 2 Delaware Oaks and was third in the Grade 1 Alabama. R Lady Joy has produced one previous starter, Quite Spectacular, a claimer who has won five races so far in his career.

Owner: StarLadies Racing

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Jockey: John Velazquez

Sales history: $270,000 Keeneland September yearling


ZEEZEE ZOOMZOOM (gray/roan filly, Congrats—Zee Zee, by Exchange Rate) is out of a turf runner who won the Happy Ticket at Louisiana Downs as a 2-year-old and captured the Edgewood at Churchill Downs and was third in the Grade 2 Lake George and Grade 3 Regret. Zee Zee’s only foal to race, Queenofzeenile, has won a single race in 10 starts.

Owner/trainer: Amy Tarrant

Jockey: Joseph Rocco, Jr.

Sales history:  $80,000 Keeneland September yearling; $135,000 OBS March 2-year-old (one furlong in 10 3/5 seconds, video)



DIVINE PRAISES (bay filly, Medaglia d’Oro—Grand Prayer, by Grand Slam) is a half-sister to Malibu Prayer, who won the Grade 1 Ruffian Invitational Handicap, and Valid, who has placed in the Grade 3 Fred W. Hooper Handicap and Grade 3 Salvator Mile. Their dam won a minor stakes at Monmouth Park and is a half-sister to Grade 2 Bonnie Miss heroine Tap Dance.

Owner: Besilu Stables

Trainer: William Mott

Jockey: Joel Rosario



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

Forbes’ Firsters is a collaboration among Jon Forbes, Susie Raisher, and Lily Pierce