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TimeformUS Analysis for July 25

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

 

TimeformUS Saratoga Analysis for Friday, July 25
 
Race 1:  Difficult to find anything clever to say about the opener. The favorite, #7 Silver Union, takes the required drop while adding Lasix. The second choice, #5 Vision of Mine, takes an even bigger drop after running into a pair of repeat winners to begin her career.  Nothing so compelling about the others, unless you're interested in first-time starter #3 Lovely Elle, whose dam was a debut winner in NY for Pletcher several years ago and went on to win seven more races in her career.  
 
Selections:  7-5-2-3
 
 
Race 2:  #5 Shaunna Alexandra has earned a pair of 90+ TimeformUS Speed Figures for her last two races, which is rarified air in this field of $20k claimers.  Pace Projector indicates that she will be forwardly placed in a race that favors front-runners, and we expect her to be tough in this field.  #2 My Place is the horse to beat as she is dropped out of allowance company for Mott, which is something he does well from a limited sample (99 Trainer Rating).  #8 Valerie Victoria comes up a little light on our speed figures, but she's making just her second start off the layoff, and she raced on gamely to be second-best last time after chasing the pace throughout.
 
Selections:  5-2-8-9
 
 
Race 3:  Well-matched field of older turf horses set to go 1 1/2 miles here, with the distance likely to be the equalizer. Favored entry of #1 Artic North and #1A Clearbrook have stayed the longer trips most effectively, which is a strong point in their favor.  #4 Saffron Hall has competitive form up to 9 furlongs on turf, but he won over longer on dirt, and this barn is due to break out at some point.  #7 Rapscallion has never really delivered on his early promise, but he did run very well in a strong field over 1 1/4 miles two starts back. 
 
Selections:  4-7-1/1A-6
 
 
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Race 4:  This is a good NY-bred sprint that brings together several horses showing improved recent form and is open to just about any one of the seven entered.  We are most interested in #5 Leilani's Ticket. He is one of the biggest prices on the board, and he has really improved his form since being claimed by these connections here last summer.  He has run very well twice while sprinting on dirt this year, posting a 100 TimeformUS Speed Figure for his late-running second over the inner dirt on March 8th, and coming right back with a 94 despite trouble at the break next time out.  His recent turf form is fine, but he's better on dirt and will be running late.  #6 Horatio has turned his life around since turned over to Jimmy Toner, and his last race was his best yet.  #7 Dan's Gold is another who is listed at a big price on the ML, and he has dangerous speed to use from his outside post.  #1 The Big Deluxe also has speed and may be forced to use it from the rail as he steps up off the claim. 
 
Selections:  5-6-7-1
 
 
Race 5:  #9 Animal Style is the horse to beat here as he drops down in class after putting in a strong run to fall just short vs. much better last time. Pace Projector indicates that he'll have a fast pace to set him up.  Appears these connections, who have gotten off to a slow start here for the second year in a row, are starting to look for wins.  Interested to see what we get from #6 Road Agent, who switches to a turf sprint off the claim. He has the pedigree to handle it and may appreciate a change after tailing off on the dirt recently.  
 
Selections:  9-6-2-10
 
 
Race 6:  Solid entry of #1 Guilt Trip and #1A Code West entered here, but only one will go, with Leparoux named on both.  Whichever one goes figures to be the horse to beat in here. But we're going to play multi-race wagers mostly through #3 Qualify, who is on the upswing for Graham Motion after winning all three starts so far this year.  May need to step forward one more time here, but he's been impressive during the current streak. We're skeptical of his more accomplished, and so far faster, rivals.  
 
Selections:  3-1/1A-6-2
 
 
Race 7:  Wide-open turf maiden race.  #3 Hope Cross makes her third career start for Chad Brown, and she could easily have won either of her first two with any luck at all.  She had trouble at the break of her debut, and wound up getting bumped late while rallying through traffic to just miss.  She was then heavily backed for her second start at Belmont, only to find herself hooked into a fast duel and getting run down by a perfect-trip closer.  #2 Shift Colors came with a big run on the outside when second best in her turf debut in Kentucky and is eligible for better.  #5 Rapid Repair made a promising debut on grass before switching to the main track for Mott, but she is also entered into an easier spot on turf on Saturday.  
 
Selections:  3-2-5-9
 
 
Race 8:  #4 Noble Doss has returned running since being switched to dirt off the layoff. He won easily over a one-turn mile vs. weaker, and then rushed up to contest the pace after missing the break last time, staying gamely to the end. 9yo #2 Writingonthewall is back to dirt for sharp connections after getting a short break.  He's been in good form and likes to win.  #9 Bug Juice easily handled Noble Doss at the end last time, but he got a perfect trip that day and may be better over a wet track.  #10 Regulus has the top last-out speed figure in the field, but he was facing just three others in that off-the-turf event, and he got loose on the lead.
 
Selections:  4-2-9-7
 
 
Race 9:  $100k Curlin stakes for 3yos may have a different look come post time, as ML favorite #1 Commanding Curve and third choice #6 Cousin Stephen are both cross-entered into Saturday's Jim Dandy.  Either way, we'll take our chances with #3 Protonico, who impressed in contesting the pace all the way to a 100 TimeformUS Speed Figure in his first start for Pletcher.  Pedigree suggests taking on more distance should be no issue.  This trip may be pushing the limits of how far #10 Life in Shambles wants to go, but he has speed and was a very good 3rd last time after being forced to gun to the lead on a solid pace from his inside post.   
 
Selections:  3-1-10-2
 
 
Race 10:  #3 Illapa made a positive impression on turf last year as a 2yo, and she got in what appeared to be a useful prep going shorter off the layoff downstate.  We liked what we saw from #5 Jolene in her turf debut last time, as she was forced to try her rally up the inside and just missed getting 2nd from #4 Knotty Pine, who was controlling the pace that day. Well-bred #9 Fresh Feline could be dangerous in here after racing very greenly in her debut, but we have been leery of runners from this barn in NY all spring and summer, and want to see some life out of their runners before getting on board.  
 
Selections:  3-5-9-1A 
 
 
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TimeformUS Analysis for July 24

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Saratoga Analysis for Thursday, July 24
 
Race 1:  Steeplechase.
 
Race 2:  Of the three experienced 2yos entered to go here, #6 Louisiana Brown interests us the most. He brought a game challenge to troubled Sanford runner-up Mr. Z in his debut before falling just short.  Both #3 Battle Red and #2 Revolver are eligible to step forward a bit with a race under their belts, but we were less impressed with their debut efforts.  Always have to take Pletcher firsters seriously. Therefore, #4 Bully Proof will be part of our play.  
 
Selections:  6-4-3-2
 
 
Race 3:  #2 Miss Electronica is lightly raced, and thus less exposed than her rather modest competition in this $40k maiden claimer. That may be reason enough to take her in here. But she also faced a much tougher group for this level in her debut. The race had a race rating of 79 (vs. today's 66) and she ran into MSW dropper Loomin' Lori Lou in that spot.  
 
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#5 Keep Right has some angles in play, as she drops in for a tag for the first time while also turning back and switching from turf to dirt.  We would also take a long look at firster #8 Built in a Day in a field like this, as she is well-connected. Her trainer doesn't excel first-time out but did saddle Andromeda's Risk to a 41/1 upset in a maiden claiming debut earlier this year.
 
Selections:  2-5-8-9
 
 
Race 4:  #6 Misszippityslewda took a bad stumble at the start, then rallied gamely through some traffic late to be along for second behind a heavily favored front-running winner last time. Then she galloped out strongly after the wire. She deserves another chance.  #1A Ultimate Shopper has dangerous speed, and also has a pair of wins over this seven-furlong distance, which is as many wins as the rest of the field combined. We've always felt that #3 Lady Gracenote was better over sprint distances, so getting back to seven furlongs is a good thing for her. She has hit the board in each of her last six starts sprinting, while posting a pair of wins in those races. 
 
Selections:  6-1A-3-5
 
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Race 5: With plenty of speed signed on, this turf sprint for maiden fillies figures to feature a contested pace . We're interested in giving #10 Julie's Jewelry a chance in here off the trainer change to Clement. She was well-backed for her debut and figures to handle grass, being a half-sister to Saucey Evening, a stakes winner over turf in her career.  
 
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Our other horse will be #3 Miss Lech, who returns for Chad Brown to make what is essentially her 3yo debut. This trip may come up a little short for her. But she was a very good 2nd over seven furlongs on grass last September, and she should have some pace to close into here. 
 
Selections:  10-3-2-5
 
 
Race 6:  #4 Haldane has some hang in her, and it's not exactly encouraging that she has failed to be competitive at Finger Lakes recently, but she is entered at the right level today and figures to have some pace to run at.  #8 Saichi Sweepin has maintained consistent form despite winning just one of her seven starts since arriving on this circuit last September, and she has the best speed from a nice outside post.  Both #1 Bridget Moloney and #2 Bird House have become pace dependent, but we thought the former ran the better race of the two when behind front-running winner Sweet Sway at this level on June 27th. 
 
Selections:  4-8-1-2
 
 
Race 7:  #8 Powerful Instinct showed big improvement once switched to this barn at the end of last year, and wasn't seen to best effect when trying to close from behind a powerful front-running winner off the layoff as a new gelding.  Eligible to go forward in his second start of the year, and Pace Projector suggests he'll have the right set-up for his closing style.  #5 Captain Gaughen's gradual improvement last year as a 3yo is somewhat hidden by a pair of races against the flow last October at Belmont (up dueling a fast pace on the 3rd, and then caught behind a joke of a slow pace on the 19th).  Can do better here in his third start back, and he'll be a price. 
 
Selections:  5-8-11-3
 
 
Race 8:  #2 Pura Vida Zen improved to a new career top speed figure second off the claim and is now shipped straight to Saratoga by a trainer who scores a strong 96 rating with last-out winners.  Not much separating #3 Wild Kay, #6 Wholelotaroyalty and #7 Heir to Dare on recent figures, and they all have speed. 
 
Selections:  2-3-7-6
 
 
Race 9:  $100k Quick Call a real puzzle, with plenty of speed signed on (see Pace Projector) and only a single prior grass winner among the seven entered.  
 
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That turf winner is #3 Escapist, who has impressed in beginning his career two-for-two, but has done so in front-running fashion, and that style may not play in this spot.  The expected pace scenario may make #2 Harpoon the one to beat, as he is one who will be running late for Pletcher, but we think #6 Glacken Too is going to benefit from the turn-back out of a fast-paced route and will take him to post a mild upset. 
 
Selections:  6-2-4-5
 
 
Race 10:  Have no good ideas in wide-open finale that is expected to feature a fast pace. At least #10 Little T. Louie showed some life in his turf debut last time, and he isn't expected to be looking for the early lead.  #8 All Over Me has the best credentials to this point and drops back down as the horse to beat.  #4 Bapu, who is first-time Lasix for second lifetime start, and firster #11 Chasin Chama have landed in the right kind of field, assuming they have any ability. 
 
Selections:  10-8-11-4 
 
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TimeformUS Analysis Wednesday Jul 23

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Saratoga Analysis for Wednesday July 23
 
Race 1:  Steeplechase
 
 
Race 2:  2yo fillies in the first flat race of the day, so we get to see the board to kick off the Pick 4, which may not matter that much with Pletcher's #8 Overspending entered back here.  Marooned on the AE list opening day, she brought $340k at OBS March after powering through a furlong in :10 flat.  Expect her to be a short price, and to be tough to beat.  #1 Designer Soxx is a half to Designer Legs, who won the first three starts of her career as a 2yo last summer, including a roughly run edition of the Grade 2 Adirondack here via DQ.  #6 Kisses for Romeo shows up for a good debut trainer with a fast gate breeze in tow.  
 
Selections:  8-1-6-3
 
 
Race 3:  #4 Madaket Millie has run only on grass to this point, but Chad Brown has a history of success with horses like this switching over to dirt.  #5 Got Lucky has ability but very little speed, so is going to need some help up front, which could happen in this field as she tries her available condition for the first time.  #6 Pretty Fancy is 0-for-2 on dirt but has run well in both of those starts and has the pedigree to take on the added distance here.  #2 Equilateral impressed in winning her debut over a muddy track while earning this field's top figure, and only stepped back mildly with more distance last time. Stretches again, but Wednesday may be the right day to be on her with Got Lucky taking much of the wagering action. 
 
Selections:  4-5-6-2
 
 
Race 4:  #1 Wild Finish endured a pair of very tough trips when returned from a long layoff earlier this year, and had trouble once again when bounced around between horses late last time on turf; trainer has strong record going from turf to dirt (92 rating) and with horses dropping from allowance to claiming (97).  #4 Shot to Win has won two of his last three, earning speed figures of 95 and 92, which are competitive in here, and Pace Projector puts him on the lead.
 
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#7 Santa Elf has also been in good form recently, which cannot be said for some of the others.  #2 Betweenhereandcool takes a big drop in class after a no-show effort off the layoff; his lone career sprint attempt came in his debut in a very tough field on synthetic.
 
Selections:  1-4-7-2
 
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Race 5:  #2 Girlaboutown is very well-bred and comes off of a promising debut when second-best to her talented stablemate Star Grazing; eligible to improve second out, but will be tough in here even if only duplicating that effort.  #1 Kleptocrat debuted for a tag and landed in a tough spot vs. heavily favored drop-down Loomin Lori Lou, but came with a strong run through the stretch and galloped out past the wire.  #8 Pretty Like Me has run well enough in each of her three career starts, but may have to do better vs. the top one.  #4 Saharan Serenade turns back while switching back to dirt, and she finished up well last time on dirt after encountering trouble at the start.
 
Selections:  2-1-8-4
 
 
Race 6:  This race features #1A Artemis Agrotera, a Grade 1-winning two-year-old who was subsequently sent off at a short price in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies and was burned off after racing close to a fast pace.  Drops out of another Grade 1 try in her 3yo debut, and will be a very short-priced favorite as she lines up vs. fellow NY-breds for the first time since runaway win over this track last summer.  #4 Irish Sweepstakes comes back to dirt after a pair of decent tries on turf downstate, and she also posted a big win up here as a 2yo. 
 
Selections:  1A-4-6-3
 
 
Race 7:  #12 Late Night Artist has run well in all 4 career starts and drops a bit off a pair of solid efforts at Churchill. She easily outfinished #1 Treaty Oak when they met on May 17th, but that one got the better of the draw for the rematch, which may be enough to reverse that decision.  
 
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#7 All Star Kitten also drops down a bit for Chad Brown, and she was a game 3rd at Monmouth behind an impressive winner when last seen.  #10 Beauty Surprise has speed and has run well enough to win this; trainer change to Clement doesn't figure to hurt her.  That trainer also sends out first-time starter One More Song, a half to three turf winners.
 
Selections:  1-12-7-10
 
 
Race 8:  Solid field of $25k claimers shapes up to be a war, as the 10 entered have combined to rack up 64 wins, and several of these horses are dropping in class here.  #7 Bemata faced a strong field of allowance runners last month and couldn't impact them late while racing on through the stretch.  Win two back came easily, and he figures to have plenty of pace to close into in this spot.  #2 Haverhill endured a couple of very tough trips on the inner dirt over the winter, then was dropped down last time and was a clear 2nd-best at this level.  Trainer returned a pair of claims from off the layoff down at Belmont and they both ran well to be second at big prices, and he will also benefit from any pace that develops.  #3 Bernie the Maestro is another class-dropper, and he has run very well over this track and trip in the past. 
 
Selections:  7-2-5-10
 
 

Race 9:  Interesting group of 3yo fillies will contest the Grade 2 Lake George over 1 1/16 miles on turf. #3 Duff One got off to a promising start to her career here last summer, and continued on through the winter, improving her form until failing to impact a strong field in the Florida Oaks.  Must be ready off the layoff, but she's eligible to be an improved horse since laid off over four months ago, and she'll be a price.  #4 Sweet Acclaim has come up short in all three stateside starts for Chad Brown, but has taken the worst of it trip-wise all three times, and can do better with the right trip this time.  #5 Speed Seeker impressed in burying maidens up front over a demanding one-turn mile at Woodbine as if eligible to be this good.  #2 Daring Dancer was visually impressive in parlaying perfect trips into easy scores through her first three starts, then failed to show up as the favorite last time; needs to rebound. 

Selections:  3-4-5-2
 
 
Race 10:  #1 All Mine Tonight has sprinted on turf only once to this point, but that was also first time back from a layoff, and it resulted in her lone career win; attracts Castellano.  
 
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#2 Royal Jest has also performed well in all three career turf sprint attempts and is an attractive price on the ML.  #5 The Lost Tigress switches to grass after cruising to a much-the-best maiden win off the layoff.  #8 Hot Squeeze is the horse to beat, dropping out of troubled-trip stakes attempt, but she was disappointing with a soft trip vs. NY-breds prior to that, and she may be overbet in this race. 
 
Selections:  1-2-5-7
 
 
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TimeformUS Analysis for July 21

TimeformUS Analyst Mike Beer

TimeformUS Analysis for racing on Monday July 21

Race 1:  Several options to choose from in this contentious opener full of lightly raced NY-bred maidens, but we're most interested in giving #5 Cuantos a chance.  He raced greenly though kickback early before moving right up behind the impressive winner on the lead coming to the stretch; he ultimately came up empty in the stretch, but showed enough ability in there to suggest that he can improve with racing.   Our main backup in the Pick 5 will be #8 Greg's Fourwheeler, who gets a cut-back in distance after failing to impact after a wide run over a mile last time; sprint debut was promising as he was wide there, as well, but raced on gamely. 
 
Selections: 5-8-6-3
 
 
Race 2:  We'll keep an eye on the will-pays in an attempt to get a handle on the first-time starters, but they may have to be able to go a little if #1 Lamontagne stays in for trainer Wesley Ward; gray filly has flashed high speed in all three career starts (2 of those vs. colts), and she was given an ill-advised ride last time when pulled sharply back off the pace after leaving the gate running; has the kind of speed that can make things tough on her inexperienced rivals. 
 
Selections: 1-2-6-8
 
 
Race 3:  Going with speed again in race 3, as #1 Annie Walker takes the next step after finally putting together a full effort in demolition of maiden claiming company last time; Pace Projector doesn't agree that she's fastest of these early, but we think she can make the running from the rail and will benefit from the slight turn-back here.  
 
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#5 Wraith may be the main danger, as she has run several TimeformUS Speed Figures that are faster than Annie Walker's best, but she doesn't have much speed, and this race may not come back to her.
 
Selections:  1-5-2-3
 
 
Race 4:  Toughest race in this Pick 5 sequence here, as 11 maiden claimers line up to go seven furlongs without a standout in the group.  Think there's a chance that drop-downs #4 Tony B and #6 Artemus Paperboy hook up early and hurt each other, but they also may just be better than their somewhat modest competition here.  We're most interested in #5 Wild Skye as an alternative to them, as he raced very greenly in both prior starts, and his lack of professionalism really cost him last time. 
 
Selections:  4-6-5-11
 

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Race 5:  Field full of hard-hitting turf sprinters is open to several, but we're going to cast our lot with #8 Isn'tlovejustgrand, who has been holding strong form since being switched back to grass; parlayed a perfect trip into a win over a salty group of $40k claimers two starts back, and he was dead-game with an aggressive ride contesting the pace going longer last time. 

 
Selections:  8-4-3-5
 
 
Race 6:  #1 Make Your Point remained a disappointment on the main track but ran a better race last time with blinkers on, chasing a very fast pace up the backstretch before inheriting an early lead and then weakening late from her early exertions; turf start two back was only OK at a big price, but that race has produced three horses who have won a race since.  
 
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#3 Fire Ship switched to turf for the first time in career start #9 and found herself hooked into a fast duel early, and was swallowed up by the closers once she put her early rival away; with the pace of that race taken into account, she actually ran the top last TimeformUS Speed Figure in the field, and may be the horse to beat in this weak $40k maiden claimer. We've tried #4 Dixie Gem in the past at big prices, and her turf debut actually wasn't a poor effort at a big price; offered nothing last time, but gets a class drop for this.  #7 Burndownthetown has the pedigree to be a runner, but has so far offered little on the track; dropping in vs. maiden claimers may help.  
 
Selections:  1-3-4-7
 
 
Race 7:  Seen enough of the familiar names in this field lately, and want a new face to try against them.  Most interested in trying #9 Dreamsgonewild off the layoff, as he will offer value.  #11 With Exultation once had promise for Christophe Clement, and has run a couple of good races recently out of town with new blinkers; maybe he just wanted to sprint all along?  #10 Sandy'z Slew is logical as the horse to beat; ran well enough when back to turf-sprinting last time, but that was a race that really held together up front.  We like #6 Western Tryst, who needs some pace to run into, but want a good price in order to use.
 
Selections: 9-11-10-6
 
 
Race 8:  Short but strong field assembled for this $100k stakes, which attracted three Grade 1 winners among the six entered.  If you're looking for an alternative to the more accomplished runners, #3 Bridgehampton has the speed and ran a big race when last seen at Parx, running away from a challenge coming to the stretch and getting clear to a much-the-best win; she has upside, and Pace Projector puts her on the lead to advantage here, but has never been beyond six furlongs.  #4 My Miss Aurelia could easily have been retired with her value as a broodmare already established with three Grade 1 wins, so the fact that she returns to the track suggests that she has something left.  #2 Grace Hall hasn't won a race since the end of her three-year-old season, but she never got going at four, and is now third back from the layoff; not so sure that turning back to shorter races going forward won't suit her well.
 
Selections:  3-4-2-1
 
 
Race 9:  Strong-looking $40k claimer restricted to non-winners of two races lifetime features a trio of well-connected droppers drawn toward the inside in #1 Branded Hand, #3 Belly of the Whale, and #4 Honor the Kitten.  We'll put Honor the Kitten on top for now, but realistically, price should determine where your money should go.  #10 H Town Brown just took a field of $50k maiden claimers wire to wire, and his speed is an asset, but these connections have been getting way overbet since the meet began.
 
Selections:  4-3-1-10
 
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