Tuesday, June 21, 2016
TimeformUS Analyst David Aragona
TimeformUS Analysis for Racing at Belmont Park on Wednesday June 22
>>Go To TimeformUS Past Performances For These Races
Race 1: Of those that have run, we’re most interested in MacCorleot (#10). Wesley Ward gets a 97 trainer rating with second-time starters, and does especially well with runners moving to turf in their second starts. This daughter of Uncle Mo was a little slow into stride in her debut but rushed up while racing wide on the turn before flattening out. We expect better here and prefer her slightly to obvious contender Bahama Halo (#5). That said, our top choice is the first-time starter, NOBLE READY (#3). Christophe Clement gets a 92 trainer rating with first-time starters, and is particularly effective with two-year-olds debuting in turf sprints. This filly is a full-sister to multiple turf stakes winner Zindaya and a half-sister to Grade 1-winning turfer Western Aristocrat.
Selections: 3 – 10 – 5 – 9
Race 2: We don’t see any viable alternatives to the heavy favorite BEACH HUT (#1), who is probably going to win for fun as he takes a nose-dive down the class ladder. His recent speed figures are far superior to his competition and he held his form well in his first start for Danny Gargan last time. After starting Point Hope (#6) in an ambitious spot off the claim, Rudy Rodriguez is getting more realistic as he drops him down into this $20,000 claimer. Point Hope has won at seven furlongs before, but he’s unlikely to get any pace to close into today.
Selections: 1 – 6 – 4 – 5
Race 3: One could make a reasonable case for each of the five runners in this race. We’re not making the most creative argument in picking STORMY SKY (#5), but we do feel that she brings the best credentials. This filly ran very well two back when making an early four-wide move around the far turn. She made the lead sooner than Eric Cancel would have liked, but she held sway gamely in the stretch. Then last time, she was racing in an uncomfortable spot behind and between horses for much of her trip and then had to wait for room at the top of the stretch. She probably would have been a clear second that day otherwise. She always shows up and we’re not trying to beat her. Rachel’s Temper (#1) has run well in each of her last two starts, but she’s unlikely to get the favorable pace setup that she received last time. Desert Valley (#2) was totally overmatched in the Ogden Phipps last time, but she does have some competitive speed figures on her resume, and her tactical speed should make her dangerous in a situation projected to favor horses on or near the lead.
Selections: 5 – 2 – 1 – 4
Race 4: Wild Chatter (#7) or Candida (#10) could certainly win this race. They performed well at this level last time, but both had relatively good trips. Wild Chatter, in particular, had no excuse to lose and actually got herself beaten by wandering around in the stretch after making the lead. We believe there are some other more interesting players that should go off at slightly higher prices. The Pace Projector is predicting that Miss Aja Brown (#9) will be racing on a clear early lead in a situation favoring the frontrunner. She was forced to rate last time after an awkward start, but she came through along the rail professionally. The two horses that finished just behind her both came back to run improved races in their subsequent starts. She’ll be on our tickets, but our top pick is INDYGITA (#4). This filly was facing subtly tougher competition at Gulfstream this winter. She ran well two back after getting shuffled out early in the race and last time she lost to a filly that has gone on to win two more times, most recently taking down a stakes. Indygita is in good form and her tactical speed should have her placed close to the pace.
Selections: 4 – 9 – 7 – 10
Race 5: There are many ways to go in a race where the contenders just aren’t that reliable. Our top pick is DA WILDCAT GIRL (#3), who closed well into a slow pace (color-coded in blue) last time and now drops slightly in class. She apparently needed the short layoff earlier this spring because she’s come back with two improved efforts for Ed Barker. We also believe that Pearls for Girls (#9) will offer value. She ran competitive speed figures in March and April, but then caught a wet track, which she clearly does not like, and was squeezed out at the start last time. We’ll also use the logical Touching My Toes (#4), who gets some class relief.
Selections: 3 – 9 – 4 – 5
Race 6: There are a couple of ways to look at this race. On one hand, Chomsky (#8) is the fastest horse in this race. He has consistently earned speed figures that are faster than what the others have recorded and he's done so against some pretty legitimate competition. That said, he's had many chances and has often failed to get the job done at relatively short prices. It's possible--but not a certainty--that one or more of the lightly-raced horses could take a step forward. We think it would be unwise to dismiss Chomsky as a win candidate, but we will nevertheless try to beat him with MAGICIAN MAN (#9). This horse did not run very fast in his debut, but he is by a Belmont Stakes winner out of a dirt routing dam who is also by a Belmont Stakes winner. There is a lot of stamina in this pedigree so he is supposed to stretch out. Furthermore, Tony Dutrow, who gets just a 47 trainer rating with his debut runners, gets a 94 rating with second-time starters. He especially does well in situations where he's stretching maidens out in their second starts. We could also use Motown Sound (#5), who ran deceptively well in his debut last fall, and Tale of Mist (#6), who faced a weaker field last time but may be improving.
Selections: 9 – 8 – 5 – 6
Race 7: The likely favorite is Jonrah (#7), who drops in class for Chad Brown. While we acknowledge his merits, this is not the kind of horse that we want to take at a very short price. While we acknowledge that he's been facing tougher company, his two races this spring since the lengthy layoff have been unspectacular. Furthermore, the Pace Projector is predicting a situation that favors horses on or near the lead, which could work against this late runner. The one they will have to catch is Little Jerry (#5), who was able to pull off the victory against a slightly softer group last time after setting moderate early fractions. He tends to let horses come to him before battling on, so he might have had more in the tank that day. That said, we still don't want to take a short price on him, especially as he lands in 50-rated turf route trainer Michelle Nevin's barn. Our top pick is OUR EMERALD FOREST (#2), who has enough tactical speed to not let Little Jerry get too far away early. He's routinely faced tougher competition and has performed well off lengthy layoffs in the past. He also gets a positive rider switch to Luis Saez for this race.
Selections: 2 – 5 – 7 – 6
Race 8: With speeds like Saratoga Smoke, Midnightatmarions, and Pussy Willow all signed on, the Pace Projector is predicting a fast pace. That should benefit our top selection, SUGAR MAGS (#10). This filly ran well against a tougher group last time, only losing to an impressive runaway winner after slicing her way through the pack with an eye-catching late run. If she works out a trip again today, she's probably going to win. The others we would use are Kitty Maddnes (#3), who has a right to take a step forward as a three-year-old, and Queen of Castle (#12), who is improving but once again stepping up in class.
Selections: 10 – 3 – 12 – 8
Race 9: There are many ways to go in the finale and little proven turf sprint form on which to base opinions. We'll primarily use RIO VISTA (#1) and Citizen by Day (#3), who both at least have run well sprinting on turf previously. We could also include Bellamy Touch (#5), who drops in for a tag for Bill Mott after she was overmatched on dirt in her debut. We don't know if she can run at all, but her dam was a turf horse. We're somewhat against favored Crimson Cat (#9) at a short price. She's run the fastest races, but is an unkown quantity at shorter distances.
Selections: 1 – 3 – 5 – 9