Saturday’s all-stakes Cross Country Pick 5 features racing from Belmont Park, Churchill Downs, Monmouth Park and Thistledown
by Keith McCalmont
The New York Racing Association Inc. (NYRA) will host an all-stakes Cross Country Pick 5 on Saturday featuring racing from Belmont Park, Churchill Downs, Monmouth Park and Thistledown.
Free Equibase past performances for the Cross Country Pick 5 sequence are now available for download at https://www.nyra.com/belmont/racing/cross-country-wagers.
The sequence, which features fives stakes to be completed in less than one hour, kicks off in Race 8 at Belmont Park at 4:40 p.m. Eastern with the Grade 2, $250,000 Mother Goose at 1 1/16-miles for sophomore fillies. Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher sends out Group 3 UAE Oaks-winner Shahama for her second start in North America following an off-the-board effort in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks. She will face returning rival Venti Valentine and a new challenger in Grade 1-winner Juju’s Map.
Action switches to Monmouth for the Goldwood [Race 11, 4:47 p.m.] as an overflow field of fillies and mares 3-and-up sprint 5 1/2-furlongs over the turf led by nine-time winner Hey Mamaluke for trainer Patricia Farro. An experienced field includes multiple-stakes winner Robin Sparkles for trainer Bruce Brown and the consistent pair of Champagne Lady, who has hit the board in her last five starts for Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey; and Honey Pants, who boasts a record of 13-3-6-0 for conditioner Christophe Clement.
The middle leg, the $250,000 Lady Jacqueline [Race 10, 4:48 p.m.], offers a field of 10 fillies and mares 3-and-up traveling nine furlongs at Thistledown topped by multiple graded-stakes winner Crazy Beautiful for trainer Ken McPeek. Steep opposition will be provided by multiple graded-stakes winner Army Wife for conditioner Mike Maker and the Rob Atras-trained Maracuja, who captured the Grade 1 CCA Oaks last summer at Saratoga Race Course.
A field of seven older fillies and mares will line up in the penultimate leg, the Grade 3 Chicago [Race 9, 4:55 p.m.] at seven furlongs over the Churchill Downs main track. The regally-bred Pennybaker, whose dam Macaroon is a full-sister to multiple Grade 1-winning multi-millionaire Frosted, will look to improve on her five-race win streak in her graded debut. The Michael Stidham trainee captured the Heavenly Cause last out in her first stateside start. A talented group includes Grade 1-winner Bell’s the One and graded-stakes winners Sconsin, Four Graces, Kalypso, and Lady Rocket.
Closing out the sequence is a field of eight sophomores in the nine-furlong Grade 3 Ohio Derby [Race 11, 5:35 p.m.] from Thistledown. Grade 1 Florida Derby winner White Abarrio will look to make amends from an off-the-board effort in the Grade 1 Kentucky Derby for conditioner Saffie Joseph, Jr., facing off against fellow Derby starters Tawny Port, winner of the Grade 3 Lexington for trainer Brad Cox; and Classic Causeway, who makes his first start for McPeek after taking the Grade 3 Sam F. Davis and Grade 2 Tampa Bay Derby for his former trainer Brian Lynch. Ethereal Road, an emphatic winner of the Sir Barton last out at Pimlico, could be a factor late for Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas.
The minimum bet for the multi-track, multi-race wager is 50 cents. Wagering on the Cross Country Pick 5 is also available on ADW platforms and at simulcast facilities across the country. Every week will feature a mandatory payout of the net pool. The Cross Country Pick 5, which features a low 15 percent takeout, will continue each Saturday throughout the year.
America’s Day at the Races will present daily coverage and analysis of the spring/summer meet at Belmont Park on the networks of FOX Sports. For the complete broadcast schedule, visit https://www.nyra.com/belmont/racing/tv-schedule.
NYRA Bets is the official wagering platform of Belmont Park, and the best way to bet every race of the spring/summer meet. Available to horse players nationwide, the NYRA Bets app is available for download today on iOS and Android at www.NYRABets.com.
Cross Country Pick 5 – Saturday, June 25:
Leg A: Belmont-Race 8, G2 Mother Goose (4:40 p.m. Eastern)
Leg B: Monmouth-Race 11, $100K Goldwood (4:47 p.m.)
Leg C: Thistledown-Race 10, $250K Lady Jacqueline (4:48 p.m.)
Leg D: Churchill-Race 9, G3 Chicago (4:55 p.m.)
Leg E: Thistledown-Race 11, G3 Ohio Derby (5:35 p.m.)