I am in a 5-race contest on Derbywars.com, last 5 races at Saratoga, with the scoring being based on mythical $2 WPS wagers. Top 2 get paid.
Here’s my look at races 7 through 11 at the Spa!
7th at Saratoga is 8.5 furlongs on the turf course, non winners of 2 races, allowance, 85k purse for statebred fillies. There are allowances re age and distance. Truth gets a 7 lb break. My top 3 here include overlay Mom’s On Strike, favored Act Naughty, and Broken Border. No one else with a real definite shot.
Mom’s On Strike scored a 100 Brisnet last out, running very wide but competitive in her turf debut, the 200k Pebbles at Belmont last year. That score is best on turf of the field, and her early/backstretch runs suggest she’s the true speed here. 10 months away from the track,and stretching out, with good works, I’m playing her with confidence.
Broken Border I like mainly because of her recent run of Brisnet scores…the last 4 all in the 80s, plus wins in the last 3. She’s also the lone early closer of the field.
8th race is the Grade 1 Vanderbilt Handicap, for top 3YO+, 6 furlongs on dirt. Top 3 here are overlay/longshot Ready For Rye, Bird Song, and Awesome Banner. Another overlay here in Spartiatis.
Ready For Rye in his 5YO debut ran a 98 after 7 months away, improving at 1st call since his prior race, the Fall Highweight Handicap. Overall Brisnet of 98, down from 101. He took the head at 2nd call and won well as the favorite. Yes, a muddy track, and, yes, a deeper field here too, but I’m willing to back this overlay.
Bird Song 4 races removed from lifetime best 104 BRIS, took a bounce in the Stephen Foster last time out. This E/P type has a bunch of races running in triple digits at 2nd call. He also owns a prior win here.
Awesome Banner hit small new top 2 races back in a 150k stakes race. That was 2 months ago, and I say he’s still under influence of that number, and can run back to that number.
Spartiatis had a tough trip last out, but still posted a 91 score in the Diablo. Drops 9 lbs to 115. He’s won prior with similar move. 5 works at the Spa since as well.
9th race is the Bowling Green Stakes, 11 furlongs on the inner turf course. This Grade 2 event is for 4YO+. My top 3 are 2 of the favorites in Sadler’s Doy and Ascend, then lone overlay Closing Bell.
Closing Bell exploded to a 109 last out in the UN Stakes, a Grade 1 event at Monmouth 4 weeks ago. He rallied decently in this race but the fast pace left him wanting more. Can’t throw out given the pace potential.
10th is the featured Jim Dandy Stakes, a Grade 1 event at 600k for top 3YOs. Top 3 include overlay Good Samaritan, favored Always Dreaming and other overlay Giuseppe The Great.
Good Samaritan is a colt by Harlan’s Holiday with Pulpit as the damsire. Won first 2 lifetime, then placed between 2nd and 4th in 4 Graded events since. Peaked 3 races back in the American Turf at Churchill with a 98. Only colt in the field who has a distance cutback win. Turn time of 22.8 last out is also best of the field.
Giuseppe The Great loses blinkers for this race. After maiden win, was 2nd in the Woody Stephens, then 4th in the Dwyer. 4 straight races in the 90s. Had some trouble in the Dwyer but still matched lifetime best with a 98.
Finally in the 11th, there is an 83k maiden event, 8.5 furlongs on the turf. Top 3 here are Durable Goods, Magical Sky, and Freedom. No overlays in this race.
Magical Sky the best price play here. Just one start, vs 42k maidens at a mile on the Gulfstream Park turf on 6/22. 77 Brisnet in that debut with a 91 stretch pace. Turn time of 24.4 is best of the field.