Race 1 – 5, 1, 2
(5)Rose Garden ran into a bit of trouble in her debut and looked a bit green. Hoping to see a bit of maturity out of her today, could make the difference.
(1)Artistic Quality has run out of ground in her last 2 so should benefit from the added distance today. Also gets a jockey upgrade to Jose Ortiz.
(2)Windjammer (Ger) gets Johnny V aboard today which I am taking as a positive sign. Horse are known to show improvement 2nd time being on Lasix so taking that approach with her today, hoping she can round out some exotics.
Race 3- 2, 4, 12
(2) No Mo Promises was a $250K purchase in March of this year. His works have been solid even though they have strictly been at Colt Neck Stables. The top 2 morning line favorites in my opinion are suspect so taking a shot with No Mo Promises.
(4)Pequeno Grande was bred and is owned/trained by Rudy Rodriguez which is interesting. Yes he hasn’t had the best of meets, but I think this one will outrun his 15-1 Morning Line odds so will use him.
(12)Good Old Boy adds blinkers for Mike Maker, and if he was inside he may have been my top selection, but from the 12 post I couldn’t put him on top. He adds Saez today so I am expecting a big improvement from his debut, but the post is cause for concern.
Race 5 – 5, 6, 8
(5) Blockade had traffic issues in his last start and still almost got there. I am hoping 3rd time is the charm for him, because this horse has shown talent, just needs a clean trip.
(6)Witch Doctor showed a huge improvement last time out. Not a big fan of the cut back in distance with him today because I think he wants to go longer, but should be a major factor here.
(8)Congruity has been the beaten favorite in both career starts, but ran very well at this distance last time out. Too dangerous to leave out, in my opinion, but as the Morning line favorite, he is beatable.
Race 6 – 3,1,7 (14)
(3)Shanghai Jewel is trying turf for the first time and sire Shanghai Bobby has produced some solid turf runners in his first crop. Pletcher is only 14% with first time turf which isn’t an eye popping stat, but is 31% with Maiden 2nd time starts.
(1)Gold Zipper would’ve been my top selection if she wasn’t on the rail, I’m not a huge fan of 2 year olds first time out on the rail or on the far outside By her workouts she is fast and her breeding fits for this 6F turf race, plus getting Joe Bravo first time out is a plus.
(7)Mo Shopping has a fantastic pedigree (Sire: Uncle Mo, Dam: Stopshoppingmaria) and will most likely be your post time favorite, but she looks like one that might need a start first. Her recent works are nothing special and I prefer Pletcher’s other runner in here who has a start under her belt. Won’t be shocked if she wins, but as the favorite, I won’t use her on top in exactas or trifectas, only underneath.
*If (14) Circle the Bases draws into this race, she will become my 3rd choice. Won’t be a fan of the outside post, but I love the equipment change removing the blinkers. She gets a jockey upgrade to Jose Ortiz and has a race under her belt where she outran her 27-1 odds.
Race 7 – 10, 7, 5
(10) Penjade (Fr) has won 3 in a row including last time out at this distance. Her speed figures aren’t as high as some in here, but she sits back off the pace so not faulting her for the numbers. She proved last time that she can close on a slow pace and has proved she can be wide and win.
(7) Off Limits (Ire) will be the deserving favorite here, but I put her 2nd because of the distance. Her two career stakes win came at 1 mile which I think is her best distance so not thrilled with her stretching out. She is 1 for 4 at this distance in her career so won’t be surprised if she gets it done, but with her likely low odds I will play small against her, but will include her in my exotics and multi-race tickets.
(5) Time and Motion has been disappointing in 2017, but does get some class relief today and should be have decent odds. She is does seem to love Belmont though and is 4/5 in the money for her career here. She does only have 1 win though, and is only 2 for 6 winning at this distance. To me she is a logical horse to round out trifectas/supers with.
Race 8 -3, 4, 7
(3) Miss Sky Warrior is finally back after the sloppy Kentucky Oaks. She upgrades to Javier today in the irons and has been training great. There is other speed in here which does worry me a bit, but looks to be the inside speed on paper which is a huge plus in my opinion.
(4) Verve’s Tale is the only horse in this field who I can see potentially spoiling Miss Sky Warriors return. She has run well in her last 2, and her last effort in the G1 Beldame is a lot better than it looks on paper. If you are looking to go against the favorite here, I think this is your horse.
(7)Eskenformoney has finished 2nd or 3rd in 6 of her 7 starts this year and her only out of the money finish came in the slop. You know exactly what you are going to get with her. I don’t think she can win here, but for Exacta’s and Trifectas she is worth using.
Race 9 – 9, 7, 8
(9) Seymourdini with a clean break should be the outside speed and with how he has run in all 3 of his starts this year, he is too dangerous not to use here. This is a very solid field, but with only 1 other speed horse in the race (Awesome Banner), I don’t see Seymourdini having any issues taking this group all the way around.
(7) Stallwalkin’ Dude is as classy as they come. He runs solid in every spot he is entered in, and is dropping in after back to back G1 appearances where the winners are running in the Breeder’s Cup Sprint next week. He gets class relief today and should get a solid pace to close in on, but unless Seymourdini is pressured, I don’t see Stallwalkin’ Dude catching lone speed.
(8) Beasley is just game. He is 2 for 2 since coming back in August, but his speed figures are still a bit low, even though he has shown improvement. If he really is 20-1 come post time, I will play him across the board.
Race 10 – 6, 2, 9
(6) War Chest was wide throughout last time out at this distance and broke his maiden impressively. He was a $500K yearling purchase who has a very nice pedigree so I expect this one to improve off his maiden win.
(2) Therapist is stretching out today, but is coming off a stakes win. He is 2 for 2 and has shown improvement in both starts and now upgrades jockey’s to Irad Ortiz Jr. He comes from the back so will need a solid pace, but if he gets it he should be flying at the end.
(9) Devine Entry is also stretching out today, but looks to be one who is going to take a step forward today. He does lose Irad, but gains Jose who is always a solid pick. He ran a game 2nd 2 races back when breaking from the 9 post and Linda Rice is 29% when going from Sprint to Route, 32% going from 2 Sprints to a Route, and is 31% when winning the last start.