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Saratoga Stack 9.2.23
Great weather and a challenging Saturday card
Can imagine this morning is a lot like Travers morning weather-wise at the Spa. Cooler. More fall-like. But pretty awesome.
Only three cards left for Saratoga Summer 2023.
Thankfully after a summer of mostly brutal weather, it looks great for the final three days. No MTOs. Full fields. And hopefully safe trips for all those involved.
And an occasional winner.
Friday’s pick was not only a bad pick by me but utterly unbeatable at 2-1 off the 9/2 ML. Chad Brown took that one easily off the two-year layoff. If you told me that one was 4-1, I’d have called you crazy.
3-0-0-2 to start the final week. Looking to finish strong.
TODAY’S STACK IS PRESENTED BY NYRA BETS
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Six race days to go - now is the time!
Two-win lead for Chad over Linda with three days to go. Both have numerous entries today, tomorrow and Monday. Should be a fun battle.
I think David Aragona of NYRA/DRF/Timeform was the first to note this, but the turf seems to be playing to closers the last few days. Especially the turf sprints. Something to keep in mind for the next three days.
Saturday’s card is going to require some guesswork with multiple maiden races. I’ll mention again the DRF Clocker Report is invaluable on days like this. Without it, I’d advise looking at daily double will-pays to see if there are horses getting bet. You can also see this in the win pool - money matters in these races.
Some real #buzz horses on this card based on their workouts.
Race 8 is The Harvey Pack Stakes - formerly the Lucky Coin.
Harvey Pack is one of the reasons I fell in love with racing. He was the best as the host of the old Siro’s handicapping shows I’d watch on YouBet. Could dish it out as well as he could take it. And he was an innovator: he started the pre-race and post-race shows that are now common across the country.
He did so much for New York racing, including introducing the world to some handicapping legends over the years.
My favorite Pack one-liner was about the last race of the day, where he’d say something like, “Race 10 the finale, the race that will decide if you’re eating at Siro’s or McDonald’s.” He had a lot of good ones.
His memoir, “May the Horse Be With You” is a book I’ve read a few times. Glad NYRA is honoring him with a stakes race.
Let’s walk the card
#2 Tammy Lynn comes in having worked with Vesture - who got bet huge in the opener on Friday, flashed speed and faded. #8 Sugar N Spike a full to a good turf sprinter and could blast off from there.
Two Lindas and one Chad here. I thought the rail was a poor place to for #6 Guntown two-back. Then last time a slow start. I’ll give him one more chance here. Linda stretching out a horse is never a bad thing.
Small shot against #2 McKulick with #4 Amazing Grace. Clement barn has been very good as of late. Hate seeing these Grade 2 races with short fields.
#2 Cape Trafalgar chased home a good one last time and should get a nice trip off the speed.
Chalking out with #5 Dazzling Blue. Would use 4 and 1 as backups in the Pick 5.
#5 Zverev had a good sales work and looks like the turf should be no issue. #1 Wally World has been rained off a few turf races this summer.
The board will tell us more, but I’ll lean towards #9 Dive Bomber. The horse has been working with Drum Roll Please who was a clear second to Locked yesterday - he might have been the most impressive two-year-old of the summer. That one likely to get a Beyer close to 90. #1 Ask Issac was rank last time - trainer Bill Mott 7 for 37 (19%) with two-year-olds going turf to dirt. Player underneath.
Admittedly rooting for old Harvy Pack guest Steve Crist and #3 Thin White Duke to take home the first Harvy Pack Stakes after winning this race as The Lucky Coin last year.
Our Two Minute Pick Presented by NYRA Bets!
Last time at Monmouth #8 Internal Capital didn’t get the best trip in a race that was slow early last time - see fractions coded blue on TimeForm. This time, he gets a pace and should be flying late.
An interesting Jockey Club Gold Cup where I’ll take a shot at #6 Tyson. Josie Carroll 22% going synth to dirt: 1 for 4 in graded stakes races. That includes #7 Duke of Love who made this move last time. Plenty of dirt pedigree. #4 Rattle N Roll an “A” in the late picks. The 1 and 8 backups for me.
The #4 Camcha is the horse to beat, I get it…but #1 Spress has two okay turf races and should get a pace in front of her. Should be a great price. 1-4 exacta box to end the day.
Good luck if you’re playing. Comments open below.