Posts Tagged ‘Travers 2013’

Saturday Saratoga Race Course Free Play for Travers Day – Aug. 24

I am offering full card analysis from Saratoga Race Course each Saturday on my Today’s Racing Digest Handicapper page. For the August 24 Travers program, I have posted a free play below. I also posted my August 17 analysis from Saratoga at the bottom of this post, along with full card highlights.

Check out my free analysis of the King’s Bishop at

Saratoga Race Course Free Play for Saturday, August 24

Saratoga Race 6 (MSW, 8.5f inner turf) #6 BIRCHWOOD ROAD (3-1) missed by a neck vs. similar local rivals July 19. He attracts Rosario, dons the hood, and could be sitting on a new top 3rd off the shelf. #10 Hudson Miracle (7-2) finished 3rd, a neck behind Birchwood Road last time after racing rank and wide. Brown reaches out for $$ rider Castellano. #1 Grahamandwithers (4-1) and #7 Irish Jade (5-1) finished 2-3 here July 28. The former should flash speed from the rail and the latter dons the hood. THE PLAYS: #6 to win, Exacta Box 6-10, Exacta 6-10/1-7

Check out my Saturday (August 24) Saratoga full card analysis (available now) at For bonus free pick (SAR 14th race), click view sample. DRF TicketMaker Pick 6 tickets included in Travers Day full card analysis.

Upcoming full cards:
Saratoga Race Course (Sat. August 24) – available now!

Saratoga Saturdays (Aug. 31)
Belmont Park: Jockey Club Gold Cup Day (Saturday, Sept. 28)
Keeneland: Fall Stars Saturday (Saturday, October 5)
Breeders’ Cup from Santa Anita (Friday, Nov. 1 & Sat., Nov. 2)

Orb horse

Derby winner Orb returns in Saturday’s Travers – photo by Eclipse Sportswire

Saratoga full card analysis for Saturday (8-17-13)
By Jarrod Horak (,
: Mostly Sunny. High 82.  Best Bets (races 4, 6, 9, 11)
Pick 6:  Races 7-12 (see DRF Ticketmaker P6 tickets below)


SAR 5 Westside Corral/Annawon EXACTA ($84.50)
SAR 7 Lawyer Jim ($13.20), EXACTA w/Tater Downs ($79)
SAR 9 Big Blue Kitten/Twilight Eclipse EXACTA (best bet #3, $36.20)
SAR 10 Princess of Sylmar ($3)
DAILY DOUBLE (race 9-10, $11.20)
SAR 11 So Outspoken/Tiu EXACTA (best bet #4, $25.20)
PICK 3 (race 9-11, $52.50)
DAILY DOUBLE (race 10-11, $14)
PICK 3 (race 10-12, $116)
PICK 4 (race 9-12, $443)

The Fast Track with Steve Borstein

For Travers Day best bets, check out The Fast Track with Steve Bortstein on Saturday morning at 10am eastern

SAR 1 (Clm-20k, 5.5T) #3 DISSENSION (4-1) overcame trouble to beat similar course/distance rivals July 28 and Gary Gullo is good (25%) with his recent claiming winners attempting a repeat. #6 Ideal Place (3-1) won her Maiden Claiming turf sprint bow before fading to last vs. state bred stakes sprinters on the lawn second time out. Chas Brown excels with 46-90 day layoff runners and she reunites with winning pilot Javier Castellano. #8 Tapit to Me (8-1) has fired Trifecta shots in 5 of 7 turf starts at 7.5f or shorter including her last three outings. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta Box 3-6, Trifecta 3-6/ALL/8

SAR 2 (MSW, 6.5f) #3 TAPITURE (3-1) is by 13% debut sire Tapit and dam has tossed three winners from as many starters (2 Stakes winners). Steve Asmussen is clicking here and this one fired a local 5f gate bullet Aug. 12. #4 Crescent (5-2) finished a solid 3rd in his bow and winner Corfu came back to take the G2 Saratoga Special. The $215k Keeneland sales grad can improve for patient trainer Bill Mott. #1 Rebranded (7-2) is a $350k son of Tiznow debuting from the intimidating rail for the profitable Johnny V/Pletcher team. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Quinella 3/1-4   

SAR 3 (Mcl-20k, 6f) #5 MY ITALIAN ICES (9-2) dueled and faded as the beaten favorite in his debut and the clear place finisher came back to score. Jason Servis excels first off the claim. #6 Ocala Jim (2-1) turns back, switches surfaces, and drops in for a tag. He has solid connections (Castellano/Levine) in his corner. Levine also trains #3 Pete and David (4-1), and he is back at his claimed level. Trainer George Weaver is sending out live wires here and he has first timer #1 John Silver (5-1).  THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Exacta 5/1-3-6, Exacta 1-3-6/5  

SAR 4 (OC-25k/1x, 9f) #8 INDY’S ILLUSION (5-1) needed his last 7f prep and ran well at 9f in Florida earlier this year. The highly regarded A.P. Indy colt ran in the G2 Remsen as a juvenile and hooked Orb twice at the Gulf this winter. Tagg shows a profit sprint-to-route. #6 Sliver and Onions (3-1) exits a sharp course/distance graduation run for high % trainer Hushion. THE PLAYS: #8 to win, Quinella 6-8  

SAR 5 (Clm-20k, 8.5f inner turf) #10 ANNAWON (12-1) rates a look at a price for solid trainer Jack Fisher. The realistically spotted Virginia shipper won here before and attracts sharp turf rider Lezcano. #11 Livingston Street (7-2) drops into a winning spot in his third start off the Trombetta claim. Johnny V hops aboard the fresh, tactical gelding. #12 Yankee Fourtune (10-1) can improve in his second start off the Servis claim. He has won twice here and three times at this trip. #9 Westside Corral (3-1) drops off the claim but Galluscio is winning here and Castellano has booted him home before. THE PLAYS: #10 to win, Exacta 10/9-11-12, Exacta 9-11-12/10

SAR 6 (Alw-1x, 5.5T) #2 IRON POWER (6-1) split a 12-horse field off a layoff after breaking last and making a wide move under Rosario at this course/distance July 29. Hushion excels 2nd off the shelf and quality turf rider Lezcano takes the call. #3 Countknickerboker (3-1) proved once again that he likes local turf sprints with a place finish from post 10 vs. this kind July 29. #5 River Tune (4-1) ran well at 6f on turf May 26 but not nearly as good in two longer starts since. Castellano sticks and he may regain his punch at this abbreviated trip. THE PLAYS: #2 to win, Exacta 2/3-5, Exacta 3-5/2  

SAR 7 (OC-35k, 8.5f inner turf) #5 LAWYER JIM (10-1) is versatile for profitable turf trainer Lisa Lewis and I like the rider switch to Jose Lezcano. He lands a better post and should offer value. #3 Liquidity Trap (9-2) ran well off the Jacobson claim in a slow early/fast late turf route at Belmont July 7. He has fired Trifecta shots in 6 of 8 turf tries. #6 Gold Megillah (7-2) and #12 Tater Downs (4-1) both figure for Mike Maker. The former enters fresh after a pair of close-up 4th place finishes at Belmont and the latter has won twice on turf and is usually thereabouts. THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Exacta Box 3-5, Exacta 3-5/6-12

SAR 8 (OC-35k, 9.5T) #8 MASTER WESLEY (5-1) ran well at Monmouth Park July 6 and the show finish came back to score. Castellano hops aboard 3rd off the shelf. #5 Now and Then (7-2) tries turf for McLaughlin and is the likely target. #6 Royal Blessing (4-1) reunites with winning pilot Saez but might be better at 8.5f. #2 Ampersand (4-1) won here last year and will try to get involved late under Lezcano. THE PLAYS: #8 to win, Exacta Box 5-8, Exacta 5-8/2-6

SAR 9 (G1 Sword Dancer, 12f inner turf) #4 TWILIGHT ECLIPSE (5-1) ran well despite some give in the ground in the G1 Man o’ War last time. He prefers firm turf and can turn the tables on Boisterous if he gets the right ground. He is 2-for-2 at this trip. #10 Boisterous (5-2) has fired Exacta shots in six straight and exits back-to-back Graded wins for Shug. He has won here before and moves up with some give in the ground. #1 Big Blue Kitten (4-1) exits a smart win in the G1 U.N. at Monmouth at 11f and was 2nd to Boisterous at 9f before that. He is 1-for-1 over the Saratoga turf course. THE PLAYS: #4 to win, Exacta 4/1-10, Exacta 1-10/4

SAR 10 (G1 Alabama, 10f) #4 PRINCESS OF SYLMAR (3-5) is 6 for 7 in routes and the G1 Kentucky Oaks heroine easily won the local prep for this, the G1 Coaching Club American Oaks at 9f. Pletcher’s versatile miss probably seals the Eclipse Award deal with a victory in this spot. #6 Fiftyshadesofhay (2-1) has the breeding (Pulpit-Real Quiet) to handle this trip and exits back-to-back Graded route tallies. Baffert’s filly is fresh, attracts Johnny V, and is expected to attempt a wire job. #5 Carnival Court (15-1) offers Exacta value. McLaughlin excels first lasix and Royal Delta’s $650k half-sister has won two straight. Barn won this with Questing last year. THE PLAYS: Exacta 4-6/5  

SAR 11 (Mcl-25k, 8.5f inner turf) #12 TIU (3-1) drops to a new low and should be very competitive in this spot based on his last two turf numbers. #6 Ryvit (6-1) found the pace at a flat mile a bit too quick for his liking here Aug. 3 and he probably regressed 2nd off the shelf as well. He fits off his July 21 place finish here and should be much closer to softer splits this time. He is 0-for-15. #9 So Outspoken (5-2) is the obligatory favorite for Johnny V/Pletcher. He ran into multiple next out winners in both turf starts and finished 2nd in a local 9f dirt route on the drop July 28. THE PLAYS: #12 to win, Exacta 12/6-9, Exacta 6-9/12

SAR 12 (MSW, 7f) #10 SHOT TO WIN (4-1) hails from a profitable debut outfit and sports two bullets for this. #4 Summer Place to Be (6-1) is a $100k purchase and Tony Dutrow can click with a first time starter. #6 Bottleofredorwhite (7-2) is a $135k purchase debuting for the recently hot Johnny V/Pletcher team. #3 Native Singer (3-1) dons the hood after back-to-back place finishes. THE PLAYS: #10 to win, Exacta 4-6-10/3     

Double/Pick 3/Pick 4 contenders – in order of preference


1   (3-6-8)
2   (3-4-1)
3   (5-6-3-1)
4   (8-6)
5   (10-11-12-9)
6   (2-3-5)
7   (5-3-6-12)
8   (8-5-6-2)
9   (4-10-1)
10 (4-6-5)
11 (12-6-9)
12 (10-4-6-3)

Beyond the 2013 Triple Crown: Summer Stakes Preview

The 2013 Triple Crown series is in the books and the 3-year-old calendar will heat up again in July when racing moves to Saratoga.  

Derby winner Orb, Preakness hero Oxbow, and Belmont Stakes upsetter Palace Malice all figure to point to the G1 Travers, the mid-summer Derby at Saratoga on Saturday, August 24.

The G1 Jim Dandy Stakes, the local prep for the Travers, will take place on Saturday, July 27.

Verrazano tops the list of G1 Haskell Invitational contenders following a facile win in the G3 Pegasus at Monmouth Park on July 16. Itsmyluckyday was supposed to test him in the Pegasus but was pulled up with an injury and is out for four months. The Haskell is set for Sunday, July 28.

In the video below, I recap the Triple Crown series, as well as the Matt Winn and Pegasus Stakes. Finally, I look at five horses to watch this summer/fall.