Here are a few of the races I will be looking at.
The Arlington Classic is for straight 3 year olds, going 1 & 1/8 on the turf. Wilcox Inn looks like he has found the right spot. He is the class of the field, but it won’t be easy. He is back on his preferred surface, and will be adding blinkers. Don’t forget, he beat the Derby winner when breaking his maiden. Is it my imagination, or is Harlan’s Holiday quickly becoming a “turf sire?” Two more just won this afternoon, one at Woodbine and one at Belmont.
Anyway, Proctor’s horse, Extensive has never been off the board on turf. Suntracer has had 3 wins on turf, but has never won at the distance. And Sandy’s Diamond has a little longshot look to me as he has improved with blinkers. He has had some good efforts on the grass.
At Churchill, I will take a look at the Grade 3 Louisville Handicap. I’m going to give Guy’s Reward a chance in here. He has never been this far, but he closes in all his races. He may be a cut below these, but maybe, just maybe, the added distance could be the answer for him. It is curious to me that Kertana is in here. She is a lovely mare and could beat the boys, but why not keep her against her own kind, for a grade 2 with more money? Her trainer says she likes the 3 turns and he would prefer not to ship.
Belmont’s Grade 2 Sheepshead Bay would have been a walk in the park for Kertana. Could Belle Watling take them all the way? She is not facing Havre de Grace or Kertana in here, and she is returning to turf. I am not a fan and rarely back her connections, but she could be lone speed in here. She is a winner of 13 races and she is getting some much needed class relief. Cheetah looks good in here as well. She beat the boys at Kempton, and even though Kempton is not Ascot, it’s still not an easy thing to do.
In Woodbine‘s 9th, an allowance for “other than” or never won two, I will give Purple Trillium another chance. The 5 year old mare just started her campaign last month as a FIVE YEAR OLD. (Why, I don’t know) but her maiden score was visually impressive. She bobbled a bit, at the start of her second race, and then perhaps bounced a little. She is a daughter of Seeking the Gold out of the great mare Perfect Sting, and she could have some good races in her this year.
In the Lamplighter at Monmouth, Beachcombing is the horse. He is returning to turf, and may have a tactical advantage over the Team Valor horse. He could sit right behind the speed and get the jump on the favorite.
A happy and safe holiday weekend to all and enjoy the good racing ‘round the country.