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Eyeinthesky runs in The Mizdirection at Aqueduct in April 2019.
Eyeinthesky runs in The Mizdirection at Aqueduct in April 2019.|NYRA

Thoroughbreds Sunday: McMudder picks races at Saratoga, Laurel and Monmouth

Mick McMudder

Mick McMudder

Every day is a big race day at Saratoga and that makes the meet one of the most enjoyable ones of the year. But now everyone else has caught on and started to move their big race days around on the calendar. For example, Laurel is now using Sundays, typically an anticlimactic race day, to hold their stakes races. Both Parx and Delaware have moved stakes races to week (weak?) days. All of this is to maintain interest in the racing product virtually and to gain patrons in reality. Since few race tracks charge admission at this point, getting people to the races should be easy but it isn’t. There has never been more competition for the sports spectator’s attention. Kudos to horse racing for trying to meet the public where they live. Let’s all hope it brings more fans to the game.

Picks for July 14, 2019:

Out on a limb here…sunny and pleasant with no rain.

Saratoga Race 9 – Coronation Cup

A filly stakes race on turf with no Chad Brown? Although it may be hard to believe, this race is still loaded with story lines. 9-Abyssinian may be the most interesting. She appears to be much better at 5f than today’s 5.5f distance. Does ½ furlong really matter that much. It appears to for her. 6-Eyeinthesky seems to enjoy a little more ground having won at 6f but her last two efforts have been lacking. So obviously, you need 5-A Bit of Both, a winner of 5 of 6 lifetime including the last one at this trip and surface. A repeat puts this one in the photo.

$10 W/P/S 5-A Bit of Both

$2 Exacta box 5,6

$1 Trifecta box 5,6,9

Laurel Race 4 – Twixt Stakes

6-Late Night Pow Wow tried G1 company last time and hit the board. This is not G1 company and the race stands to get even lighter if 3-Yorkiepoo Princess runs on Saturday. Beyond those two, 1-Cairenn is your best bet to bounce back from her worst race in a year. Can’t see the others involved but keep late scratches in mind.

$10 W/P/S 6-Late Night Pow Wow

$2 Exacta box 3,6

$1 Trifecta box 1,3,6

Monmouth Race 9 - My Frenchman Stakes

Did you see 1-Invigorous’ last race? It was impressive. The problem at this point is that it was 8 months ago on dirt. 6-Skole comes in for turf specialist trainer Arnaud Delacour. The brief freshening should help and Paco Lopez knows how to finish races. 4-Credit Swap just missed around two turns last out and gets a new pilot here having lost Nik Juarez to the 1.

$10 W/P/S 6-Skole

$2 Exacta box 1,6

$1 Trifecta box 1,4,6

Mick’s Quickie’s

Laurel Race 5 – Jameela Stakes: 1-Hailey’s Flip is bred to sprint on turf and gets the opportunity here. She should sit the trip and some running late. If she is good enough, she will pay well.

Laurel Race 6 – Ben’s Cat Stakes: 8-Dirty gets huge class relief here and it should be all he needs. The outside post is a huge plus.

Laurel Race 7 – Concern Stakes: 3-Mind Control is another getting huge class relief and stands above this group. He won a G3 two back. Consider a few on 7-Mount Travers if the M/L holds. He has had terrible racing luck that will eventually turn.

Laurel Race 8 -Stormy Blues Stakes: 3-Introduced loves this strip and looks to take the next step in her career. Track, distance and rider are all correct for success.