First post time is 2:06 pm EDT
Partly Sunny Day, 90° at Churchill Downs
There are a few picks today to look at:
$81K Allowance for 3yo+ NWx or NW2 going 8.5 panels
#5 What A Country (9/2) has best overall class, speed and second best last. He just broke his maiden in a $79K MSW event at CE in late May and just recently galloped out a 7f workout. Thus far, he is 1-1 at Churchill and can be a threat.
#2 Locally Owned (7/2) has place-itis at CD going 3:0-3-0, yet with Tyler Gafflione getting his second ride on him, this may be the spot to break the chain.
#6 Beau Luminaire (7/2) from the Rodolphe Brisset barn, this gelding shipped in from GP and has crushed his workouts, with the last being 3f in :35 flat. Look for him to be the lone speed and have an opportunity to wire the field.
#7 Gigging (3/1) one of the conditions of this race is non-winners of a race other than maiden, claiming or starter, which means that you can be a multiple winner of those races and still qualify; hence his 18:4-1-2 record. Using Equibase class ratings, he has raced in his last four against 98-100-100-102 rated events. The only horses to have raced of late that were of that level were Beau Luminaire (102-103 last two) and Locally Owned (102 three back). Yes, he is the ml fave, but this son of Afleet Alex will be overlooked and that may be a mistake. SmartCap has him as an awfully close second in speed.
#8 Hombrazo (12/1) to include in tri and super bets. Is 7:2-1-2 and with his two turf tries, where he obviously is unsuited, you can pare that record to 5:2-1-2, so he has a nose for money.
My Pick: #2 Locally Owned with Tyler having a second go
$79K MSW for 3yo+ fillies and mares going 1.0625 miles
#7 Majorette (5/1) is a 2nd starter with 2nd Lasix. She put up and 80 Equibase number in her debut after being bumped, then pinched back at the start, and recovered well to score the place money. The favorites will be #2 Messina (4/1) Pletcher/Gafflione horse is trying dirt after three consecutive turf tries, #6 Glamour Girl (3/1) 8:0-2-4, has already made a habit of losing, #3 Never Forget (7/2) getting her fifth jockey in as many tries, and #4 Wild Love (7/2) Asmussen still 0-fer in routes at CD.
My Pick: #7 Majorette
$30K MCL for fillies and mares 3yo+ going six furlongs.
If acting awards were handed out during the Eclipse Ceremony, jockey James Graham would win hands down after his “hard check” on Kisses For Heidi in #10 Teenage Kicks (5/2) last race. Teenage Kicks was clearly pulling away when he neared Graham’s horse and did not impeded with him. Graham, summarily yanked on Kisses For Heidi’s reins, giving the impression that he was being pinched. It was absolutely the best acting job in horse racing. It won’t happen again, and Teenage Kicks wins this today.
My contest pick: $7/w $13/p on Teenage Kicks
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