Got Stormy, winning the 2019 fourstardave at Saratoga, races today at Kentucky Downs.
Got Stormy, winning the 2019 fourstardave at Saratoga, races today at Kentucky Downs.|NYRA
Thoroughbreds

Garrity's Saturday Stakes: Favorites to bet and bet against in 6 races at Kentucky Downs, Woodbine and Monmouth

Garrity's first post is 4:27 pm EDT. His last post is 6:04 pm. Spend 100 minutes with the ponies and see 6 top-flight races with more than $3 million in purses.

Chris Garrity

There’s a lot of money on the table today, most of it at Kentucky Downs, where there’s an 11-race card with combined purses of nearly $3.7 million. That’s a lot of cheddar, and there’s also a big card at Woodbine, which features Canadian-bred 3-year-olds running in the Queen’s Plate. We have plays in six races, a good, old-fashioned Saturday six-pack, and we expect fast dirt and firm turf in all of them. Let’s go.

Kentucky Downs, Race 7, 4:27 pm ET

$500,000 Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf, 1 mile, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

After scratches, the Ladies Turf has seven females going a mile on the Kentucky Downs turf course. The favorite is 6-Regal Glory, a Chad Brown 4-year-old filly who’s coming out of a couple of near misses in some top-level stakes races at Belmont Park. Is she good enough to win this? Almost certainly, but she’s 9/5 on the morning line, and will likely be shorter at post time, and at miserly odds, we think she’s an underlay, and a play-against.

We like 8-Secret Message, who goes for trainer Graham Motion. We like her last race, a close third in a minor grass stakes at Saratoga on August 14, in which she showed the ideal running style for Kentucky Downs: she showed enough early speed to remain reasonably close to the early pace, and finished with a strong closing kick. We think she’s rounding into form, has a big shot here, and is live at very generous 6-1 odds. We will bet her to win. The bet: Kentucky Downs, Race 7, $35 to win on 6-Secret Message.

Woodbine, Race 9, 4:51 pm ET

Grade 2 Canadian Stakes, 1 ⅛ miles, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

Woodbine runs some good turf races in the fall, and the Canadian is one of them, with a field of ten older females lining up to go nine furlongs on the sod. We’re against the favorite, 10-Cambier Parc, a Chad Brown trainee who had a marvelous 2019 campaign as a 3-year-old, but who here starts off a layoff of nearly a year. She may win, but at 6/5, we wouldn’t bet her with counterfeit money.

We like 3-Elizabeth Way. She is coming into this race in good form, and we think that as a 4-year-old she should be hitting her prime as a racehorse. The pace here looks to be slow, or even very slow, and we give her the nod due to her combination of decent cruising speed and strong closing kick: she should get first jump on the deep closers, and that is going to get her the prize here. We will bet her to win at 4-1. The bet: Woodbine, Race 9, $30 to win on 3-Elizabeth Way.

Kentucky Downs, Race 8, 4:59 pm ET

$500,000 Kentucky Downs Ladies Sprint, 6 ½ furlongs, Turf, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

The Ladies Sprint drew a full field of twelve, but we have eyes for only one: 8-Got Stormy, who starts for trainer Mark Casse. She’s been running, and running well, against the boys, and here, in a race restricted to females, we think she is going to dominate. Look for her to sit just behind the first flight of horses early, and to be rolling late. We will bet her to win at 2-1, and will do so enthusiastically. The bet: Kentucky Downs, Race 8, $50 to win on 8-Got Stormy.

Monmouth Park, Race 11, 5:07 pm ET

$100,000 Mr. Prospector Stakes, 6 furlongs, Dirt, 3 & Up

Monmouth Park is winding down its summer meeting, with only six live dates left, so we’re jumping on the Mister Prospector Stakes, if only to have a play at the Jersey Shore while they’re still running there.

It drew a pretty good field of seven older sprinters. Favored 3-Mind Control is the pick, and a strong one: He’s coming out of three consecutive Grade 1 races, and while his efforts in two of them were weak, both of those subpar efforts were on sloppy tracks, which is not his favorite. He’ll get the fast dirt he likes today, and he figures to dominate: he’s been running against some of the best sprinters in the country, horses like Win WIn Win, Volatile, and Vekoma, and there are certainly no runners here on the level of those beasts. Look for him to stalk the speed, move to the front at the top of the stretch, and win this one with condescending ease. We will bet him to win at 8/5. The bet: Monmouth Park, Race 11, $40 to win on 3-Mind Control.

Woodbine, Race 10, 5:41 pm ET

$1,000,000 Queen’s Plate, 1 ¼ miles, Synthetic, Canadian-bred 3-Year-Olds

A full field of twelve line up for the Queen’s Plate, and we’re all in on the favorite, 12-Clayton. He’s run four times, won three of them, including the Queen’s Plate Trial at Woodbine on August 15. He has earned superior speed figures to his rivals, has shown an affinity for the synthetic racing surface at Woodbine, and has a tractable running style that should get him a perfect stalking trip. We think he looks better than the other eleven, and sometimes this game really is a matter of identifying the best horse, and betting him to win. We’ll do just that here, and play Clayton to win at 2-1. The bet: Woodbine, Race 10, $40 to win on 12-Clayton.

Kentucky Downs, Race 10, 6:04 pm ET

$1,000,000 Kentucky Turf Cup, 1 ½ miles, Turf, 3 & Up

The Kentucky Turf Cup, a million dollar race at the classic distance of 12 furlongs on the grass, drew a full field of twelve. The hot favorite is 10-Zulu Alpha, who’s won three of his past four races, all in graded stakes and against some of the toughest turf stayers out there. He’ll be plenty tough in this spot, but he’ll also be a very, very short price, likely odds-on, and we think he’s a case of the likeliest winner of a race being a poor wagering proposition.

We are taking a shot with 6-Postulation. He’s a true stayer, having run virtually all his recent races at a mile and a half, and while he won’t awe anyone with his turn of foot -- he’s a grinder -- that style works very well in general at these longer distances, and has worked even better this week at Kentucky Downs. We also like his effort in his last, when he ended up on the lead in the Elkhorn Stakes at Keeneland: He inherited the lead by default, when no other runner wanted it, and he finished a game second despite appearing to be uncomfortable being in front. He finished just a length behind the winner, who happened to be Zulu Alpha, which begs a question: when two horses appear to be pretty close in ability, and in pretty similar form, and one is 4-5 and the other 8-1, which one do you bet? We think it’s an easy answer: take the price. We will bet Postulation to win. The bet: Kentucky Downs, Race 10, $40 to win on 6-Postulation.

That’s all for today. Until tomorrow, enjoy the racing, be safe, and, as always, good luck at the windows.

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