Wednesday at the track! Garrity picks the Lady’s Secret Stakes at Monmouth, the JPMorgan Chase Jessamine Stakes at Keeneland, and more
Royal Flag, shown here running at Aqueduct in December 2019. is Garrity's pick to win the $100,000 Lady’s Secret Stakes at Monmouth Park todayNYRA

Wednesday at the track! Garrity picks the Lady’s Secret Stakes at Monmouth, the JPMorgan Chase Jessamine Stakes at Keeneland, and more

First picked race, the 5th at Keeneland, has a post time of 3:18 pm

We’re back after a brief freshening, and the break has us eager to take on a couple of this afternoon’s races, two at Keeneland and one at Monmouth Park. We expect firm turf for both races in Kentucky, and fast dirt at the Jersey Shore. Let’s go.

Keeneland, Race 5, 3:18 pm ET

Allowance, 1 ⅛ miles, Turf, 3 & Up

This is a real handicapper’s race, with a full field of twelve and no clear favorite. It’s the kind of race where one can try to dope out a winner at a big price, and that’s exactly what we’re doing, in the form of 6-Battalion. He made all of his seven career starts for owner Winstar Farm and trainer Bill Mott, but he was claimed from those connections in his last race, and today makes his first start for new conditioner Saffie Joseph. We like this colt’s pedigree (by Tiznow, out of a Bernardini mare), and we also like how Joseph is able to get horses new to his barn to improve: he’s got an otherworldly 37% win rate with horses making their first start after a claim. Look for Battalion to be toward the rear and rolling late. We will bet him to win at 12-1. The bet: Keeneland, Race 5, $35 to win on 6-Battalion.

Monmouth Park, Race 8, 3:53 pm ET

$100,000 Lady’s Secret Stakes, 1 1/16 miles, Dirt, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up

Seven veteran mares go in the Lady’s Secret. We like the favorite, 4-Royal Flag, who comes from the high-powered Chad Brown barn. She is pretty close to the embodiment of handicapping perfection for us: she’s got the figs, she’s got the class (she drops into this overnight stakes after hitting the board in graded stakes in her last two starts), and she has a pace-pressing running style that will work against this field. She’s not much of a price, 8/5 on the morning line, but we believe there is value in every winner, and Royal Flag is overwhelmingly the likeliest winner here. We will bet her to win, and we will do so enthusiastically. The bet: Monmouth Park, Race 8, $60 to win on 4-Royal Flag.

Keeneland, Race 7, 4:24 pm ET

Grade 2 JPMorgan Chase Jessamine Stakes, 1 1/16 miles, Turf, 2-Year-Old Fillies

A full field of eleven goes in the day’s best race, the Jessamine at Keeneland. There are several promising juvenile fillies in here, but the one we like most is 1-Batyah. She’s a Graham Motion trainee who won her career debut on September 19 at Belmont Park, and we like everything about her effort in that race: she beat a big field, besting nine other fillies; she ran like a seasoned pro, not a first-time starter, rating at the back of the pack early and blowing away the rest of the field late; and she earned good speed and pace figures for the effort. She draws the rail here, which is a tactical advantage and should help her save ground, and there appears to be enough early pace in the race to set up her late charge. We think she will probably be a shorter price at post time than her 6-1 morning line odds, but she merits a play anyway. We will bet her to win. The bet: Keeneland, Race 7, $40 to win on 1-Batayh.

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

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