Sunday Horse Racing: After nailing the Belmont Trifecta Saturday, Garrity picks Belmont, Monmouth, Santa Anita
Altaf, winning at Aqueduct April 18, today races at Monmouth.NYRA

Sunday Horse Racing: After nailing the Belmont Trifecta Saturday, Garrity picks Belmont, Monmouth, Santa Anita

Garrity's first post is at 4:08 pm EDT.

Horse racing is beset with problems, both large and small, but yesterday was a reminder, at least to us, of the sport’s greatness. The races at Belmont Park were nothing short of terrific, with the horses the stars, as they should be, and the results deeply satisfying. It’s a reminder that despite all that is wrong with the sport -- and there is plenty -- it is still the greatest game in the world. The Belmont Stakes itself was sensational, with two superb equine athletes putting on a show that will be remembered for a long, long time. And calling the first three finishers in order, as we did yesterday morning -- having the "trifecta cold," as the saying goes -- was nice.

There are three stakes today, and they are our three plays: one each at Belmont, Monmouth, and Santa Anita Parks. We expect fast dirt and firm turf in all three, so let’s go.

Belmont Park, Race 7, 4:08 pm ET
$150,000 Jersey Girl Stakes, 6 furlongs, Dirt, 3-Year-Old Fillies

Six go in the Jersey Girl. We see a speed duel up front, which should set the table for 4-Australasia, who should get a dream stalking trip just behind the pacesetters, and moving forward when the speed starts to back up. Her last few starts have been at longer distances, but we think she will do here what she probably does best, which is sprinting. We will bet her to win at 7/2. The bet: Belmont Park, Race 7, $40 to win on 4-Australasia.

Monmouth Park, Race 10, 4:52 pm ET

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

A good field of eight lines up for the Lady’s Secret at the Jersey Shore, but we see no reason to look past favored 2-Altaf. She’s a Chad Brown trainee who made her seasonal debut a winning one, taking an allowance at Aqueduct on April 18. While a repeat of that effort may be good enough to win here, we think she will be even better, partly because it’s her second start off the layoff, and partly because the race shape -- there’s enough speed to favor her stalking/closing style -- will benefit her. Sometimes, the best play is the obvious play, and we will make that here: we think we’ve identified the best horse, and we will bet her to win at 6/5. The bet: Monmouth Park, Race 10, $50 to win on 2-Altaf.

Santa Anita Park, Race 7, 7:21 pm ET

$75,000 Desert Code Stakes, 6 furlongs, Turf, 3-Year-Olds

There are five colts entered in the Desert Code, but we’re not picking any of them: We like the lone female runner, the 3-year-old filly 3-Missy P. Her first two starts were quite good, and while they were on dirt, and this will be her first attempt at turf, she has the pedigree to suggest that she will thrive on the sod. And perhaps most important is her trainer: If conditioner Richard Mandella thinks she is ready to take on the boys on grass, so are we. We will bet Missy P. to win at 9/5. The bet: Santa Anita, Race 7, $40 to win on 3-Missy P.

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

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