Garrity's 11.13 Saturday Stakes picks Aqueduct – Artie Schiller – and Churchill Downs – Dream Supreme – 2 more
The pickings in the horse racing world are a bit slim today, as far as stakes action goes, at least, which is unsurprising, considering the Breeders Cup was just a few days ago, and that Thanksgiving weekend, which is a relatively big one in our sport, is just two weeks hence. We’ve pored over the entries from coast to coast, and have managed to cobble together four plays, two of them stakes races. We expect fast dirt and firm turf in all, except where noted below. With that out of the way, let’s go.
Aqueduct, Race 8, 3:14 pm ET
Allowance, 6 furlongs, Dirt, 3 & Up
The 8th at the Big A is a first-level allowance that drew a field of seven. One of them, 5-Happy Medium, comes off a win that was as sensational against the clock as it was visually: He won a maiden race at Belmont Park on Sept. 30 by 9 ½ lengths, which is nice, but he also earned a 103 Beyer Speed Figure, which is good enough to win most stakes races. It’s about as fast a maiden win as you’ll ever see.
If Happy Medium runs back to his last race today, he will win. But he will be the shortest price of the day at Aqueduct, and maybe the shortest price in the country: he’s 2/5 on the morning line, and will likely be even shorter by post time. So we are taking a shot against him, and are doing so with 2-American Monarch, who ran two promising races as a juvenile last year before an injury sent him to the sidelines. He returns here after a layoff of over a year, and while the time away is a concern, the presence of Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott, who is good with horses coming off the bench, makes it less so. We will bet American Monarch to win at 8-1. The bet: Aqueduct, Race 8, $35 to win on 2-American Monarch.
Aqueduct, Race 9, 3:43 pm ET
$150,000 Artie Schiller Stakes, 1 mile, Turf, 3 & Up
Ten line up in the Artie Schiller. We are expecting the race to stay on grass, even after a goodly amount of rain fell in New York yesterday, and for the turf course at the Big A to be yielding. We like 4-March to the Arch, a Mark Casse trainee who spent the summer running against much tougher at Woodbine in suburban Toronto. He has run well on softer going before, winning the Niagara Stakes in July on turf rated good; he also is a strong closer in a race that figures to favor that running style. We will play him to win at 8-1. The bet: Aqueduct, Race 9, $40 to win on 4-March to the Arch.
Del Mar, Race 4, 5:00 pm
Allowance/Optional Claiming, 1 mile, Dirt, 3 & Up
This first-level allowance drew a field of six. We like 4-Arham, who ships to California after a string of strong performances on the New York circuit. He cuts back in distance here, after fading a bit in his last race, which was at a mile and an eighth; we think this two-turn mile distance will suit him quite well, as he has good early speed, and the short stretch at Del Mar should allow him to finish strongly. We will bet him to win at 9/5. The bet: Del Mar, Race 4, $40 to win on 4-Arham.
Churchill Downs, Race 10, 5:36 pm ET
$300,000 Dream Supreme Stakes, 6 furlongs, Dirt, Fillies & Mares 3 & Up
Seven older fillies and mares go in the Dream Supreme. The connections of the two favorites, 4-Sconsin and 6-Bell’s the One, chose this spot over last week’s Breeders Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, and did so presumably to avoid having to run against superstar filly Gamine. Both camps probably experienced some regret after watching Gamine get cooked by a hot pace, and Ce Ce, a mare with a strong closing style, win the race. The way the race was run, it could have been one of them.
We think one set of connections will get some consolation here, and we think it will be those of Sconsin. While they have similar closing styles, and there should be enough early pace to set the table for both of them, Sconsin seems to be a little bit better than Bell’s the One. We will bet Sconsin to win at 9/5. The bet: Churchill Downs, Race 10, $40 to win on 4-Sconsin.
That’s all for today. Until tomorrow, enjoy the racing, be safe, and, as always, good luck at the windows.