06/19/2010 4:25PM

Arlington: Turf yielding indeed


Just watched Illinois-bred N1X allowance horses on turf go to the half-mile in 48.80 seconds in a one-mile race. That's a moderate split, at best, yet from the leader's six furlong fraction (1:13.40) to the finish (1:39.20), the closing quarter-mile still was a tepid 25.80 seconds or so. Two earlier grass races produced the same sort of result, with 4-5 chalk Gaelic Storm requiring almost 13 seconds to complete his final furlong in race 3, a $16K claimer. Gaelic Storm did win as totally logical chalk, and did so on the lead. Ice Climber just rallied from well back to capture race 6, and he made sense here, too, as did turf-sprint maiden winnner Buzz My Bell in race 2. Yet I'm still feeling a little uncomfortable with the AP turf - it seems pretty extreme.

Free Fighter opens the 2-1 chalk in race 6, the Black Tie Affair, which is the first of six Illinois-bred stakes. Princeville Condo a surprisingly high 4-1 to start, but likely to drop. My Sonny Boy taking early action at 5-1, and likely to rise.