08/30/2010 2:08PM

Day 34: 8/30/10


HEMPSTEADATOGA -- Made it back downstate in under four hours, just in time to watch, but not handicap or play, today's Spa pick-6 with a one-day $100,847 carryover. The sequence starts out with three races for older maidens, followed by three (two for statebreds) allowance races, with all but race 9 on the grass.

In the first leg, the upcoming 5th, trainer Gary Contessa is sending out the current 6-5 favorite, Cranberry Queen. Contessa, struggling through a 3-for-74 Saratoga thusfar, has already had one losing favorite today in 9-to-10 Insightful, who ran 4th to Delta Thunder ($11.60) beaten 9 3/4 in today's first race.

Contessa then claimed the winner of the 2nd race, Dutrow firster Hasten to be King ($7.50) for $16k.


3:25 pm: Cranberry Queen, hit late to 4-to-5, checked in fifth as third choice Yan Yan ($10.60) held off 7-2 Truth Will Tell. Yan Yan, who completed a $791 early pick-4, was the fifth winner of the meet from 18 starts for trainer Rusty Arnold.


4:00 pm: Did we just see the first Australian-bred first-time starter to win at Saratoga? Senor Dehere, a 4-year-old making his belated racing debut, broke sharply, took back to fifth, and then finished like a shot under Leparoux to raise the distinct possibility of a two-day carryover into Wednesday's card. The gelded son of Dehere and the New Zealand-bred mare Senorita Lucy ran the 5.5f on the turf in a sharp 1:01.15.

Turf sprinting is a bigger deal in Australia than here, and two of its Grade 1 turf sprints -- the T. J. Smith at Randwick April 10 and the Manikato at Moonee Sept. 24 -- are "Win and You're In" races for the Grade 2 Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint.


5:05 pm: That Aussie's 1:01.15 looked sharper before another 4-year-old gelding, Fiddlers Patriot, won the 8th in a course-record 1:00.59. Fiddlers Patriot ($14.20), making his sixth career start and first since Jan. 2, led all the way in the statebred N2x allowance.

The parlay through the first four legs of the pick-6 is just over $5k; could go either way. 


5:45 pm: Two-day $443,274  carryover to Wednesday! They haven't run the finale but it doesn't matter -- no live tickets into the nightcap (and it will pay on 4 of 6 if the 7 or 10 should win.)

Once again, five of the six races in the pick-6 sequence are on the turf including the featured P. G. Johnson stakes for 2-year-old fillies. The rest are maidens or claimers.

Taking the dark day off. See you in September.