07/21/2013 11:57AM

Saratoga Day 3: July 21, 2013


12:55 pm: Fast, firm and 87 degrees for Day 3, with most of the oppressive humidity gone and only a "slight" chance of an afternoon thunderstorm in the forecast. 

Both stakes on today's card are good ones. The Fiddlers Patriot, at 5.5f for $100k, drew several of the east's better turf srpinters, including Tightend Touchdown,Great Attack and Varsity. Add in the rejuvenated Longhunter and the intriguing Dr. Chit [update: scratched] and it's a pretty good puzzle. In the featured Sanford, I'm a Debt Ceiling fan but am also interested to see if All in Blue and Jake's Magic Hat can step it up in stakes company after winning their Belmont debuts.

Yesterday's prelim Beyers: Royal Delta 105 in the G1 Delaware Handicap; Princess of Sylmar 104 in the G1 CCA Oaks; Authenticity 96 in the G3 Shuvee; Jeranimo 95 in the G1 Eddie Read.

Since man can not live by fried-chicken sandwiches alone, (or so my crackpot cardiologist claims,) I went for the Lobster Roll at the Putnam Street Market today. It's a good amount of thick, quality, lobster chunks, lightly drizzled in butter instead of the all-too-common drenching in mayonnaise. The only drawback: the $16 pricetag.

1:25 pm: First baby race of the meet for males went to Asmussen firster Double Gold ($7.10), a $52k Ocala April 2-year-old purchase, over Ferraro Finger Lakes steamer (2-1) Fox Rox. Winner went 5.5f in 1:05.58. Main Man Mike a late scratch in the 2nd.

1:45 pm: Third-time starter/first-time-turf Rapscallion ($31.00) really took to the grass for trainer Motion, leading throughout and putting distance between himself and the field with a nice burst in upper stretch of one-mile race. Even so, fractions strain credulity: 24.24, 49.23, 1:13.92, 1:36.14 would mean winner ran final quarter in 22.22.

3:00 pm: Juddmonte/Mott 3-year-old filly Uno Duo (Macho Uno-Wilstar) a nice looking winner of N1x in 4th as heavy fave. Gray filly, photoed by stakes-bound Irish Lute in last at Churchill, won eased up in 1:23.35 for 7f.

3:20 pm: A Brit I know used to say that when things were in disarray, they were "all at sixes and sevens," which is some sort of Cockney slang. All five winners so far on Sunday Spa card have been won by #6's or #7's, including Rapscallion at $31.00, Marriedtothemusic at $19.80 and just now Happy Fella at $58.50. The old 7-7-6-6 pick-4 paid $46,165 -- and that's with a 1-to-2 shot in the third leg.

Happy Fella kicked off a pick-six that is currently a favorite to produce the meet'. The #6 and #7 went off at 39-1 and 41-1 as longest shots in field, and #6;s first carryover.


3:55 pm: Disarray suspended in 6th as 3-to-5 Vinnie Goodtimes was a runaway winner. The #6 and #7 went off at 39-1 and 41-1 as longest shots in field, and #6 Sunnyinseabrook did get up for 4th to complete $3,938 super underneath $3.20 winner.


The late pick-4 looks no easier than the early one but let's fool around with a spready play:

4:25 pm: I clearly wasn't paying enough attention to the toteboard to upgrade Joy Seeker ($10.40), making his turf debut off a seven-month layoff for Sovereign/Terranova. Bet from 12-1 ML to 4-1, shot to front, never in doubt. Winner was crushed in win pool only, paying $10.40, $6.40 and $5.40 across; double from $3.20 Vinnie Goodtimes paid $32.40.

5:00 pm: Strong Impact ($24.40), a 7-year-old statebred gelding making his first start in an open stakes in his 34th career start, ran down 3-1 Tightend Touchdown in the final yards to win the $100k Fiddlers Patriot in a quick 1:01.17 for 5.5f on the Mellon turf.

The A P Jet gelding got a very nice ride from Alex Solis, who saved all the ground. Tightend Touchdown, coming off a fine second to Ben's Cat in the G3 Parx Dash, blasted to the front with a scorching half in 43.55 and looked home free but could not hold off the winner. Varisty ran third with Longhunter 6th as the surprising 2-1 favorite.

Debt Ceiling has opened at even-money for the Sanford, with All in Blue next at 9-5 and the others 6-1 and up.

5:15 pm: If you're thinking ahead to a possible carryover into Monday's card, here's the sequence:

Race 5: 2yo fillies going 8.5f on the inner turf. Nine entrants, seven of them first-time starters.

Race 6: Starter-allowance/$50k optional claimer at 5.5f on the turf.

Race 7: Ten 3-and-up maiden claimers going 6f on dirt.

Race 8: Seven N3x allowance fillies going a mile on the inner turf.

Race 9: Six older statebreds in the $100k Evan Shipman Stakes at 9f on dirt, with Readthebyline the 9-5 ML fave, Groomedforvictory 2-1 and Awesome Vision 3-1.

Race 10: A conditioned claimer for $20k fillies at 8.5f on the inner turf, open to nonwinners-of-two lifetime or 3-year-olds.

5:40 pm: A topsy-turvy day of results continued in the featured G2 Sanford, as the three outsiders in a field of six led the order of finish with the three favorites off the board. Wired Bryan ($16.40), an Anstu homebred trained by Michael Dilger, scored by 5 1/4 lengths and made it two straight New York-breds in the winner's circle in open stakes races. Debt Ceiling, the previously-undefeated narrow favorite, was squeezed back at the rail nearing the end of the backstretch, seemed to lose his action thereafter, and was pulled up before the wire.

Wired Bryan, a gray son of Stormy Atlantic, won his debut at Belmont June 19, scoring by 7 1/4 lengths over the filly Irish Sweepstakes, who returned to win here Friday.

Nobody's alive in the pick-6, and the pick-4's are paying from $8k to $102k:

6:05 pm: So of course Galiana, longest shot on the board (and a #6) won the finale and paid $141.50, completing a $70k pick-4 and topping a $172k-for-$2 superfecta. Four out of six was good enough in the pick-6, paying $799, and the carryover into tomorrow is $57k. Good night, and better luck.