05/22/2010 11:02AM

Weekend Opinions


Let's take a look at some of today's stakes races from across the country:

Sheepshead Bay - Belmont - Race 9:
Not the strongest Sheepshead Bay in history so I'll take a chance with a price horse.  BUBBLY JANE seems the most consistent from a speed figure perspective, but she hasn't been out since November, and has to navigate 11 furlongs off the bench.
Instead, I'll try PARI, a filly that really appreciated stepping up in distance last time out at Keeneland.  True, she didn't beat much while riding a slow pace in that allowance heat, but she hasn't run a bad one this year, and may be close to moderate fractions once again. 
Selections:  Pari, Bubbly Jane, The Gaillimh Girl

Louisville - Churchill Downs - Race 10:
Yielding ground at Churchill Downs coupled with a lack of pace may make things tough for some of the confirmed stretch runners.  It looks as if EAGLE POISE will take up the early running after setting the tempo over a closer-biased Pro-Ride surface last time out.  He should run a good one, but I'm also expecting MARCH TO VICTORY to be close up after the opening quarter-mile.  The distance may be stretching it just a bit, but he rallied into a slow pace last time out in the Grade 3 Miami Mile, and has run some consistent numbers throughout his career for Christophe Clement.  Note that Corey Nakatani takes the mount as Julien Leparoux will miss some time due to injuries.  March to Victory has also run well over turf courses with a bit of give in the ground.
Selections:  March to Victory, Silverfoot, Bearpath

American 1000 Guineas - Arlington - Race 9:
Here's hoping speed holds well over soft ground at Arlington this afternoon.  GO ASK ALEX set a new course record for this mile distance when on the engine at Indiana Downs last time out and she beat males three starts back over "good" ground.  There doesn't appear to be a good amount of speed in the 1000 Guineas and Go Ask Alex could prove very tough to catch if Chris Emigh (Jon Court will ride Pari at Belmont today) can get her to settle for the backstretch run.
Selections:  Go Ask Alex, Bay to Bay, Chantilly Nayla

Arlington Classic - Arlington - Race 10:
Again, there doesn't look like there's a ton of pace and that may benefit the chances of WORKIN FOR HOPS, who was off awkwardly last time out at Churchill Downs.  He probably is better when allowed to race freely as he did two starts back when an impressive winner going 7 1/2 furlongs at Fair Grounds.  The distance may be pushing it a bit for Workin for Hops, but he could get brave if allowed to set a relaxed pace by himself. 
Selections:  Workin for Hops, Indy Scent, Family Foundation

Decathlon - Monmouth - Race 5:
I'll take a shot at a price with TOMMY'S MEMORY, a lightly-raced gelding that looked good against Florida-bred stakes company last time out at Tampa Bay Downs.  He rushed up down the backstretch while four wide, took aim at the leader on the turn, took over at will, and won geared down under the wire.  An injury-prone runner, Tommy's Memory hasn't really run a poor race throughout his career, and he may work out a nice stalking trip behind a contested pace.  Perhaps we haven't seen his best.
Selections:  Tommy's Memory, Mr. Fantasy, At the Disco

More importantly, who do you like this weekend?  I want to know.