08/17/2013 11:22AM

Saratoga: Dave Litfin's Analysis August 18, 2013

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Dave Litfin's Analysis [BEST BET: Kitten Kaboodle (11th race)]

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1 Racing over an anti-speed track July 31, MAGSAMELIA pressed the pace, went clear through midstretch and was overhauled late; she may be able to get a clear lead in this matchup. COSI CELESTE trailed through fast fractions behind Ari the Adventurer ($2.30) first out; likely to be more involved early vs. these. ART OF THE GAME and PREDICATE raced a bit greenly behind runaway winner Stopchargingmaria opening day; the former took some money, lost all chance at the break. Closer Looks >>
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2 All things considered, that wasn't a bad first try on dirt for SCIENZIATO on Aug. 7, and she could improve second time back from the extended absence; eligible to get the jump on these unless one of the first-time starters has early speed. YOU TAKE THE CAKE earned a layover figure three weeks ago; she's a deep closer who's now susceptible to a bounce, though, and you won't get 26-1 this time. BROADWAY MUSIC GAL is a half-sister to $100K earner Parkhimonbroadway; good debut barn. Closer Looks >>
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3 INVOCATION is just 1 for 20, but may appreciate the cutback to one turn, and has finished second both starts at seven furlongs, one of them at Saratoga to Alpha; first time for a tag. BOSTON PROPER is an alert breaker who chased multiple stakes winner Overanalyze on this track last summer; not much to run with him early. ESCAPE ARTIST has never been this short, but could wake up returning to dirt for first time in a year; compromised by slow pace in Spa route last July. Closer Looks >>
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4 LIFE'S A ROAR is third back from a layoff and on a bounce-rebound pattern after wide trip behind 11-10 Madris; Jack Fisher's five meet wins include Short Shrift (14-1) & Mr. Starr's Report (9-1), the latter wire to wire on this course Thursday. MADAM I'M ADAM was a maiden winner only previous start in a claimer; tough task trying to make up ground into the fastest quarter of race in N.Y. Stallion last out. FREUD'S DEBUT is rounding back to form after three races off a year layoff; alert from gate chasing loose Storm Pursuit in sprint most recently. Closer Looks >>
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5 BASHART showed good tactical speed and held stubbornly in a turf sprint first out; bred to get this trip for trainer who's aces with second-out maidens. BRANDED HAND was under constant pressure to stretch before finally weakening in good debut at 21-1; Bill Mott-trained runners routinely move forward off their initial race. TEXAS ZIP, STORMING INTI, WACO and HIGH RANSOM, like Branded Hand, are all graduates of Keeneland's Sept. yearling sale, all with license to like the grass. Closer Looks >>
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6 SMOKIN CANDY ran two peak races when switched back to dirt at Belmont by Dominic Galluscio, who lost the gelding June 6 and quickly reclaimed him; can let several speeds go and drop in toward the rail first turn. READ THE PROPOSAL back to dirt after bolting; two comeback starts downstate included a third to Bond Vigilante, recent overnight stakes winner here. STREET LORD improved sharply for maiden win off a freshening July 4, then was rushed back in sloppy N.Y. Derby on short rest; rebound threat for Charlie Baker, winning at 28% this year. Closer Looks >>
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7 NECK OF THE MOON hadn't been out for almost a year when she finished willingly opening day and improved several lengths off winning debut over the course; any further progress makes her a handful. WHITE CRANE pressed the pace three wide and was nipped in a blanket finish at 23-1 first time on turf; moves inside. MY UPTOWN GAL and uncoupled stablemate THERAPY are going well lately for Katy Feron; either/both may factor in competitive dash. WHITE SANGRIA returns; good-figure maiden turf sprint winner at 3. Closer Looks >>
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8 TAPICAT rolled through three front-running wins in Florida when switched to turf over the winter, and will very likely benefit from return in Lake George when outsprinted for the lead and game through stretch; gets the top today. WATSDACHANCES got a favorably fast pace and closed steadily to just miss in the Lake George, earning best figure to date; may be a touch better with some cut in the ground judging from that effort and last year's Miss Grillo. SILSITA has that intangible "nose for the wire," having prevailed in three photo finishes on turf and synthetic at 16-1, 9-1 and 6-1, the latest at the expense of BROKEN SPELL. Closer Looks >>
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9 CHANNEL MARKER is third off the bench after edging forward with new Beyer tops and missing in photos with different tactics, rallying from far back at Churchill, and pressing the pace here when a clear second over SHADOW ROCK; rates another chance. JOE CAN GALLOP chased speedy Mentor Cane through wicked splits in dirt debut, and improved 16 days later withstanding long drive and some contact on this course; may go well right back for red-hot George Weaver, who also sends out PARTLY MOCHA. The latter and THOMAS HILL step up after hard-fought wins with new Beyer tops in starter/optional company. Closer Looks >>
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10 The 1 3/8-mile distance is the big X-factor for these maidens, so let's go with "Long Jon" Sheppard's AFLUTTER, whose older sibling Parker's Project was a Grade 2 steeplechase winner for these same connections; improved second try at Delaware included good gallop-out. PROFESSOR MIDNIGHT earned top figure when last on firm turf; half-sister It's Tea Time a Lake Placid winner for this outfit. RUNS LIKE A KITTEN takes blinkers off after racing too close early at 1 1/4 miles second out; good finish prior to that, albeit for $65K. Closer Looks >>
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11 KITTEN KABOODLE rated along early, steadied briefly nearing the lane and finished well for second on the inner course first out; she moves to the Mellon, which has been more favorable for stretch runners like her this summer. CANDY KITTY prompted the pace while wide and finished evenly behind the top pick when switched to turf; beaten fave marooned outside again. CORONETTE is out of a dam who has produced four turf winners; promising Fair Hill works for Michael Matz, who unveiled longshot 2YO grass winner And Why Not here a couple summers back. Closer Looks >>
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