08/23/2013 12:52PM

Saratoga: Dave Litfin's Analysis August 24, 2013

Email

DRF Plus Preview

#

Dave Litfin's Analysis [BEST BET: Bobby's Kitten (3rd race)]

Links

1 COZZETTI bumped repeatedly with a rival, held his ground and galloped out with good energy under these conditions July 20 - his first dirt race in 14 months; earned best figure since 2012 Ark. Derby. BRADESTER beat a handful of nice horses twice at turn of the year, several of which have won stakes; gets weight from older in return. RIGHTFULLY SO is 0 for 6 in N2X races, but last two were excusable (turf, slop); triple-digit Beyer when last on a fast track vs. 2011 Travers runner-up Rattlesnake Bridge. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
2 Second out in the U.S. and first-time Lasix, CELEBRATED TALENT forced a strong pace, gained command in the stretch and held well to be clear second vs. Miraculousmo, who runs later in the King's Bishop; moves outside for third start of the year. TIZ CHRIS has been away since saving the place behind Remsen/Wood runner-up Normandy Invasion only start last fall; pricey 2YO purchase has trained steadily. HOWIE'S TIZ cuts back to seven furlongs, where he caught slop in seasonal bow vs. King's Bishop entrant Bad Hombre. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
3 BOBBY'S KITTEN was hard held early, finished well in traffic and galloped out strongly past the wire when bet to favoritism for debut; homebred from world's hottest owner/breeder can turn the tables on STROLL TO VICTORY. The latter finished gamely to miss in head bob first out while fairly well supported; obvious threat. LULU LE' MON is a half-brother to seven-time graded turf stakes winner and $1.3 million earner Boisterous; bears watching. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
4 Running the last-out $25,000 claim BE BULLISH for $14,000 makes perfect sense, since the winner's share of this optional sprint is a hefty $49,200; grizzled veteran still capable of 90+ figs any given day, favorable pace setup looms. MARRIEDTOTHEMUSIC was worn down by second choice Bond Vigiliante when coming off big-figure performance just 17 days earlier; may be strung out wide as CAY TO POMEROY, DO I AMUSE YOU and/or the intriguing turf-to-dirt proposition DR FIGAWI race for early position as well. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
5 ARCHER HILL steadied along early, came wide into the lane and made up considerable ground second time back from short layoff while wearing new blinkers; previous races indicate he has more positional speed than that if new pilot chooses to use it. SUNLOVER beat four of these when edged by 10-year-old win machine Gimme Credit most recently; should be peaking third off the bench. Z MAITRE D was a respectable fourth after racing wide early in last turf race Nov. 10 behind Admiral Kitten, winner of last week's Grade 1 Secretariat; entitled to improve off paired 65 grass Beyers as a 2YO. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
6 HUDSON MIRACLE was slow to settle, ralllied wide and ran out of ground in three-way photo behind BIRCHWOOD ROAD first out in two months; picks up leading rider who has dominated on turf lately. ELROI was in a crowd early, moved up inside down backstretch, and was in tight quarters on the fence through stretch of debut; can move forward off that educational experience. IRISH JADE gets blinkers after finding best stride too late behind GRAHAMANDWITHERS in just his second start of the year; benefits if the latter gets hooked by SUN WORSHIPPER early. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
7 WILD BILLUM got up with wild stretch run off trainer & surface change at Belmont, then hit heavy rush-hour traffic attempting similar rail run vs. some of these July 21; Castellano now. ADIRONDACK DANCER is a bit more than a length away from four straight wins this year, with a freakish 101 Beyer for July 14 blowout victory surrounded by three close runner-up finishes; must catch stablemate BLUEGRASS SPRINGS and try to hold off the closers. Among those are WILDCATTER and HAPPY FELLA, who were necks apart in their initial confrontation; they figure close in what could be a cavalry charge with RIVENDELL, ONE GOLDEN ROAD and MORE HUNDRED ACRE. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
8 JOKING was a promising second in his initial turf route, putting away two pace challengers turning for home and holding stubbornly vs. multiple stakes-placed 3-5 shot Kharafa; fourth finisher has since won at this level. RAPSCALLION took what was given to him July 21, getting clear through easy fractions and sprinting last quarter in just over 22 seconds; well-bred colt may get more pressure this time from CANTONIC. The latter has won as many turf races (6) as the rest combined; that being said, there isn't much financial future in betting on 7-year-olds still eligible for a preliminary allowance, at least not to win. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
9 Horses coming off pace-setting routes tend to do well at seven furlongs, and MY HAPPY FACE fits the mold after good try vs. champion-in-waiting Princess of Sylmar in CCA Oaks; the other two fillies that beat her are multiple stakes winners too. SWEET LULU handled Cal Cup Distaff winner Bella Viaggia and Ondine (coming off 3rd in Hollywood Oaks) in last month's big-fig Del Mar score; Jerry Hollendorfer's last visit to the Spa was with 2010 Alabana winner Blind Luck. LIGHTHOUSE BAY comes off breakthrough effort running past WILDCAT LILY and IRISH LUTE with rail run in Prioress; may get another good setup if 'Lily is involved early with BABY J and SO MANY WAYS. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
10 With considerably less fanfare than her Kentucky Derby-winning stablemate, HUNGRY ISLAND freshened up down at Fair Hill after running a non-threatening third June 8; her "A" race beats these, and she ran one of them in last year's Ballston Spa behind eventual champion Zagora's course record. MIZ IDA is very likely the best turf filly no one's heard of, but the dual Grade 3 winner comes off her two best races, and probably would've beaten SOMALI LEMONADE if the Parx course hadn't been on the soft side of yielding; pace scenario in her favor. LAUGHING picks up weight after repelling CENTRE COURT through measured pace in Diana; must deal with PIANIST up front this time. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
11 Based on their one-two finish in the Woody Stephens, little separates deep closers DECLAN'S WARRIOR and FORTY TALES, but the former will be a better price after running fifth behind Forty Tales in the Amsterdam as both prepped for this off a 50-day break; the pace should be favorably fast for them with speedballs MENTOR CANE and LET EM SHINE expected to throw it down. CENTRAL BANKER's best 2-year-old race came off a turf-to-dirt switch, a factor being repeated after romping win in the Quick Call first out this year; may improve again. OVERANALYZE hasn't sprinted since taking the Futurity, was more involved early with blinkers on in W.V. Derby; three-time graded stakes winner at a price. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
12 Don't expect PALACE MALICE to bounce off the 107 in the Jim Dandy, as Todd Pletcher's Flower Alley (2005) and Stay Thirsty (2011) each held their form to double up in the Travers; appeared well within himself improving to 2 for 2 over the track, drew favorably outside early speed MORENO. The post draw wasn't as fortuitous for VERRAZANO, who appeared uncomfortable inside horses early in Tampa Bay Derby before being maneuvered outside; freakish Haskell performance over deep track suggests 1 1/4 miles within reach. ORB reportedly put on weight and trained well getting some R&R at Fair Hill after demanding first half of the year; Derby hero can't afford to fall too far behind, as Travers winners typically are in close touch to the leaders, especially by the pre-stretch call. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
13 Class on the grass applies to turf sprints too, so SLAMARAMA gets benefit of the doubt for recent debacle on dirt; maiden winner on this course. SMILING BOB was bumped early and often and raced wide under these conditions in last; two most recent figs were a slight improvement from three-race stretch at Belmont & Gulfstream. HOLY ENDEAVOR drops back in for $20K, where he scored at nearly 8-1 two back; threat in scramble. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>
14 AS WELL beat several of these when second behind loose-on-the-lead Joy Seeker at a mile July 21, and prior that met allowance repeater Wild Grace first out since Jan. 4; set for best. SOPHIE'S TURN cuts back to shorter route after coming up empty first time going long; improved workout Aug. 7 presumably in new blinkers she wears today. DISCREET MALENA is a half-sister to Borrowing Base, a long-winded stakes winner of over $500K on this circuit a few years back; promising grass works. Closer Looks >>
DRF Picks >>