08/08/2013 10:37AM

Saratoga: Dave Litfin's Analysis August 9, 2013

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Dave Litfin’s Analysis [BEST BET: Flashy American (9th race)]

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1 UNCLE SOUTHERN gets off the rail after chasing Subtle through wickedly fast fractions opening day; 2012 Spa maiden winner takes sharp class drop. DISSENSION is right back at same level after bursting through traffic to win one of these beaten claimers at 33-1; she has found a home in turf sprints. IDEAL PLACE drops from restricted stake and switches back to Javier Castellano, who was aboard for debut maiden win; might be okay in the event of a surface switch, as half-brother New York Red was a three-time dirt winner. Closer Looks >>
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2 ARTEMUS PAPERBOY was off slow and passed five rivals when solidly backed for debut on synthetic track at Arlington; entrymate OPTIONALITY gets some added ground after finding best stride belatedly first time over the track. START JUMPING has been idle since claimed mid-winter, returns for trainer who has done well with layoffs of this type; worked nicely Monday. JOEY N may get overlooked, but can contend at a price based on his one dirt race at seven furlongs, which was as good or better than anything in the race. Closer Looks >>
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3 LE DELUGE is third off a layoff, turf to dirt and drops from stakes; he has won at this demanding distance (on synthetic), and has back form on dirt. STATE FLAG has never been on dirt, but Grade 2-placed dam is out of Personal Ensign and is a half-sister to Grade 1 winners Miner's Mark, My Flag and Traditionally; coming off his three fastest races. EA won this marathon in 2012, but at the time was an 8-year-old in good form, and is now a 9-year-old in suspect form; entrymate SO SCOTT was running the best figs at Belmont, but at middle distances. Closer Looks >>
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4 FORBIDDEN TALENT sold for 20 times the stud fee of sire Talent Search after working a furlong in 10.20 seconds at the OBS April sale; dam has produced 2-year-old stakes-winning sprinter Pyriteville. JOHNNY MEATBALLS has been readied by Rudy Rodriguez, who has positive R.O.I. stats with first-time starters overall as well as debuting maiden claimers. FANCY BOSS is by high-percentage first-out sire Street Boss, and comes off a bullet work last week; Gary Contessa's Spa firsters have been running well, including a runner-up finish by J. Quirk and a tough-trip third from Thug Daddy (see 6th race). Closer Looks >>
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5 If switched to dirt, SKY CREW chased odds-on Ari the Adventurer in useful debut at Belmont; 400+ Tomlinson rating for wet tracks. MISS LECH could be a threat on either surface, as she is by versatile stallion Giant's Causeway, and a half-sister to Grade 2 winner Guilt Trip; bulet gate work on main track Sunday. BOOM BOOM VROOM is out of a dam who has produced seven winners, including four juvenile winners; also-eligible has shown high speed on dirt and synthetic. Closer Looks >>
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6 FOX ROX has a "Saratoga pedigree" on the dam side, and was bet to favoritism when second best opening weekend; continues to train sharply at Finger Lakes. THUG DADDY was squeezed back at the start, rallied wide and finished with good energy behind the top pick when also well supported July 21; might easily make up the one-length difference with a cleaner getaway. FROM THE POINT is a half-brother to four winners, including three 2-year-olds. DECEIVED boasts strong (416) Tomlinson for wet, sold for $180K in March, and blew out sharply from the gate Monday; looks live. Closer Looks >>
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7 HIGH HEEL KITTEN is a full sister to six-time stakes winner Csaba, so in addition to a solid (382) Tomlinson rating for turf, she has license to like dirt in the event of a switch to the main track at seven furlongs. ALL STAR KITTEN has kept a similar training schedule to her stablemate, but Castellano is named on both so only one will start; she is a full sister to Empire Builder, who won a minor turf stake at Calder. COURTESAN is unveiled by Christophe Clement, who already has three debut winners on grass at the meet (two of which were routers); dam is a half-sis to Grade 1 winners Discreet Cat and Discreetly Mine, so there's dirt pedigree here, too. Closer Looks >>
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8 CHARMING KITTEN was a close third to BALANCE THE BOOKS in the With Anticipation here at 2, and has been second to RYDILLUC twice this year, but may be set to gain some revenge after nice forward move on the numbers to just miss in Virginia Derby; extra credit for rain-softened turf. Rydilluc repelled the choice through blistering final quarter in rich Penn Mile. but didn't appear as comfortable on soaked Colonial course at 1 1/4 miles; likely to get pace pressure from the top pick's entrymate, GET IN LINE, a speed horse who otherwise looks overmatched. BALANCE THE BOOKS didn't get much pace in the Solar Splendor but was making up ground on the consistent NOTACATBUTALLAMA; fast fractions would help. Closer Looks >>
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9 FLASHY AMERICAN has come a long way since beating $25K maidens in an off-the-turfer here last year, capped by her two fastest figures winning Iowa Distaff and finishing second to odds-on Authenticity in the Shuvee; handled this kind of weight to win three back. LADY COHIBA makes 4-year-old bow, which is seen as a plus because she was a debut winner over SEA ISLAND at 18-1, and last year won a restricted stake at the Spa off a 10-week absence at nearly 14-1; likely to go well. AND WHY NOT hasn't been on the main track here since 2011, when she won debut and ran third in the Spinaway; last two at Delaware.were her fastest yet, meets no Royal Deltas today. Closer Looks >>
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10 SAM'S BUCK was set up to run a good race last weekend, and delivered it, but was in a tougher $20K "beaten" claimer that had a date clause and thus admitted allowance dropdown Quantity, who wouldn't have been eligible for this race; softer spot or not, she has little margin for error against EL SEASON. The latter tried jumps to no avail in the spring, but ran well over the flat in two recent in-the-money finishes at Delaware for top-class outfit; stretch threat. CYTHEREAN makes second start off the bench after even try in off-the-turfer at Delaware; consistent mare boasts nearly identical Beyer tops on turf & dirt, went okay in Spa slop 2012. Closer Looks >>
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