07/30/2013 10:59AM

Saratoga: Dave Litfin's Analysis July 31, 2013

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

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1 David Jacobson may have them coming and going in Wednensday's opener, with probable pacesetter SOVEREIGN DEFAULTdropping to a much EAsier spot after dueling with Whitney-bound Mucho Macho Man last out, and EA returning to the scene of two wins in the span of a week last August; the latter has won as much money as the rest combined. CHARLIE'S QUEST was no match for Ea in a muddy marathon back in January, but is a consistent sort who has won or placed 50% of the time. Closer Looks >>
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2 This may develop into a battle between second-time starters GLORIA VICTORIA and HOT STONES, each of which ran second in a longer sprint downstate. Glorida Victoria led after six furlongs, and may appreciate the turnback in distance for Todd Pletcher, who wins at 38% with second-out maidens. Hot Stones just missed while four lengths clear of the rest on a wet track; bet to 7-5 that day.CARLA SWEETREVENGE was no match for either of the top two at Belmont, but sandwiched in between those races was a better effort at today's distance. Closer Looks >>
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3 RARE PENNY had her debut rained off to a sloppy main track at Churchill Downs that was carrying speed, and finished evenly behind a couple of next-out winners; stakes-winning dam has produced three multiple winners including the good grass runner Quick Delivery. NEOLEXIA has no early speed but has turned in three solid closing fractions in three starts this year; favorable scenario could develop if WINNING SCOOP, TOO GOOD TO B TRUE and/or PERFECT PACKAGE battle up front. CAXAMBAS PASS has been freshened since a throw-out race on the main track at Belmont behind Assured (see today's 9th); prior outing featured a promising stretch run to just miss the runner-up spot. Closer Looks >>
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4 THESCREENISRED ran very well off the bench in a Saratoga turf sprint last summer, before going on to win two of her next three starts with improved figures; the stand-out 83 from her allowance win was solidified when second finisher Quiet Ending subsequently won two allowance conditions. RAKIN' GOLD was beaten by several of these last year, but those races were either in slop or on non-firm turf; headed in right direction after allowance score with a new top fig second time back. LISINI and MARGARET LILIAN are competitive based on their back form at the Spa. The latter is under the gun from the rail, with pace pressure likely to come from LA BELLA VALERIA and DIVADORA. Closer Looks >>
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5 KICKEN LIVI is a half-sister to two multiple winners, one of them being Purely Majestic, a winner at the Spa each of the past two years; her June 30 workout matches up with stablemate Wired Bryan, who is 2 for 2 for Anstu Stables and Michael Dilger after taking the Sanford as much the best opening week. OLD HARBOR rallied against the grain of a speed-favoring track when unveiled at Monmouth; added ground could help. LAVENDER ROAD is a half-sis to three winners, notably Roses for Romney, a recent allowance winner on grass downstate; follow for eventual switch to turf. Closer Looks >>
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6 QUICK CASABLANCA earned over $400,000 in his native Chile, and hadn't run in 375 days when edged for second by HYPER in their May 15 clash; draw a line through sloppy Brooklyn. Hyper has won eight of 17 on turf in the United States including lone start here; traffic vs. top one at 1 1/4 miles prior to near-miss in Grade 2 Colonial Turf Cup. ROYAL BENCH, a Group 2 winner overseas, makes third U.S. start for Tom Voss, who trained John's Call and sent out Always First to win this race in 2010; wide all three turns last time. HARRODS CREEK gets a switch back to Junior Alvarado, aboard for 2012 John's Call win; middle move in United Nations second time back from layoff. Closer Looks >>
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7 WEST COAST CHICK is by the good debut sire Malibu Moon, and has picked up the pace in her recent workouts, including July 8 drill that matches up with well-regarded stablemate Grand Arrival, who was a promising third when unveiled here recently; as always in situations like this, observe tote action and pre-race appearances before firming up any late pick 4 plays. DANCING HOUSE is out of Tout Charmant, a Grade 1 winner who has produced three winners; entrymate GARZONI has several works that match up with stablemate Snowbell, a very good second in her recent bow here. MAGSAMELIA fetched $130,000 after working an eighth of a mile in 10 seconds at the OBS April sale; attracted top rider. Closer Looks >>
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8 TABREED put it all together in third U.S. start, running the final three furlongs in under 35 seconds for a last-to-first triumph while geared down some late; flattered when runner-up returned to win here last week. ORION MOON surged to the front midstretch and gamely withstood a challenge to win U.S. debut; figures close with uncoupled barn mate. VIVA RAFAELA has a July 8 work that matches up with Vitoria Olimpica, who led to stretch in a salty turf allowance last week in first start outside Brazil for these connections; beat 15 rivals in 2012 finale. Closer Looks >>
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9 The regally bred ASSURED gives every indication 1 1/8 miles is within her scope, after flashing late foot in her sprint debut, and moving forward substantially to graduate at a mile a month later; trio of improved workouts since then. FINESSE makes the same distance progression as Assured after also earning a much better figure for second-out win at a mile; daughter of Travers & Whitney winner Medaglia d;Oro will take some catching. GRAND MERE was no worse than second in five starts for Rudy Rodriguez last fall and winter; handles any footing. Closer Looks >>
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10 IMANINDIANOUTLAW makes her first start in nine months, so it's encouraging she won a maiden turf sprint when fresh last summer; working well for first try vs. claimers. CHELSEA ROAD also drops from the allowance ranks, along with a trainer change, while cutting back to the distance of her maiden win; be closing. WELLSPRING LEGACY and SAROPIA were forward factors in a recent N.Y. Stallion race at seven furlongs before fading; they are the only two multiple winners in the field. Closer Looks >>
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