08/10/2013 2:46PM

Steven Crist's Saratoga graded stakes analysis: Saratoga Special


Sunday’s two graded stakes at Saratoga are the Grade 2, 6 1/2-furlong middle legs of the graded series for 2-year-old males and fillies: the Adirondack, which falls between the Schuylerville and Spinaway, and the Saratoga Special, which follows the Sanford and precedes the Hopeful.

There’s a standout favorite in the Adirondack who’s going to be very hard to beat: Fiftyshadesofgold, who has won her two starts by 8 and 10 lengths, earning the two top Beyers in the field. The Special, however, is a much trickier proposition.

I’m against the Sanford winner, Wired Bryan, a quick colt but one who strikes me as an underlay because his races may look better on paper than they really were. He trounced a statebred filly in his debut and then won a Sanford where it seemed no one else did much running. This is a much tougher field.

Instead, I’ll go in order with Candy Dandy, an off-the-pace winner of a June 30 Churchill race from which the second and third finishers have already returned to win; Corfu, a heavily-bet debut winner from Pletcher who might have run faster had he not faced severe pace pressure; and Lunarwarfare, a very fast debut winner at Gulfstream, albeit it at 4 1/2 furlongs.

Mike Rozier More than 1 year ago
Corfu! Wow. 21.62 and 44.02 and he hangs on to wire the field.
Bobby S More than 1 year ago
Steve, Could not disagree more on this specific opinion, Wired Bryan has overcome inside posts in his first two and a very difficult, down inside, leaned on outside and pop type trips. He also has the breeding to get the 6.5 trip. This one is the real deal, no disrespect - think you do a great job & looking forward to the 2nd half of the meet! Only thing to be feared here is the quick turnaround (for modern racing) - if he doesn't fire, I think we are looking at a grab bag result that will drown many, many multi race tickets.
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richard cowles More than 1 year ago
Good luck steve
Michael Castellano More than 1 year ago
Certainly one hopes for a price. Anything less than 3 to 1 in a race like the Special is too short. Caught Wired Bryan last time and he looked very good, if a bit green. Not his fault no one else wanted to run. My guess is that he will not be a favorite because they do not bet this jockey, who is a very fine rider and as good as any in the race.
[removed] More than 1 year ago
This comment has been deleted
Suheil More than 1 year ago
Stay off this blog with your lies post elsewhere
Chris Lowe More than 1 year ago
You know you're yelling at a robot, right?
edb More than 1 year ago
Sorry Dave, I read your lips. Got to admit those are almost as fun as the ads.