08/02/2017 11:43AM

Wednesday TimeformUS Highlight Horse: La Manta Gris will appreciate the stretch-out in distance

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Saratoga | Race 8 | Post Time 5:02 p.m. (ET) | Go to the TimeformUS PPs

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I suppose Church Social (#4) is the horse to beat once again, and I admit that I’m one of this horse’s biggest fans – but she’s starting to run out of chances. I know that she may have been best in her last two starts as she was compromised by slow paces, but that could be the case again today in a race lacking any confirmed front-runners.

There are some intriguing 3-year-olds in this race. One is Chad Brown’s Homeland Security (#7), but she’s going to take money and will have to improve after beating an average field of maidens last time. Another young runner to consider is Lucky Long (#9), who may play out as the controlling speed in this race. However, I’m not sure that she actually wants to go this far, and it’s not as if she’s going to be that large of a price either.

The runner who interests me most is LA MANTA GRIS (#1).

I like the way this filly wore down the leaders when winning her maiden two back, and third-place finisher La Sola Ranger has come out of that race to run well. La Manta Gris never had a chance last time when overmatched in the Regret, and she dropped too far back off the pace. The Pace Projector is predicting that she’s fast enough to be up close to the leaders early, so Julien Leparoux would be wise to take advantage of this inside post and gain a somewhat forward position. Furthermore, she’s bred to stretch out in distance since her dam was a turf runner who excelled at distances between 10 and 12 furlongs.

 

THE PLAY

Win: 1

Exacta Key Box: 1 with 4,5,7,8,9