Saratoga July 29

I’ll be doing a summary of the first four days of the meet this week. Lots of prices and the track seemed to change from Friday to Monday.  Meanwhile, today’s card has a lot of puzzling races. Some concern about the heat and humidity, so I made selections to account for potential scratches. I’m passing the hurdle race, but if I had to bet I’m looking at Elizabeth Voss, Jack Fisher and James Day.

Race 2      6-3-2

Bellamy Brew had been off close to two years and was taken in his first start of 2015 by DJ. I like that he laid him off for close to two months – tells me he wanted to get the horse in the right shape before running him. He has a lot of back class. Of course, all the time off still has to be cause for some caution. Bet the Power is in good condition and goes first time for Chris Englehart. He’s been a reliable runner for a while. American Progress has competitive figures and looks to be in his best form.

Race 3      1-5-8

Ackerman Road ran a lifetime best when moved to the turf. Castellano is too good to be kept out of the top spot for long. Tax Deduction is another that improved when moved to the turf. A little more improvement puts him right there. Private Show has no turf breeding, but is a strong sprinter and is dropping from MSW. Worth a look.

Race 4      4-3

Judy the Beauty and La Verdad look head and shoulders above the field. Judy gets the nod off her better SAR record.

Race 5      3-9-7-11

Tizallheart is 12-1 on the ML. He actually has a good race on the SAR turf and fits the class and conditions. Gotachancetodance only has three starts and has looked better each race. Sylvia T switches to RuRod’s barn and perhaps that will help her to find the winner’s circle. Solid in the horizontals. Winner’s Legacy looked good first time out in 2015 and has the currently hot Jose Lezcano in the saddle.

Race 6      1-4-7-10

Successful Runner finished last season with a good race at SAR. Low profile connections should ensure decent odds. Well Lawyered ran well on the turf last out and returns to the dirt where he had some impressive races out West. Has a race on the SAR dirt and looks good on the slight drop in price. Wynhurst was picked up by DJ from the Bob Baffet barn. He looked pretty good out West and if he is in shape he’s dangerous. Deficit Hawk ran well on the dirt at AQU, ran one on the turf and switches back to the dirt today. At 12-1 he shouldn’t be ignored.

Race 7      1-8-10-4

Style Drift ran well first time on the turf for Chad Brown. Irad Ortiz stays for the trip. Fourstar Crook is the other Brown runner and should be the one coming late. This should be a pretty good 1-2 punch. First Charmer is 12-1 ML for the incredibly hot Bill Mott. Ignore his horses at your own peril. Donatienne just missed breaking her maiden at SAR last year. Graham Motion is pretty good with horses coming off the layoff.

Race 8      9-1-4-6

Oklahoma Den ships up from GP. He’s been running with much better and should appreciate the move to state-breds. Jax Heritage hasn’t run a bad one in 2015 and has competitive figures. Battle of Evermore has been running with top flight state-breds and should be a big factor in this group. Police Camp is better than his 15-1 ML would indicate. Worth a look.

Race 9      1-10-11-6

Although I think the two outside horses might be a little better, given this one is on the inner turf I’m going to look inside for winner. Slim Shadey has been with a lot of stakes runners in the last two years and has good figures. All Included goes for the strong Pletcher/Velasquez combination. He was only a length out of the Grade 3 Poker and looks to be in top form. Sky Flight has looked good in both his 201 starts and goes relatively fresh for top trainer Mark Casse. Front is a longshot with some potential to make the exotics. Jerkens did get hot at SAR last year and has been training well in 2015.

Race 10   1-4-2-6

Smokem’s Charm goes first time for Abby Adsit who has been pretty good with claims. Has a third at SAR and makes a good drop in price. Spa City Fever has the name for the track. He’s making a big drop in price and has the best last race figure by far. Native Gold goes for Danny Gargan who is having a great 2015. Breezed well over the SAR surface. Real Estate Rich has a second at SAR and has been competitive in 2015.