Belmont Highlight Horse for Saturday: Given the right ride, Church Social can pull off the minor upset

Belmont | Race 6 | Post Time 4:09 p.m. (ET) | Go to the TimeformUS PPs

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Volatility Index is likely to go off at a short price here, but I find her hard to take after she lost to the inferior Not Taken last time despite working out an absolutely perfect trip setting a slow pace (indicated by blue color-coding in the PPs). She can win, but I prefer others.

Lido is clearly improving for Kiaran McLaughlin as she figures out the game. She put in a strong late run to get the win at Keeneland last time, but now must step up against older horses. She’s dangerous, but she doesn’t figure to be much of a price, either.

Therefore, my top pick is CHURCH SOCIAL (#2). I know her last race was falling apart late after the leaders set fast fractions, but I liked the way she rebroke once Joel Rosario angled her outside in the stretch. She appeared to be idling in behind horses, and only produced her strong late rally once she was in the clear. If you watch all of her races, this is a filly that clearly doesn’t like racing inside of horses, and Rosario appeared to sense that last time. When she gets ridden properly, she’s certainly good enough to beat a field like this.

THE PLAY

Win: 2

Exacta Key Box: 2 with 3,4,5,6

Trifecta: 2 with 4,5 with ALL

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