Friday’s TimeformUS Highlight Horse: Summer Reading’s speed makes her dangerous off the layoff

Aqueduct | Race 2 | Post Time 1:20 p.m. (ET) | Go to the TimeformUS PPs

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SUMMER READING (#4) figures to go off as a slight favorite and certainly seems like the most likely winner. There is not much early speed signed on, and she is clearly fast enough to contest the early pace along with Anydayismyday. Indeed, the Pace Projector is predicting a situation that favors runners on or near the lead. Among those with recent dirt form, her chief rival is Friend of Liberty, but I’m concerned that she’s just not quite as talented as Summer Reading.

Friend of Liberty (#3) earned a career-best speed figure in the slop three back, but horses have not exactly come back out of that race to validate the high number. Over another wet track at Laurel last time, she couldn’t get the job done as the 6-5 favorite. The other runner likely to attract support is more of a wild card.

Not Taken (#5) has not started on dirt since early 2017, and she has never run fast enough to compete with Summer Reading on this surface. However, she has improved significantly in her recent turf races, which suggests that it’s possible she may just be a more talented horse overall now. I find it interesting that John Terranova kept her training through the winter, and she has logged some quick workouts for this comeback. For what it’s worth, her pedigree indicates that she’s always been cut out to handle dirt since she’s a half-sister to dirt stakes winner Spelling Again and local dirt winner Flash Trading.

THE PLAY

Win: 4

Trifecta: 4 with 3,5 with 1,2,3,5​

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