The horse to beat in this spot is Appealing Henry (#7), who gets some necessary class relief after failing to measure up against tougher starter allowance foes last time. He had run reasonably well in two prior starts against New York-breds, and his early speed makes him a wire-to-wire threat here. I’m certainly using him, but I think there are some other options to consider at better prices.
Conquest Expresso (#5) deserves another chance after blowing the break last time. The early pace of that race was extremely slow, which basically cost him any chance of getting back into contention. He had previously run speed figures that make him a player here.
I’m definitely using both, but my top pick is SWIFT ONE (#3). This horse was given some time on the shelf after going off form for his current connections last summer. He returned on Apr. 27 at Belmont with an effort that is better than it seems at first glance. He was away somewhat awkwardly, placing him near the back of the pack. However, rather than sitting back to make one run, his rider sent him to make a premature wide move around the far turn. He actually got up into third at the top of the stretch before flattening out late. He figures to benefit from that return effort, and I think he can make some noise at price if he steps forward in his second start off the layoff.
Exacta Key Box: 3 with 2,4,5,7
Trifecta: 3 with 5,7 with 2,4,5,7,8