This allowance race came up very strong for the level. The horse to beat is Dr. Edgar (#9), who appears to be in the best form of his career since returning from the layoff this summer. He ran a truly amazing race on July 11, as he dueled through suicidal early fractions, put away his main pace rival, and nearly held off the eventual winner, who closed from well back. He again found himself in a situation where the pace was unusually swift last time at Saratoga. That time, he rated a few lengths off the runaway leader before taking over in midstretch. He drifted out late and was controversially disqualified from the win, but he nevertheless ran extremely well.
I’m using Dr. Edgar, but I think he faces a serious pace rival in Morrison (#2). This 3-year-old has significantly improved in recent starts for Joe Sharp. He showed a new dimension two back, stalking to win over yielding ground at Saratoga. They got ambitious and tried him in the West Point against older rivals last time, and he arguably ran the best race of his career, attacking a fast pace before fading. The only problem with these two runners is that the early pace of this race is also predicted to be fast, so they may find themselves vulnerable late.
I’m trying to beat them with FAST BOAT (#7) off the layoff. This colt showed a ton of talent late last year, as he was third in a loaded maiden race behind Analyze It in his debut and returned with a visually impressive score at Gulfstream in his second start. He was beating an inferior field in that Dec. 8 race, but I loved the way he won, as he rated keenly off the pace and exploded once set down in the lane. He was justifiably sent off as the favorite in the Kitten’s Joy in his most recent outing, but he didn’t appear to have the same kick in the lane. I’m guessing that something went wrong that day, as he didn’t return to the work tab for a long time after that race. It appears that Christophe Clement has him right again, as that bullet workout over the dirt last week is unusually fast for this barn. The one-turn mile should be a perfect place for him to start.
Exacta Key Box: 7 with 2,4,6,9
Trifecta: 7 with 2,9 with 1,2,4,6,9