Chad Brown holds a very strong hand in this Long Island, sending out 3 of the top 4 choices on the morning line. He has the filly to beat in likely favorite Pollara (#1). While she lost her North American debut, she was facing a pretty tough Grade 1 field in the E. P. Taylor. Both of the top two finishers were European shippers with improving form coming into that race, and third-place finisher Santa Monica is an established graded stakes performer. Pollara had to alter course in the stretch and probably ran a bit better than her sixth-place finish would indicate. She had previously shown promise racing in France, and I think this 3-year-old filly still has plenty of upside.
She’s the one I want most of the Chad Brown brigade, though both Lady Paname (#10) and Night of England (#11) have some appeal. The former beat a weak field in her stateside debut last time, but she should move forward with that experience under her belt. Night of England may be the biggest price of the trio as she ships in from Germany. Chad hasn’t had this one for nearly as long as the other two, and her German form is a bit difficult to assess.
I’m using all of these in some capacity, but the filly that I want to bet is LADY MONTDORE (#2). She clearly has the best winning chance of the non-Chad Brown runners, and she may end up going off at a more generous price than she should. I think this filly has run well in all of her U.S. starts. She got great trips in her pair of wins at Saratoga, but she nevertheless dominated those races, registering decisive victories. I can’t really hold the Flower Bowl loss against her, since the top two finishers in that field have real quality. I also wonder if she’s best when she can control affairs on the front end. With no clear speed in this field, she may find herself on the lead, and I believe that will make her very dangerous.
In addition to the Chad Brown brigade, I also want to use Golden Attitude (#12) on my tickets. She’s yet to run a competitive speed figure in this country, but her last race was a step in the right direction over a turf course that she may not have appreciated. Her 3-year-old form in France is very strong.
Exacta Key Box: 2 with 1,10,11,12
Trifecta: 2 with 1,12 with 1,5,6,10,11,12