Sunday TimeformUS Highlight Horse: Achilles Warrior likely to improve in 3-year-old debut

Aqueduct | Race 7 | Post Time 4:42 p.m. (ET) | Go to the TimeformUS PPs 
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If Wegotoldyougotsold (#5) duplicates his runner-up effort from Feb. 16, he is highly unlikely to lose this race. That day featured an extremely strong rail bias and this gelding was forced to race 2- to 3-wide throughout after getting outrun to the lead by the eventual winner. Most horses on that card came up empty in the lane after such a trip, but Wegotoldyougotsold refused to yield, only losing by a length. That 120 TimeformUS Speed Figure is clearly the highest number in the field and it’s conceivable he would have run much faster given a more favorable setup. My one concern is that his prior form did not hint at him possessing that kind of potential, and I’m worried he won’t be able to replicate the performance. He’s clearly the horse to beat, but I’m not enthusiastic about accepting a very short price.

Achilles-Warrior.png

The only horse who intrigues me as an alternative is the 3-year-old ACHILLES WARRIOR (#8), who returns from a layoff following an aborted juvenile campaign. This colt put in a decent effort to win his off-the-turf debut at Saratoga last year, but things went awry soon after. He was overmatched in the Champagne and then nothing went right for him when he was turned back in distance at Churchill Downs. While he’s clearly better than those efforts, his debut effort would get him nothing in this spot. However, after watching his most recent workout at Gulfstream Park, I’m confident that we will see a vastly improved version of Achilles Warrior on Sunday. I wasn’t blown away by any of the drills I watched prior to his debut last summer, but he looked like a completely different horse breezing last week. Placed in company with Grade 2 winning sprinter Strike Power, he easily ran away from that workmate on the far turn, forcing his rider to vigorously restrain him approaching the quarter pole. In the lane, he continued under restraint while maintain a slight lead on his classy workmate through the wire. This horse looks primed for a big effort off the layoff.

THE PLAY

Win/Place: 8
Exacta Key Box: 8 with 2,4,5
Trifecta: 5,8 with 5,8 with 1,2,4,6

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