It’s difficult to eliminate any of the entrants in this six-horse Top Flight Invitational. I suppose the horse to beat is Forever Liesl (#6), who won the Ladies Handicap quite impressively over this course and distance back in January. She appears to be at her best over a wet track, and she may get the kind of going on Saturday with rain in the forecast on Friday night. She should also appreciate the outside post position after not responding when driven along in the inside path going one turn last time. I believe she’s a strong contender, but she’s unlikely to offer much value as the potential favorite.
She and the rest of this field will have to run down Frostie Anne (#4), who stretches out and steps up in class as she seeks her 16th career victory. She’s earned some of the fastest speed figures in the field, but she’s also benefited from favorable circumstances and will have to deal with the speed of rival Jump Ruler (#3) this time. I prefer some of the longer prices.
My top pick is MIDNIGHT DISGUISE (#1). This filly is admittedly a favorite of mine, but I believe she’s finally landing in the right spot now in her third start off the layoff. She actually ran deceptively well in her 4-year-old debut in the Biogio’s Rose two back. Whereas Frostie Anne was riding a gold rail that day, Midnight Disguise rallied to be second despite going four wide on the far turn. She didn’t handle a wet track last time, and that may be a concern yet again with the track rated sloppy early in the day. On the other hand, she is likely to benefit from the stretch-out to 1 1/8 miles. She won going this distance in the Busanda last year and she gives every impression that the farther she goes, the more dangerous she will be.
The other horse that I want to use at a bigger price is Another Broad (#2). She never had a chance going a one-turn mile at Gulfstream last time, and this stretch-out to 9 furlongs should really suit her. She’s bred to run all day as a daughter of Include out of a dam who was second in the 10-furlong Delaware Handicap. A wet track would only help her chances.
Exacta Key Box: 1 with 2,5,6
Trifecta: 1 with 2,6 with ALL