Behind the Couch (#1) may go favored in this spot as she returns following a disastrous performance in the Fleet Indian. Something clearly went amiss that day, as she was never traveling well and was eased on the far turn. Given that unsightly effort, it’s a good sign to see her back in the entries just two months later, showing a steady series of workouts leading up to this. Jeremiah Englehart does well with turn-backs in general, and this filly may ultimately be better going shorter. She’ll be formidable if she bounces back, but she’s still hard to completely trust.
Sweet Meadow Mist (#2) also figures to attract some support, but horses with her kind of late-running style are always at the mercy of the pace and there just isn’t much speed in this field.
Given that situation, I want to take a shot with SHE TAKES CHARGE (#7) as she returns from a layoff. This filly hasn’t been seen in nine months, but she showed talent in her two appearances over the winter last year. She was bet down to favoritism in her December debut and did not disappoint, drawing off to an impressive victory. That race only received a 75 TimeformUS Speed Figure, but almost every horse to come out of that spot improved in their next start. Of the 11 horses to run back, not counting this filly, 10 improved their figures and one regressed. Those who improved did so by anywhere from 10 to 47 speed-figure points, averaging out to a 23-point improvement. She Takes Charge didn’t quite handle the mile in her only other start before getting put on the sidelines. Yet she appears to be working well for her return. Furthermore, the Pace Projector is predicting she will be stalking the pace in a situation favoring horses on or near the lead.
Exacta Key Box: 7 with 1,2,3
Trifecta: 7 with 1,2 with 1,2,3,5,6