The horse with the best speed figures in this spot is Dancers for Token (#9), but he’s also had the most chances of any of these. I like this horse and you can make the case that he’s been in the wrongs spots too many times. He really needs New York-bred company and this one-mile distance to be most effective, and he’s only seen those conditions twice. He disappointed as the even-money choice when last seen, but a couple of others really stepped forward that day and he actually earned his career-best 97 TimeformUS Speed Figure. I’m using him, but I think there’s one rival who has a chance to take a big step forward.
MICROSECOND (#2) made his debut for Rudy Rodriguez back in March and put in a solid effort despite getting sent off at 9-1 odds, nearly hanging on for the victory in a blanket finish. It’s encouraging that he did so well going 6 furlongs as a son of Micromanage, who himself was a dirt marathoner. As a sire, Micromanage has done better with his progeny that have stretched out, compiling a record of 5 for 23 with all of his route starters thus far. This gelding is a massive specimen and appears to be training well for new conditioner Todd Pletcher, who has taken over a number of the Repole horses. One of his recent workouts was actually in company with stakes winner Dream Bigger and he held his own against that rival. Furthermore, there doesn’t appear to be a ton of early speed in this field, so he figures to work out the right trip.
Others that I would use in exotics include first time starters River Nile (#1A) and Pacific Jazz (#7), as well as the second time starters Senrima (#4) and Mundacious (#8), both of whom ran reasonably well in their debuts.
Exacta Key Box: 2 with 1,4,7,8,9
Trifecta: 2 with 9 with 1,4,7,8