Tapit Today (#12) is clearly the horse to beat as she drops slightly in class out of her win in the Grade 3 Athenia last time. She got a 3-wide uncovered trip that day, but it all worked out since the pace was slow and she was able to get the jump on a few of her main rivals. This 5-year-old mare has been steadily improving for a while now, and she’s likely to beat this field if she merely repeats that last performance. However, she will have to work out a trip from the outside post position in this 12-horse field on the inner turf, which is no small feat. She’s a deserving favorite, but I’m open to the possibility of an upset given the wide draw.
However, I would not try to beat her with Myhartblongstodady (#9), who also figures to take money. This filly is undefeated in 2020 and hasn’t lost a race since 2018, but she’s been incredibly fortunate in her recent starts. She’s enjoyed uncontested early leads in paceless races, and it seems highly improbable that she’ll get that kind of trip here. In my opinion, the right strategy in this race is to play against her.
The most logical alternative to the favorite is Feel Glorious (#4). This Clement-trained filly finished behind Tapit Today last time, but she was hindered by the slow pace of that race. She’s actually been in solid form all year but rarely gets the respect she deserves. I think she’s going to run well getting back to Aqueduct.
She’s a significant part of my play, but my top pick is actually Chad Brown’s other horse MISS TEHERAN (#10). This 4-year-old filly made one start in this country off a 21-month layoff, and just missed against an inferior field at Monmouth. Yet she encountered some traffic trouble, having to alter course multiple times in the lane before getting free. Third-place finisher Orglandes returned out of that last race to win impressively at Belmont in her next start before taking the Red Carpet at Del Mar yesterday. Miss Teheran showed some promise in France as a 2-year-old and I’m convinced we haven’t yet seen the best she has to offer in this country.
Exacta Key Box: 10 with 4,5,12
Trifecta: 4,10,12 with 4,10,12 with 4,5,7,9,10,12