Eloquent Speaker (#11) may go favored as she returns from a brief layoff since the summer. She ran well in both starts at Saratoga, just unable to get the distance on July 22 before setting a very fast pace that fell apart in August. A repeat of any of those performances will make her tough for this field to handle, but you do have to wonder what kept her away from the races for this period. Furthermore, there is other speed in this race, as Lune Lake figures to be sent aggressively to the front by Kendrick Carmouche. I’m certainly using Eloquent Speaker, but I think others could offer better value. I do still prefer her to some other short prices like Snicket (#6), who may take money after breaking her maiden here last month. I’m instead interested in a bigger price.
RUVIES IN TIME (#10) deserves another chance at this level after getting the wrong trip last time. She was unfortunately to draw the rail on Nov. 27, a day when it seemed especially difficult to race through kickback. Her rider was unaggressive away from the start and she was always out of position, getting shuffled back around the far turn coming to the quarter pole. All things considered, she did well to rally for fourth, running a much better race than Honey Money, who had no excuse while finishing just three lengths ahead of her. This time Ruvies in Time figures to get a more comfortable outside stalking trip, and I think she’ll be dangerous if she gets back to her performances from this fall at Belmont.
Exacta Key Box: 10 with 5,8,9,11