This Bernard Baruch has only drawn five entrants, but all of them are serious contenders. Tell Your Daddy (#1) may be the horse to beat and the one to catch as he figures to go to the lead from the rail. He got a good trip last time when just second best to gate-to-wire winner Flavius, who was allowed to set a slow pace on the front end. He’s been an excellent claim by Tom Morley, as he was run very well in three of his four starts for this new barn, and had a legitimate excuse for the Poker two back. He’s a major player, but there are some intriguing rivals to his outside, a few of which still have upside.
En Wye Cee (#2) figures to attract plenty of support off his obvious trip last time when he should have beaten today’s rival L’Imperator, but was boxed in for much of the stretch drive. This Todd Pletcher trainee has never won on turf, but he’s run well in all of his starts on this surface and has the tactical speed to work out the right trip here. I prefer him to closers like L’Imperator and Dreams of Tomorrow, but I’m worried that he’ll be overbet.
I’m actually most interested in Pletcher’s other horse NO WORD (#4). He doesn’t have the speed figure credentials of some others in here, but he showed real talent last year. He was just a half-length behind division leader Domestic Spending in the Saratoga Derby before running a good second in the Belmont Derby. He’s been off the board twice since then, but I thought he ran better than it appears in his return last time. He got rank into the first turn behind a moderate pace and then was just hung out wide every step of the way. He’s better than that and could get somewhat overlooked even in this short field.
Exacta Key Box: 4 with 1,2,3
Trifecta: 2,4 with 2,4 with 1,3,5