Bay Storm (#7) is clearly the one to beat off her dominant Christiecat score, which earned her a field-best 113 TimeformUS Speed Figure. There are no official times posted, but she actually set an honest pace on the lead, based on video timings of the race. That said, she was racing on an inner turf course that was heavily biased towards rail runners, and she rode the hedge the entire way. She now must stretch out to 7 furlongs and deal with some other speed. Furthermore, Jonathan Thomas is just 2 for 25 (8%, $1.54 ROI) with last-out winners in stakes on the turf over 5 years. I’m skeptical of this likely favorite.
Caldee (#3) also makes sense coming out of that Christiecat. She figures to appreciate getting slightly more ground here, but she also rode the rail until getting into the stretch last time, which may have aided her performance.
Invincible Gal (#5) makes plenty of sense as she cuts back in distance. I’ve always liked this filly going shorter distances and her recent form is better than it appears. She got the wrong trip in the Tepin three back and then was stymied in traffic two back at Saratoga. In some ways, I think Invincible Gal is the horse to beat, but I wanted to go for a bigger price.
HONEY PANTS (#12) is the horse that I want to take out of the Christiecat. It may look like she regressed that day, but she got an impossible trip over a biased course. She was ridden to stay in touch early behind a legitimate pace, but was 2- to 3-wide all the way while rail runners dominated. I don’t think the gap between she and Bay Storm is nearly as large as that last result indicates. She doesn’t have the flashy speed figures of some others, but she’s run deceptively well in a few races, particularly three back when overcoming a slow pace to win on June 20. There’s talent here and she’s going to be a much better price this time.
Exacta Key Box: 12 with 3,5,7,8,11
Trifecta: 5,12 with 5,12 with 3,4,7,8,11