This Carle Place has drawn a wide open field of 12 runners with no clear standout. I think the horse to beat is probably Easy Time (#5), who exits a solid runner-up performance in the Grade 2 Franklin-Simpson at Kentucky Downs. He was facing a couple of classy European shippers in that spot and did well to close for third while coming up the rail. I think 7 furlongs is the perfect distance for this horse, as he won going this far over Tapeta in his career debut last year. He didn’t fare so well in his lone prior start at the NYRA circuit in the Hall of Fame, but he got taken up sharply in the stretch of that race. There should be some early pace for him, and I just think he makes the most sense.
I’m also not against the two horses coming out of the Allied Forces earlier in this Belmont meet. Smokin’ Jay (#3) got the better trip that day, as he just saved ground on the rail and found running room to move through inside in upper stretch. Arzak (#6), meanwhile, broke slowly and switched out to come around horses at the quarter pole, which proved to be the wrong move. I think Arzak is just as good as Smokin’ Jay and could be a bigger price this time. They’re all worth using, but I’m most interested in a new face.
SNOW HOUSE (#12) switches back to the turf for the first time since his career debut. He had a bit of a trip that day, getting shuffled back on the far turn and encountering some traffic in upper stretch. Since then he’s improved on dirt, placing in the Grade 3 Dwyer, but I’m intrigued by him getting back on grass. He’s by versatile sire Twirling Candy and his second dam is multiple Group 1 winning Special Duty, who was elevated to victory in both the English and French 1000 Guineas via disqualification. Notably, Snow House has been training over turf recently and he’s been outworking this barn’s Slicked Back, who runs in Saturday’s Hill Prince.
Exacta Key Box: 12 with 3,5,6,11
Trifecta: 12 with 5,6 with 3,5,6,7,8,11