It’s hard to trust anyone in this wide-open maiden claiming affair, which closes out the Belmont meet. #2 North Carolinaonce had turf form that towered over this field, but his recent efforts leave a lot to be desired. #9 Calloway Peak has to be considered on the class drop. Even though he hasn’t done much running in his races, he’s exiting one of the best maiden special weight events of the meet and may have found the right field returning on short rest.
A couple of runners exit that 10-furlong maiden special weight event on May 20. #8 Dream of a Day stayed on mildly late without really threatening, though he’s another who could appreciate the drop. I’d be more interested in #7 Greg’s Honor, who got a somewhat indecisive ride, making an early move on the backstretch before fading. He should fare better as John Velazquez takes over.
My top pick is #6 THE ICEMAN COMMETH. I had thought this horse was an interesting prospect in his debut prior to that race getting rained off the turf. He clearly needed the experience, as he got squeezed back at the start and had no speed thereafter. Yet he did get rolling in the last quarter mile, passing tiring runners before galloping out with interest. Keen Ice has had a bit of success with turf routers, and the dam earned some of her best speed figures on turf despite never winning on the surface. Second dam Duty Dance was an excellent turf performer, so there is plenty of pedigree for him to handle the surface. Tom Morley runners tend to do better with experience, and this gelding isn’t meeting the toughest field.
WIN: #6 The Iceman Commmeth, at 5-1 or greater