Aqueduct | Race 9 | Post Time 5:38 p.m. (ET) | TimeformUS PPs are now available on DRF.com. Go to PPs
I’ll be interested to see if the also eligible entrant Little Skippy (#11) draws into this affair. If he gets one defection and makes the race, he is one that figures to pull some support. He faced better company in both prior turf starts at Gulfstream and put in decent efforts on each occasion. However, he would be saddled with a disadvantageous post position and I think there are some other more interesting options in this field.
In the main body of the field, Old Point (#6) could take some money on the switch to grass. However, he’s not the kind of first time turfer I want. He really doesn’t have that much pedigree for grass despite being out of a British-bred mare. It’s more of a dirt family overall, and he might just lack the speed to compete at this 6-furlong distance.
Among the experienced options, I’d be more interested in Nieuwendyk (#7). He made just one start on turf in his career debut last summer, and didn’t run that badly. He contested a pace that came apart and stayed on pretty well for fifth. He has plenty of grass pedigree, and may be ready to put forth a better effort on this surface now that he’s had more experience and time to mature.
My top pick is FATHER OF LIES (#1), who is another horse trying grass for the first time. I find it encouraging that this horse showed good speed on debut before fading on the dirt, so he should be able to get forward position from this rail draw as he switches over to turf. Daredevil’s progeny have won 19% of their turf sprint starts. The dam was a synthetic specialist and she has produced a 3-time turf sprint winner. This horse moves like one that should take to this surface, and I think it’s encouraging that Javier Castellano takes the mount for a trainer who often names live riders on his live horses.