Round Two of The Triple Crown Series is upon us and before we get to The Preakness on Saturday, Pimlico will host Black Eyed Susan Day on Friday May 18th. Against The Number contributor and horse racing expert, Matthew Pappis weighs in with his thoughts.
Race 7 Grade III Miss Preakness
Almond Rocco (8): Toss her last on turf and she would be coming into this with two dominating efforts and the one to beat. She has a great outside stalking post to sit and pounce.
Lezendary (6): Turned the corner when finally breaking her maiden in January, another step forward shes a big player in here.
Good Move (9): Comes in off two dominating efforts and will be heavily supported at the window. This will be a class test.
Race 9 Grade III Pimlico Special
Hedge Fund (5): Hopped at the start in his last and while he didn’t lose many lengths, he was forced to do something he was not used to. He should be able to sit a good stalking trip in here.
Rated R Superstar (3): Was very impressive when winning the Ben Ali at Keeneland circling the field in victory and should get some pace to run at in this spot.
Irish War Cry (1): His last was too bad to think it was him and the race did not come back strong either. We will keep him on our pick 4/5 tickets but he is hard to endorse at a short price.
One Linear (2): Was good in victory second off the layoff at Keeenland and has been given about a month to recover from that race here. With the projected rain in the forecast this weekend he should have no issue handling it this will be a step up in class.
Race 10 Jim Mckay Turf Sprint
Field of Courage (2): Has some back numbers sprinting on both synthetic and turf that make him a player in this field and at a good number to boot.
Imprimis (3): He’s undefeated and looking to remain that way when entering stakes company for the first time but this isn’t exactly a field of killers.
Hogy (7): The only classy veteran is the one to beat here and will be going to routes to a sprint which is one of my favorite angles to play. Please note he carries 5 pounds more than the field.
Race 11 Black Eyes Susan
Sara Street (9): Was a very sharp move of trainer Kiaran McLaughlin to skip the Oaks and point to this easier spot where she will be fresh. The lack of speed in the race should give her a tactical edge, if she gets the rain they are predicting she will move up even further.
Red Ruby (4): Was compromised at the start of the Honeybee where she broke a little slow and was pinched back and forced off her game. She went off as a very short price in that race so we are going to give her another shot here with a clean break.
Midnight Disguise (2): Something went wrong with her in the Gazele and I like the addition of blinkers. She should be fresh coming into this and able to sit a little closer.
Coach Rocks (3): She was out classed in the Kentucky Oaks and will be better suited in this spot but I think she’s been over run at this point and needs a break before the summer campaign.
Race 12 Hiltop Stakes
ThewayIam (8): Much the one to beat in this field and should be a very short price horse. The class she’s faced in her last makes her 3/5 on paper and a logical single on the card.
Jehozacat (4): Has been much better since getting on turf and will like the stretch out back to a mile at two turns where she enjoyed success at Tampa.
Souper Striking (2): The race two back makes her a player in here but she’s more likely for the exotics then a win.
Race 13 Grade III Dupont Distaff
Blue Prize (7): A very consistent type of horse being in the money in 10 of 12 career starts, she found the winners circle last start and will be dangerous third off the layoff.
Son of Spring (5): Narrowly missed off the layoff last out when coming from the clouds. I like the switch to the aggressive rider of Ricardo Santana who will have her in the game much earlier.
Verve’s Tale (6): While she does not like to win, she’s always on the wire for a share being in the money – 15 of 19 starts and comes out of the same race as our top pick.
Race 7- 11 Pick 5 (UPDATED)
6,8,9/4,5,7,8,16/1,2,3,5/1,2,3,4/4,9 = $192
Pick 4 Race 11-14
2, 4, 9/ 8 / 5,6,7 / all (14 horses) = $63
Please note turf races are handicapped for the turf with bad weather expected you should check the conditions before wagering.