I’ll Have Another will not win the Triple Crown.
Sad, but it’s time to move on. Today’s card at Belmont is fantastic with five consecutive
stakes of either grade 1 or grade 2 status culminating with the 144th
running of the Belmont Stakes. The final four of these big races make up the $1
million guaranteed Pick 4. In the place of seeing a Triple Crown winner … let’s
go get it.
The 8th race on the card is the Just a Game
for fillies and mares running a flat mile on the lawn. Winter Memories and her
perfect 4 for 4 record on the Belmont turf will be heavily favored, and must be
included on the ticket, but could be vulnerable at the short distance. Making
her task just a little more difficult will be a likely moderate early pace. I’ll
throw in Tapitsfly and Hungry Island with her, as well as, long shots
Sylvestris and Wallis.
Next comes the Woody Stephens where you will find one
of the more wide open sprint races of the year. Favorites Trinniberg and Hierro
both could win, but neither is anywhere a sure thing. Others to throw in
include: Hardened Wildcat, Bourbon Courage, Power World, and Isn’t He Clever.
Even long shot, Brian, (I like the name) cannot be totally dismissed.
In the Grade 1 Manhattan, Neil Drysdale’s Chilean
import, Omayad, is one of my top picks. Making his second start since leaving South
America as one of the most successful horses on the continent, Omayad had a
solid one-mile prep at Hollywood and should be ready to roll at ten furlongs.
Of the favorites, Brilliant Speed looks like the most likely winner as he gets
a distance a little more in line with his talents today. Boisterous, Desert
Blanc, Papaw Bodie, and Hudson Steele are throw-ins on the ticket.
In the big one, Dullahan and Union Rags, are the two favorites
and the two most likely winners. Both took the Preakness off to point for this
and carry a class advantage over the rest of the field. Dullahan has looked
fantastic since arriving to Belmont Park, but after much deliberation, I have
decided to go with Union Rags as my top selection. The Derby trip makes it a
complete throw-out for me, and we already know that the big, grand looking colt
has a fondness for the Belmont main track. With the defection of I’ll Have
Another, Union Rags may well take an aggressive early position and sit a dream
trip in 3rd early on. If so, he becomes the horse to beat.
Others to include on my ticket include, Street Life, coming
off a sharp performance over the track in the Peter Pan, Paytner, who has the
pedigree to run long, but is short on experience, and Atigun, who I believe is
the one longshot with a real chance to become a Belmont winner. The recent
winner of a strong allowance last time at Churchill Downs, has a series of
solid works over the strip for Belmont Stakes winning trainer, Ken McPeek.
Here are the 50-cent Pick 4 tickets:
4/1,2,4,5,6,7,8/1,6/1,3,4,5,9 = $35
1,3,5/2,5,6,7,8/1,6/3 = $15
4/2,6/1,2,4,5,6,7/1,3,4,5,9 = $30
1,3,5/2,6/1,2,4,5,6,7/3,5 = $36
1,3,5/2,6/1,6/1,3,4,5,9 = $30