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Tapicat, Watsdachances Vie for Favoritism in Lake Placid

Tapicat
Tapicat, whose three-race win streak was snapped with her third-place finish in the Grade 2 Lake George, and Watsdachances, who rallied to finish second to Kitten's Dumplings in that race, meet again Sunday in the 30th running of the Grade 2, $200,000 Woodford Reserve Lake Placid at Saratoga Race Course.

 

No worse than third in five career starts, Tapicat strung together a trio of victories during the winter in Florida, breaking her maiden and taking an optional claimer at Gulfstream Park before a gate-to-wire win in the Grade 3 Florida Oaks at Tampa Bay Downs. In the Lake George, the 3-year-old daughter of Tapit took the lead coming off the turn and led to the final yards before being overtaken by Kitten's Dumplings.

 

Tapicat, trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott, drew post position 2 and was listed as the 9-5 favorite on the morning line. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith will ride.

 

Watsdachances, whose 11-length rally fell a half-length short in the Lake George, won her first stateside start last year at the Spa, taking the P. G. Johnson by a neck over Broken Spell. A 2 ¼-length winner of the Grade 3 Miss Grillo at Belmont Park, the Irish-bred daughter of Diamond Green closed out her 2-year-old campaign with a solid second to Flotilla in the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf for trainer Chad Brown, a native of nearby Mechanicville, N.Y.

 

This year, Watsdachances is still seeking the winner's circle, having finished fourth in the Grade 2 Appalachian at Keeneland Race Course and third in the Grade 2 Sands Point prior to the Lake George.

 

The 2-1 second choice on the morning line, Watsdachances drew post position 3 and will be ridden by Javier Castellano.

 

Donning blinkers for the Woodford Reserve Lake Placid will be the Graham Motion-trained Concise, who made a belated rally from last to finish second in an optional claimer on July 25 at the Spa in her American debut. The Lemon Drop Kid filly won a maiden race at Kempton as a 2-year-old and finished fourth in a stakes at Newbury in May in her most recent European outing.

 

"We thought she ran well in her first start here," said Motion. "This seems like a good spot for her."

 

Joel Rosario rides Concise, the 5-1 third choice on the morning line, from the rail.

 

Returned to the turf in her most recent start, Silsita turned in a game effort to win the My Princess Jess overnight stakes by a nose over Broken Spell. It was the second victory of the year for the Macho Uno filly, who won the Grade 3 Bourbonette Oaks over the synthetic surface in March at Turfway Park and then fini,shed last of 10 in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks behind her stablemate, Princess of Sylmar.

 

"It was a good performance," said trainer Todd Pletcher. "I don't think she liked the surface at Churchill Downs [for the Oaks]. We regrouped after that, and she ran respectably to finish second [in the off-the-turf Astronomia on June 13] at Belmont. We felt like she was a filly who liked the turf, and her last race gave us added confidence that she is."

 

Hall of Famer John Velazquez will ride Silsita, 6-1 on the morning line, from post position 6.

 

Rounding out the field are Grade 3 Virginia Oaks winner Nellie Cashman, My Princess Jess runner-up Broken Spell, and Caroline Thomas, seventh in the My Princess Jess.  Skyfall and Flash Forward were entered but will run only if the race comes off the turf.

 

 

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