Wednesday’s 9th race from Saratoga is an optional claiming event for three-year-olds and up traveling a mile and an eighth on the main track (Post Time 5:39 p.m. ET).
#1 WEST WILL POWER (3-1) exits an even 4th in the Salvator Mile (3) at Monmouth Park. He won his two longest races and might appreciate the added furlong of this race. The tactical type fired big shots from the inside post on three previous occasions. There is a chance of thunderstorms and he romped in the slop April 10.
#3 Highest Honors (5-2) won the Curlin Stakes in the mud at this course and distance last year and tailed off in a pair of starts after that. He got back on track in an optional claiming score at Belmont Park June 20, and he always runs his race with Jose Ortiz in the saddle.
#2 Forza Di Oro (9-5) is a fragile four-year-old with five career starts. He earned improved speed ratings in his final two starts as a sophomore including a sharp victory in the Discovery (G3). This is his first start in more than seven months and he will probably try to pounce from midpack.
#4 Core Beliefs (12-1) was a decent sophomore in 2018 and upset the New Orleans Handicap (G2) the following year. He has mostly struggled in seven starts since but did show signs of life in a show finish for his new trainer Brian Lynch June 18.
#6 Trident Hit (12-1) exits a victory at this distance at 5-1 odds at Churchill Downs, and Javier Castellano was also aboard for his dirt route win at Oaklawn Park March 13. He can stalk or close and has improved his speed ratings since Ron Moquett took over the training duties.
#7 American Dubai (10-1) will probably be sent to the early lead from the outside post. He dueled and kept on going at this distance at Oaklawn Park April 24, and set the pace before weakening to 4th when last seen in the Blame Stakes May 29. The eight-year-old horse competes for the $100k claiming price.
#5 Empty Tomb (6-1) is entered for the $100k tag and should attend the pace at a distance that frequently rewards forwardly placed runners. He is winless in five attempts at a mile and an eighth.
#1 to win
Exacta Box 1-3
Recent Best Bet Winners
July 1 - MIGHTY HEART ($5.80), Exacta ($18.20), Trifecta ($59.30)
July 3 - Miles Ahead/Chance It Exacta ($39.60)
July 4 - SHE'SONTHEWARPATH ($6.80), Exacta ($10.80)
July 9 - Uyuni/Amiche/Tayet Trifecta ($976.80)
July 10 - OUR FLASH DRIVE ($4.70)
July 11 - Easy Time/Keep Grinding/Haddassah Trifecta ($432.50)