5 live longshots to bet in Belmont's Stars & Stripes races

By Jarrod Horak
July 06, 2018 07:07pm
The New York Racing Association is offering an enhanced wagering menu for Saturday's Stars & Stripes Racing Festival card, which includes an all-stakes Pick 4 and Pick 5 capped by the Grade 1 Belmont Derby. Check out five horses poised to score an upset at longer odds:

Race 6: Grade 3 Dwyer (8F)

#6 Mendelssohn (8-5) and #3 Rugbyman (2-1) are the two logical favorites, but #7 Firenze Fire (6-1) might be the right one from a value standpoint. He exits a better-than-expected 11th of 20 from the dreaded inside post in the Kentucky Derby. Two of his stakes wins were at a flat mile around one turn, including the Champagne (G1) at Belmont Park last fall under Saturday's rider, Irad Ortiz Jr. (9-for-19 with trainer Jason Servis).

Race 7: Grade 2 Belmont Sprint (7F)

#1 Limousine Liberal (9-5) is 8-for-22, and all eight wins were in Kentucky, while late runner #2 Whitmore (2-1) appears best at six panels. #6 Favorable Outcome (4-1) drew an advantageous outside post, runs well fresh, owns competitive numbers, and usually fires with Javier Castellano in the saddle. Chad Brown’s 4-year-old colt projects a decent outside stalking trip at a hint of a price.

Race 8: Grade 1 Belmont Oaks (10F, turf)

#1 Significant Form (7-2) is the inside target under Irad Ortiz Jr, and #7 La Signare (4-1), #6 Athena (9-2), and #5 Toinette (5-1) should take wagering action as well. There are a few interesting price players including #4 Capla Temptress (6-1). The latter shipped from Great Britain to capture the Natalma (G1) at Woodbine last September, and talented fillies Dixie Moon and Wonder Gadot were second and third that day. She ended her 2017 campaign with an OK seventh in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, and returned with a close-up fourth vs. flat mile Group 1 foes in France. Castellano rides the Team Valor filly, and she is an interesting player if she handles 1 1/4 miles.

Race 9: Grade 2 Suburban (10F)

No real knocks on favorites -- #5 Dr. Dorr (3-1), #4 Tapwrit (7-2), and #8 Hoppertunity (9-2) -- except price. #7 Take Your Guns (8-1) continues to move forward on the speed figure scale, and his odds figure to be right. Brown’s 4-year-old colt brought a two-race win streak into the Brooklyn (G2), but he flattened out and ended up an uncomfortable fourth at a mile and a half that day. This shorter trip helps, and he should be finishing under regular pilot Joel Rosario.

Race 10: Grade 1 Belmont Derby (10F, turf)

#3 Analyze It (5-2), #8 Hawkish (7-2), and #7 Catholic Boy (4-1) are the three likely betting choices, along with overseas invader #4 Hunting Horn (7-2), but I will take my chances with the other import, #6 Kingstar (12-1). He ran well in both starts in France last year, and returned with an easy score at Longchamp on June 2. The lightly raced Team Valor runner has plenty of upside and might be this good.


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