HRN Sunday Picks: English Channel, Anoakia, Dowager

Place des Vosages wins at SA (2-25-17)
Photo: Benoit Photo

Each weekend we reach out to our network of editors, writers and bloggers for their thoughts on the country's biggest stakes races.


On Sunday, we've lined up stakes picks from coast to coast, starting with Belmont's English Channel, then to Santa Anita's Anoakia and finally Keeneland's Dowager.


Best of luck! Now, to the picks…


$100,000 English Channel Stakes (4:13 p.m. ET at Belmont Park)


Jeffrey Byrnes, Byrnzzze's Corner (@jeffbyrnes96)


Winner: #10 Souper Tapit


On the board: #3 Let's Get Loud, #11 Fact Finding


Longshot I like: #6 No Dozing 


Analysis: Souper Tapit returns to the races off a five-month layoff. The last time we saw him, he won the Marine Stakes at Woodbine over the Tapeta surface. After three races on dirt, the Live Oak homebred switched to a different surface and dominated his competition. This will be his turf debut, but his pedigree suggests he should take to the surface. His dam, Grade 1 winner Zo Impressive, has a family that's full of turf winners. Coming into this race off a bullet work on Oct. 14, this son of Tapit is ready to roll on the Belmont turf course.


Jarrod Horak (@jchorak)


Winner: #6 No Dozing


On the board: #3 Let's Get Loud, #10 Souper Tapit


Longshot I like: #4 Dalarna


Analysis: No Dozing was overmatched in the G1 Allen Jerkens last time. Dam has produced two turf winners and trainer Delacour is 14-for-42 (33%) first turf.

Casey Laughter, The Tattooed Tracksider (@writingcasey)

Winner: #10 Souper Tapit


On the Board: #6 No Dozing, #3 Let's Get Loud


Longshot I like: #2 Lunaire


Analysis: I think Souper Tapit will do just fine on the turf after running on the all-weather at Woodbine last out. This will also be No Dozing's first start on the turf, so I am anticipating he can move up a bit.

Jasen Mangrum, Handicapper’s Corner (@Cappercorner)

Winner: #10 Souper Tapit

On the board: #6 No Dozing, #11 Fact Finding

Longshot I like: #2 Lumaire

Analysis: Souper Tapit has never raced on the grass, but a repeat of his only effort over Polytrack will put him straight in the winner’s circle.No Dozing has also yet to try turf, but is bred for lawn and a mile is his best distance. #11 Fact Finding looks to be the dangerous lone speed in the race.

My plays: $2 trifecta 10/2,3,6,11/2,3,6,11=$24 $1 trifecta 2,3,6,11/10/2,3,6,11=$12 Total Bet=$36

Matt Scott, 55,000 Furlongs to the Finish

Winner: #3 Let’s Get Loud


On the board: #10 Souper Tapit


Analysis: The weather looks to keep this on the turf, so limiting the selections, Souper Tapit could put in quite a show as a first time turf starter. However, I'll stick with Chad Brown and the greenly raced Lets Get Loud when the running is on the green stuff.


Matt Shifman, NY State of Racing (@andyscoggin)


Winner: #11 Fact Finding


On the board: #3 Let’s Get Loud, #10 Souper Tapit


Longshot I like: #2 Lunaire 


Analysis: The English Channel attracted a mixed bag of runners that includes horses that were briefly on the Kentucky Derby trail, some of which have not yet run on the grass. Fact Finding won three in a row to start his career and then something went amiss in the Sam F. Davis. I think his return in the turf sprint could be pointing to a big effort here.


$70,000 Anoakia Stakes (4:31 p.m. ET at Santa Anita Park)


Jarrod Horak (@jchorak)


Winner: #5 Steph Being Steph


On the board: #1 Chatty, #4 Just a Smidge


Longshot I like: #5 Steph Being Steph


Analysis: Steph Being Steph showed marked improvement in her Los Al graduation run Sept 8 and the 2-3 finishers from that heat were next out winners. An outside stalking trip is expected.

Casey Laughter, The Tattooed Tracksider (@writingcasey)

Winner: #4 Just a Smidge


On the Board: #3 Artistic Diva, #5 Steph Being Steph


Longshot I like: #1 Chatty


Analysis: Just a Smidge has run the fastest of all entries by getting an 80 on her debut. She hasn't placed since, but she has the right trainer, jockey, and pedigree to get back to winning form.


Jasen Mangrum, Handicapper’s Corner (@Cappercorner)

Winner: #4 Just a Smidge

On the board: #1 Chatty, #3 Artistic Diva

Longshot I like: None

Analysis: Look for Just a Smidge to sit off a contested early pace, while taking the blinkers off, dropping in class and cutting back to a sprint for Bob Baffert. Chatty appears to be the speed of the speed, but has never raced past 5 1/2 furlongs and draws the dreaded rail going 6 1/2 furlongs.

Matt Scott, 55,000 Furlongs to the Finish

Winner: #4 Just A Smidge

On the board: #1 Chatty

Analysis: Blinkers come off and a drop in class will hopefully see her return to the form for Just a Smidge's maiden. Including a reduction in distance and the outside trip, I like her chance.

$125,000 Dowager Stakes (4:57 p.m. ET at Keeneland)


Jeffrey Byrnes, Byrnzzze's Corner (@jeffbyrnes96)


Winner: #7 Apple Betty 


On the board: #2 Lottie, #5 Daring Duchess 


Longshot I like: #10 Grateful


Analysis: Apple Betty is in great form heading into this race. The full sister to 2013 Breeders’ Cup Turf winner Magician comes off a 4th in the Waya Stakes at Saratoga. Apple Betty made her U.S debut in this race one year ago and finished 2nd. This is a course that she likes and is facing a field that isn't as tough as she has been raced all year, such as  Dacita, Hawksmoor, and Sea Calisi. Apple Betty also won the River Memories going 1 1/2 earlier this year, so distance is right up her wheelhouse. Apple Betty's pedigree and stamina will get her to the wire first in the Dowager. 


Jarrod Horak (@jchorak)


Winner: #2 Lottie


On the board: #10 Grateful, #6 Promotional


Longshot I like: #3 Place des Vosges


Analysis: Lottie is fresh and gets pace to chase in the paper race. She was in the frame in four straight prior to her last and beat today's favorite Grateful at Belmont June 2.

Casey Laughter, The Tattooed Tracksider (@writingcasey)


Winner: #7 Apple Betty (IRE)


On the Board: #2 Lottie,  #10 Grateful


Longshot I like: #5 Daring Duchess


Analysis: A 1 1/2-mile race is always somewhat difficult to work on, but Apple Betty have won at the distance, is bred for it, and has run well at Keeneland before — all things I want to see from my pick.


Jasen Mangrum, Handicapper’s Corner (@Cappercorner)


Winner: #2 Lottie

On the board: #6 Promotional, #10 Grateful

Longshot I like: #6 Promotional

Analysis: Lottie loves the distance and will have plenty of pace to run into. Promotional’s two best speed figures were at the distance, and she tends to run her best races off a layoff. Likely favorite Grateful finished ahead of War Flag last out, who came back to win the Grade 1 Flower Bowl at Belmont.

Matt Scott, 55,000 Furlongs to the Finish

Winner: #2 Lottie


On the board: #3 Place des Vosges


Longshot I like: #6 Promotional


Analysis: The only thing that should stand in Lottie's way to win is the wall of speed horses backing up down the lane. Watch out for Promotional, another closer who runs well off the layoff and has been working well into this race.


Matt Shifman, NY State of Racing (@andyscoggin)

Winner: #2 Lottie

On the board: #5 Daring Duchess, #6 Promotional

Longshot I like: #8 Polar Vortex

Analysis: The 12-furlong Dowager comes up as a turf contest loaded with horses that like to run on or near the lead, thus the closers should have an ideal setup. The best of them appears to be the Graham Motion runner, Lottie. Can Trainer Tim Glynshaw continue his magical run with Polar Vortex? She would be another very big price.

 

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