Woodbine Mile 2019: Odds and analysis for Saturday's race

September 11, 2019 01:50pm
With the presence of Got Stormy, Saturday's Grade 1, $1 million Woodbine Mile does pack at least one punch in terms of star power. Got Stormy defeated males to win the Fourstardave Handicap (G1) at Saratoga, and if she wins again, she will draw plenty of comparisons to Mark Casse’s previous female star Tepin.  
But the race is not a lock for Got Stormy, as there is more than one talented turf miler in this spot capable of derailing her momentum. Also, female stars tend to get over-bet in open races due to hype and intrigue of seeing them face males.  
The Woodbine Mile is carded as Race 9 with post time set for 5:42 p.m. ET. Here's a look at the field with morning line odds.
1. El Tormenta, 20-1 (Stormy Atlantic – Gail Cox/Eurico da Silva – 12: 3-3-0): His fourth in the local Play the King Stakes (G2) came with some traffic trouble in the stretch. But he also finished fourth in the Highlander Stakes (G1), and the winner, Wet your Whistle, and third-place White Flag both failed to hit the board in the Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint (G3) last weekend. He appears a bit outclassed. Toss 
2. Lucullan, 8-1 (Hard Spun – Kiaran McLaughlin/Luis Saez) – 11: 5-2-2): With two wins in two 2019 starts, he is in sharp form. But the quality of those fields is questionable. He nosed out Sacred Life in Saratoga's Lure Stakes, and that one ran a modest second to Qurbaan in the Bernard Baruch Stakes (G2). Toss.  
3. Silent Poet, 15-1 (Silent Name – Nicholas Gonzalez/Gary Boulanger – 11: 6-3-1): This 4-year-old gelding is in sharp local form with two wins in two starts this year, including the Play the King Stakes (G2). He only earned a 115 TimeformUS Speed Figure, though, despite running seven furlongs in 1:19.22. Plus, the Woodbine Mile is a tough field with outside shippers. With that said, Mr Havercamp won the Play the King last year and finished second in this race. Use underneath. 
4. Synchrony, 6-1 (Tapit– Michael Stidham/Flavien Prat – 23: 9-4-6): Watch the odd trip this one experienced in the local King Edward Stakes (G2). In the opening quarter, he showed some speed in fifth and got within two lengths before falling back to seventh and 5 ¼ lengths back. Yet, after the turn he rallied back to win. Out of the four one-mile turf races on the card, Synchrony ran the fastest time by slightly over a second. The long Woodbine stretch might help him especially. The pick. 
5. Got Stormy, 8-5 (Get Stormy – Mark Casse/Tyler Gaffalione – 15: 7-1-3): It is hard to knock the Fourstardave win. While Gidu went crazy on the lead and led by 11 lengths at point, Got Stormy displayed good tactical speed in fourth. On the far turn, the early stalking position allowed her to capitalize first on the collapsing pace. She also loves the one-mile distance, as all her subpar races came when trying longer routes. Will bettors get a fair price, though? Win contender. 
6. Awesometank, 8-1 (Intense Focus – William Haggas/John Egan– 15: 5-5-0): She made a strong impression in her North American debut, finishing second in the Beverly D. Stakes (G1) to Sistercharlie. While Awesometank lost by three lengths, she also did more pace work by running in second and chasing the rabbit, Thais. She might get ignored on the board with another filly, Got Stormy, present. Live longshot. 
7. Raging Bull, 3-1 (Dark Angel – Chad Brown/Joel Rosario – 11: 5-2-1): This 4-year-old colt capped off a successful 2018 campaign with a win in the Hollywood Derby (G1) and looked destined for another great season. But his 2019 form is disappointing with four straight losses since the Del Mar victory. Granted, he recently finished second to Got Stormy in the Fourstardave Handicap (G1) at Saratoga. But he also finished 2 ½ lengths behind and that is a sizable margin. Use underneath. 

8. American Guru, 30-1 (Unbridled’s Song – Michael Doyle/Rafael Hernandez – 6: 4-1-0): The flat fifth in a local July 21 allowance race is fine, as he came off a big layoff. He then won on Aug. 11 in gate-to-wire fashion, albeit with only a 109 TimeformUS Speed Figure. Even though he displayed consistent form at Belmont last year (in allowance races), he needs to show more for this Grade 1. Toss.
9. Made You Look, 12-1 (More Than Ready – Chad Brown/Luis Contreras – 14: 4-2-1): This horse is a money burner. His last win came in May of 2018 when he took a Belmont optional claimer. This year, he finished fourth in the Forbidden Apple Stakes (G3) and fifth in the Fourstardave Handicap. As usual, he secured good position and got first run in the Fourstardave. But he proved no match for Got Stormy. Why would anything change in this spot? Toss. 
10. Emmaus, 20-1 (Invincible Spirit – Conor Murphy/Channing Hill – 11: 3-3-0): He finished second by a neck to El Tormenta in the Connaught Cup (G2) and fourth by two lengths to Synchrony in the King Edward Stakes. The two-length margin to Synchrony is deceiving, as Synchrony got an odd trip and lost significant ground. El Tormenta is a toss in this race. On paper, this horse appears too slow to factor in, too. Toss. 
11. Admiralty Pier, 30-1 (English Channel – Barbara Minshall/Patrick Husbands – 13: 3-1-2): After picking this horse in the Play the King off a troubled trip two starts ago, he got a clear run and disappointed with a flat fifth-place finish. Yet, the connections want to take a shot in the Woodbine Mile against tougher horses. No chance. Toss. 
Conclusion: Because most of the public will look for another Tepin in Got Stormy, it feels logical to play against her, or at least use other horses alongside the filly.  
For starters, the other female in the race, Awesometank, is a strong choice with lesser known connections. But I'll side with Synchrony, who ran too well from a visual standpoint in the King Edward to ignore. All he needs is a moderate pace to show his kick.


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