Runaway Belmont debut winner Roderick (Into Mischief), scratched out of Friday's deep GII Saratoga Special S., has been tabbed as the 9-5 morning-line favorite in Saturday's GII Best Pal S. at Del Mar.
Roderick crushed a trio of rivals on debut for trainer Wesley Ward on Long Island June 21, including runner-up Zippy Baby (Cairo Prince), who returned to graduate next out at Saratoga.
Purchased by Breeze Easy for $550,000 as a KEESEP yearling, Roderick is a full-brother to GIII Southwest S. winner One Liner and hails from the same female family as Grade I winners Albertus Maximus (Albert the Great) and Daredevil (More Than Ready).
Highly regarded maiden Ambivalent (Constitution), a $550,000 OBSMAR graduate, looks to go one better following a strong second-place finish on debut behind wire-to-wire winner Weston (Hit It a Bomb) going 4 1/2 furlongs at Santa Anita June 21 (Second Chances).
Santa Anita debut winner Herd Immunity (Union Rags) is the lone runner in the field with stakes experience, entering off a well-beaten third in Churchill's GIII Bashford Manor S. June 27.