Sept. 5 Insights

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency HALF TO BOBBY'S KITTEN DEBUTS IN KY 2nd-KYD, $135K, Msw, 2yo, f, 6 1/2f, 1:53 p.m. Joe Sharp unveils MISTHAVEN (IRE) (Candy Ride {Arg}) in this first baby race of this boutique meet. SF Bloodstock purchased Celestial Woods (Forestry) for $350,000 with this filly in utero at the 2018 FTKNOV sale. She is also the dam of GI Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint winner and millionaire Bobby's Kitten (Kitten's Joy) and MGSW Camelot Kitten (Kitten's Joy). TJCIS PPs PLETCHER UNVEILS PRICEY CLASSIC EMPIRE FILLY AT THE...

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A 'Pulsating' Finish In the Lucky Coin

A troubled fifth in the GIII Troy S. over this course and distance last August, Pulsate (Speightstown) settled for second in this event just shy of 12 months ago before hitting the shelf. The chestnut resumed following a 10-month absence to just miss to the ill-fated Fiya (Friesan Fire) in a hand-timed Belmont turf sprint on Independence Day and was a latest fourth in a rare appearance over the local main track Aug. 6. Away without incident, Pulsate landed in third position early on as Noble Emotion (Noble Mission {GB})...

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Forza Di Oro Gets Acid Test in Jockey Club Gold Cup

Don Alberto Stable's Forza Di Oro (Speightstown) has shown considerable talent in six starts dating back to his debut in September of 2019, and he'll finally get his chance at the highest level as a likely favorite in Saturday's 10-furlong GI Jockey Club Gold Cup, being run at Saratoga for the first time in the race's storied history. Running a huge race after a disastrous start to be second at 31-1 in his unveiling, the homebred graduated next out, but took a major step backward when finishing eighth, beaten 24...

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Second Chances: Don't Wait Up

In this continuing series, TDN's Senior Editor Steve Sherack catches up with the connections of promising maidens to keep on your radar. Nominated to Monday's GI Hopeful S. after a too-good-to-lose second on debut at Saratoga Aug. 14, Don't Wait Up (c, 2, Upstart--Lovely Marissa, by Proud Citizen) will instead return in a maiden special weight on the closing day card. Given a 7-1 chance to win at first asking going six furlongs, he was away last of 10 from post nine after veering in and bumping with a rival...

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Saturday's Insights: OBS April Topper Must Overcome High Draw

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 10th-DMR, $70K, Msw, 2yo, 5 1/2f, post time: 9:07 p.m. ET CORNICHE (Quality Road) topped this year's OBS April Sale on a bid of $1.5 million from Peter Fluor and K.C. Weiner's Speedway Stable and has drawn gate 10 as the 9-5 favorite Saturday at Del Mar. The son of six-time GSW and GI Matriarch S. runner-up Wasted Tears (Najran) was led out unsold on a bid of $385,000 at KEESEP last year, but turned in a smooth sales breeze in :10 flat to become...

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Test Runner-Up Faces Array of New Shooters in Prioress

Heavily favored on the morning line, Live Oak Plantation's GI Longines Test S. runner-up Souper Sensational (Curlin) will likely need to run that race or better as she faces an intriguing field of emerging sophomore filly sprinters in Saturday's GII Prioress S. at Saratoga. Named a 'TDN Rising Star' for an easy debut graduation last September at Woodbine, the $725,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga buy quickly backed that designation up with a four-length conquest of the Glorious Song S. Runner-up in the Silverbulletday S., she fell off the GI Longines Kentucky Oaks...

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Returning Constitution Colt Meets Brown Pair in Saranac

Impressive through his first two races before disappointing in his third try, Repole Stable's Never Surprised (Constitution) will return off a seven-plus month layoff to face a formidable pair of Chad Brown rivals and three other challengers in Saturday's GIII Saranac S. at Saratoga. Debuting over six furlongs on the Aqueduct grass last November, Never Surprise stalked the pace, pounced at the quarter pole and drew clear in the lane for a 3 1/2-length success, earning a strong 89 Beyer. He bettered that number by one point when going wire...

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Tough to Get Past War Like Goddess in Flower Bowl

She keeps getting better, and Saturday, George Krikorian's War Like Goddess (English Channel) will get her first chance at a Grade I victory as a likely overwhelming favorite in the 1 3/8-mile GI Flower Bowl S., which will be run at Saratoga for the first time after a 43-year run at Belmont. Bought for just $30,000 at OBS June in 2019, the bay debuted going nine furlongs on the Churchill turf last September at Churchill and rallied from second-last to take over late, and she validated that explosive late rally...

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With Five Days Left In Meet, Saratoga Sets New Handle Record

At the completion of Wednesday's card, all-sources handle for the Saratoga meet stood at $709,437,410, which was enough to set an all-time handle mark for the historic race meet. After Wednesday, there were still five days left to the meet, which means the final handle number will shatter all records. The previous handle record was set in 2019, when $705,343,949 was wagered. With fans not allowed on-track last year due to COVID-19 concerns, the 2020 handle came in at $702.5 million. "The record-breaking handle numbers reflect the quality of racing...

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Silver State Possible For Woodward Or Kelso

Winchell Thoroughbreds and Willis Horton Racing's Silver State (Hard Spun), who had a six-race winning streak snapped with a third-place effort behind Knicks Go (Paynter) in the GI Whitney S. Aug. 7, going remain at the nine-furlong distance for the GI Woodward S. Oct. 2 or could cut back to Belmont's one-turn mile for the GII Kelso S. Sept. 25. The 4-year-old has already shown an affinity for the latter track and trip, having made the GI Hill 'n' Dale Metropolitan H. the last of his half-dozen victories in a...

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Tapit Colt Takes it to the Bank in With Anticipation

Coinage (c, 2, Tapit--Bar of Gold, by Medaglia d'Oro) switched to grass in style with a wire-to-wire upset victory at 6-1 in Wednesday's GIII With Anticipation S. at Saratoga. The chestnut, drawn widest of all in post six, was sent to the front by Junior Alvarado. The New York-bred showed the way through fractions of :25.66 and :50.65, and had plenty left for the stretch to win going away by two lengths. Saratoga debut winner Portfolio Company (Kitten's Joy), a handful for Irad Ortiz, Jr. throughout the 1 1/16-miles journey,...

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Taking Stock: A Weekend to Remember

Everything that top-class racing should be was on display over the last weekend. The six Grade l races at Saratoga on Saturday featured most of the leading horses in each division except older dirt males, and as a group they didn't disappoint, did they? Nor did their trainers. One race after another was dramatically decided at or close to the wire, and some of the runners-ups, including the Steve Asmussen-trained Midnight Bourbon (Tiznow) in the Gl Runhappy Travers S. and the Todd Pletcher-conditioned Life is Good (Into Mischief) in the...

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