Weekend Stakes Preview 6/26

Mother Goose Stakes tops a stakes triple at Belmont on Saturday 

The Grade 1 Mother Goose is the first of three stakes Saturday afternoon at Belmont Park.   The Mother Goose has been carded early in the card, likely because Untapable figures to be a single on many people’s tickets.  Untapable is coming off three straight dominant wins, the most recent of which was the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks.  She towers above this field as she towers probably every three year old filly in the country right now. She will be trying Belmont Park for the first time on Saturday in the Mother Goose.  Her main competition could be Stopcharginmaria who is coming off a Grade 2 win in the Black-Eyed Susan.  She rallied from off the pace that day but look for her maybe to try and get an early run on Untapable.  Princess Violet could get some attention at the windows even though she’s only an allowance winner.  Her last out win was a sharp score at Belmont and garnered her a nice speed figure so many players might look at her as an alternative to Untapable, who will be a miniscule priced favorite.

The Grade 2 New York Stakes features recent Grade 2 winner Riposte who will be looking to make it two in a row at this level.   She went wire to wire in the mile and three eighths Sheepshead Bay Stakes, but with the addition of Viva Rafaela to this field, she could have to come from off the pace on Saturday.  Tannery is a Grade 1 winner and drew the inside post.  She just won an overnight stakes at Monmouth last time out and returns to Belmont where she’s a Grade 2 winner.  The $100,000 Manilla Stakes and features Bashart who will be making his first start since a sixth place finish in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf.  He was a Grade 2 winner at Saratoga and this seems like a logical spot for him to make his seasonal debut. Selections for the Mother Goose

  1. Untapable
  2. Stopchargingmaria
  3. Princess Violet

Longshot: House Rules Selections for the New York Stakes

  1. Tannery
  2. Inimitable Romanee
  3. Riposte

Longshot: Scampering Selections for the Manilla Stakes

  1. Long on Value
  2. So Lonesome
  3. Bashart

Longshot: Canzoni 

Gold Cup at Santa Anita headlines huge So. Cal Saturday 

Game on Dude is looking to win his third Gold Cup, but this will be the first time he’ll be trying it at Santa Anita as the Grade 1 $500,000 Gold Cup at Santa Anita headlines a huge card.  The race formerly known as the Hollywood Gold Cup is now at Santa Anita, but features the same 10 furlong trip.  Game on Dude is 8 for 11 at Santa Anita and 6 for 12 at the distance and will once again be ridden by Mike Smith.  Game on Dude is looking to rebound from a loss in the Charles Town Classic to Imperative who is also in the Gold Cup on Saturday.  Game on Dude beat Imperative by seventeen lengths the last time they hooked up at Santa Anita, and with Game on Dude, the pace is always the key.  Fury Kapkori looks to be the main pace rival for Game on Dude and Fury Kapkori has been in great form with wins in four of his last five races.  He was second last out to Clubhouse Ride in the Californian.  Clubhouse Ride has never been a win machine but he will often put in a run and get up into the trifecta.  Lideris is a Peruvian import who has been saddled with 124 pounds of weight, so obviously the race office thinks he’s a big player.

The Grade 1 Triple Bend Handicap features older sprinters at seven furlongs.  Grade 1 winner Sahara Sky will look to get back on track after a very dull seventh place finish in the Churchill Downs Handicap.  Returning to Santa Anita could be helpful as he’s 5 for 8 at the Southern Cal oval.  In fact the last time he was going seven furlongs at Santa Anita he was turning in a huge rally to get up and win the San Carlos Stakes.  Cyclometer won the local prep for the Triple Bend, the Los Angeles Handicap in very impressive fashion.  In fact it was a career best effort that if he can repeat and work out a similar trip he could be very tough.

The Grade 2 Royal Heroine drew ten runners including Parranda who drew a tough outside post.  She won the Grade 3 Wilshire Stakes and was a late closing third in the Grade 1 Gamely last time out.  Stormy Lucy and the red-hot Joe Talamo will also be flying late.  The Grade 3 Senorita Stakes drew eleven runners and looks to go around Rovenna who has turned in three consecutive dominant stakes wins.  She has however been winning against state-bred stakes competition, so the jump up to Grade 3 competition is certainly a jump in class. Selections for the Gold Cup

  1. Game on Dude
  2. Imperative
  3. Clubhouse Ride

Longshot: Majestic Harbor Selections for the Senorita Stakes

  1. Famous Alice
  2. Rovenna
  3. Morning Fix

Longshot: Disregarded Selections for the Triple Bend

  1. Cyclometer
  2. Sahara Sky
  3. Wine Police

Longshot: Declassify Selections for the Royal Heroine

  1. Stormy Lucy
  2. Parranda
  3. Wishing Gate

Longshot: Kathleen Rose

This weekend is The Iowa Festival of Racing at Prairie Meadows

Friday and Saturday are the two biggest racing days of the season at Prairie Meadows in suburban Des Moines, Iowa, as the the track presents the Iowa Festival of Racing.  Three stakes races will be run on Friday and Saturday, with Saturday night being the big card featuring the Grade 3 Cornhusker, the Grade 3 Iowa Derby and the Grade 3 Iowa Oaks.  The Cornhusker Stakes drew a very solid cast of eight older runners including favorite Golden Ticket.  Golden Ticket has gotten a reputation over the years as finding a way to not win very much.  But he sure was winning in his only attempt at Prairie Meadows, an eight length romp in the Prairie Mile.  Ground Transport will look to rebound from a dull performance in the Grade 2 Brooklyn Handicap, but he should appreciate a cutback from the marathon mile and one half trip last time.

The Iowa Derby will feature Vicar’s In Trouble who will make his return to the races after a nineteenth place finish in the Kentucky Derby.  He was very solid in Louisiana but will have to rebound after that debacle.  Embellishing Bob won the Derby Trial two starts back and ran into a buzzsaw in Bayern last time out so he should appreciate the massive class relief in here.  The Grade 3 Iowa Oaks drew nine runners including Grade 1 winner Ria Antonia and Grade 3 winner Sugar Shock.  Ria Antonia rose to prominence winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, but has struggled as a three year old including a last place finish in the Preakness.  Julien Leparoux will be making his first ride aboard Ria Antonia on Saturday.  Sugar Shock comes in off a nice win in the Panther Stakes, which is the top local prep for the Iowa Oaks.

Three overnight stakes headline the Friday night card.  Racing from Prairie Meadows gets underway on Friday and Saturday night at 7:30pm EST. Selections for the Cornhusker

  1. Golden Ticket
  2. Coin Broker
  3. Carve

Longshot: Lent Selections for the Iowa Derby

  1. Smack Smack
  2. Embellishing Bob
  3. Vicar’s In Trouble

Longshot: Six Spot Selections for the Iowa Oaks

  1. Thank You Marylou
  2. Sugar Shock
  3. Size

Longshot: Dream Spinner

Saturday Stakes Action at


Race 8                  CTBA Derby                             5:55pm EST


Race 9                  Chicago Handicap                     6:00pm EST


Race 4                  Mother Goose Stakes                2:53pm EST

Race 8                  Manila Stakes                           4:57pm EST

Race 9                  New York Stakes                      5:28pm EST

Churchill Downs

Race 6                  Bashford Manor Stakes              3:16pm EST

Race 7                  Kelly’s Landing Stakes                3:47pm EST

Race 8                  Firecracker Stakes                     4:18pm EST


Race 7                  Alabama Futurity                      9:45pm EST

Race 9                  Miss Polly Classic                        10:35pm EST

Gulfstream Park

Race 9                  Quality Road Stakes                  5:33pm EST

Monmouth Park

Race 11                Lighthouse Stakes                    5:43pm EST


Race 8                  Oak Tree Distaff                       7:52pm EST

Prairie Meadows

Race 7                  Iowa Oaks                               10:11pm EST

Race 8                  Iowa Derby                             10:43pm EST

Race 9                  Cornhusker Handicap             11:15pm EST

Santa Anita

Race 5                  Royal Heroine Stakes                 6:00pm EST

Race 6                  Triple Bend Handicap                6:30pm EST

Race 7                  Senorita Stakes                        7:00pm EST

Race 8                  Gold Cup at Santa Anita            7:30pm EST


Race 8                  My Dear Stakes                        4:40pm EST


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