BetPTC Weekend Stakes Preview

Virginia Derby tops a massive weekend of racing

The Virginia Derby, a $500,000 Grade 2 event will headline a big card from Colonial Downs that gets underway Saturday night at 5pm EST.  Ten runners are entered, including the 1-2-3 finishers from the Penn Mile, Rydilluc, Charming Kitten and Jack Milton.  Both are stretching out to ten furlongs in this spot, however many of these runners are making their first try at this longer distance.  Rydilluc has never lost on the grass and employs lots of early speed, which will allow Edgar Prado to place his runner where he needs to.  Charming Kitten generally likes to come from further back, but in the Penn Mile he found himself closer than usual.  With a bigger field here, expect him to sit back further off the pace.  Jack Milton is another who likes to come from off the pace, but he is so lightly raced that he still has lots of potential upside to improve and make a serious run at this race.  Draw Two might be an interesting new shooter to the race, as he has two straight impressive grass wins up at Belmont Park.  Redwood Kitten also runs for Ken and Sarah Ramsey, who own Charming Kitten, and he could be the speedster who battles Rydilluc and sets it up for his stablemate.

The Virginia Oaks is carded as the 6th race, going off just before the Derby, and came up with a field of eleven drawn in to go.  The Oaks features Praia who was just second in the Grade 3 Regret Stakes behind Kitten’s Dumplings who would be a massive favorite in this spot if she was in the race.  Blossom’s Trail is a perfect three for three and also deserves a look, and she’ll be making her first stakes try and her first start for Gary Contessa who claimed the horse last time out for $62,500.  A trio of ungraded stakes preceed the two big events, carded as races three through five.  First post at Colonial on Saturday Night is 5pm EST. Selections for the Virginia Derby

  1. Charming Kitten
  2. Rydilluc
  3. Jack Milton

Longshot: Draw Two Selections for the Virginia Oaks

  1. Praia
  2. Blossom’s Trail
  3. Three Hearts

Longshot: Hold Our Destiny

Meadowlands Pace part of huge harness night in New Jersey

The Meadowlands will showcase one of the biggest nights of the year in the sport of harness racing on Saturday night, as Meadowlands Pace Night has arrived.  Over $2 million in purses will be paid out as some of the top trotters and pacers will be competing in a card that gets underway at 7:15pm EST.  The $635,000 Meadowlands Pace is the feature event and goes off as race 10 on the card.  Captaintreacherous, harness racing’s biggest star is the headliner in the Pace and has been having a banner year.  After being named Pacer of the Year as a two year old, he’s five for five this season, including a huge win in the North American Cup at Mohawk.  Tim Tetrick will drive the ‘Captain’ who will break from post 5.  Sunshine Beach looks to be maybe the main challenger, as he won last week’s elimination in a very speedy 1:48.  John Campbell will drive Odds on Equuleus who is 4/1 on the morning line and figures to be a contender.

The William Haughton will go as the 9th race and features recent world record tying Warrawee Needy, who stopped the clock in 1:46 and 4/5 last week on his way to an elimination win.

There is a $100,000 Guaranteed Pace Pick 4 that cover races 7 through 10, ending in the Meadowlands Pace.  A $20,000 Pick 5 kicks off the card in races 1 through 5 and offers a $.50 minimum.  Race 3 through 6 is the early Pick 4 with a $30,000 guaranteed Pick 4. Selections for the Meadowlands Pace

  1. Captaintreacherous
  2. Sunshine Beach
  3. Rockin Amadeus

Longshot: Beach Memories Selections for the William Haughton

  1. Sweet Lou
  2. Warrawee Needy
  3. Golden Receiver

Longshot: Pet Rock

Saturday is Million Preview Day at Arlington Park

Arlington Million Day is always one of the best days on the racing calendar each year, and Saturday features four big stakes events, all preps for the big races on Arlington Million Day next month.  The $200,000 Grade 3 Arlington Handicap is the final local prep for the Arlington Million and has drawn a couple of serious runners, including Rahystada and Dullahan.  Rahystrada is the defending champ in this race and was third in the Arlington Million last year and is no stranger to racing at Arlington Park on the big days.  He hasn’t won a race since last year’s Arlington Handicap, but when he fires, he’s always dangerous.  Dullahan will have to prove he can come back from Dubai and fire well, as he was trounced in a pair of starts over there.  The American Derby is a prep for the Secretariat Stakes for three year olds and drew eleven entrants, including the top three finishers from the Arlington Classic.  General Election won that day and it was his first try over the grass.  He seems to be getting better later in his three year old season and certainly warrants attention.  Admiral Kitten was so far back in that Arlington Classic, but closed up to get within a length at the wire and will get the riding services of Julien Leparoux this time out.

The Modesty Handicap is a prep for the Beverly D. and features eight runners.  Colonial Flag has been relegated the high weight and is a Grade 3 winner.  She was 3rd in the Mint Julep Stakes last time out.  Strathnaver is making just her fourth career start in North America, but she won her first two and flopped last time in a Grade 2 event.  She’ll look to get back on track and Saturday will be ridden by Eddie Castro.  Dark Cove should be a massive favorite in the Stars N Stripes Handicap and will be tough to beat if he runs his best race. Selections for the Arlington Handicap

  1. Rahystrada
  2. Najjaar
  3. Coalport

Longshot: Temeraine Selections for the American Derby

  1. Admiral Kitten
  2. General Election
  3. Formidable Heart

Longshot: Procurement Selections for the Modesty

  1. Dame Marie
  2. Colonial Flag
  3. Strathnaver

Longshot: Artemus Kitten Selections for the Stars N Stripes

  1. Dark Cove
  2. Suntracer
  3. Ioya Bigtime

Longshot: Live IN Joy

Grade 1 American Oaks headlines final Hollywood Saturday 

Hollywood Park will close out the meet this weekend, and the Grade 1 American Oaks is a worthy conclusion to the final spring/summer meeting ever at the track.  Grade 1 winner Emolient will make her first start west of the Mississippi as she will make her turf debut. She went all the way in the Ashland Stakes at Keeneland, but then threw a clunker in the Black-Eyed Susan.  Many of the runner’s she’ll face are coming out of the Grade 2 Honeymoon Handicap, including Sarach, who was the wire to wire winner that day.  Sarach won for Martin Garcia who was getting aboard her for the first time in the Honeymoon.  He’ll be back on Saturday, and with Sarach drawing the rail, don’t be surprised to see them send right to the front.  Scarlet Strike was the big favorite in the Honeymoon and came flying late, but couldn’t get to Sarach.  She’ll have an extra furlong this time out to try and real in Sarach, and that added distance could make her dangerous.

The Grade 2 A Gleam features Grade 1 winning Teddy’s Promise, who is coming off a loss in an overnight stakes.  Teddy’s Promise is 5 for 10 at Hollywood Park, but will be facing Grade 1 winners like Byrama, Book Review, and multiple Grade 1 placed Reneesgotzip.  It should be a great race.  The Betfair Hollywood card on Saturday also features a pair of races for the juveniles, the Landaluce and the Hollywood Juvenile Championship. Selections for the American Oaks

  1. Scarlet Strike
  2. Sarach
  3. Emotional Kitten

Longshot: Topic Selections for the A Gleam

  1. Book Review
  2. Teddy’s Promise
  3. Byrama

Longshot: Winding Way Selections for the Hollywood Juvenile

  1. Alpine Luck
  2. Willie B. Awesome
  3. Bond Holder

Longhshot: Knock Em Flat Selections for the Landaluce

  1. South Sound
  2. She’s a Tiger
  3. On the Backstreets

Longshot: Pleasant Miss

Saturday Stakes Action at

Arapahoe Park

Race 7                  CTBA Lassie Stakes                   5:30pm EST

Race 8                  Rocky Mountain Derby               5:55pm EST

Arlington Park

Race 7                  Stars and Stripes Stakes            4:55pm EST

Race 8                  Modesty Handicap                     5:25pm EST

Race 9                  American Derby                         5:55pm EST

Race 10               Arlington Handicap                    6:25pm EST

Race 11               Coach Jimi Lee Stakes               6:55pm EST

Betfair Hollywood

Race 2                  Landaluce Stakes                      4:30pm EST

Race 4                  Hollywood Juvenile Championship5:30pm EST

Race 8                  A Gleam Handicap                    7:35pm EST

Race 9                  American Oaks                         8:00pm EST

Colonial Downs

Race 3                  Chenery Stakes                        5:54pm EST

Race 4                  Tippett Stakes                         6:22pm EST

Race 5                  Kitten’s Joy Stakes                   6:50pm EST

Race 6                  Virginia Oaks                            7:28pm EST

Race 7                  Virginia Derby                           8:10pm EST

Delaware Park

Race 8                  Delaware Oaks                         4:45pm EST

Race 9                  Robert Dick Memorial               5:15pm EST

Evangeline Downs

Race 9                  Oak Hill Stakes                         10:00pmEST


Race 8                  Cellars Shiraz Stakes                 4:45pm EST


Race 8                  California Governor’s H.             8:15pm EST


Race 7                  George Lewis Memorial              3:55pm EST


Race 8                  Passing Mood Stakes                 4:22pm EST

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