BetPTC.com / Weekend Stakes Preview / Ed Meyer
Race #9 – The G3 Mineshaft – 1 1/16 – 5:25 pm EDT
BetPTC.com Selections / #5 – Lone Sailor / #9 – Flameaway / #13 – Quip
#5 Lone Sailor comes from the Thom Amoss barn and they are winning at a 21% clip. He has been off for three months and ships in from CD. His last effort was in the BC Classic and had an eventful trip tossing in a 7 wide dud. Regular rider James Graham back in the saddle and sports a bullet to get ready. He is 2 for 3 ITM at FG and looks prepared for a sharp effort. #9 Flameaway is a speedy son of Scat Daddy who has been on the shelf for five months. Tyler Gafflione in the irons and was a beaten favorite last out at Parx where trainer Mark Casse comes back to score 25%. Tyler will send from the gate break and be tough to catch if left alone to his own. His early turn can be effective as Gafflione wins 21% with speed type runners. #13 Quip is making his 7th career start off a 9 month layoff. Luis Saez has the mount and can be forwardly placed from the start. After getting bested in the Preakness he is looking to get his 2019 campaign on track. The bullet work at Payson may be a great sign of things to some and a little maturity can make him a new runner starting off the year.
Race #10 – The G3 FG Handicap – 1 1/8 on the turf – 5:57 pm EDT
BetPTC.com Selections / #6 – First Premio / #7 – Combatant / #9 – Synchrony
#6 First Premio is a son of Pure Prize for the red hot Mark Casse barn winning 25%. He is 2 for 2 ITM over the course and 4 for 5 ITM on the sod. B.J. Hernandez in the irons and he is winning at 38% this meet. This is his second off the shelf and steps back up in class. The Big Easy may be his kickoff point for the 2019 campaign. #7 Combatant has Jose Ortiz in the irons for Steve Asmussen. This son of Scat Daddy is only 1 for 4 ITM on the green and has faced some tough guys in his past. His dam Border Dispute has 9 starters, 8 winners, and 5 turf winners to her credit. There may be some hidden nuggets of gold with this runner once they hit the weeds. #9 Synchrony has Jersey Joe Bravo in the driver’s seat and this son of Tapit is a perfect 3 for 3 on the FG sod. He was the beaten chalk in the G2 Seabiscuit and was forced to steady 4 wide in the lane. He is 10 for 11 ITM on the weeds and is bred to relish the sod and distance.
Race #11 – The G2 Rachel Alexander – 1 1/16 – 6:29 pm EDT
BetPTC.com Selections / #3 – Serengeti Empress / #10 – Chasing Yesterday / #4 – Positive Spirit
#3 Serengeti Empress is a speedy daughter of Altercation and been away for three months in the BC Juvenile Fillies. She has a powerful turn of foot and her works have shown a new campaign plan. Ever since the Ellis Park victory, she has looked bright and happy. Catch her if you can. #10 Chasing Yesterday has Drayden Van Dyke in the saddle for Bob Baffert and is looking for her 4th straight win. This daughter of Tapit has 5 starts and 4 wins. She is a perfect style as a closer and should relish the early pace in here. #4 Positive Spirit has the services of Manny Franco and looks to duplicate off a strong 10 length win in the G2 Demoiselle at Aqueduct. She is 4 for 4 ITM lifetime and looks to be starting to find herself. A perfect stalker who should sit just off the lead may be dangerous. Her dam Above Perfection has 9 starters and 8 wins to her credit.
Race #12 – The G2 Risen Star – 1 1/16 – 7:02 pm EDT
BetPTC.com Selections / #6 – Hog Creek Hustle / #14 – War of Will / #13 – Kingly
# 6 Hog Creek Hustle is a Vickie Foley trainee and is 4 for 5 ITM lifetime. This colt has shown glimpses of very good and it is only a matter of time before he gets it all together. He is a strong late closer and his dam Candy Fortune has 2 starters with 2 winners. Florent Geroux has the call and is 2 for 2 ITM over the FG oval. This colt may be ready to get it all together this weekend. #14 War of Will is a son of War Front for trainer Mark Casse. Ever since coming off the turf he has shown big improvement. He is looking for his third straight win and 2nd in a row at FG. Tyler Gafflione in the saddle and is a perfect stalker looking to keep his record perfect at the distance. #13 Kingly is a lightly raced son of Tapit. He was a beaten chalk last out in the slop and his dam has 4 starters with 4 winners. He has the look of a front runner who will get better very quickly. Baffert is off to the races winning 31% this year. The price is right and if he fires he’ll light up the tote board.