I thought Flatlined, our play in the Tourist Mile on Wednesday, was going to run by in the last furlong Wednesday, but it was not to be. But Kentucky Downs continues to offer very strong cards, and today’s is no different. An all-stakes pick-4 closes out the card. Let’s take a look.
Race 7 – Ladies Turf – #5 Miss Temple City (1-1) is the deserving favorite, but we weren’t thrilled with her comeback race in the Matchmaker last time. It should be noted that she ran substantially better in the Diana, her first race back after the Ascot trip last year. Our pick is #4 Zipessa (7-2), who in our opinion, is much better going shorter than longer and she will appreciate turning back to a mile. We’ll live and die with those two but Zipessa will be the key to the entire play.
A – 4
B – 5
C – none
Race 8 – Ladies Turf Sprint – Trainer Brendan Walsh is making a very savvy move with #3 Corby (20-1), turning her back out of a mile-70 yard stakes race at Mountaineer into this 6.5 furlong dash. She has some speed and was part of a fast pace last time that collapsed (the two pace rivals finished at the back and one was 3-1) and Corby was just caught in the last furlong. In a tough race, she rates an upset chance at a big price. Of the logicals, we prefer #1 Mississippi Delta (3-1), who made an inside move as the Caress collapsed outside of her last time at Saratoga, but that was going 5.5 furlongs, probably shorter than her best. She has a win over the quirky track (in this race) last year too. #2 Fair Point (7-2) can win but her last race was not good and she might be better going a bit shorter. There are two three-year olds in here: #5 Lull (5-1) and #6 Morticia (9-2). Of the two, we prefer Lull, who ran two good turf sprints last year and ran too good to lose the one-mile San Clemente last time, getting caught late. Morticia has a shot but needs to run faster and she is stretching out a furlong after facing weaker than Lull.
A – 1, 3
B – 5
C – 2, 6
Race 9 – Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint – #1 Commend (4-1) is our top pick, going out for Bill Mott. He had a good trip in his turf sprint allowance win at Saratoga but looked like he won easier than the one-length margin would indicate and he seems to be improving. We also have to use #10 Hogy (5-2), who goes first off the claim for Mike Maker, an outstanding trainer. The distance might be at this limit at this stage, but he’s been facing some tough runners. #5 Boundrant (7-2) could take some money but he’ll be coming from pretty far back and there’s not a ton of pace on paper.
A – 1, 10
Race 10 – Kentucky Turf Cup – This is a wide-open race so we’ll cast a pretty wide net, but our top pick is #11 Taghleeb (5-1), one of four Mike Maker entries. It’s possible he was better at Gulfstream, but he’s had some excuses lately, including two-back in the Arlington Handicap when he got stopped cold. Last time, #1 Postulation (9-2) got the jump on him after inheriting the lead but Postulation ran well and is a definite contender in this race. We’re using #8 Bullards Alley (12-1), who did not run well in the St. Leger (featuring Taghleeb and Postulation), but maybe he made the lead a bit too soon at Woodbine two-back and we liked his race, where he had some traffic against some solid Euros going two-miles in the Belmont Gold Cup. #7 Enterprising (3-1) is the favorite off his solid fourth in the Arlington Million, but that race featured a bunched finish and he has to stretch out from 10 furlongs all the way to 12. We’ll use defensively only. #4 Oscar Nominated (7-2) is going to be a short price but didn’t do much running in his last two starts, granted against better. He could win but figures to be an underlay. We’ll throw in #12 Nessy (20-1) who might be in too tough but ran well in the John’s Call at Saratoga last time behind a very slow pace and a wire to wire winner.
A – 1, 8, 11
B – 4
C – 7, 12
Using DRF TicketMaker – we’ll play the 4A ticket for $1.50, the 3A/1B ticket for $1, and the 2A/2B and 3A/1C ticket for 50-cents. The total play is $56. Good luck!