Equidaily Racing Journal

Today's Best Bets

by Seth Merrow

Saratoga Race Course
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Meet Total ... 66-236

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No racing. Dark Day.


There will be an ice-cream eating contest by the silks room starting at 2pm [registration starts at 1pm]. And in today's featured Albany, the 'Big Apple Triple' bonus of $250K is up for grabs -- with Tin Cup Chalice having taken the first two legs earlier this season. It won't be easy with a couple of NY-breds entered today that will be bringing in Triple Crown experience -- Big Truck and Icabad Crane. It should be fun.

Normalize...4YO comeback was impressive and this lightly-raced filly might still have some upside.
My Luckey Penney...OK third at this level last time despite some trouble.
Flibberjibit...Two starts this year have been good and should fit with these.
Soul Violins.

Sneak Peek...Trainer has a high-stat with second-time starters.
Distant Strike...Steady -- but slightly uninspiring works. Breeding intrigues however.
Umbra...Pletcher 2YO going long on turf in debut. Dangerous.

Pretty Carina...Comeback effort was very good. Looks capable of going through the next condition quickly.
Awesome I Am...Could be tough cutting back to sprint off of near-miss in small MTH stake.
Spring Elusion...Also cutting back and showed some nice speed going longer in latest.
Song of Love.

Ardnavagh...Dropped into this condition and just missed last time after having faced better. Another chance today.
On Lake...Better than her record indicates. First time for Serpe today.
Princess Westly...AE lister. Went well at this level in last.
Adorable You.

There Are Rainbows...AE lister. Pletcher first is eligible to come out running.
Warm Springs Girl...Some interesting breeding and OK works.
Consequence...McGaughey not known for first-out wins -- but, like most Phipps runners -- she's regally-bred.
Swirly Girl.
Closing Speed.

Real Quality...Won big when last seen at this level.
Rio Mistico...Trainer going well and this one should be a good fit at this level.
Encinas...Big number win against similar in latest.
Bone Marie.
Rock Lobster.

Tonsina...We'll roll the dice here and look for second-start improvement from the Zito trainee.
Distant Shine...Nice Beyer improvement in second start. Class relief today.
Messa Nera...Also dropping to find a winning level.
Tomlinson Hill.

EIGHTH RACE - Bennington $80K
Zada Belle...Comes out of a good second in a G2.
City Bird...Third start of season and first two were solid.
Be Golden...Only one start last year but has looked good over last few in 2008.
Gem Sleuth.

NINTH RACE - Albany $150K
Tin Cup Chalice...Chasing the $250K bonus after taking the first two legs of the Big Apple Triple. Gets a real test today but might have a pace advantage. The big question mark will be what does Writingonthewall do? If Tin Cup can clear that one early he might take them all the way.
Big Truck...Back with state-breds after facing the best of the division. Over-matched in G1 Ky Derby and perhaps iddn't like the surface at Keeneland. Look for much better today.
Icabad Crane...Ran in the last two legs of the Triple Crown -- including a third in the G1 Preakness.
Almighty silver.

Absolute Heaven...Should be set up to run well in third start of 2008.
Stormy Relations...Seldom runs poorly.
Western Slang...Will appreciate the return to turf.
Bella Attrice.

If we are interested in both halves of an entry -- in event of a scratch -- it is noted that way [in other words, both halves are named]. If only one-half of the entry is named, then we prefer that half and will move to our next pick listed [rather than the other half of the entry] in event of a scratch.

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