Historically, the winning profile has been tilted towards speed horses, those with stalking ability versus deep closers. Thirteen of the last twenty-four editions have been won gate-to-wire and 12 by front half stalkers (the 2013 edition ended with a stalker dead heating the tiring leader). Closers have won but three times.
From a running style perspective, four of today’s entrants won their debut on the lead; one other stalked up close. Two entrants won from off the pace. This suggests the pace should be honestly contested through the opening quarter, perhaps hotly so. Only one entrant has been today’s distance, a non-winning effort.
#1 Decked Out 4-1
Off poorly in the debut effort at Santa Anita, Decked out moved up without being rushed, angled to the inside rounding the turn, had clear sailing along the inside and drew clear with authority. Last out in 4-horse Astoria, she was patiently ridden while wide chasing the loose leader, drew even at the eighth pole, headed that rival only to flatten out. Jockey Kent Deormeaux and Decked out looked a winner under a confident ride, but today’s rival Moment Is Right came back along the inside and forged ahead for the win. Look for Desormeaux to allow her to settle after the start, angle off the rail and make a late run.
#2 Little Miss Miss 30-1
Parx shipper looks overmatched.
#3 Areolite 8-1
This filly won with ease over a rival who turned the tables next out in the Debutante. She is the lone runner with a race at today’s distance. Tough to endorse off that last effort.
#4 Off the Tracks 12-1
Rudy Rodriguez charge crushed a field of 8 rivals on debut at Gulfstream Park. She moved up from between rivals, forged ahead and drew clear. This was a solid debut over what proves to be a weak group producing no next out winners. Looms a possible threat to hi the board from off the pace.
#5 One Minute 20-1
Races for trainer Steve Asmussen and is as part of an uncoupled entry with mate Areolite. Filly took three races to break her maiden and finished behind Decked Out and Moment Is Right in the Astoria. Longshot.
#6 Moment Is Right 5-2
Obliterated a short field on debut at Gulfstream Park going 4 ½ furlongs. In the Astoria she ran off to a long lead, weakened, was headed, then came back along the inside while slow to change leads. Looms the main speed to catch but will face pressure today.
#7 Positively Royal 2-1
Positively Royal delivered a professional performance on debut, crushing a short field. She was squeezed and bumped hard at the start, recovered to pull her rider to the lead, cleared while under a hold and racing well of the rail gaining lengths in the run to the wire. She has tactical speed and will sit just off Moment Is Right down the backstretch. Her last tow works were in company, the last over mate Tonasah, who was nominated to this race but not entered.
#8 Banree 5-1
Banree races for Wesley Ward and is the uncoupled mate of Moment Is Right. She lost all chance at the start in the Tremont. She was not asked and the race should be a throw out. With an alert start, Banree has speed to press Moment Is Right but not the speed to stay with that rival
#7 Positively Royal
#1 Decked Out
#6 Moment is Right
#4 Off the Tracks (exotics only)