2 Year Old Stakes Watch- Chelsea Flower

Chelsea Flower at Belmont

ReceptaIn Saturday October 25th we have the $100,000 Chelsea Flower Stakes to consider for our 2 year old stakes watch this weekend. A group of 14 two year old fillies will go head-to-head for a mile on the turf. In last year’s edition of the Chelsea Flower, Recepta won by 3 ¼ lengths over A Little Bit Sassy paying $11.80 for the win. Before we dive into this year’s race, it’s important to note that there are 3 entries that are for the main track only which are Winding Bay, Miss Always Ready and Grandpa’s Princess. The forecast looks clear and sunny for Belmont in Elmont, New York, so more than likely we won’t see these 3 in action, leaving our field for the turf at 11. Miss Always Ready would be our morning line favorite at 2 to 1, but since she is entered for the main track only and apparently isn’t “ready” for the turf, we’ll move on. Out of the group that will venture out into the turf, the morning line favorite will be Miss Chatelaine at 3 to 1. Her only outing was in early September where she stalked the pace and won by 2 ¼ lengths. That effort earned her the highest last race speed rating in this field and her impressive effort will make her the one to beat. With Joel Rosario in the irons, she’ll be even that much more dangerous. Close Skinner Boxon her hooves in the morning line is Ack Naughty at 7/2.  Ack Naughty won her first and only outing by 3 lengths, making a mid-race, mid-pack charge at today’s distance on the turf. My problem with both of these fillies is that they both share stalking/come-from-the-clouds running styles where they don’t need to be on the early lead and are hoping for a speed duel. Unfortunate for them is that there may not be a speed duel. What we need is a horse that can get the early lead and have the stamina and speed to hold off those late charges. So for my value/longshot play, I’m giving the nod to Skinner Box at 12 to 1 on the ML. She bounced in her last outing, but that was the Grade 3 Miss Grillo Stakes. Prior to that, she made a late rally in the Grade 2 Natalma Stakes at Woodbine, missing the win by 2 ¼ lengths and earning the highest speed figure in this field. But in her debut race, she won in gate-to-wire fashion at Saratoga. If she can take that running style (by taking the early lead and never looking back) and her speed figure from the Natalma Stakes, I think she could win this one at a great price. Good luck everybody!



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Mike Jr, eldest son of Mike Lane Sr, is co-lead author at and was raised on thoroughbred horse racing and handicapping. Although father and son often butt heads on their selections, they both have much love and admiration for the sport. Mike Jr. brings a new, fresh perspective to horse racing and is often in search of new angles to try.

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