HHR’s 2 Year Old Stakes Watch August 10th

Saturday’s 2 Year Old Stakes 8-10-2013

ConcaveHere we go head-long into another great weekend of racing and the 2 year olds are chomping at the bit to put on a show! In case you missed Wednesday’s 2 year old stakes watch, we covered Del Mar’s $150,000 Grade 2 Sorrento Stakes and witnessed Concave edge out She’s a Tiger by a ½ length. It was an exciting race, and although I had my doubts about Concave’s abilities, she certainly proved me wrong! Side Letter disappointed me, surging out to the early lead, dropping back and eased into the final furlong. I hope all is well with the filly, and you can make sure that I have added her to my watch list for future races. That being said, this Saturday we’ll be looking at 3 new two year old stakes races here and hoping to pull in some winners!

Northlands Fillies Sales Stakes

Trainer Robertino DiodoroStarting with Race 2 at Northlands on Saturday, we have the $50,000 Fillies Sales Stakes set at 6 ½ furlongs for Canadian foaled 2 year old fillies. With a short field of 5, we might as well discuss them all. The 8/5 morning line favorite is Honey Candy. Honey Candy is coming out of a victory in her straight maiden 14k debut at Northlands where she won by 2 lengths in a 3 ½ furlong race. She is showing some fine bullet works and a fantastic jockey/trainer combo in jockey Amie Pooli and trainer Robertino Diodoro. There’s no doubt that Honey Candy is the filly to beat here. Bet On Soup is the 2nd morning line choice at 2 to 1. She, too, won her debut at Northlands by 2 ¼ lengths in a 3 ½ furlong race. Bet On Soup had no problems picking up the early lead in that race and drew off, but she did lose 4 lengths from stretch to finish, which could be a concern for Saturday’s 6 ½ furlong race. Honey Candy and Bet On Soup are the only 2 in this race that have won a race. Cats a Lush was in Honey Candy’s maiden race, but ran 5th in a field of 7 and showed no real gain throughout the entire race. Finally we have the only two horse in this race who have gone further than 3 ½ furlongs. Kissin Abbey ran 5th in her 5 ½ furlong race, but she did it in a straight maiden 16k at Northlands, the highest class in this field. But I’m going to go after the longest shot on the board- Kissin Music. At 8 to 1 morning line odds that are bound to rise in the public’s opinion, I feel Kissin Music will get overlooked because she is showing the lowest class on the board having run 3rd in a maiden claiming $12,000. The reason I like her is because that race was 5 ½ furlongs and she gained ground in the run for home. I believe she will get the distance and at least be in the money, mixing it up with Honey Candy and Bet On Soup.

Northlands Sales Stakes

Trainer Greg TracyThe $50,000 Northland’s Sales Stakes for 2 year old colts and geldings foaled in Canada will be race 7 on the card. There are only 5 entered in this race, as well, so let’s go down the line. The 8/5 morning line favorite is Artie’s Brother. Artie’s Brother is coming out of a 3rd place finish in the Edmonton Juvenile Stakes at Northlands and is sporting the most class and earnings in this race. The Edmonton was at 6 furlongs and Artie’s Brother proved that he could get the distance and gained some ground down the stretch. He’ll definitely be the horse to beat here. 2 to 1 on the morning line odds is Old Top Hat. Old Top Hat has not won a race yet, but has put up two good finishes running 2nd in his last race and 3rd in his debut, both outings in straight maiden 16k races. He has the best jockey/trainer combo of the bunch in jockey Rico Walcott and trainer Greg Tracy. Of course Greg Tracy is also the trainer of 3 of this race’s entries. Old Top Hat will have blinkers on this Saturday which could be the added edge needed to top the rest of the field. Second Hand News will also be wearing the blinkers here. Second Hand News ran 4th in his debut, but did pick up ¾ of a length and might get a slight advantage here with those blinkers. He’s showing some of the best recent workouts of the bunch, too. At a morning line of 8 to 1, he could be the longshot that might pay-off and I’ll have to put a little win/place money on him, just in case. Gold for Free is the lowest in rank here, but won his maiden debut in a maiden claiming $12,000 by ¾ of a length. He is the second highest in earnings and could be a threat. My value play here would have to be Legend Fortynine, though. Legend Fortynine ran second in his debut, but gained 3 ¼ lengths heading for home in a 5 ½ furlong race. He’s sporting some good times and works and should be in the money.

Woodbine’s Ontario Debutante Stakes

Conquest WhiplashIn the 8th race at Woodbine on Saturday we have the $125,000 Ontario Debutante Stakes for two year old fillies. The 6/5 morning line favorite is Conquest Whiplash. Conquest Whiplash won her maiden debut in the Victoria Stakes at Woodbine on June 22nd. She won that race in a field of six by 2 ¾ lengths, gaining ground to the finish. Conquest Whiplash’s two top rivals in this race would be Madly Truly at 5/2 and Skylander Girl at 7/2. Madly Truly broke maiden in a straight maiden 67k and won by 4 ¼ lengths in a 6 furlong race at Woodbine. Skylander Girl won broke maiden in the My Dear Stakes, but fell short in the Shady Well running 4th. Skylander GirlShe had a bothered start in that race, so I look for her to do much better in the Ontario Debutante. She’s showing some good works since then and will be getting Lasix for the first time here. My value play would have to be Skylander Girl, but I believe the public will show her some love, despite the 7/2 morning line odds. My second choice for value would be Questera. Questera won her career opener in a $40,000 maiden claimer where she was claimed by Janice and Veronica Attard. The filly won that race by 2 ½ lengths driving and has a great shot of getting there come Saturday. If you really want to pull the trigger in this one and go for a worthy longshot, then first time starter Spanish Flower would be the way to go. She’s showing some really strong works and has a great chance of slipping up into the mix here and landing an upset.

That’s all for Saturday, but be sure to check back with us on Sunday when HHR covers 5 two year old stakes races, including the Saratoga Special and the Adirondack. Good luck to all!



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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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