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HHR’s 2 Year Old Stakes Watch August 17th

2 Year Old Wrap-up from Last Week

Corfu Edges Out Wired Bryan in Saratoga SpecialCompared to the last few weekends on the 2 year old stakes front, this weekend will be a little quiet with only 3 races for you to consider. We wrapped up last Sunday with 5 different 2 year old stakes races including the Cavonnier at Santa Rosa, the Colleen at Monmouth, the Vandal at Woodbine, and of course, the Adirondack and Saratoga Special at Saratoga. In the Cavonnier, Hirschy edged out Outlook by ¾ of a length and in the Colleen Flay Mignon avoided an upset by Pure Lady Like.   Go Greeley squeaked out a win over Heart to Heart in the Vandal at Monmouth. At Saratoga, we witnessed Fiftyshadesofgold get denied a rail trip by Who’s In Town, who was disqualified and placed 4th after an inquiry in the Adirondack. After the disqualification, Designer Legs took the win, Thank You Marylou was 2nd and Fiftyshadesofgold had to settle for third, although there was no doubt that she could have gotten the win if not for the interference. To make the Adirondack even more disheartening, Charmed Hour broke down near the half mile pole and had to be euthanized on the track. The Saratoga Special was a much more satisfying and exciting race as Corfu held on by a nostril (or nostril hair!) over Wired Bryan with a wire-to-wire win. I look for big things from both of these horses as they mature. Now, on with this weekend’s 2 year old stakes!

Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies Stakes

Harrahs Louisiana DownsWhile many will be focused on the Arlington Million this weekend, Louisiana Downs has an action packed day on the 17th with Louisiana Cup Day. The 4th race of the day is the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies Stakes for accredited Louisiana bred 2 year old fillies and will travel 6 furlongs. The first filly in this race to catch my eye is Whata Friend. Whata Friend is coming off of a 2nd place finish in the D. S. Shine Young Memorial Futurity Stakes at Evangeline Downs. She will want the early lead and in her past races has shown that she can gain ground. In the Young Memorial she lost ground in the stretch and was passed, but it was also muddy that day. If the weather is kind, Whata Friend should be the horse to beat in this race. Lady Notional was third behind Whata Friend in that race and could be a threat Saturday. Her workouts look sharp and she seems to be improving. Lady Grantham is one of my first picks for value. In a straight maiden 30k, she ran a good 5 furlong time at Evangeline and won by 9 ½ lengths under steady urging. She has some nice works and looks to be ready for this race. My other top choice for value here is Glamoride. Unlike the rest of the fillies mentioned here, Glamoride has won at a greater distance than the rest, breaking her maiden in a straight maiden 21k at 7 furlongs. Even more impressive is that she won by 11 lengths and was ridden out. She’ll have the home field advantage here and should be in the money.

Louisiana Cup Juvenile Stakes

Trainer Thomas AmossRace 6 on the card for Louisiana Downs on Saturday is the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Stakes for accredited Louisiana bred 2 year old colts and geldings. Set at 6 furlongs, the Louisiana Cup Juvenile Stakes hosts a field of 11. I believe the horse to beat here will be Burning Warrior. Burning Warrior is coming off of an 11 length victory in his career debut at Louisiana Downs on June 29th. With such an impressive finish at 5 ½ furlongs in a straight maiden 26k, Burning Warrior will have no problems picking up the extra ½ furlong and romping to the finish. His works are good and he looks ready here. As far as times are concerned, I have to consider a couple of horses that have spent their early careers at Lone Star. The first is H an F’s Sensation. Trained by Thomas Amoss, this gelding can not only put up the times needed to beat Burning Warrior, he can also come off of the pace. This could be a much needed edge as many will fight for that early lead, including Burning Warrior. H an F’s Sensation will also have Richard Eramia aboard as an added bonus. The second well-traveled horse to consider is Yes It’s a Fact. Yes It’s a Fact has yet to break maiden in his 5 attempts so far, but his times are good and his experience should see him through to a win.  He has some stakes experience as well, running 4th in the $100,000 TTA Sales Futurity at Lone Star. A value play to consider here is Upclosenpersonal. With so many battling for that early lead, Upclosenpersonal’s style of coming from the back of the bunch to the front will suit him well here. Look for this horse to be in the money come Saturday.

WTOBA Lads Stakes at Emerald

Del Rio HarborIn race 9 at Emerald Downs we have the $50,000 WTOBA Lads Stakes for 2 year old colts and geldings. Set at 6 ½ furlongs, the WTOBA Lads Stakes will spotlight a field of 9. Many will be looking at Del Rio Harbor to dominate here. Del Rio Harbor is coming off of a ¾ of a length victory in the Emerald Express. He has a good jockey/trainer combo in trainer Doris Harwood and jockey Rocco Bowen and looks ready for this one. I look for him to take the early lead here. Noosito might have something for him, though. In Noosito’s career debut he won a straight maiden 18k drawing off by 3 lengths. He is also trained by Harwood and Isaias Enriquez will be in the irons. But Doris Harwood has one more horse for your consideration in Kenai King, who I really like for this race. He ran 3rd behind Del Rio Harbor in the Emerald Express chasing 4 wide before driftinginto the show spot. On Saturday, Kenai King will be getting the blinkers and will have an excellent shot at gunning down Del Rio Harbor. Finally, I believe Stikine Slough could surprise everyone. He did not fare well in the Emerald Express but followed that race with an 18 length maiden win on August 11th. Juan Gutierrez will have the mount, giving Stikine Slough an added edge. Look for this horse to hit the board.

 

 

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Mike Jr, eldest son of Mike Lane Sr, is co-lead author at HandicapHorseRacing.com 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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