Charles Town picks and analysis: July 4
Photo by Allison Janezic.
Charles Town has an eight-race Independence Day card. Post time is the normal 7:00 p.m. Good luck!
Charles Town’s Saturday night opener is also the first maiden special weight event for state-bred two-year-olds and features eight first-time starters. #6 Hopping Henry (7-2 ML) arrives off three straight bullet workouts for owner-breeder-trainer Michael Sterling and could be favored by post time. Trainer Anthony Farrior will saddle #2 Stolen Biz (3-1) and #1 Tappin for Glory (9-2), both of which arrive off a pair of three-furlong drills. Trainer Javier Contreras will saddle #3 Uncle Funky and #8 Natural Attraction; both are 6-1. Uncle Funky is a son of First Samurai out of the talented state-bred mare Julie B, who posted a 15-7-3 slate and earned nearly $900,000 in a 33-race career.
Any of four distaffers could win this two-turn event for $5,000 claiming fillies and mares. #4 Lady’s Cork (8-5) drops back into claimers after a sixth-place finish against allowance foes. #1 Scottish Denis (3-1) seeks her first win in four tries this season for trainer James W. Casey. #2 Yodel Lady (4-1) also exits an allowance race and drops back into claimers, while #7 Mo Cuishle (7-2) seeks her second straight win after prevailing against similar foes last Saturday.
#3 Golden Appeal (5-2) has already won twice in five starts this year and seeks another score for trainer Ronney Brown in this two-turn allowance for older geldings. #6 Black Steel (3-1) looms a serious threat for trainer Ed Tobin, #4 Morgan County (4-1) is a genuine contender for trainer Vernon Greaves, and Tim Collins will send out #1 Rip Thorn (9-2) and #2 Affix (6-1); both loom live courtesy of their inside draws.
One-turn sprint specialist #3 Dr. Feelgood (1-1) could be the shortest-priced favorite of the night after capturing the It’s Only Money Stakes last out for trainer Crystal Pickett. He has won both of his starts this year, three straight overall and 10 of 12 in his career for owner Jill Daniel, and he was entered but scratched out of a minor stake at Monmouth on Friday. #1 Aaron’s Tap (9-2) is no stranger to stakes company for trainer Jeff Runco and owns 14 wins and $325,000 banked in 29 career outings. #2 Last Print (5-1) has won once in four starts this year and eight times in 16 career tries for trainer Javier Contreras. #6 Hypothesis (10-1) gives Pickett a chance to run one-two in this salty allowance affair.
In this one-turn sprint for filly-mare $10k claimers, #8 One Fat Kat (8-5) gets the favorable outside draw for Anthony Farrior after exiting allowance company and seeks first win in over a year. #5 Lili Linder (5-1) was eighth in the Fancy Buckles Stakes last out but was second twice and third three times in five tries before that and figures to be close here. #2 House of Love (6-1) exits an allowance and won three starts back on March 11 here, while #6 Stylish Paint (10-1) looks for first win since beating maiden claimers last December 11.
In the lone, three-turn event of the night #1 Postino’s Secret (8-5) draws the favorable rail for trainer Dorothy Worton off three half-mile works at Pimlico. #3 Morningafterblues (6-1) exits an allowance and won previously on March 5 against similar for trainer Glenn Harrison of Mean Bean fame. #4 Dah Philly (5-1) has made her last seven starts at Laurel but was second here in her only previous try last November. #9 Charitable Rose (4-1) has already won twice in five starts this year for trainer Ronney Brown but could be compromised by outside draw.
#6 Fancy Castle (7-2) finished third in the Coin Collector Stakes last out and should be really tough in this spot for owner-breeder-trainer John A. Casey of Down Town Allen fame. #1 Moonlit NIght (3-1) is a half-brother to Moonlit Song, but owns just two wins in 17 career tries for trainer Tim Grams. #7 Earlscastle (6-1) won nicely last out after posting four straight runner-up efforts for trainer Lewis Craig, Jr., while #4 Righteous Man (6-1) also seeks his second straight allowance score for trainer David Walters in this two-turn allowance
In the finale for claiming fillies and mares going one turn, #6 Witchy Windsor (2-1) has been second in each of her last two starts and three times in six outings overall this year for owner-breeder-trainer Tim Collins and looks poised to end bridesmaid status. #5 Sister Anna (7-2) has won her last two starts for trainer Gerald Coker, Jr. and looms a serious player here. #7 Uncanny (4-1) finally garnered her diploma two starts back for trainer Stacey Viands of Parisian Diva fame, while #12 Mesmerizingpegasus (7-5) will be very tough here if she draws in off the also eligible list.
LATEST IN HANDICAPPING
The original and best Colonial Downs tip sheet returns: Nick’s Picks is back, along with picks from the legendary Derby Bill Watson.
In Spa selections, our on-site correspondent provides his Saratoga picks for key races on today’s Saratoga card!
We provide picks and analysis for this evening’s card at Charles Town Races.