Spa selections 2020: Saratoga picks July 23
Ginger N Rye won the 2017 Smart N Fancy Stakes at Saratoga. Photo by Chelsea Durand/NYRA.
by Joseph Aiello
In Spa Selections, Saratoga on-site correspondent Joseph Aiello provides Saratoga picks for a handful of key races at Saratoga, including all of the exciting stakes action!
Race 1 – Grade I A.P. Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase Stakes
1. #5 Moscato (2-1) – Has run well at Saratoga and is very classy having run in five straight graded races
2. #3 Optimus Prime (9-5) – Comes off a year-long layoff, but a return to form will find this eight year old gelding in the winner’s circle
3. #2 Pravalaguna (5-1) – Winner in both of her tries, this mare will look to take the boys wire to wire for her first graded win
Race 4 – New York Stallion Series Stakes
1. #6 Nicky Scissors (7-2) – Questions with the rest of this field leave this first time turfer now trained by Brad Cox to try and steal this race
2. #1 Fresco (1-1) – Keeps Irad Ortiz and should have a few targets to close into, but this distance may be a tad far for this filly
3. #2 Dixie Cannon (9-2) – The break will determine how well this filly by Freud runs here, and staying involved early could lead to a strong stretch run late
Race 9 – OC 80000n3x
1. #1 Wendell Fong (7-2) – Wide open race here, but if David Cohen can keep this colt from getting too tied up with Captain Scotty and Admiral Lynch, he offers good value here
2. #4 Honest Mischief (8-5) – Running second to Volatile last time should lead to improvement against this group, but may be over-bet despite being the most likely winner
3. #2 Bon Raison (20-1) – Others like Captain Scotty may hold on for the money, but this horse gets a nice price dropping from a Grade I, and should get a hot pace to close into