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CHARLES TOWN PICKS AND ANALYSIS: August 27

Aaron's Tap
Aaron’s Tap won the 2019 It’s Only Money Stakes. Photo by Coady Photography.

Charles Town has a 13-race Friday card. Post time is the 5:00 p.m. Good luck!

Carryovers: Jackpot Pick 6, $10,225

Check out our other handicapping here!

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RACE 1

5-6-7-4

In the opener on the stakes-filled Charles Town Classic card, a one-turn maiden special weight event for fillies and mares, #5 Brandyurafinegirl (3-5) should get the night off to a chalky start while returning from an outing at Pimlico for trainer Mike Jones, Jr. #6 Lady Cinco de Maya (3-1) makes her career debut off a pair of ‘bullet’ works for trainer Dewayne Johnson and merits respect at first asking. #7 Signs of Jealousy (12-1) gets favorable outside draw for career debut off a series of decent works for trainer Lewis E. Craig, Jr. #4 Down Under Thunder (12-1) also makes career debut in this spot for trainer Amanda Calhoun and could forge mild surprise.

RACE 2

1-2-6-7

In this two-turn event for $5,000 claimers, #1 Widget Factory (7-2) was solid second last out and has been runner-up four times in six winless starts this year but looks to emerge here for trainer Kevin Joy. #2 Prince Valeski (8-1) won last out and seeks second straight and third overall for trainer Ronney Brown and merits upset chance. #6 Golden Appeal (9-5) exits allowance company last two and gives Jones solid chance to capture the early daily double. #7 Burn the Ships (6-1) makes 12th start of busy sophomore campaign for owner-breeder-trainer John McKee.

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RACE 3

3-1-4-5

In this two-turn allowance for state-bred fillies and mares, #3 Moonlit Shadow (7-2) graduated two starts back and looks to rebound from latest and seek to emulate full-sister Moonlit Song for trainer Tim Grams. #1 Heretodaygonemanana (5-2) makes long awaited seasonal debut after graduating last fall for trainer Jeff Runco. #4 Juba’s House (6-1) was solid second last out for trainer John A. Casey. #5 Arrowwood (6-1) gives Runco outside chance to run one-two in here.

RACE 4

5-7-6-4

In the first stakes race on the card, the $75,000 Sadie Hawkins for state-bred fillies and mares, #5 Star Of Night (1-1) looks to maintain the perfect start to her four-year-old campaign as the defending West Virginia-bred horse of the year returns to stakes company to face a familiar foe. #7 Bridging the Gap (5-2) looks to prep for her title defense in the Cavada off a series of good works while being idle since January. #6 Stowe Angel (6-1) has been a bridesmaid much of this year but gives Runco chance to run one-two here. #4 See Ya Manana (8-1) has been a model of consistency throughout here career for Runco and merits respect in here.

RACE 5

8-2-4-1

In this one-turn allowance dash for state-bred older males that could easily pass for a stakes race, #8 Golden Key (2-1) gets favorable outside draw while tackling older foes again for trainer Ronney Brown. #2 Hypothesis (7-2) rebounded from dull outing at Colonial Downs to capture allowance dash last out and looks capable of repeat here. #4 Aaron’s Tap (4-1) was sharp second last out for Runco and certainly merits respect in this spot. #1 Command The Cat (12-1) returns from stakes try at Mountaineer Park and could be a factor late for McKee.

RACE 6

7-6-2-1

In the $75,000 Robert Leavitt Memorial for state-bred three-year-old males, #7 Nocashrefunds (15-1) makes stakes debut off two straight sharp scores for trainer M. Joanna Boggs and looks poised for mild surprise here. #6 No Change (3-1) has won three of last four for McKee and looms the tepid choice in this spot. #2 Youthinkthatsfunny (7-2) gives McKee outside chance to run one-two here. #1 Social Chic (4-1) was second in Coin Collector two starts back and gives Runco upset chance here.

RACE 7

1-7-4-2

In the $75,000 Sylvia Bishop Memorial for state-bred three-year-old fillies, #1 Door Buster (7-2) returns off a solid effort in minor stakes at Colonial Downs and gets nod to regain winning ways here for trainer Ollie Figgins III of Dance to Bristol fame. #7 Shutupn’kissme (3-1) has been consistent sort throughout her career for McKee and could forge mild upset here. #4 Mady Rose (5-2) posted nice allowance tally last out and merits respect here as the tepid choice. #2 Jacks Sister Jill (4-1) also notched allowance triumph last out for trainer Vernon Greaves and could upset here.

RACE 8

2-8-5-4

In the first open stakes on the card, the $150,000 Pink Ribbon for fillies and mares, #2 Lady Rocket (9-5) won allowance at Churchill Downs last out for trainer Brad Cox of Knicks Go fame and looks ready for first stakes score. #8 Queen Nekia (7-5) exits consecutive graded stakes for this event for trainer Saffie Joseph and looms the solid post time while cutting back to a sprint. #5 Landing Zone (7-2) finished solid third in allowance at Delaware Park last out for trainer Claudio Gonzalez and merits respect here. #4 Ava’s Charm (8-1) should benefit from belated seasonal debut in stakes at Delaware Park last out.

RACE 9

2-1-6-5

In the $150,000 Robert Hilton Stakes for three-year-old males, #2 Exculpatory (5-1) arrives off nice score at Colonial Downs and looks to maintain winning ways here for trainer “Butch” Reid. #1 Swill (9-2) prevailed against allowance foes at Ellis Park off the layoff last out and could repeat in this spot for Cox. #6 Helium (5-2) has been third in two stakes at Churchill Downs since exiting the Kentucky Derby and merits respect here for trainer Mark Casse. #5 Moonlite Strike (5-1) has been third in last two stakes tries for Joseph and appears to be a serious contender in this spot.

RACE 10

7-6-2-11

In the $150,000 Russell Road Stakes for older males going seven furlongs, #7 Wind of Change (5-2) won minor stakes at Monmouth Park two back for Joseph and looks poised to rebound from latest outing at Saratoga. #6 Vertical Threat (9-5) exits Grade I Bing Crosby in overdue seasonal debut last out and looms the tepid choice here following cross continental flight. #2 Savvy (15-1) was good third in Ellis allowance last out for trainer Ian Wilkes and could round out several gimmicks at a generous price. #11 Speightsford (12-1) won previous try over the strip in May and merits respect here if he draws in off the AE list.

RACE 11

2-3-1-6

In the Grade III, $400,000 Charles Town Oaks for three-year-old fillies, #2 Street Lute (8-1) should atone for latest outing at Colonial Downs and possibly forge double-digit upset here for trainer John (Jerry) Robb of Little Bold John and Anna’s Bandit fame. #3 Pauline’s Pearl (3-1) has tried nothing but stakes foes since graduating for all-time winning trainer Steve Asmussen and merits respect here. #1 Caramel Swirl (5-2) posted sharp allowance score at Saratoga last out and gives Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott chance for graded stakes double here. #6 Inject (9-2) was solid third in grade III stakes at Belmont Park last out for Cox after handy score in minor stakes at Prairie Meadows.

RACE 12

1-6-8-7

In the main event on the card and the entire racing calendar at Charles Town in 2021, the Grade II, $800,000 Charles Town Classic at nine furlongs for older runners, #1 Warrior’s Charge (3-1) gets favorable rail draw and exits off solid second-place effort behind Maxfield in Grade II Stephen Foster at Churchill Downs and gives Cox solid chance at graded stakes double. #6 Ny Traffic (8-1) exits pair of stakes at Monmouth for Joseph and former Derby and Preakness participant can not be overlooked here. #8 Art Collector (5-2) won minor stakes last out for Mott and gives Hall of Fame conditioner chance to late graded stakes double. #7 Sleepy Eyes Todd (6-1) has literally traveled the world since winning this event last summer and seeks repeat tally here.

RACE 13

9-5-1-4

In the Friday night finale, a genuinely deep, contentious renewal of the $75,000 Frank Gall Memorial for West Virginia-breds going seven panels, #9 Muad’dib (7-2) has won all six of his lifetime starts for Runco and full-brother to Late Night Pow Wow makes his stakes debut in a salty spot. #5 Fancy Concho (6-1) has only been worse than second once in 14 lifetime tries for Grams and will seek to work out a favorable trip in prep for the Onion Juice BC. #1 North Atlantic (5-1) rallied to overhaul Fancy Concho on two-turn allowance here last out and looks destined to make fifth attempt at West Virginia Classic success for Runco. #4 V.I.P. Ticket (6-1) should atone for latest local effort and could benefit from ample early action in this wide open affair,

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