Spa selections 2022: Saratoga picks September 3

In Spa Selections, Saratoga correspondent Joseph Aiello provides Saratoga picks for a handful of key races at Saratoga, including all of the exciting stakes action!

Follow along all meet with all the exciting action (and good betting opportunities)!

Race 4 – Grade III Saranac Stakes

1. #3 Annapolis (2-5) – Not unbeatable, but in a small field like this where only Celestial City has some races that signal an upward trend, this seems to be the likely winner

2. #1 Celestial City (3-1) – This colt by Uncle Mo ran very well in the Grade II Hall of Fame last time, but might be in a spot that is devoid of the pace necessary for him to close into

3. #2 Piqua (12-1) – Made a nice late charge against a good field last time, but still would need to take a step forward to compete with the top two contenders here

4. #5 Fuerteventura (6-1) – Didn’t run his best in his graded stakes debut last time, but maybe just needs to return to turf which he does in this spot

Race 9 – OC 62500n2x

1. #4 Sanctuary City (6-1) – McCarthy has had a tough meet with plenty of mounts, but is sitting on one that seems due for a win after a slew of solid tries where he closes in nearly every one

2. #10 Eyes on Target (7-2) – Tough post draw, but ran a nice speed figure last time against Good Governance, and has run his best on the turf with a good clip in the money

3. #2 Analyze It (5-2) – This seven year old gelding has some versatility to go to the lead or rate as he did last time in a stakes effort, but is more likely to win with a good break

4. #9 Ocean Atlantique (6-1) – Showed huge improvement last time by being placed on the lead by Luis Saez who returns here, but needs to stretch a bit in distance in this spot

Race 10 – Grade II Flower Bowl Stakes

1. #4 War Like Goddess (2-5) – Right now is a step above these and wins this if she runs her race, showed she was better than Virginia Joy last time

2. #3 Virginia Joy (7-2) – The most likely to compete with War Like Goddess, but needs to run a bit better than she did in the Glens Falls maybe by being closer to the back

3. #7 Marvelous Maude (20-1) – She has been trending up and won in late July over this track, usually being bet to favorite and has finished no worse than third in her career

4. #6 Temple City Terror (8-1) – A little inconsistent, but ran well in the Glens Falls last time and has some good top end races plus gets Saez here

Race 11 – Grade I Jockey Club Gold Cup Stakes

1. #8 Dynamic One (7-2) – Coming off the Suburban win, this is probably the best going this distance, and shouldn’t be too far back here leaving too much ground to gain late

2. #6 First Captain (4-1) – Took a step forward in the Suburban after a nice Pimlico Special win, and seems to be improving going longer distances unlike in his three year old season

3. #7 Keepmeinmind (12-1) – Doesn’t appear to be enough pace to close into for this colt going this distance, but of Pletcher’s four, this is the best value and trending up

4. #2 Olympiad (2-1) – Looks like the best in this field, but might be better at nine furlongs and would probably win at that distance, so needs the right trip and a slower pace to win here

Race 12 – Claiming 25000n2L

1. #4 Notable Exception (9-2) – This gelding by Street Sense is the most consistent of the bunch, putting in good speed figures recently and running well around two turns

2. #3 Mr Breadwinner (9-2) – Gets a bump dropping from allowance races, and ran his best race going a mile so could do so here again

3. #10 Midnight Worker (7-2) – Pletcher and Repole Stable had this colt in graded races last year, and repeats of some of those past efforts probably puts him ahead of this field

4. #6 Patient Capital (5-1) – This gelding by Practical Joke and owned by Klaravich comes out of open allowance races, but didn’t show much past his maiden try and will need to improve

  • Tiz the Law was much the best in the Travers Stakes at Saratoga. Photo by NYRA.
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