Can Japan challenge in the Belmont Derby and Belmont Oaks?

Master Fencer galloping at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography The New York Racing Association announced Wednesday the Japan-based 3-year-olds Master Fencer and Jodie will compete in the $1 million Belmont Derby (G1) and the $750,000 Belmont Oaks (G1), respectively. The Derby and the Oaks, a pair of 1 1/4-mile turf tests scheduled for July 6 at Belmont Park, have quickly risen in prominence since their creation in 2014. The races have attracted high-quality challengers from Europe, but Master [...]

Pegasus Stakes kicks off summer campaign for Maximum Security

Maximum Security wins Florida Derby (Coglianese Photos) With the disappointment of his Kentucky Derby (G1) disqualification still looming large, Maximum Security will aim to start the summer of his 3-year-old campaign on a bright note when he contests the June 16 Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park. Gary and Mary West’s star colt is one of six runners entered in the 1 1/16-mile event, which serves as a local springboard to the July 20 Haskell Invitational (G1) at Monmouth. [...]

How to play the Stephen Foster Day all-stakes Pick 4

Churchill Downs - Coady Photography Six weeks after the Kentucky Derby, Churchill Downs will return to the spotlight with a terrific evening of racing Saturday. The 11-race card features five consecutive graded stakes races, so fans of multi-race wagers will have plenty of all-stakes options to choose from. My personal focus will be on the Pick 4, which kicks off in the sixth race. I’ve previewed each race separately for BetAmerica, but since intra-race and multi-race wagers require [...]

Why I’m betting Tom’s d’Etat in the 2019 Stephen Foster Handicap

Tom's d'Etat winning an allowance race at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography There will be no shortage of quality horses for handicappers to choose from in Saturday’s $600,000 Stephen Foster Handicap (G2) at Churchill Downs. The 1 1/8-mile event is the highlight of the racing weekend in North America, offering a hefty purse and a “Win and You’re In” berth to the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1). On five occasions, the Stephen Foster winner has gone on to [...]

Varenka looks promising in 2019 Regret Stakes

Varenka training in the rain at Churchill Downs - © Alex Evers/Eclipse Sportswire/CSM /Breeders Cup A quick glance at the field for Saturday’s $150,000 Regret Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs is enough to make your head spin. The 11 sophomore fillies going 1 1/8 miles on turf all have similar form lines and speed figures, and there doesn’t appear to be a clear standout. Dig a little deeper and #4 Varenka just might have an advantage in this competitive [...]

Why I’m betting Admission Office in the Wise Dan Stakes

Admission Office winning a Keeneland allowance race - Keeneland Photo A wide post draw in a large field is less than ideal, but when 14 horses assemble for Saturday’s $250,000 Wise Dan Stakes (G2) at Churchill Downs, my money will be on #12 Admission Office. This lightly raced 4-year-old son of Point of Entry has never missed the exacta in six starts, and he’s shown particular promise this year. In his 2019 debut—his first run for current trainer [...]

How to bet the 2019 Fleur de Lis Handicap

Blue Prize winning the Falls City Handicap (gG1) - Coady Photography Three fillies and mares stand above the others in Saturday’s #250,000 Fleur de Lis Handicap (G2) at Churchill Downs. #2 She’s a Julie, #3 Elate and #5 Blue Prize are all grade 1 winners who figure to put on a show in this 1 1/8-mile “Win and You’re In” qualifier for the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1). In terms of Brisnet speed figures, they’re significantly faster than their [...]

War of Will holds early edge in race for Eclipse Award

Maximum Security and Country House battle to the wire in the Kentucky Derby (G1) - Coady Photography The rules are simple. Sweep all three legs of the Triple Crown, and you will be named champion 3-year-old male at the Eclipse Awards. Win two of the three races and you’d have to really mess up the second half of the season to lose the title. But when three different horses win the three Triple Crown races, it’s anyone’s guess [...]

Breeders’ Cup Classic top 10: Thunder Snow impresses in defeat

Thunder Snow winning the 2018 Dubai World Cup (G1) - Coady Photography A busy Saturday of racing at Belmont Park on Belmont Stakes Day saw a handful of contenders for the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) enhance their résumés. Others faltered under the bright lights and will have to rebound this summer. No clear favorite has emerged for the 1 1/4-mile race Nov. 2 at Santa Anita Park. Your guess is as good as mine when it comes [...]

Brooklyn provides last chance for bettors on Belmont Stakes Day

The start of the 2016 Brooklyn Invitational (G2) - © Nikki Sherman/Adam Coglianese Photography Who says long-distance dirt races are dying out in North America? Maybe they’re not as common as they used to be, but the field for Saturday’s $400,000 Brooklyn Invitational (G2) suggests genuine dirt route races are still alive and well. The Brooklyn serves as the final race at Belmont Park on Belmont Stakes Day, providing bettors with one last opportunity to cash winning tickets [...]