BetAmerica’s horse racing pick of the day: June 26, Churchill Downs
Weekday picks and plays for Thoroughbred racing.
Friday, June 26
The experienced fillies in this juvenile dash don’t appear formidable. None have earned a Brisnet Speed rating better than 67, while the par winning figure for this class level and distance is 86.
Furthermore, three of the four first-time starters are conditioned by D. Wayne Lukas and Ian Wilkes, two trainers who rarely crank their young runners to win on debut.
This leaves #7 Midnight Cocktail (2-1 on the morning line) as the filly to beat for trainer Steve Asmussen, who has gone 5-for-8 (63%) with 2-year-old first-time starters at Churchill this meet. All five were ridden by Ricardo Santana, who will climb aboard Midnight Cocktail on Friday.
Midnight Cocktail is bred for speed and might have a maturity advantage, thanks to her Jan. 5 birthdate. The only concern is her work tab, which lacks any of the quick half-mile moves Asmussen’s winning juveniles have recorded prior to their debuts this spring, but Midnight Cocktail doesn’t need to be a monster to beat this field.
$12 Exacta: 7 with 5,6 ($24)
$3 Trifecta: 7 with 5,6 with 5,6 ($6)