Exacta box of the week: Monmouth's ninth race Saturday, July 20
Exacta Box of the day for MonmouthSaturday is Haskell Day at Monmouth, the biggest day of the New Jersey racing season that features six stakes, including the $1 million Haskell Invitational (G1) for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles, which will go as the 12th race on the 14-race card. Among the five undercard stakes is the $75,000 Wolf Hill Stakes, a 5 1/2-furlong turf sprint that draw a wide-open eight-horse field. The Wolf Hill (ninth race) is an interesting handicapping puzzle that looks well-suited for an exacta-box play, and you should be able to hit it by narrowing the field down to the four top contenders, who may not even be the favorites.
MONMOUTH RACE 9 WOLF HILL STAKES EXACTA BOX PICKS:#4 FIG JELLY has landed in the exacta in eight of his 16 starts, including two of three this year. He finished second behind multiple graded stakes winner Pure Sensation at Gulfstream two races ago, then did not handle a soft turf course in defeat at Parx last time out. He'll be ready to rebound for 32% turf sprint trainer Jason Servis, with Luis Saez aboard for the mount.
#5 TRICKS TO DOO exits a grade 1 turf sprint at Woodbine, where the six-furlong distance day proved not to be his cup of tea. The five-furlong distance seems much more in his wheelhouse, based on good stakes efforts at Tampa and Pimlico. He routinely earns turf dash speed figures that put him among the top tier in today’s field.
#7 JUSTAHOLIC tried a turf sprint for the first time last time out and made the outing a winning one at Monmouth, with an easy optional-claiming allowance victory. Stakes placed on dirt and synthetic tracks, he already seems to be better on grass, so this step up against stakes competition is the logical next step.
#8 MAI TY ONE ON goes out for trainer Jane Cibelli, who is enjoying a monster meet at Monmouth, with 10 wins from her first 30 starters. She’ll have a legitimate chance to add to her win total with this hard-knocking, crusty veteran sprinter, who has been in the exacta in 12 of his 21 starts. He drew the very tough six-furlong inner turf rail post position twice in a row at Belmont for his two most recent starts, and now finally gets off the rail and gets 30% Monmouth rider Paco Lopez. It would be a mistake to underestimate this horse, and he’s a tough one to leave out of a four-horse exacta box.
Box the above four horses in the exactas and you should come away with a bankroll-building ticket that will give you some extra money in your pocket for the Haskell. Best of luck!