Why I’m betting Firenze Fire in the 2019 Met Mile

Firenze Fire winning the Champagne Stakes (G1) - Photo courtesy of NYRA/Coglianese Photography The Belmont Stakes (G1) is going to be an exciting race, but from a sporting standpoint, the highlight of the spectacular June 8  card at Belmont Park is the $1.2 million Runhappy Metropolitan Handicap (G1). The field for this prestigious one-mile race is packed with some of the best older horses in training. There’s #2 McKinzie, a two-time grade 1 winner entering off a dominant performance in the Alysheba Stakes [...]

Why I’m Betting Copper Town in the Hal’s Hope Stakes

Gulfstream Park (Coglianese Photos) An unusual blend of horses is set to contest Saturday’s $100,000 Hal’s Hope Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park, and in my opinion, demanding a bit of a price in the wagering could be a wise idea. Three of the nine entrants in this one-mile test are running for the first time since late spring 2018, including the stakes-winning pair of #5 Quip and #9 Prince Lucky, who will be making their first starts [...]

Mask Seeks Rebound in Easy Goer Stakes

Mask winning the Mucho Macho Man Stakes - Photo by Kenny Martin/Coglianese Photography It might not offer the spotlight and prestige of the Belmont Stakes, but Saturday’s  $150,000 Easy Goer Stakes at Belmont Park is a pretty good consolation prize for three-year-olds that weren’t quite good enough to run in the “Test of Champions.” But that’s not to say that one of the eight entrants in the Easy Goer won’t enjoy a high level of success down the road. [...]

Keying Peace in the Sunland Derby

Sunland Park - Coady Photography Over the years, Sunland Park in New Mexico has garnered a reputation as a very fast and speed-favoring racetrack, producing quick times and often favoring horses that secure the early lead. That has certainly been the case for many renewals of the $800,000 Sunland Derby (gr. III), a nine-furlong Road to the Kentucky Derby prep race that will be held for the fifteenth time this Sunday. However, assuming that the track is always [...]

Instilled Regard Demonstrates California’s Strength in Lecomte Stakes

Instilled Regard winning the Lecomte Stakes (gr. III) at Fair Grounds - Hodges Photography / Amanda Hodges Weir In recent years, California-based three-year-olds have proven dominant in the Triple Crown races and the prep races on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. Certainly the West Coast held a clear edge in 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2016, when horses like I’ll Have Another, California Chrome, American Pharoah, Nyquist, Exaggerator, and Bodemeister rose to prominence, and early evidence suggests that [...]