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John Pricci's Weekend Warrior - Saratoga - Late Pick 4 - August 20, 2016

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By John Pricci
Exclusively for 123bet.com

Saratoga - Late Pick 4 - August 20, 2016



Poala Queen (20-1): tried the G1 Kentucky Oaks and Acorn to no avail in last two starts and while likely appreciating the cut back, this group appears to too tough for breakthrough performance.

Lightstream (8-1): earned field’s co-fastest figure breaking maiden at the trip in GP debut followed by win in 7F G3 Beaumont at KEE. Third in recent G1 Mother Goose, Lynch barn profitable with turnbacks and is major threat with a return to winter-spring form.


Guapaza (5-2): has been highly competitive on T-G scale in three New York appearances, albeit not so much on PER scale. Chad 28% effective with potential repeaters and winning rider Javier takes the return call.

Al’s Gal (20-1): earned top PER when fast-closing, tough-trip second in G3 Bewitch three back and was third again in G3 Modesty at AP last out. Highly competitive on both T-G and PER scales and looms stark overlay at early line odds.

RACE 10: The Grade 1 WHITNEY STAKES 3 & UP 1-1/8 MILES

Frosted (3-5): earned the highest figure ever recorded, according to Thoro-Graph’s Jerry Brown and must regress off that effort. But despite weight assignment (124 pounds), there’s plenty of wiggle room. Returns with good spacing, loves the trip (4) 2-2-0 and highly competitive albeit winless on this surface.

Comfort (8-1): hails from Todd barn that has very good record in this race. Rapidly improving 4YO is straight forward on figures, is nicely drawn with Johnny, and rates a puncher’s chance. Need at least early odds vs. this group.


Lady Lara (8-1): has always been promising turf mare but has disappointed often; finished willingly in rapidly run G1 Just A Game and drop just might be what Mott ordered.



King Kreesa (12-1): won the Forbidden Apple after getting loose in soft fractions on a speed-kind course...but these are Grade 1 rivals.

Grand Arch (6-1): returns to what might be his favorite course--over which he won this race last year. A four-time winner at the trip, returns with profitable spacing for Lynch barn that’s come alive recently. Nicely drawn, sheds 6 pounds and ML odds offers value.

Reporting Star (20-1): four of five lifetime wins have come at this trip, sheds six pounds, and won G3 Appleton at the distance three back. In top hands but this is a different level.

Force the Pass (8-1): just missed catching ‘Kreesa’ after chasing the loose leader in the Forbidden Apple. Has enough versatility to adapt to dynamics, well drawn and three of four lifetime wins at today’s distance. Excellent value on early line.

Blacktype (10-1): won the Oceanport when Jersey Joe took advantage of demanding course and timed his late run perfectly. Meeting tougher, obviously, and at his best with a little more ground.

Ring Weekend (3-1): handles any type of footing, has won at G1 level, and just missed in G2 Dixie making first start in 14 months. Loves tis course, working bullets at Fair Hill base and goes very well for Johnny.

A Lot (10-1): drops significant weight exiting two rapidly run sprints, gets switch to Javier. Has run very well on this course but this is a different level and had better inside draw in last week’s canceled renewal.

Tourist (5-2): won his lone start on this course, three of four at this trip lifetime and exits long series of G1 event. Has enough tactical gas to overcome wide draw and reunites with winning rider Rosario. Worthy favorite.

Takeover Target (9-2): would have preferred last week’s softer ground but likes Spa turf. Freshened awaiting this, sheds five pounds but loses Rosario to Tourist. Chad white hot, has good spacing, but this a tough spot.


Dark Nile (20-1): intriguing filly has won four of five lifetime for Delacour having a simply super season. Has versatility, Bravo, is pole sitting, but leaps to G1 level against the Princess with solid, purposeful workline. Interesting price shot.

Weep No More (15-1): had trouble at the start of CCA Oaks vs. Songbird here, losing any chance whatsoever. G1 Ashland winner would need that kind of perfect dueling setup...and then some. Reunites with winning rider Lanerie.

Going for Broke (10-1): obviously, Chad is en fuego and this filly has benefit of winning 9 furlongs over the track. Only loss sprinting in debut over speed-kind strip. Bred for the trip with Irad on the re-ride and will be running in the lane.

Go Maggie Go (8-1): is a dual G2 winner and is of Grade 1 quality. Had tough trip chasing three-wide on speed-favoring Belmont in Acorn mile, which produced two wins from three subsequent starters. Will appreciate stretching around two turns again.

Family Tree (10-1): has been collecting second-tier G2s while touring the Midwest now ships in for toughest test off strong works at Keeneland base and bred both sides for added distance. Acid test.

Songbird (1-5): is 9-for-9 lifetime and needs no introduction. Biggest hurdle figures to be today’s trip but did drew out in final furlong winning CCA Oaks here at 9 furlongs July 24. Has continued to train well over the strip.

Flora Dora (20-1): was a good third in CCAO in Sa debut and has been working bullets in her new blinkers subsequently.


Orino (10-1): has never been entered this cheaply but draws in with salty NY-Bred group. Barn’s horses always live here, draws pole and attracts Johnny; wakeup potential.

Sanctify (10-1): returns to state-bred competition and is entered for a tag again. Last two victories came beneath Franco, is 1-for-2 at trip and laudable (2) 1-1-0 on Spa grass. Very good value on early line.

Converge (2-1): has been class tested in five straight open graded stakes now drops back in with New Yorkers for Chad with switch to Castellano; extremely formidable here despite meeting elders for first time.

Powerful Instinct (9-2): came to hand for these connections at Belmont summer meet after leaving Florida but barn winless in 23 attempts at this meet through Wednesday racing. Five-time trip winner gets J Ortiz on the re-ride.

Vincento (8-1): was beaten less than 3 lengths by ‘Instinct’ following bobbled beginning in Belmont finale. Meets elders once again with Irad taking the return call.

Dream Doctor (8-1): has won two of last three and beaten less than two lengths while chasing the pace wide in Belmont finale. Back around two turns with switch to Saez.

Memories of Peter (20-1): chased the pace from wide post on tiring course last out on Long Island after adding front bandages but Lezcano on the re-ride for top state-bred owner-breeder. Not impossible at huge price.

Tizquick (20-1): returns to winning level and reunites with winning rider Arroyo (took off Dream Doctor). Has solid, purposeful workline but barn still winless at meet.

Ocala Jim (5-1): just missed to Powerful Instinct last out, all six lifetime wins at today’s trip (plus three placings) and is (4) 1-1-0 on Spa grass. Potential value on early line.

Front (12-1): chased the pace in that same race from wide post, understandably tiring late. Crafty claiming outfit switching to Santana but has shown no affinity for Spa turf (5) 0-0-0.

With Exultation (4-1): makes first start at reduced level since claimed, raced well in troubled Spa turf return, had sharp blowout for this with switch to Bravo. Very live in this spot. ALSO ELIGIBLE

Make a Decision (5-1): has been raced into condition, turns back from longer grass routes and returns to level of claim. Rice barn has come alive and 4 of 5 lifetime wins came at this trip; likes course, a big wakeup candidate. ALSO ELIGIBLE

Jet Black (5-2): MAIN TRACK ONLY


Lakeview Lady (15-1): showed improved speed in two recent starts now draws pole with tactical speed and big switch to Joel; anticipate further improvement at sizable odds.

Celestial Sighting (10-1): goes off long layup for leading owner returning to the surface of both lifetime best performances. Prepared at Fair Hill and shipped to Spa early awaiting this. Obviously well-meant here.

Day After Day (15-1): has been showing high speed on tiring courses in three career starts. Loses Irad to ‘Celestial’ but picks up turf ace DeCarlo.

Laura’s Patriot (12-1): was a very willing fourth going 7/8s in Belmont finale and appears well suited by the turnback; getting weight for all and apprentice, struggling here, has ability.

True Charm (12-1): comes off comprehensive open lengths score in recent off-turfer here and has run very competitively in two of three turf starts; threat to repeat with Lezcano on the re-ride.

Sabrina Ballerina (12-1): owns high early speed and not particularly well meant for turf; on bounce-rebound pattern and aggressive Carmouche sticks.

Wantagh Queen (20-1): raced wide in one of these, her Spa turf return, following maiden-claiming Belmont win. Second at this trip last year now gets switch to Geroux; surprise package?

Somerset Sandy (6-1): was a willing third in course return with Santana. Has improved in recent starts since adding Lasix and now gets blinkers. Second to ‘Celestial’ here in 2015; dangerous rival and value on line.

Esther the Queen (8-1): chased strong pace throughout her last in turf-sprint this- distance debut. Loses Carmouche but is reunited with Franco; improvement expected.

Lulu’s Blues (4-1): might have moved prematurely when second in course and distance debut here August 4. Well-bred New Yorker will benefit from effort and gets Castellano takes the re-ride. Formidable.

Cosmic Tale (7-2): placed gamely in last and was awarded the win via DQ following third to recent repeat winner. Switches to Johnny for Baker, batting otherworldly 43 percent at meet through Wednesday.

I Hope You Dance (8-1): made mid-race move then finished evenly in 3YO debut July 8, her first start following Linda Rice claim. Barn 33% effective in LAY-2 long layoff scenarios and Jose takes the return call.

Woodford Tea (15-1): certainly has the needed conditioning turning back from recent turf routes, her last on tiring ground. Maker barn going well here but this a tough task given wide draw. ALSO ELIGIBLE

Queeb (20-1): is also turning back from turf routes but is 1-for-1 at today’s trip and ships in for top Delaware Valley outfit attracting Santana; very interesting price shot coming into this off bullet drill at home base, 2nd fastest of 14 peers week of Aug. 2. ALSO ELIGIBLE

Silver Vixen (15-1): will find this a very tough go given wide draw for first start in turf sprint. ALSO ELIGIBLE

Sing for Beauty (9-2): MAIN TRACK ONLY



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