Submitted by John Conte on Monday, August 15, 2016 at 10:26 AM
NATIONAL RACE MASTERS SARATOGA TRIP NOTES
(Thursday 8/11 - Sunday 8/14)
Thursday, August 11
(Turf Courses Firm - Main Track Fast Throughout)
VENTRY BAY - Wesley Ward juveniles are all trained to break out fast and this on broke dead last in MSW Turf sprint. He was a bit green early but swung 4 wide at the 3/16ths marker, willingly went between rivals in mid-stretch sided up to the winner and just lost. Breaks maiden in next.
MUNCHKIN MONEY - After a pair of bad trips in NYSB MSW Turf tests (while backed at the windows) Chad Brown gave this filly a few months off and brought her back vs restricted 40K maiden claimers on grass. Once again she ran into trouble a she was moving to the leaders in the lane and got boxed in for the remaining 3/16ths and still got beat just 3 lengths. She is due her trip and will graduate.
LIGHT THE NIGHT - In his first try since November at Gulfstream West the Michael Trombetta Street Cry colt measured the 5½ furlong MSW field and took over in the lane after moving off the rail. The colt faced good ones as a two year old in Florida (has hit the board in all 5 career starts) and has gone two turns. Good enough to move through conditions.
Friday, August 12
(Turf Courses Firm - Main Track Fast Throughout)
COMPELLED - The debut in 5½ furlong MSW Turf sprint by the juvenile daughter of War Front was compromised by a rough start. She was bumped on both sides at the break, travelled three wide on the turn, yet regathered to get off the rail and finish strong on the outside of the course to secure the show award. She was well-regarded at the windows and just needs a clean break.
KNOW YOUR CUSTOMER - Leading trainer Chad Brown wastes little time putting maidens in a winning slot. After two decent MSW efforts at Gulfstream and Monmouth he gave this Pioneerof The Nile colt 9 weeks off and dropped him in vs 40K rivals for a confidence building wire-to-wire two turn turf win. Now eligible for starters allowance vs NW1 you can expect another good performance.
Saturday, August 13
(Only 5 races run before severe weather conditions canceled racing)
THIRST FOR VICTORY - Over a track that turned sloppy following the downpour a short time earlier, the son of 2011 Belmont Stakes runner up and Travers winner Stay Thirsty looked like an early version of pop as he broke in close contact, took over in the stretch and galloped home in his career debut in unique 7 furlong juvenile MSW test. He was well ahead of his development and will go longer. Follow him as he moves forward.
Sunday, August 14
(Off The Turf - Main Track Good Races 1-6...Fast Races 7-10)
ASPEN HILLTOP - The progeny of Bernardini don't often win their debuts and especially not at sprint distances and her conditioner is only at 5% with debuting MSW runners. Yet this juvenile filly showed she could be something special as she not only spotted the field 12 lengths as she was last a quarter mile into the 6 1/2 furlong dash but moved up wide on the turn and was in the middle of the lane as she ran down them all for the win. The Gary Contessa trainee will of course go long but looks like a serious one.
RECENT SARATOGA TRIP WINNERS 8/10 - 8/14
SHOW GIANT - WIN $10.40
NYSB maiden had shown solid speed in last two. On May 16 the Giant Surprise filly battled for the lead in 6 furlong turf 40K maiden claimer and was a close third without getting off the rail. Laid off until a 6 furlong maiden claiming dirt try on the SPA main track 9 days earlier she flashed front speed and weakened late. Back on short rest and back on turf at 5 ½ panels she looked like the controlling speed and ran to her prior two races to wire the field.
ADULATOR - WIN $10.00
When two trips at a shorter distance suggest a runner wants two turns and John is convinced both the male line (Flatter-A.P. Indy) which provides stamina and the female line (Need-Strong Hope) loaded with speed you can be confident in the stretch-out. Two back this colt stumbled and was steadied out of the gate but still was within 2 ¾ lengths at the finish in a 6 ½ furlong allowance. In his last he pressed the pace at 7 furlongs while 3 wide and lost the head bob. Both were at entry level allowance and he was right back there at 9 furlongs. He stalked in third, took over in the lane and drew clear.
SKY CHAPARRAL - WIN $11.40
Ten days earlier this mid-level maiden claimer got his first taste of the SPA Main Track and while the past performance line shows an even effort at 6 furlongs vs the same his trip told a different story. He broke from post 11…was 3 wide into the far turn and had to kick out 6 wide into the lane. He did not lose ground and finished a tricky good 4th. That he wheeled back in such a short period following that effort made the support easy.
SCARLY CHARLY - WIN $13.20
When a high level veteran sprinter not only comes off a great trip that says the best is on the horizon but also comes into a race duplicating a successful pattern there is reason for support. This Michaels Hushion trainee did everything but win vs a group of second level allowance/optional 62.5K claimers 7/16 at Belmont at today's 7 furlong distance. He was pressed through while on the lead, battled the entire stretch and dropped a half-length decision while 3 wide throughout. Last year he made a similar start at Saratoga after winning a third level allowance/optional 80K claimer on the same 7/16 date and in his SPA August start was beaten a nose in the 100K Tale Of The Cat Stakes. He should have been 5-2 and was actually an overlay from his morning line.