The Gallant Bob Stakes (Grade 3)
The Pick: #11 Rainbow Heir
Contenders: #2 Distinctiv Passion ,#5 Salutos Amigos ,#9 Amarish ,#13 Zeewat
Wildcards: #1 Res Judicata ,#7 City of Weston ,#8 Majestic Hussar, #10 Heaven’s Runway
Toss Outs: #3 Black Hornet ,#4 Take it Like a Man ,#6 English Major, #12 Clearly Now , #14 Purple Egg
Breakdown: Get ready for a mad scramble in this one! In a race that’s about as wide open as can be, look for anything to happen. We went with Rainbow Heir, who was undefeated before his sixth place effort at Saratoga in the Amsterdam. Even though the pace should be SIZZLING in this one, Rainbow Heir could be the “speed of the speed.” If you like a closer in here you probably are pretty smart, and Zeewat could be your best bet. Another fast closer is Salutos Amigos, who is dropping down in the class for this one after knocking heads with the best in the country at Saratoga.
The Cotillion (Grade 1)
The Pick: #6 My Happy Face
Contenders: #5 Seaneen Girl ,#7 Sweet Lulu, #9 Close Hatches
Wildcards: #2 Carnival Court , #8 Promise Me More
Toss Outs: #1 Flash Forward , #3 Dancing Afleet, #4 Asiya, #10 Street Girl
Breakdown: The Cotillion is usually a great race, and this year is no different. In years past the race has come off as a showdown between two top horses, but this year the field is definitely deeper. Close Hatches is the headliner for this event as she’s coming off an eight length win in the Mother Goose over Dreaming of Julia. That race was ran on June 22nd, so it’s sort of mystery why we haven’t seen her since. Another horse coming off a big win is Sweet Lulu, who exits the seven furlong Test Stakes where she won by a head. This will be her first test around two turns. Our pick, My Happy Face, also exits the Test Stakes where a brutal trip probably cost her the race. Her two-turn form is a little more established than Sweet Lulu, which is why we gave her the edge. It’s important to note that five of the ten entered for this one are Graded Stakes winners.
The Pennsylvania Derby (Grade 2)
The Pick: #1 Transparent and #1A Romansh
Contenders: #3 Moreno, #7 Will Take Charge
Wildcards: #2 Speak Logistics , #5 Java’s War
Toss Outs: #4 Battier , #6 Fury Kapcori
Breakdown: When breaking down this one it becomes clear very quickly what the key to the race will be….PACE. It’s easy to see how Moreno could get away with an easy lead here. Romansh and Fury Kapcori could be the only two horses to put any kind early pace pressure on a horse that has shown a lot of ability in his last three starts. Much has been made of the “rivalry” between Will Take Charge and Moreno, but this time it could be the Godolphin entry that steals the show. You have to think Transparent will bounce back from his poor Travers effort, and Romansh’s fifth place in the Travers is certainly a notable effort. Out of the eight entries, it would be no surprise if the four Travers graduates are all involved in the superfecta.