Friday’s Pick 5 sequence includes two singles and a lot of short prices. I will be playing the ticket a few times over in order to maximize on the clear-cut favorites. The feature on the card is the Hessonite Stakes for New York-breds. 

Best of luck!

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Race 1: $40k Claiming for 3-year-olds and upward going 6 1/2 furlongs on the dirt

#4 Star of the West has been SCRATCHED! Runners to use: #1 Big Boy Mo, #2 Dangerous Edge, #3 Kadens Courage, #5 Cause of Action, #6 Dr. Devera’s Way

Race 2: $20k Maiden Claiming for 3-year-olds and upward going 6 furlongs on the dirt

#2 Carters Got Sass has one way of running, and that’s to get to the lead and try to hold on. He faced open competition last time out and faded in the stretch after setting the pace. Off since February, he should have a little more left in the tank down the stretch. #3 Cobble Hill failed to break his maiden in his first 7 efforts, and I don’t love his 6/5 morning line. He is a defensive use, rather than a play against, because Irad Ortiz, Jr., rides back for his second start off the layoff. #5 J’s Warrior takes a slight drop in class after fading off the lead last time out. Reylu Gutierrez is an aggressive gate rider who should fit this gelding’s front-running style.

Race 3: Allowance for 3-year-olds and upward going 1 1/16 miles (8 1/2 furlongs) on the outer turf

The formidable trio of Klaravich Stables, Chad Brown, and Irad Ortiz, Jr., team up with #1 Good Governance. He hasn’t run since losing last August’s Saranac Stakes (G3) by a neck to Global Access, who repeated his winning effort in the Ontario Derby (G3). His only question mark is the layoff, but only five will make the gate if it remains on turf. He looks like an easy single.

Race 4: $25k Claiming for fillies and mares 3-year-olds and upward going 6 furlongs on the inner turf

The two logical horses in this spot are both taking significant drops. #3 First Appeal finished third in her seasonal debut on June 19, and though it is a quick turnaround for this spot, trainer Brad Cox is 1-for-2 in the last 365 days with runners returning within a week’s time. #4 Sanity was way overmatched last time out at the optional claiming level, yet she still closed well in the stretch to lose by just 4 lengths. She owns 3 wins from 5 starts when running this distance on turf.

Race 5: $10k Claiming for 3-year-olds and upward going 7 furlongs on the dirt

#1 Blue Belt is one of the more consistent runners in this group, finishing in the money in 25 of his 39 starts. This level suits him well and I expect Dylan Davis to position him toward the front early on. #5 Javelin enters as the 9/5 morning line favorite, but he’s very beatable, so this is a defensive use. He finished second on June 3 in a race that has three other runners in this field, including Blue Belt. #7 Tale of Mist takes a massive drop in class after facing higher-priced claiming foes, including beating $20k claimers last December. Trainer Randi Persaud hasn’t finished in the money in 13 starts so far at the meet, but the horse is a must-use on the drop in class alone.

THE TICKET

$1 PICK 5 (Races 1-5) 1,2,3,5,6 / 2,3,5 / 1 / 3,4 / 1,5,7 – $90