Friday, 31 July 2020 11:25

Saratoga Horse Racing Picks for Saturday, August 1, 2020

Written by Ellis Starr

Key Races & Bets for Saturday August 1, 2020

H. Allen Jerkens Stakes - Race 10 at Saratoga - Post Time 6:18 PM Eastern

H. Allen Jerkens Stakes - Race 10 at Saratoga - Post Time 6:18 PM Eastern

The morning line favorite, No Parole (9/5 starting odds), has a problem because although he’s five-for-six, all five wins have been earned leading from start to finish. Although he’s very fast in the early stages, so is Eight Rings and also Mischevious Alex. I just can’t see him getting his way on the front end as he did in the Woody Stephens on June 20.

Of the horses proven to come from off the pace and win, three deserve top billing – Captain Bombastic (15/1), Tap It to Win (5/1) and Echo Town (9/2). Captain Bombastic just ran the best race of his career and at this seven furlong trip on June 14. That win came in the Mike Lee Stakes and he stalked a pace as fast as he’ll get today before rallying from fourth to draw off. Putting in a strong 47.8 third best of 28 half-mile workout last week and with a great post to watch the pace battle in front under Castellano, with that 108 figure AS GOOD AS the one No Parole earned in an allowance race before winning the Woody Stephens (with a 93 figure), Captain Bombastic deserves our attention when wagering in this race as he could legitimately post the upset if he repeats that last race.

Tap It to Win cuts back from the nine furlong Belmont Stakes to this seven furlong trip, having won his last two one-turn races. In the Belmont he led from the start and through the seven furlong mark this race ends before tiring, because he went WAY TOO FAST (46 flat, 1:09.8) early. He doesn’t need the lead, however, having stalked in fourth three back in a sprint. He also earned a 108 figure one before last, and the cut back from nine furlongs to seven helps him to have some extra energy in the late stages enabling him to be finishing well and potentially get back into the winner’s circle.

Echo Town finished second behind No Parole in the Woody Stephens, closing from fourth in the stretch into a horse who had an easy lead from the start he is unlikely to get today. Two before that when battling head and head for the last quarter mile and coming up that head short on the wire, Echo Town earned a 112 figure which wins if neither Captain Bombastic or Tap it To Win improves off their best efforts.

Even if they do get passed in the stretch, No Parole and Mischevious Alex can run second so we will use them in that position on exacta tickets.

Bets:
Win: Bet Captain Bombastic and Tap It to Win at odds of 3/1 or more.
In the unlikely event Echo Town goes to post at 3 to 1 or more, he can be considered for a win bet but I’d rather play exactas with him in the top spot as below.

When making multiple win bets, use a "Dutching" tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

Exactas:
(Exacta as a place bet): ALL over Captain Bombastic
Tap It to Win and Echo Town over Echo Town, Mischevious Alex, No Parole, Captain Bombastic and Tap It To Win.

Captain Bombastic, Tap It to Win and Echo Town over Echo Town, Mischevious Alex, No Parole, Captain Bombastic and Tap It To Win.

Doubles:
Race 10: Captain Bombastic, Tap It to Win and Echo Town
Race 11: Marzo, Cross Border, Dot Matrix, Pillar Mountain

Pick 3:
Race 10: Captain Bombastic, Tap It to Win and Echo Town
Race 11: Marzo, Cross Border, Dot Matrix, Pillar Mountain
Race 12: I’llhandalthecash, Dalika

Bowling Green Stakes - Race 11 at Saratoga - Post Time 6:50 PM Eastern

Cross Border is one of two from the strong Mike Maker barn, the other being Marzo. Maker once again proved his prowess with turf stakes runners last Saturday when running one-two in the Bernard Baruch Stakes over the course and has a big shot to do the same thing or similar, with only Dot Matrix the other horse I could see winning.

Cross Border is four-for-four on the Saratoga Turf including a win on July 22 which is probably why Maker wheels him back on 10 days rest as that six length win in the Lubash Stakes (for New York breds) took little out of him. Jose Ortiz rides back and the stretch out from a mile and one-sixteenth is not an issue as he just missed by a neck in the McKnight Stakes at 12 furlongs in January as well as won an 11 furlong race last November on the turf at Aqueduct. Jose Ortiz rode him in both those top efforts as well and since this hard knocking horse has been first or second in eight of his last 11 this year and last and only beaten two lengths or less in the other three he’s going to be pretty tough to beat.

Dot Matrix is another who likes the course and likes the distance. He won the John B. Connally Stakes at 12 furlongs in January then missed by a head of catching Paret in the Tiller Stakes at 11 furlongs in June when the winner was allowed to coast on a snail-like pace (114.6 six furlong split). He was overmatched in the Manhattan Stakes last month and has every right to run back to his Connally effort and win.

Marzo won the Sycamore Stakes last fall at Keeneland at 12 furlongs two races after Maker claimed him, another example of the trainer’s acumen at turning ordinary horses into marathon turf stakes winners. He hasn’t won since but ran fine behind Dot Matrix in the Connally when just a half-length from the runner-up and another three-quarters of a length form the winner. His two recent nine furlong races were too short but back at a marathon distance he loves, Marzo can rebound to competitive form.

I’m going to toss in Pillar Mountain for some exacta and trifecta as she opens at 12/1 for Pletcher and John Velazquez. The horse won two 11 furlong races in a row about a year ago, one at Saratoga and had to need his last start on 6/20 following eight months off so can improve and potentially get a piece.

Bets:
Win Bet: Cross Border to win at 9 to 5 or higher.
Dot Matrix to win at 3 to 1 or higher.
Marzo to win at 7 to 2 or higher.

This is the kind of race where a “Dutching” tool like the free one at Amwager really comes in handy as it proportions your bets based on the odds so you don’t have to do the math for yourself.

Exactas:
Box Cross Border, Dot Matrix and Marzo
Box Cross Border, Dot Matrix and Pillar Mountain

Trifecta:
Box Cross Border, Dot Matrix, Marzo and Pillar Mountain

Doubles:
Race 11: Marzo, Cross Border, Dot Matrix, Pillar Mountain
Race 12: I’llhandalthecash, Dalika

Caress Stakes - Race 12 at Saratoga - Post Time 7:22 PM Eastern

I’ll Handalthecash and Dalika stick out even in this 10 horse field in my option. This isn’t a graded stakes but carries a $200K purse so has attracted some very good filly and mare turf sprinters. Just the same, I’ll Handalthecash proved herself at the level just one month ago when winning the License Fee Stakes at Belmont for a career best 107 Equibase figure. She had trouble in three straight before that, no fault of her own, and with Jose Ortiz riding back after being up for the first time in victory last month, and with the filly not being a need-the-lead type, she could be very tough to beat.

Similarly tough is Dalika who closed like a shot from eighth to second as the even money favorite behind I’llhandalthecash last month. She had won five weeks earlier off a five month layoff and Rosario was up for both “A” races as well as today. Rosario rode Cariba to a sharp win at the end of June for Clement, who he’s winning a lot of races for, but he and his agent are sending a strong signal picking Dalika here, who has earned 106 and 108 figures in her last two, on par with I’ll Handalthecash and far better than any of the others in this field.


Bets:
Win: Bet either (or both) I’llhandalthecash and Dalika to win at 9 to 5 or higher, both low odds overlay win bets.

When making multiple win bets, use a "Dutching" tool to do the work of allocating your wagering dollars for the best edge. Amwager has a great dutching tool available, among many other great features.

Exactas: Box I’llhandalthecash and Dalika
We can also play some exactas and trifectas for profit because of the high probability of one of the two contenders winning.

Exacta: I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over ALL

Trifectas:
I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over ALL
I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over ALL over I’llhandalthecash and Dalika
I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over Jakarta, Saratoga Treasure and Cariba
I’llhandalthecash and Dalika over Jakarta, Saratoga Treasure and Cariba over I’llhandalthecash and Dalika