The Saratoga Derby

There are plenty of stakes to choose from on Saturday at Saratoga. The Whitney, The Test, and The Lure and The Glens Falls will all be run. So will The Saratoga Derby and I like that one. Yes, I like the name, but I also like the race from a wagering perspective.

A full field of 11 is scheduled to go a mile and three sixteenths on the Mellon Turf Course. A few are coming out of The Belmont Derby where Classic Causeway was allowed to set and control the pace unchallenged and pulled off the gate to wire upset. I do not think lightning strikes twice in this instance and will be looking elsewhere for the winner.

Main Event and Emmanuel both have the potential to entertain Classic Causeway on the front this time around. Considering how things played out in The Belmont Derby you must think most of the riders will not want the same scenario. This should help things set up for the horse I like.

Stone Age is drawn outside again this time in the 10 slot. In The Belmont Derby he was in the 12 slot and completely marooned. He still ran a decent race into the slow pace from far back in the field. At Saratoga he will get a long run into the first tun and Johnny V rides this course exceptionally well so his trip and the pace set up he gets should be a lot more favorable. He was washed out and obviously not himself in The Cazoo Derby the race before that when he was showing signs of really coming around. I can forgive the last two races and look for a big bounce back here.

There is a chance of rain. That never bothers me as much when I like a European horse. Even the ones who prefer firm or harder ground have plenty of experience over softer and wet going. Aidan is overdue to win a big one at Saratoga and I think he may get it done here.

It will be interesting to see The Whitney. Will Life is Good return to the form that had him the horse to beat in the major races for older horses this year? He has a nice outside draw to give Irad some options but it looks like a race where the pace can potentially get hot so it will be interesting to see how he handles that scenario.

The Test is another race where it looks like there is plenty of speed.

For more on Saturday’s big card at Saratoga check out Saratoga Today every Saturday of the meet on Past The Wire TV

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Jon Stettin

Since childhood, Jon has always had a deep love and respect for the Sport of Kings. His years of experience have earned him a well respected spot in the industry as a handicapper. He now is a frequent contributor to AmWager as well as writing for his own site.

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