Brandi Looks to Take Charge of Division in Starlet at Los Alamitos

Breeders' Cup Juvenile champion Take Charge Brandi headlines the Starlet. (Photo credit: Breeders' Cup Ltd.)

Take Charge Brandi takes on six foes in Saturday’s $350,000 Starlet (G1) at Los Alamitos, with a victory all but wrapping up the Eclipse Award for top two-year-old juvenile filly.

The D. Wayne Lukas trainee was beaten double-digit lengths in three starts going into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1), but under jockey, Victor Espinoza the filly rode the speed friendly racing strip at Santa Anita to take the field gate to wire, returning $125.40 for a $2 wager.

The filly came back three weeks later to win the Delta Princess (G1), and is now looking to cap off her 2014 campaign with another Grade 1 victory.

She may already have the Eclipse Award in her back pocket. Her main rivals are Lady Eli, the undefeated Chad Brown trainee who won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) and Sunset Glow, who won the Sorrento (G2) and Del Mar Debutante (G1), but had to settle for second in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies.

Peace and War won the Alcibiades (G1) at Keeneland, but it was her lone start in the U.S.

Her main rival on Saturday is the Todd Pletcher trained Feathered, who was fourth and beaten a length in the Juvenile Fillies. She picks up the services of Hall of Fame rider Mike Smith.

The feature at Aqueduct on Saturday is the $100,000 Queen’s County, headlined by Vyjack, who was fifth in the Cigar Mile Handicap (G1) in his last outing. The gelding earned a career top two back winning the Kelso Handicap (G2) at Belmont Park.

Trained by Rudy Rodriguez, the gelding is perfect in two starts on the inner track, winning the Jerome (G2) and Gotham (G3) last year.

My Best Plays Report for Saturday will include my strongest plays from Aqueduct and Los Alamitos.

Let’s head out to Los Al for Saturday’s featured race of the day:


Los Alamitos Race Course Race 8 The Starlet (G1) Post time 4:00 PT

4 Feathered   2-1

6 Take Charge Brandi   9-5

5 Majestic Presence   8-1

1 Achiever’s Legacy   5-1

Feathered was only beaten a length in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) and may be able to turn the tables here. She was bumped coming out of the gate, tracked the early pace, made a good move to get into the mix and then flattened out to finish fourth. She caught a racing strip that day that was kind to inside speed.

She was a good looking maiden winner in her second career start at the Spa and then caught a sloppy track in a third place finish in the Frizette (G1) in her first go against winners. The fact that Todd Pletcher ships her back west looks like a good sign. The $300,000 Ocala purchase is by Indian Charlie out of a stakes placed Dynaformer mare.

Take Charge Brandi took the field gate to t wire to win the Juvenile Fillies over the speed friendly racing strip at 61-1. She had been beaten by double-digit lengths in her three previous outings. She came back to win the Delta Princess (G3) last out over the tight turns at Delta Downs, not beating a really tough group.

A win here would wrap up the Eclipse Award for top two-year-old filly but her price is going to be on the light side.

Majestic Presence was beaten 13 ¼ lengths in the Juvenile Fillies and came back with a good effort last out in a third place finish in the Delta Princess over a racing strip that can be tough to make up ground on. She was beaten 2 ½ lengths by the likely favorite in here. She draws a much better spot here and will appreciate the extra ground. Worth tossing in the mix if she goes off near her 8-1 morning line.


WIN: Feathered to win at 2-1 or better.

EXACTA: 4,6 / 1,4,5,6

TRIFECTA: 4,6 / 1,4,5,6 / 1,3,4,5,6


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