The feature at Saratoga on Sunday is the $120,000 Coronation Cup and trainer Christophe Clement sends out a competitive duo in the 5 ½ furlong sprint on turf.
There is rain in the forecast for much of the day which might force this race to go on the main track, or at the very least there will be plenty of give to the ground.
Clement will send out Bye Bye (5-1), who is cutting back from a mile where she weakened to finish seventh in the Wild Applause. She won the seven furlong Soaring Softly (G3) two back in her first start against winners.
The trainer also will saddle Honey Pants (4-1), who is coming off a sharp win against first level allowance foes going six furlongs on turf at Belmont Park. She has a couple of seconds in stakes company on turf.
2021 Soaring Softly Replay
The Brad Cox trained Goin’ Good is the 5-2 morning line favorite. The filly beat allowance company at Churchill Downs in her last outing going 5 ½ furlongs on turf.
“She’s not the quickest thing in the world,” Cox said of the filly. “Sometimes it can take her a couple of jumps to really get in position, but once she gets away from there, she’s capable of putting herself in a nice tactical spot.”
Wesley Ward sends out a pair of runners in Wink (10-1) and Illegal Smile (9-2). Wink faded to finish ninth in the Mamzelle at Churchill Downs in her last outing.
Illegal Smile ran second to Goin’ Good in her last start at Churchill Downs. She won the Steward Manor at Aqueduct last November.
“She’s been training really well,” Ward said. “She’s a no issue type of horse. Never had any issues in her career.”
Let’s head out to Saratoga for Sunday’s featured race of the day:
Saratoga Race 9 The Coronation Cup (5:39 ET)
5 Bye Bye 5-1
3 Honey Pants 4-1
4 Goin’ Good 5-2
10 Illegal Smile 9-2
The Clement trainee is cutting back from a mile where the filly set the early fractions and weakened to finish seventh, beaten three lengths in the Wild Applause. She broke her maiden at five furlongs in her second career start and then won the Soaring Softly (G3) at seven panels in her first start against winners. The Clement barn is 20% winners moving runners from route to sprint. She has not been on less than form ground which she likely catches today if this sticks on the grass. If this goes to the main track this gal is bred top and bottom to handle an off track.
This filly was next to last early and came with a good four wide run to get up late and beat Alw-1 company at Belmont Park going six furlongs off a 2 1/2-month break. The runner up Too Sexy came back to beat Alw-1 foes in her next outing here on Friday. She finished in the money in a couple of stakes including a runner up finish in the Steward Manor at six furlongs. It looks as if she should get an honest pace in front of her and while speed seems to be dangerous early at the meet on turf with some rain that could change for today.
The daughter of Congrats is coming off a sharp win versus non-conditioned allowance company at Churchill Downs going 5 1/2 furlongs last out. She earned a career top speed fig in the effort. She ran well on ground with some give to it three back in a runner up finish at Keeneland in the Limestone Turf Sprint. She fits well in this spot but the Cox trainee may end up a short price.
WIN: Bye Bye to win at 4-1 or better.
EXACTA: 5 / 3,4,10 and 3,5 / 3,4,5