The closing week at the Saratoga meeting is upon us, and the week starts with the $150,000 With Anticipation (G3) for two-year-olds going 1 1/16 miles on the inner turf course.
There are six days left in the meeting, which concludes on Labor Day. We have 10 stakes left over the next week highlighted by the $750,000 Woodward (G1) on Saturday.
Today’s With Anticipation drew field of eight led by the Jeremiah Englehart trained Tuggle, who is the 5-2 morning line favorite. The colt was third in the Saratoga Special (G2) last out and makes his turf debut.
The co-second choices are recent maiden winner Our Country from the George Weaver barn and Eagerly, who was third in his debut for trainer Todd Pletcher, who has won this race six times.
With a week to go the Ortiz brothers are battling for the jockey title. Jose Ortiz leads all jockeys with 49 winners, winning at a 21% clip. His brother Irad is second in the standings with 43% winners, hitting at a 20% rate.
Chad Brown is well on his way to another trainer title. The barn has won 34 races with Pletcher a distant second with 17 winners. Brown won the title last summer with 46 winners and in 2017 with 40, edging Pletcher by one.
Let’s head out to Saratoga for Wednesday’s featured race of the day:
Saratoga Race 9 The With Anticipation (G3) Post time 5:06 ET
2 Our Country 7-2
8 Field Pass 9-2
5 Eagerly 7-2
1 Tuggle 5-2
The colt stalked the early pace and came with a good late rally to graduate in his second career outing for the Weaver barn that is having a tough meeting, wining with just two of his 29 starters. The colt was fourth in his debut two back at 12-1 behind Field Pass over good ground, a race that [produced two other next out graduates. The colt was a $70,000 purchase, by Constitution out of an unraced Tiznow mare that has dropped one other foal to race, stakes winner Bye Bye Hong Kong ($97,776). This guy should get an honest pace to run at and he is already proven at the distance.
The Maker trainee graduated last out in his second start and was ahead of our top pick in the race The colt got a great trip tracking the early pace while saving ground and took over, holding on to win by ¾ of a length and earned the top last out speed fig. The colt was a game second two back in his debut going 5 ½ furlongs on the turf at Churchill Downs. The winner Axiomo came back to beat Alw-2L foes at Indiana Grand in his next outing on July 24. The colt is bred for turf, by Lemon Drop Kid out of a Runway Groom mare that has dropped one other foal to race, a turf winner.
The colt was outrun early after getting bumped coming out of the gate in his debut and came with a good late run to finish a close up third, beaten ¾ of a length for the top spot. This guy is bred to be a good one, by American Pharoah out of the turf stakes winner Excited ($244,796) who has dropped two other foals to race, both turf winners, top earner stakes winner Thrilled ($333,153). Pletcher has won this race six times including last year with Opry.
WIN: Our Country to win at 3-1 or better.
EXACTA: 2,8 / 1,2,5,8
TRIFECTA: 2,8 / 1,2,5,8 / 1,2,3,5,8