A field of 10 line up in Saturday’s $500,000 Champagne (G1) at Belmont Park with the Kiaran McLaughlin trained Endorsed the one to beat in the one-mile main track event.
The race is not only a Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” race, it is also a Road to the Kentucky Derby points race.
There are just two stakes winners in the field—Saratoga Special (G2) winner Call Paul (4-1) and I’m Smokin Stakes winner Listing (15-1), who ships in from the west coast for trainer Ben Cecil.
The McLaughlin trained Endorsed draws the rail and is the 7-2 second choice on the morning line. Joe Bravo has the return call on the son of Medaglia d’Oro, who broke his maiden in his debut by a neck at 8-1.
The Chad Brown trained Complexity is the 5-2 morning line favorite. The colt took the field gate to wire to break his maiden going six furlongs at the Spa on Sept. 3. Jose Ortiz has the call and will break from the five post.
The Champagne is one of six “Win and You’re In” races this afternoon. There are four at Keeneland and one at Santa Anita. I have all six covered in today’s Best Plays Report.
The 11-race card at Belmont Park today also features the $500,000 Hill Prince (G2), $400,000 Beldame (G1) and the $150,000 Belmont Turf Sprint Invitational.
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Let’s head out to Belmont Park for Saturday’s featured race of the day:
Belmont Park Race 10 The Champagne G1 (Post time 5:35 ET)
#1 Endorsed 7-2
#4 Complexity 5-2
#2 Trophy Chaser 10-1
#5 Call Paul 4-1
Analysis: Endorsed stalked the early pace while saving ground after breaking a beat slow, angled out and finished well while drifting out to win by a neck in his debut over a wet track at the Spa going six furlongs. The racing strip was kind to speed that day. The fourth-place finisher Borracho came back to graduate in his next outing on Sept. 15 at Churchill Downs. The colt has plenty of pedigree to handle the stretch out to a mile. he is by Medaglia d’Oro out of the stakes winner Dance Card ($502,200). McLaughlin is off to a good start at the meeting and this colt will only get better with more ground.
Complexity took the field gate to wire to break his maiden in his debut for the Chad Brown barn. The third-place finisher King for a Day came back to break his maiden in his next start on Oct. 4 here with a 93 Beyer. This colt was a $375,000 Keeneland purchase, out of a Yes It’s True mare that has dropped three other foals to race, all winners, top earner stakes winner Valadorna ($657,920). The barn hits at a 30% clip moving runners from sprint to route. The colt should get a good trip sitting just off the pace here or he is quick enough to be sent.
Trophy Chaser ran huge at Gulfstream park in his second start, earning the top last out speed fig in his maiden score in his second career start. The effort did come in the slop where he was 4-5 and drew away to win by 15 3/4 lengths. Two have come out of that race to graduate next out including the runner up Cafe Du Monde, who broke his maiden at Gulfstream Park on Sept. 23 with a 73 Beyer. He steps into much deeper waters here but worth tossing in the mix if he goes off near his 10-1 morning line. He does seem likely to see some action at the windows.
WIN: #1 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 1,4 / 1,2,4,5
TRI: 1,4 / 1,2,4,5 / 1,2,4,6,9