Selections for $1,000,000 Belmont Stakes (G1)

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By Tom Quigley, owner/publisher of The HorsePlayer Magazine. THE RACE $1,000,000 Belmont Stakes (G1) Belmont Park Race 11 (Saturday, June 8, 2013: post time: 6:36 p.m./ET; 3:36 p.m./PT) 1 ¼ miles on the main track (three-year-olds) The third leg of the Triple Crown is being billed as the ‘Duel for the Jewel’ between Kentucky Derby (G1) winner ORB and Preakness (G1) winner OXBOW. Is it just a two horse race or could one of the new shooters step up and surprise? Here’s my take on a classic (and great betting) race: #1 FRAC DADDY drew the rail and his trainer immediately proclaimed he wanted his horse on the lead. Problem is, I see others in here much quicker than him. #2 FREEDOM CHILD freaked in the slop in the Peter Pan (G2) and is likely to get similar track conditions today. #3 OVERANALYZE is one of three in here owned by native New Yorker Mike Repole, who is on record saying this is the one race in North America he wants to win most. #4 GIANT FINISH is going to need giant improvement to be competitive here. #5 ORB instantly earned racing lore by virtue of his victory in the run for the roses last month in Kentucky. He got plenty of pace to run at that day, in direct contrast to how the race unfolded in front of him in Baltimore two weeks later. I have the utmost respect for his trainer and jockey, but if this was a regular race on a Thursday, couldn’t you make a case looking at his pp’s that he may be over the top? #6 INCOGNITO, a son of 1992 Belmont stakes winner A.P. INDY, will still have to remove his mask if they take his picture in the winner circle today. #7 OXBOW jumped up and stole the Preakness (G1) on the front end engineered by cagey veteran jockey Gary Stevens. Different tactics will have to be employed today by the Sunshine Boys. #8 MIDNIGHT TABOO is aggressively placed in just his fourth career start. #9 REVOLUTIONARY ran a solid third in the Kentucky Derby (G1), then skipped the Preakness (G1) to point for this. UNION RAGS followed that path to victory in this race last year, as did SUMMER BIRD, JAZIL, BIRDSTONE and EMPIRE MAKER before that. #10 WILL TAKE CHARGE had traffic trouble at a crucial point in the Kentucky Derby (G1), then never picked up his feet in the Preakness (G1). One more chance? #11 VYJACK started from an impossible post (19) in the Kentucky Derby (G1), flashed early speed, and then faded. His trainer has also cooled off of late. #12 PALACE MALICE was a run-off in the Kentucky Derby (G1) while setting suicidal fractions with the addition of blinkers. The blinkers come off today and the morning clockers have been impressed with his work in the am. #13 UNLIMITED BUDGET is a filly running against the boys. I saw her in the Churchill Downs paddock on Kentucky Oaks (G1) day and her physical build leads me to believe she cannot compete on this stage against her male counterparts. #14 GOLDEN SOUL was a closing second to ORB on the first Saturday in May. Outside post and abbreviated work tab since then has me looking elsewhere. SELECTIONS 1. #9 REVOLUTIONARY– Prefer the fresh horse. 2. #2 FREEDOM CHILD – Mud lark? 3. #12 PALACE MALICE – Money rider. LONG SHOT VALUE PLAY: #10 WILL TAKE CHARGE – Beat OXBOW three races back. WAGERING STRATEGY In my opinion, significant “dumb” money will be wagered on ORB and OXBOW and thus, both will be underlaid on the tote board. It’s a bit early to jump to any conclusions, but my instinct tells me this is a weak crop of three-year-olds with no dominant leader, so why take a short price in such a wide-open race? BANKROLL PLAY $20 Win: #9 REVOLUTIONARY $20 Win: #12 PALACE MALICE $10 Win: #10 WILL TAKE CHARGE (Bankroll at +$483.50 after Week Sixty-Six Based on $50 Wagers; -$139.00 last newsletter)

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