TVG Analyst: Christina Blacker
#4 COME DANCING will be my top selection. She is four for five this year and the only horse to finish in front of her on the racetrack is Midnight Bisou. Additionally, her last two wins have been effortless. She is setting fast fractions, finishing quickly, and making it look easy. She also has the ability to rate, which I think she will need to do based on the early speed of a few of her competitors. However, she does have one quirk that initially put me off of her. She seems to gravitate towards the rail in the stretch and is clearly most comfortable in that lane. I watched a few of her works in the morning and she does the same thing when she practices. It doesn’t seem to be slowing her down at all and hopefully she is able to pounce on the leaders and pull clear to finish.
#1 COVFEFE has been ultra-impressive thus far and was sparkling in the Dogwood. She set a stakes record that day and matched her career best number on Thorograph. She also dominates on the Stats Race Lens True Odds late pace ratings. So why isn’t she my top selection? I have some concerns about her returning off the big race in the Dogwood with another top level effort against older fillies and mares. In fact, the only time she lost this year was when returning off a similar speed figure and facing older. She seems to be the speed of the speed but will certainly have some company up front with the likes of Danuska’s My Girl and Selcourt. She will also take pressure the entire race from the rail. It’s difficult to see her withstanding an early duel and pulling off another career best.
#9 SPICED PERFECTION seems to fit an angle that I always follow and that is of the improving four year old. She has run two brilliant races this year; most notably, her recent win despite trouble in the TCA at Keeneland. She was away awkwardly that day and then recovered only to be bottled up inside down the backstretch. Eventually she split horses and battled to the wire for the victory. Her two best races have come at Keeneland however, so I am skeptical if she is actually an improving four year old or just fits the horse for course at Keeneland angle. She will sit a good trip from off the pace and should come running to finish, but will be an exotics type horse for me this year.
Even though her recent form is a little dull, Bellafina seems to have had some excuses lately. She broke slow in both the Test and the Cotillion and had to face a long ship each time. She is four for four at Santa Anita and her seven furlong effort in the Santa Ynez was one of her most impressive. Bellafina at home, over a distance she relishes is a threat.
#4 COME DANCING
#9 SPICED PERFECTION
Money Back Special pick: #6 BELLAFINA
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