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Saturday, August 24: Saratoga Analysis/Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

August 24, 2019

Specifically designed for the rolling exotic player, Jeff Siegel’s “Daily Analysis and Wagering Strategies” isolates those horses that should be included in daily doubles, pick-3s, pick-4s, pick-5s, and the pick-6. 
It is recommended that Jeff’s selections be used to augment the reader’s own personal handicapping, though excellent results can be achieved by applying the rolling exotic strategy specified by Jeff’s analysis. Jeff’s recommended plays are intended for players with a moderate budget; however, readers are encouraged to adjust Jeff’s wagering strategy to fit their preferred investment level. 
Grade A=Highest degree of confidence. 
Grade B=Solid Play. 
Grade C=Least preferred, or pass. 
Grade X=probable winner but odds are not likely to offer wagering value. 
The selections are available every racing day after morning scratches. For updates, please follow us on twitter @jsiegelracing.

Today’s Day Makers: https://www.xbtv.com/video/day-makers/jeff-siegels-top-plays-at-saratoga-on-august-24th-2019/ 
Today’s Bullet Drills: https://www.xbtv.com/video/bullet-drill/preview-of-the-travers-day-card-at-saratoga-on-august-24th-2019-based-on-works/ 


RACE 1: Post 11:35 ET. Grade: X 
Single: 1-Frontier Market/1a-Unleveraged 

Forecast: The entry – and we prefer Frontier Market of the two – is listed at 4/5 on the morning line in the Travers Day opener, a second level middle distance turf event, and on paper, looks it. First or second in eight of nine career starts with speed figures that are better than par for the level, Frontier Market just missed in his first start in nine months vs. similar earlier this meeting and has looked extra sharp since in morning drills. He’s likely to produce a forward move, but even if he doesn’t the son of Lemon Drop Kid should handle this assignment in the absence of poor racing luck. Entry-mate Unleveraged is a lightly-raced son of Scat Daddy with plenty of potential and rising numbers. Together they form a team that can be used as a no-value rolling exotic single in a race that we’ll otherwise pass. 
RACE 2: Post 12:08 ET. Grade: B- 
Use: 1-Tap It to Win; 3-Complexifier; 6-O’Trouble 

Forecast: O’Trouble has recorded some fancy workouts leading up to his racing debut and in what appears to be a below par race for straight maiden juveniles let’s go with the newcomer even from a barn not necessarily known for winning with first-time starters. A gate work two weeks ago in 47 2/5 seconds (second fastest of 40) catches the eye, as does an earlier gate breeze of 1:00 1/5 seconds, fastest of seven bullet drill Aug. 1. At 5-1 on the morning line, the A. Dutrow-trained colt seems as good as any. Complexifier was a fair to moderate third in his debut, beaten six lengths, in a strong race won by Shoplifted last month. The son of Overanalyze had no visible mishap but stayed on willingly and has every right to improve, especially with the addition of Lasix. Tap It to Win was 6/5 in his debut in a grass sprint at Woodbine in early July but couldn’t take advantage of an easy front-running trip and put up no resistance when challenged in mid-stretch, settling for second, beaten three lengths. A bullet five furlong gate drill here August 15 in 59 2/5 seconds gives reason to believe he can improve on dirt for the M. Casse barn, which has solid stats with second-timers. We’ll try to get by using these three in rolling exotic play but if you feel the need to spread deeper, go right ahead. 

RACE 3: Post 12:41 ET. Grade: B- 
Use: 2-Charreada; 3-First Wave; 7-Balon Rose; 9-Dabinett 

Forecast: Here’s another competitive maiden race, this one for older fillies and mares at a mile and one-sixteenth on grass. First Wave has the classic two-sprints-and-a-stretch-out pattern for a barn that has solid stats with this angle and we’re expecting the daughter of War Front to produce a significant forward move under these conditions. Runner-up in both career outings, most recently when missing by a neck in a five and one-half furlong sprint here last month, the G. Arnold-trained 3-year-old has rising speed figures and should be on or near the lead throughout. Balon Rose has been a well-bet failure so far in her brief career but continues to impress in the morning for C. Brown, so we’ll give her one more chance, but that’s it. Maybe J. Ortiz, who stays aboard, will try something different today. Dabinett, another C. Brown entrant, has been away since the spring of 2018 but has looked pretty good in the morning for her comeback and might be a better type this time around for a barn that has superb stats (28%) with layoff runners. The daughter of Blame will be heard from late if a decent early pace materializes. Charreada is a one-paced grinder with a history of getting close but not sealing the deal. She earned a career top number when second in a maiden miler at Belmont Park in early July and has been looking good in the morning in the interim. She’s another that has a winning chance if the early fractions are fast enough. 
RACE 4: Post 1:14 ET. Grade: B- 
Use: 3-Tight Ten; 5-Off the Record; 7-Payne; 11-Performer 

Forecast: Tight Ten, away since January, has shown the ability to win fresh (he won his debut) and has trained smartly for his comeback. Second in the Saratoga Special over this main track last year, the son of Tapit could easily return a lot better than he left. He’s listed at 15-1 on the morning line but seems certain to go lower. Payne had a troubled trip and ran below his true form in his most recent outing. After being pinched back and forced to steady soon after the start, he was fanned wide into the lane and then closed with some interest to be a non-threatening third at 4/5. However, even when factoring in the tough trip, it was a disappointing performance for the son of Paynter, whose Beyer speed figure dropped 17 points from his sharp runner-up effort at Belmont Park the previous month. Perhaps he’s simply more effective at Belmont Park or maybe the early trouble took him out of his game. At any rate, we’ll include him our rolling exotics. Off the Record won his debut with a good rail-scraping trip over a wet track while earning a moderate speed figure. He probably can improve but will have to. These are the three we’ll be using in our rolling exotics with Tight Ten the most intriguing based on price. 
RACE 5: Post 1:48 ET. Grade: X 
Single: 3-Mitole 

Forecast: Mitole was 50 cents on the dollar in the A.G. Vanderbilt S. last month but had the misfortune of drawing the rail, was forced into an early speed duel, and then paid the price late when weakening to be a distant third behind Imperial Hint. The son of Eskendereya is much better than the race will show and gets a chance to prove it at this seven furlong distance that he’s proven he likes. Working as well as ever and drawing outside the other main speed horse, Promises Fulfilled, the S. Asmussen-trained colt won’t offer any value at 4/5 on the morning line but can be used as a logical rolling exotic single. 
RACE 6: Post 2:23 ET. Grade: X 
Use: 2-Come Dancing; 4-Separationofpowers 

Forecast: Come Dancing couldn’t cope with Midnight Bisou and wound up second, beaten 3 � lengths, in the 8.5 furlong Phipps S.-G1 at Belmont Park in early June but drops back to seven eighths today, and at 6/5 on the morning line is guaranteed to be a short price. Victorious in six of 11 starts, she’s extremely fast on speed figures but drew towards the inside (post two), so her options are limited. If the daughter of Malibu Moon gets caught in a speed duel, the race could set up nicely for Separationofpowers, a gate-to-wire winner of the Bed O Roses S.-G3 at Belmont Park in early June but more than capable of winning from off the pace if the situation dictates. We’ll pass the race but include both in rolling exotic play with Come Dancing afforded a very slight edge on top. 
RACE 7: Post 2:59 ET. Grade: X 
Single: 1-Shancelot 

Forecast: Shancelot earned a 121 Beyer speed figure in extending his perfect streak to three in the Amsterdam S.-G3 here last month and if he can repeat that type of performance today he’ll win by just as many. Even if he regresses, the son of Shanghai Bobby is so far superior to this group that he’ll practically have to bounce to the moon to get himself beat. Except for using him as a free bingo space in rolling exotic play, It’s a nice race to watch 

RACE 8: Post 3:55 ET. Grade: B 
Use: 3-Secret Message; 8-Starship Jubilee; 9-Mascha 

Forecast: The Ballston Spa Stakes for older fillies and mares over a middle distance on grass has several contenders and requires a bit of a spread in rolling exotic play. Secret Message may deserve a slight edge since she’s dropping out of Grade-1 company to this Grade-2 affair and doesn’t have to worry about Sistercharlie and Rushing Fall today. A winner of five of 12 during her highly-productive career but never quite able to act with the best in her division, the daughter of Hat Trick is more than capable of producing a winning late kick. Starship Jubilee has more tactical speed than ‘Message and therefore could have a tactical advantage over the likely favorite. ‘Jubilee recently placed in a couple of Woodbine Grade-2 events including a strong runner-up effort to Secret Message when they met in the Nassau S.-G2 in late May. Truthfully, they’re hard to separate and a win today by either one would not be a surprise. Mascha is moving way up in class following a clever win in a first-level allowance affair at this distance here last month. With only five career starts, the French-bred filly has plenty of room for further development and continues to impress in the morning, indicating that a forward move is likely. 
RACE 9: Post 4:12 ET. Grade: X 
Single: 1-Midnight Bisou 

Forecast: Midnight Bisou and Elate renew their rivalry in the Personal Ensign S.-G1 and we suspect the result will be the same as when they meet twice during the spring at Oaklawn Park. ‘Bisou had Elate’s number at that time and probably still does, though Elate has something of a home court advantage having won the Alabama S.-G1 at Saratoga two years ago whereas Midnight Bisou is winless in two starts at the Spa. But Midnight Bisou has the edge in tactical speed and in a race that might be slowly run early, also has a better turn of foot. You have to choose one or the other, so we’ll stick with Midnight Bisou. 
RACE 10: Post 4:49 ET. Grade: B+ 
Single: 7-Annals of Time 

Forecast: Annals of Time is into the second half of his 6-year-old season and has started only seven times, but the good news is that the son of Temple City appears back in the form that saw him win the Hollywood Derby-G1 as a 3-year-old before various ailments forced him to the sidelines. He was a visually very impressive allowance winner here last month and sports a series of sharp workouts since, so we’re confident the C. Brown-trained horse is set for another major effort, one that should be good enough to beat a group of older marathoners that have taken turns beating each other all year long. Can Annals of Time handle 12 furlongs? The gamble is that he will based on running style, pedigree, trainer, and any other element you might want to include in the mix. At 5/2 on the morning line we’ll make him a straight play and rolling exotic single. 
RACE 11: Post 5:44 ET. Grade: B+ 
Use: 2-Code of Honor: 6-Tacitus; 7-Mucho Gusto 

Forecast: Mucho Gusto has rapidly rising Beyer speed figures – he’s gone from 85 to 90 to 95 to 100 in his most recent four starts - and ran the race of his career when fully extending Maximum Security in the Haskell S.-G1 last month, finishing a little more than a length behind the best 3-year-old in North American while eight lengths clear of the rest. He’s trained in superb fashion since that race for B. Baffert and as a son of Mucho Macho Man from a mare by Giant’s Causeway certainly has the pedigree to handle the mile and one-quarter trip. Additionally, he’s extremely handy and versatile and can adjust to any pace scenario, so at 6-1 on the morning line we’ll make him the main punch. Tacitus was best in the Jim Dandy S.-G2 but settled for second after stumbling badly at the start and then making a premature mid-race move that robbed him of a strong late kick that was needed to wear down Tax. Blinkers are being added for the first time, and if he doesn’t make any mistakes today, the son of Tapit will be the one that Mucho Gusto will have to worry about the most. We’ll also include on a ticket or two Code of Honor, impressive in victory in the Dwyer S.-G3 at Belmont Park last month and training since then like he’s ready for another huge effort today. 
RACE 12: Post 6:20 ET. Grade: C+ 
Use: 4-Five Star Bunt; 10-Royal Asset; 11-Discretionary Marq; 13-Dowse’s Beach 

Forecast: Here’s a turf raffle that offers a number of possibilities. We’ll use three, but if you can afford to spread deeper, go for it. Dowse’s Beach gets in from the also-eligible list and seems as good as any, having just won a similar optional claimer on yielding ground last month. An absolute Saratoga specialist, he’s won five of eight starts over this course and distance but the J. Servis-trained gelding must overcome the extreme outside draw. Discretionary Marq drops to his lowest level ever and has several races in his chart that are good enough to win. The concern is that he’s always been most effective when on or near the lead throughout and from post 11 he’ll have to hustle to get a favorable early spot. We’ll also include a couple of price chances, Royal Asset and Five Star Bunt. ‘Asset, listed at 10-1 on the morning line, has hit the board in all four of his prior starts over this course and distance and while he’s moving up in class following a $25,000 claim the veteran gelding exits a fast, highly-rated race. ‘Bunt, freshened since early May, has excellent dirt track speed figures and did finish second in one of two lifetime outings on grass awhile back. The L. Rice barn has strong stats with layoff runners and with J. Ortiz taking the call this Posse gelding has a right to outrun his 12-1 morning line. 
RACE 13: Post 6:54 ET. Grade: B+ 
Single: 5-Magic Star 

Forecast: Magic Star, a Scat Daddy filly from Grade-1 winner Meadow Breeze, finally makes it to the post in late August of her 3-year-old season and we’re hoping it was worth the wait. The C. Brown-trained filly has done some superior work in the morning while keeping up nicely on a couple of occasions with Dunbar Road, arguably the best 3-year-old filly in North American at the present time. However, she also shows a very sharp work around dogs on turf eight days ago, providing evidence that she can act on either surface. Making her debut in a moderate spot, the $500,000 yearling buy should outclass this field, and if you can gete close to her morning line of 3-1 you’ll probably be getting excellent value. Let’s make her a strong straight play and rolling exotic single.