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Sunday, August 25: Saratoga Analysis/Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

August 25, 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.p>

Today’s Day Makers: https://www.xbtv.com/video/day-makers/jeff-siegels-top-plays-at-saratoga-on-august-25th-2019/ 

RACE 1: Post 1:00 ET. Grade: B 
Use: 2-Wicked Whisper; 5-Highland Glory 

Forecast: Wicked Whisper shows an impressive series of workouts at Churchill Downs and before that Keeneland and arrives at the Spa with a reputation of being a runner. From the first crop of BC Mile winner Liam’s Map, the S. Asmussen-trained filly must leave cleanly from the rail but if she does we suspect she’ll be hard to outrun. Highland Glory impressed in a recent 3-horse gate drill (48 seconds, 25th fastest of 108) while in blinkers for trainer B. Tagg and is worth including in rolling exotic play as well. The known element doesn’t inspire, so let’s try to survive and advance using just these two. 

RACE 2: Post 1:34 ET. Grade: B 
Use: 3-Real Money; 7-Ahead of Plan 

Forecast: Ahead of Plan has so far failed to live up to the hype that he gained when bringing $475,000 at the 2018 OBS April sale after being so impressive in the preview session. Runner-up in two career outings as the favorite, most recently in early June at Belmont Park, the son of Big Drama tries his luck sprinting on grass today after a series of slow and easy recent workouts for C. Brown. Maybe today he’ll show us his best stuff. Real Money has displayed good zip but not much stick in five previous outings. However, he did earn good speed figures in his last pair and has hit the board in his last three, so perhaps at this abbreviated sprint trip the son of Real Solution will prove troublesome. Both should be used in rolling exotic play with preference on top to Ahead of Plan. 
RACE 3: Post 2:06 ET. Grade: X 
Single - 4-Tide of the Sea 

Forecast: Tide of the Sea, a lightly-raced English Channel colt with plenty of upside, graduated over this course and distance in gate-to-wire fashion last month while being allowed to stroll on the front end. He’ll only have three rivals on the one-level raise with J. Rosario staying aboard for W. Mott and will be a short price to score right back. You can use him as a no-value rolling exotic single or simply pass the race. 
RACE 4: Post 2:38 ET. Grade: B- 
Single: 1-Excess Capacity 

Forecast: Excess Capacity drops to her lowest level ever in her first start since May and catches a below par field for the level. The S. Asmussen barn hits with a respectable 19% with comebackers and this daughter of Malibu Moon shows a healthy series of recent workouts that should have her fit enough. Her rail post is the main concern; the inside lanes weren’t the place to be yesterday. She’s a single by default in a race that we won’t get too involved in. 
RACE 5: Post 3:10 ET. Grade: C+ 
Use: 2-Enthusiastic Gal; 6-Violent Times; 8-Originator 

Forecast: Here’s a difficult turf sprint for second-level allowance fillies and mares. We’ll go three-deep in our rolling exotics but otherwise pass the race. Violent Times, beaten a neck at this level over this course and distance last month with a career top speed figure, should fire a similar shot today from a good pace-stalking/pressing position that projects to have a comfortable opening quarter mile split. Originator moves up a notch after earning a competitive number in victory over an entry-level field earlier this meeting and will be doing her best work late, as will Enthusiastic Gal, a fast-finishing fourth, beaten a length, in the same race Violent Times exits. Trip and pace (there isn’t much of it) should decide this race that on paper has several evenly matched runners. 
RACE 6: Post 3:42 ET. Grade: C+ 
Use: 1-Soul P Say; 8-Scarf It Down 

Forecast: Modest ($12,500) claimers sprint six furlongs in the sixth race, another challenging affair that requires a spread in rolling exotic play. Scarf It Down drops below his claim level for the money run and seems well-placed to regain his winning form for the high percentage barn of C. Engelhart. The Twirling Candy gelding is just 4-for-31 lifetime with 14 seconds and thirds, but two of those wins have come at Saratoga. Soul P Say was overmatched for $25,000 in his last start but returns to his claim level and should be in the fray throughout despite the rail. 
RACE 7: Post 4:14 ET. Grade: B- 
Use: 1-Roman City; 9-Yellen 

Forecast: While we doubt she’s any world beater, Roman City has looked fairly decent in the morning, both at the OBS June sale (where she previewed in 10 2/5 seconds) and at Saratoga, where she appeared light on her feet with good action in an easy half mile breeze in 49 1/5 seconds on the training track last week. Certainly bred to move up on grass (City Zip), the R. Diodoro-trained juvenile looks like a live item in the maiden $75,000 claiming turf. Yellen has the benefit of a previous run, having displayed good early speed before weakening in a straight maiden dash at Churchill Downs in June. This is an easier spot, so the W. Ward-trained daughter of Fed Biz should improve considerably. These are the two we’ll be including in our rolling exotics with a slight preference on top to Roman City. 

RACE 8: Post 4:46 ET. Grade: B+ 
Single: 1-Front Run the Fed 

Forecast: We’re not entirely convinced that Bulletin wants to run this far, and we’re not sure that Bourbon War will move up on grass, so let’s go for Front Run the Fed, the earner of a monster 98 Beyer speed figure when winning a first-level allowance event at Belmont Park in his most recent appearance in mid-May. The C. Brown-trained son of Fed Biz won that race over a softened turf course listed as “good,” so today we’ll find if he can be just as effective on firm going. Recent drills indicate fitness – he went evenly with Robert Bruce in a team drill on grass more than a month ago – and from his rail post he’s all but guaranteed a ground-saving, stalking trip. At 2-1 on the morning line we’ll make him a straight play and rolling exotic single. 
RACE 9: Post 5:18 ET. Grade: B+ 
Single: 2-Meet Me in L A 

Forecast: Meet Me in L A has yet to actually finish first in a race – he broke his maiden via disqualification in June at Belmont Park – but we’re thinking he still has the most upside in this first-level allowance race and is set to produce another forward move in just his fourth career start. The Awesome Again gelding projects to settle just behind the leaders and then kick home when he’s called upon. Recent works over the Saratoga main track have been sharp for J. Jerkens, so at 5/2 on the morning line we’ll make him a straight play and rolling exotic single. 
RACE 10: Post 5:50 ET. Grade: B- 
Use: 1-Countenance; 4-Augusta Moon 

Forecast: Monmouth Park shipper Augusta Moon shows up in a claimer for the first time, so this former $250,000 yearling purchase is clearly being culled from the stable with the September sales right around the corner. The T. Pletcher trained filly has numbers that are good enough to win at this level, sports the popular blinkers off angle, and should be able to draft into a comfortable second flight position and then go on when ready. Countenance, first off a $20,000 claim by S. Asmussen (solid 20% with this angle), stretches out while making her second start off a layoff and from the rail should be close up throughout. Her turf routes at Tampa Bay Downs weren’t bad and she could be a better type now with the switch in barns. Both should be included in rolling exotic play.