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Saturday, September 21: Belmont Park Wagering Strategies

by Jeff Siegel

September 21, 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.

RACE 1: Post 1:00 ET. Grade: B
Use: 4-Shareholder Values; 6-Data Driven

Forecast: Shareholder Values, listed at even money on the morning line, has been claimed in seven of his last 10 starts and was just re-claimed by L. Rice for $25,000. The veteran gelding returns on the one-level drop while retaining regular pilot J. Lezcano for a barn that always operates aggressively, so we’ll assume the son of Uncle Mo, with an ideal late-running style for this extended sprint distance, will be tough to contain in the final furlong. His only prior outing over the Belmont Park main track resulted in a five length win with a career top speed figure in late June. Data Driven earned a triple digit Beyer speed figure two runs back in a nearly 14-lengthh romp at Saratoga but bounced to the moon when pitched too high by Rudy (who claimed for $12,500) to the $40,000 level in his next start, winding up a well-beaten fourth. This drop to $20,000 is realistic, and from his outside draw the son of Northern Afleet should have every chance with a second flight, stalking spot. Both should be included in rolling exotic play with preference on top to Shareholder Values.

RACE 2: Post 1:33 ET. Grade: X
Single: 2-Fusi

Forecast: This is a default single. Fusi will be a short price (she’s 4/5 on the morning line) in a very weak maiden $40,000 claimer for older fillies and mares after finishing a second in a similar affair at Saratoga last month. She had every chance in that race, making the running with easy splits, but simply couldn’t seal the deal. Nothing better will be needed today but as short prices go, we don’t view her as completely trustworthy. Tread lightly, or simply pass the race.

RACE 3: Post 2:04 ET. Grade: X
Single: 4-En Wye Cee

Forecast: Here’s another logical short price winner. En Wye Cee, listed at 3/5 on the morning line, won at first asking with a visually pleasing performance at Saratoga, overcoming a rough start and wide trip to be up in time while earning a powerful speed figure for a maiden. A healthy series of workouts since that early August outing should have him ready for a forward move in his first start over a distance of ground that on pedigree should make him even more effective. You can use him as a no-value rolling exotic single or simply pass the race.

RACE 4: Post 2:35 ET. Grade: B+
Use: 4-Eagerly; 8-Tiesto

Forecast: Though he finished third vs. maidens in his debut, Eagerly (listed at 7/5 on the morning line) ran well enough to entice his connections to enter him back in the With Anticipation S.-G3 at Saratoga in late August, but the son of American Pharoah was withdrawn the morning of the race and didn’t work back until Sept. 13, so a physical issue obviously surfaced. Anything close to his debut performance – he lost far more ground than the three-quarters of a length that he was beaten by – should handle this assignment, though Tiesto, a $600,000 OBS April sale purchase, warrants some consideration at 6-1 on the morning line in his debut for W. Mott. A highly-attractive son of Tiznow, he’s a half-brother to Fountain of Youth S.-G2 winner Promises Fulfilled and multi-stakes winning Marquee Miss and turned heads with an impressive 21 seconds flat breeze during the preview session. His recent work tab shows a couple of recent bullet drills, so we’ll assume he’s fit and ready, but the main question is grass for a colt bred strictly for dirt.

RACE 5: Post 3:06 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 7-Talent Scout; 9-Major Flirt

Forecast: We’ll double the fifth race, a $16,000 claiming sprint for non-winners of two races. Talent Scout returns to his claim level after finishing a willing runner-up in a $25,000 affair earlier this month and looks well-placed to win for the first time since his highly-rated debut score at Santa Anita in October of 2017. The concern is that the son of New Year’s Day is winless in four starts at six furlongs – he broke his maiden at six and one-half – but at this level he should be able to produce the last run with anything close to his best race. Major Flirt is slower on numbers but should have clear sailing and every chance outside and will be heard from late if he receives the patient ride he requires.

RACE 6: Post 3:38 ET. Grade: B+
Single: 4-Candy Tycoon

Forecast: Candy Tycoon suffered from a brutal trip that was triggered by a slow start and did well to finish as close as he did when third in his debut at Saratoga in mid-August. He returns for T. Pletcher (27% with second-timers) while removing blinkers and switching to Johnny V., and we suspect the son of Twirling Candy will show his true form today in a race in which the first-timers don’t really excite. At 4/5 on the morning line he’ll be too short to play in the straight pool but we can use him as a no-value rolling exotic single.

RACE 7: Post 4:10 ET. Grade: B
Use: 6-Balon Rose; 8-Shelter Island

Forecast: Balon Rose was supposed to be C. Brown’s next super filly – she was sent off at 35 cents on the dollar in her debut – but the daughter of War Front seems destined to fall far short of expectations as she seeks her diploma today in her fourth career starts. Second, beaten a neck, in her most recent outing, she seems certain to get plenty of play again, has every right to continue to improve, and is a “must use” in rolling exotic play. However, it’s her stablemate, the first-time starting Shelter Island, that appears more intriguing. The French-bred filly has trained like she’s fit and ready, though it’s somewhat surprising that most of her recent drills actually have been accomplished on dirt. Both should be used in rolling exotic play; we’ll have a few extra tickets keying Shelter Island – she’s 9/2 on the morning line - on top.

RACE 8: Post 4:42 ET. Grade: B-
Use: 4-Capla Temptress; 5-Significant Form; 6-Valedictorian

Forecast: We’ll go three deep in this evenly-matched edition of the Noble Damsel S.-G3. Valedictorian shortens to a mile – arguably her best trip – after failing to see out nine furlongs when a respectable fourth in the Yellow Ribbon H.-G2 at Del Mar last month. A winner of 12 of 29 career starts, the daughter of Temple City catches a very favorable pace-scenario and can pop and go or stalk and pounce from her outside draw depending upon the flow of the race. On pure form Capla Temptress appears logically the one to beat – there’s nothing wrong with her runner-up effort, beaten four lengths – in the De La Rose S. at Saratoga last month behind Got Stormy – but she’s unplaced in three prior starts over the Belmont Park turf course, which gives slight pause (to be fair, two of those three races were in Grade 1’s). Significant Form is a tad shy in the speed figure department but she’s a multiple graded stakes winner over the local lawn and earned a career top number when winning the Ballston Spa S.-G2 at Saratoga in her most recent start. A repeat of that race could be good enough.

RACE 9: Post 5:20 ET. Grade: B
Use: 3-Big Muddy; 4-Mental Model

Forecast: Mental Model earned a giant speed figure when graduating over this track and distance in mid-May and at the time seemed like a terrific claim by L. Rice. However, the son of Into Mischief was subsequently scratched twice, and makes his first start in more than four months while sporting an uneven, suspicious work tab. If he repeats his last race, he’ll probably win, and the fact that’s he’s being protected in starter’s allowance company is comforting. We’ll put him on top but also include Rice’s other starter, Big Muddy. The lightly-raced son of Medaglia d’Oro has won five of 12 career starts, has prior winning form at Belmont Park, and employs the ideal style for a one-turn mile.

RACE 10: Post 5:53 ET. Grade: B
Use: 5-Prince Lucky; 6-Plainsman

Forecast: Plainsman has the proper style for this one-turn mile trip and his only prior outing at Belmont Park resulted in a nearly seven length romp with a strong figure a little more than a year ago. Off a long layoff the four-year-old colt finished an excellent second to Uncontested in a hot overnight sprint last month at Saratoga, and if he moves forward for Shug as we expect the son of Flatter could step up and beat this field. Prince Lucky earned a triple-digit Beyer speed figure when winning the listed State Dinner Stakes when last seen in July and recent sharp workouts indicates the son of Corinthian is spot on for another big run. A two-time winner over Big Sandy, the T. Pletcher-trained gelding certainly can win with anything close to his best effort. Pat On the Back is a tough-as-hails New York-bred runner and has never finished off the board in 10 career starts over the local main track, including five wins. He’s genuine and consistent to eliminate, so we’ll toss him in on a ticket or two as a back-up.

RACE 11: Post 6:24 ET. Grade: C+
Use: 1-Barrel of Destiny; 7-Hit a Provisional; 8-Kerry’s Ring; 10-Star of the East

Forecast: The nightcap is an open state-bred first-level allowance turf miler for entry-level allowance fillies and mares. We’ll go four-deep in our rolling exotics and hope to survive. Star of the East has rising numbers and a prior win over this Belmont Park course and distance, so she’s a logical main contender. The B. Lynch-trained daughter of Medaglia d’Oro is a one-paced grinding type and should have dead aim under J. Castellano from the top of the lane to the wire. Kerry’s Ring broke her maiden last time out at Saratoga, and with just four career starts the 3-year-old daughter of Kitten’s Joy certainly has further upside. She’s a fit on numbers and ran well in both of her prior outings over the local lawn. Hit a Provisional, runner-up at this level though probably best in her most recent outing at Saratoga, can be dangerous from a stalking position or from off the pace, so J. Lezcano, who rode her well in her debut, can pick an option. Barrel of Destiny, a close third in the same race ‘Provisional exits, should enjoy a ground-saving trip and will be running on late.