Free picks For Churchill Downs - 9/1/20
Race 1- Claiming $10,000 (Purse - $27,000)
Six 3-and-4-year-old fillies will go six furlongs on the dirt in what should be a pretty competitive event. #1 Just Fly is stepping up the competition after coasting to a four-length victory at this distance against $5,000 claimers at Ellis Park on Aug. 22. The 3-year-old daughter of multi-graded stakes winner Justin Phillip is used to going on short rest and has not been under much pressure in each of her last two outings so that shouldn’t be a factor. Just Fly, who has finished in the money in five of eight starts on the dirt, is the fastest pony in the field and runs well at this distance with both of her wins are at six furlongs. #4 Proudly Fought is also coming off of a very short rest, on Aug. 23, and returns to the main track after fading and finishing a distant sixth against $5,000 starter allowances in a five and one-half furlong meet on the turf. Proudly Fought was second on the grass versus $10,000 claimers two starts ago and defeated $5,000 claimers at this distance three outings ago. She is 5-2-1-0 on the dirt, which includes one win at Churchill Downs on May 24.#2 All Facts has improved in each of her last two outings and returns to the dirt after a good third-place showing on the turf at Ellis Park on July 18. All Facts, who has shown the ability to make up ground in the stretch, had a strong recent workout going four-furlongs in 47.8 seconds.
Picks: I am going with a winning bet on the #1. I will also go with a #1, #4 exacta bet as well as a value show bet on #2.
Race 2- Maiden Special Weight (Purse - $97,000)
Seven 3-year-old male runners will go one and one-fourth miles on the dirt. While all of the horses have run a race previously, it is the first time each participant is going this distance. I like #3 Leading West the best here as he is the most experienced runner as well as the most successful in terms of “hitting the board”, which the Kentucky colt has done in five of nine career events including 50% of his dirt races. The son of Distorted Humor, who is out of Mike Maker’s barn, has also been racing well recently. # 5 Allege showed massive improvement in his second career race, posting an ESpeed of 86 while finishing fifth in a mile race at Ellis Park on Aug. 2. The son of Uncle Mo, who was bought for $375,000 last year, has had two consistent training sessions recently. #6 Awakened, a son of Curlin, has shown improvement in each of his last two races and this outing will be his off a layoff. Plus, the Kentucky colt showed well in his last training session. #7 Decision Maker could finally get his first result as he has been running extremely well recently. The 3-year-old Kentucky colt also has been superb in his last three training sessions for trainer William Bradley. However, Decision Maker has not been very good in his three events at Churchill Downs.
Picks: I will take the #3 to win. I also will go with a #3, #5, #6 exacta box.
Race 3 - Maiden Claiming $30,000 (Purse - $32,000)
Eight 2-year-old male runners will sprint six-and-one half furlongs on the dirt. Three of the runners are first-timers and this will likely be a pretty slow-paced meet as none of the participants have gone this distance before. #3 Frosted Prayer returns to Churchill Downs after weakening and finishing 11th in a five and one half furlong race on the turf in a special weight class race. This will be Frosted Prayer’s first foray into the claiming division as he was also seventh in a special weight class meet while going five furlongs here at Churchill in June. Trainer Steve Asmussen, who has a 29% strike rate and a 47% WPS percentage with 2-year-old males on the dirt this year, will have Ricardo Santana in the irons. #2 Two Worlds also is making his claiming debut after finishing seventh, at Indiana Grand, as the defeated favorite broke inside during a special weight race. Needless to say, I expect more from the son of Tapit, whose foals have fared pretty well, in this one. Two Worlds has put out a couple of solid training sessions following the Aug. 12 debut. #4 Southern Will is making his debut for trainer Dallas Stewart whose 2-year-old runners have won 20% of their races this year and finished in the top 3 60% of the time.
Picks: I like a winning bet on the #3. I also like a show bet on the #4.