Free Picks For Saratoga - 8/21/20
Race 1 - Maiden Special Weight (Purse -$62,000)
Seven 3-and-4-year-old male runners, including two first-timers, will go five-and-one-half furlongs on the turf. I expect #6 Advanced Strategy and #7 Silver Token to battle for the right to be winners. Advanced Strategy gets the edge for me, despite finishing two spots behind Silver Token in the last outing, as he ran well enough to get the last major check (fourth) following a seven-month layoff on July 26. Advanced Strategy, who will once again have Joel Rosario in the saddle, will be given Lasix for the first time. He also has been very consistent and sharp during his recent workouts. Silver Token has run extremely well since moving to the special weight division at the beginning of the year. The 4-year-old gelding, who began his career in the maiden claiming level, has four straight top 3 finishes, which includes accomplishing the feat twice at this distance. #4 Striking Causeway will look to avenge his last outing (July 5) at Belmont Park where he had no response after stalking the pace and finishing a very distant 10th in a six-furlong event. Irad Ortiz Jr. gets the ride on the 4-year-old colt, who is making his debut at Saratoga as well as at the current distance.
Picks: I like a win on the #6. I also like an exacta box of #6,7.
Race 2 - Maiden Special Weight (Purse -$72,000)
Six 3-and-4-year-old male runners will go one and one-eighth miles on the dirt. Like in Race No.1, this should be a very competitive race though it appears there are three very strong horses. #5 The Angry Man is stretching out an eighth of a furlong to the current distance for the first time. But I’m taking him in this one because he has been running well since moving to Saratoga two starts back. #2 Ashiham finished third in his debut here at Saratoga but was no match for the winner despite entering the race as the favorite. The son of Tapit, who has reached the podium in three of his last four starts, is one of trainer Todd Pletcher's horses.#4 Lucky Asset, a son of Honor Code, will look to make amends for a disappointing Saratoga debut where he finished fourth a little over two lengths behind Asiham. Lucky Asset has alternate good performances with average ones in his career.
Picks: I like a winning bet on the #5. I also like a show be on the #4 and an exacta box of #5, #2, #4.
Race 3 - Skidmore Stakes (Purse - $85,000)
Six 2-year-old runners, including one filly (Sunny Isle Beach), will go five and one-half furlongs on the grass. Trainer Wesley Ward has three horses in the field including the lone female participant so he has an enhanced chance of claiming the trophy. While #6 Golden Pal is the morning line favorite, I will go with #5 Fauci in a mild upset. Fauci, who finished second in his debut, is coming off a one-length victory in his last outing at Keeneland going five-and-one-half furlongs. Expect Fauci, with an early pace ESpeed rating of 101, to set the pace in this one. Golden Pal has been off since finishing second in the Grade 2 Norfolk Stakes at Ascot on June 19. The son of Uncle Mo finished second as the defeated favorite in his debut at Gulfstream in April. #4 Sky’s Not Falling also could take the crown. The Maryland gelding followed his victory at Delaware with a third-place finish in the Hansel Stakes on July 28.
Picks: I will go with a winning bet on the #5.