Lo Duca: My Card for Black-Eyed Susan Day
Feargal Lynch aboard Lights of Medina reacts after the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico Race Course. Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports
Black-Eyed Susan Day is almost the forgotten great day of racing on the calendar. It’s not loaded with stakes, but there is always great racing. As the Preakness is the second jewel of the Triple Crown, so is the Black-Eyed Susan for the Kentucky Oaks. There’s a 100% chance of rain on both days in Baltimore, so I handicapped according to the races being muddy. I truly don’t know what they will do for the turf races, but I’ll give you selections for both. Again, always pay attention to the first couple races to see how the track is playing.
If you need a refresher on the ins and outs of betting the ponies, we’ve got you covered.
Race 5: The Skipat
Eight fillies will go to the post for the 25th running of the Skipat, and the No. 4, Ms. Locust Point, is your 7-5 morning line favorite. Her weapon is speed, but she broke poorly last time out in the Grade 1 Madison at Keeneland, and Finley’sluckycharm took advantage. If Ms. Locust Point breaks better, she should be in front, but not without pace pressure from the outside filly, Vertical Oak. With those two going fast up front, the No. 3, Startwithsilver (3-1), should be sitting in the garden spot. Plus, she’s gray, and the one time she ran in rain she jogged to a win. Bet gray on a rainy day to start your day!
Pick: $100 on No. 3 Startwithsilver to win
Race 7: The Miss Preakness
This is really a nice group of 3-year-old filly sprinters. It’s loaded with talent, and I would not argue with anyone’s opinion here. Three-year-olds, especially fillies, can change overnight. That being said, I must give a selection, right? So who am I going to give you? The favorite. Good Move (3-1) has dominated in two starts, and I had heard she was training like a beast at Churchill. Brad Cox won the Oaks with Monomoy Girl, and he’ll be trying to pull off a rare double. My longshot is the No. 4, Purrfect Miss. I think the reduction in distance will help this horse a ton. Look for her late.
Pick: $100 on No. 9 Good Move to win
Even though it’s not a stakes race, this will kick off the Late Pick 4. It’s a 50-cent wager, and you have to connect the race winners from 8-11. The pool is guaranteed at $300,000, ending with the Black-Eyed Susan. It actually should be higher by race time. The 8th is an impossible race. If I were you I would wait for scratches and then hit the all button to start your Pick 4.
Race 9: The Pimlico Special
This year’s Pimlico Special features a field of nine. Irish War Cry (3-1), your second-place finisher in the Belmont last year, is the morning line favorite. The No. 2, One Liner (7-2), for Todd Pletcher was on the fast track to the Derby last year, but an injury derailed his journey. His last start as a 4-year-old was dominant. Then there’s the Rodney Dangerfield in the group named Something Awesome (5-1). He’s on a three-race win streak and seems to be getting better, winning the Charles Town Classic in his last start. He’s been on a wet track twice since joining Jose Corrales’ barn, and he’s won both times. For Pick 4 purposes, you have to throw in No. 5 Hedge Fund (7-2).
Pick: $100 on No. 8 Something Awesome to win
Race 10: The Jim McKay Turf Sprint
This is another really tough race because you truly don’t know if they will keep this on the turf and who will scratch. I will update this when I learn more. I like No. 1 Rocket Heat (6-1) from the inside on both surfaces. He has one way to go, so look for him on front end. The No. 3, Imprimis (3-1), is undefeated, and I don’t throw out horses with no blemishes. Hogy (2-1), the No. 7, seems to get better with age. He has a great running style. He lags back and flies home late. The No. 4, Oak Bluffs (6-1), is a must-use horse. He’s won twice on wet surfaces, and he’s been competitive on turf.
Pick: $100 on No. 1 Rocket Heat to win
Race 11: The Black-Eyed Susan
Now we get to the 94th Running of The Black-Eyed Susan. I love a horse in here rain or shine. That’s the No. 9, Sara Street (4-1). She was second in the Gazelle, a Grade 2, last time, but showed a lot of grit. It was her first time around two turns, and she passed the test. She’s lightly raced and she is bred to love the wet. The No. 7, Goodonehoney (5-1), and the No. 2, Midnight Disguise (4-1), should take money, but I think Sara Street is trending forward. The favorite, Coach Rocks (7-2), who I picked in the Oaks, was awful. I can’t see her turning it around in two weeks.
I’m going to use No. 9 in the 50-cent Pick 4, so here’s how it will look:
Race 8: all
Race 9: 1258
Race 10: 1347
Race 11: 9
Depending on how many scratches are out of the 8th, the ticket should be around a $90 investment. Time to go Horizontal!
Pick: $200 on No. 9 Sara Street to win
The 13th: The Allaire DuPont Distaff
The No. 1, Fuhriously Kissed (5-1), is a completely different horse on a wet track. She has three wins, and two of them are on the slick stuff. You also get an unreal jockey change to Javier Castellano for trainer Anthony Quartarolo, who has two horses in here. Longshot Katalust (20-1) is the other charge going and will be the rabbit for his stable mate. I do respect the favorites, the No. 6 Verve’s Tale (9-5) and No. 7 Blue Prize (2-1), but the No. 6 does not love to win. I’m only worried about Blue Prize. He’s got great tactical speed and should sit a great trip. I’ll hope Fuhriously Kissed goes by Blue Prize late.
Pick: $100 win on the 1, $50 exacta box 1, 7
All odds provided by Equibase and current as of Thursday PM.