We are only a day away from the $1,000,000 Travers Stakes (Gr. 1) at Saratoga in Saratoga Springs, NY. There are five stakes races on the agenda Saturday, with the Travers Stakes leading the way with 100 points to the winner and the top prize out of a $1,000,000 purse. Tiz the Law doesn’t need any points to reach the Kentucky Derby, but his connections would surely love that sweet prize money. The $300,000 Ballerina Stakes (Gr. 1) and $300,000 Longines Test Stakes (Gr. 1) are the next biggest races in Saratoga Springs this weekend. Elsewhere, Del Mar has a couple of $150,000 stakes races, but the spotlight will be bright on Saratoga on Saturday.
Saratoga will have one stakes race on offer today. The running of the $150,000 Saratoga Special (Gr. 2) is set for Race 9 on Friday afternoon. We have you covered for the Saratoga Special and all of the action on Saturday from Saratoga Springs. As far as today is concerned, there is a total of $667,000 in prize money available. Tomorrow things will get kicked up to $2,398,000 in prize money. Head below for our free Saratoga picks for August 7, 2020.
Post Time: 2:54 p.m. EST
Distance: 1 1/16 Miles
We’ll get started at Saratoga on Friday with Race 4 for a $57,000 purse on the turf. Eight horses are scheduled to participate on the 1 1/16 mile circuit. Baseline Circuit and Halo City are two horses to look into closer. Halo City is seeking her first win while coming close a few times already. She has placed 2nd in 3 of 7 career races, though has finished 6th, 4th, 4th in her previous three outings. In Halo City’s most recent outing, she was 4th on July 19 in a $72,000 event and 4th in a $64,000 event before that on June 13.
Halo City is back down in class in a $57,000 race on Friday. She has proven to come close to winning in bigger races than this before. Note that Halo City entered a $68,000 race on February 8 and was a neck away from winning. Prior to that outing, Halo City finished 2nd on January 10 in another $68,000 outing. In other words, we’ve seen Halo City compete and get close in higher classes than this race in the past. However, her recent form hasn’t been all that encouraging. That said, expect to find Halo City in the fray in the stretch.
Baseline Drive is coming off her debut on June 24 at Gulfstream Park. It was a solid run for a first-time runner, though more was expected out of Baseline Drive. She was the betting favorite at post time, but didn’t live up to expectations from handicappers. Having said that, Baseline Drive can only improve from here. She has been incredibly consistent in morning workouts since that performance. Baseline Drive has completed 4 furlongs in 49, 49.20, 49.80, and 49.20 seconds. Despite the slow start to her career, she is expected to enjoy a lot of success throughout. Expect a more comfortable run for her and likely trip to the winner’s circle.
Post Time: 5:14 p.m. EST
Our next selection at Saratoga brings us to Race 8, which features a $64,000 purse on the inner turf. Silky Blue and Amos are listed on my shortlist for this event. Note that Fight on Lucy is only racing on the main track. If this event gets transferred to the dirt, then Fight on Lucy would be a major contender. Amos is 1 for 12 in her career with finishes of 2nd, 1st, 5th, 6th, 2nd in her previous five races. All of her previous three entries were in allowance events.
Her win was on March 6 at Aqueduct by a half length over Dancing Slippers for a $60,000 purse. Since then, Amos has finished 5th, 6th, 2nd. Her last performance for 2nd in a $56,000 race was solid, with Amos holding a 1 ½ length advantage at the top of the stretch, and then fading late in the stretch. In preparation for today, Amos completed 4 furlongs in 51 seconds in a morning workout on July 28.
Silky Blue is a leading contender on Friday after two promising starts to her career. She finished 2nd on October 3, 2019 as a first-time runner, and then returned to the track on June 25 with an even better performance to win by a nose over Fresco for a $54,000 purse. Silky Blue was a $220,000 purchase last March. She is expected to be a major player in her career, and Silky Blue proved it in her last race. Expect Manny Franco to run a sharp race here aboard Silky Blue and guide her to a win in Race 8.
Race 9 – Saratoga Special
Post Time: 5:46 p.m. EST
Race 9 brings us to the feature race of the day at Saratoga. It’s the only stakes event of the day, with a $150,000 purse on offer in the Saratoga Special (Gr. 2). Therideofalifetime and Cazadero are on my shortlist for Race 9. Therideofalifetime is 1 for 2 in his career with a win on July 11 in his most recent outing at Keeneland.
As a rookie, Therideofalifetime placed 2nd in her first career race on June 19 at Churchill Downs. He finished 2 ½ lengths behind Jackie’s Warrior in that $79,000 race. Therideofalifetime came back in even better form at Keeneland. He won by 8 ¼ lengths in a blowout over Swill for a $70,000 purse.
Therideofalifetime continues to show positives and was strong in the morning on July 27 with a time of 47.80 seconds at 4 furlongs. She is ready to roll on Friday in the Saratoga Special. Cazadero is out today looking for a hat-trick to open her career. After winning on May 29 and June 27 in the Bashford Manor Stakes (Gr. 2), Cazadero needs one more win to open with three straight wins.
Cazadero won in convincing fashion over Gypsy King by 8 ¾ lengths for a $79,000 purse. She followed up for another impressive outing, this time in a Grade 3 race to win by 4 ¾ lengths in the $100,000 Bashford Manor Stakes at Churchill Downs on June 27. Not a bad start to a career for a $120,000 horse. She can make it three in a row and two graded wins in three races today. I’m on board with Cazadero to get it done in the Saratoga Special.