Saratoga Horse Racing Picks for Friday 8/21/20
It's a great time to dive into horse racing, and FanDuel Racing gives you the chance to do just that.
Starting at 1:10 p.m. EST, we have nine races at Saratoga. Using numberFire's projections as a guide, here are some of the best bets.
As always, check the program for scratches and changes, and check the weather and track conditions.
(I will reference Equibase's Speed Figure in selected races, which tells you how fast a horse has been running in each of its races -- adjusted for track, distances, and conditions).
Golden Pal, Race 3
FanDuel Racing Odds: 3/5
Race 3 is the minor $85K Skidmore Stakes for two-year-olds sprinting 5 ½ furlongs. The heavy favorite and top pick at numberFire is Golden Pal (3/5) with leading jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. in the irons. A son of Uncle Moe, Golden Pal has finished runner-up in both his starts, including in June when jumping right to a Grade 2 race overseas at Ascot. Golden Pal broke like a bullet and led until the final strides.
Wesley Ward also trains the second morning line choice Fauci (8/5), who broke his Maiden last month in his second start with an 89 speed figure. Daily Horse Picks (DHP) rates both Fauci and Golden Pal tops in class, with Golden Pal the winner followed by longshot Sunny Isle Beach (20/1), who won his debut in June and has been breezing the past month at Saratoga for trainer Wesley Ward’s third horse in this race. The speed favors the two favorites, with DHP indicating the pace preference for Golden Pal and Kentucky Knight (30/1), a son of Speightstown making his debut.
Standup and My Dubai Bobby, Race 5
FanDuel Racing Odds: 9/5 and 10/1
Race 5 is an Allowance race with seven runners sprinting 5 ½ furlongs on the Turf. Standup (9/5) is the horse to beat as favorite, and is one to include in the Grand Slam (races 5-8) and start of the Late Pick 5. But Daily Horse Picks prefers Propensity (4/1) with the favorite finishing second, as those are the top-two speed-rated horses. Standup has finished third in all three 2020 starts with 90’s speed figures, including last month with strong stretch-rider Joel Rosario closing hard.
The top pick of numberFire is My Man Flintstone (5/1) breaking from the far outside for trainer Kenny McPeek. Flintstone has five runner-up finishes in 10 starts, including the last two with 86 speed figures. That included his debut at Saratoga last month on the dirt when taking a 2 ½ length lead in the stretch but unable to hold on as the favorite. Switch back to turf and is the frontrunner with a good shot -- one to include.
My Man Flinstone will be pressed upfront by Dubai Bobby (10/1), who is racing second off a layoff and will move forward after showing little last month. Ready to do better pressing the pace following a bullet work and best-of-18 runners last week. Include in Exacta and Trifecta for a bigger payoff.
I’ll Take the Cake, Race 7
FanDuel Racing Odds: 3/1
Race 7 is a Claiming race with a $40K tag. Seven fillies and mares race 6 ½ furlongs, and the favorite and top choice at numberFire is Jump for Joy (9/5). She has finished first or second in 16-of-26 starts with eight wins, including last month here pressing the pace with fast fractions and inching away late.
Let’s beat the favorite and fire with six-year-old I’ll Take the Cake (3/1). She makes her Saratoga debut with a bullet work in place for EPO trainer Saffie Josesph, Jr. Underrated rider Tyler Gaffalione picks up the mount with I’ll Take the Cake showing past stronger speed figures earlier this year in a minor stakes and ready to win second off the layoff.