2022 Personal Ensign Stakes Betting Odds and Contenders Preview
The top mares in the distaff division clash on Saturday, August 27 in the Personal Ensign Stakes (G1)! The race offers a purse of $600,000, and although only five horses entered the race, four of the five are Grade 1 winners and the other is Grade 1 placed. So, they are all fixtures at the top of the division.
After an uncharacteristic fifth in the Ogden Phipps (G1) last out, Letruska aims to regain her spot at the top of the division. Clairiere, Malathaat, and Search Results—the top three in that Ogden Phipps—face her again. Rounding out the field is Crazy Beautiful, who most recently finished third behind Clairiere and Malathaat in the Shuvee (G2).
Keep on reading to learn more about these top contenders and the trends in the Personal Ensign, and to know how to watch and wager on the Personal Ensign online!
Personal Ensign Stakes 2022 Information
Race Date: Saturday, August 27, 2022
Track: Saratoga Race Course
Post Time: 4:32 p.m. Eastern time
Distance: 1 1/8 miles on dirt
Age/Sex: fillies and mares aged four and up
Where to Watch: TVG.com
Where to Bet: TVG.com and FanDuel Racing
Personal Ensign Stakes Odds
The field for the Personal Ensign drew Wednesday, August 11, with morning lines assigned the next day. Though the morning line does not determine the final price, it tends to be a useful guide to which horses will be favored and who will be a longer shot in the field. However, it is a good idea to keep watching the odds on race day before you place your bets.
This is the field for the 2022 Personal Ensign including post positions, trainers, jockeys, and morning-line odds.
|1||Letruska||Fausto Gutierrez||Jose Ortiz||3-1|
|2||Search Results||Chad Brown||Flavien Prat||7-2|
|3||Clairiere||Steve Asmussen||Joel Rosario||6-5|
|4||Crazy Beautiful||Ken McPeek||Julien Leparoux||15-1|
|5||Malathaat||Todd Pletcher||John Velazquez||5-2|
Watching the odds as post time draws closer is a good thing because it helps you make smarter bets. If a horse you think will be a very short prince is instead cold on the board, you can assess whether you are getting value or whether there is a reason they may run underneath form. On the other hand, if a long shot takes a lot of betting interest, you can think through whether the horse is an underlay or if there may be a reason that you (or the morning line maker) missed for why they are so live.
In short, horse racing is a game of information. So, keep watching TVG and TVG.com for the latest news and odds, and you can make the smartest bets on the Personal Ensign.
Personal Ensign Stakes Prep Results
Three of the five entrants in the Personal Ensign last raced in the Shuvee on July 24 at Saratoga. Clairiere, the “now” horse in the distaff division, rallied to win by 1 1/2 lengths over last year’s Kentucky Oaks winner Malathaat. Crazy Beautiful, who attended the pace through much of the Shuvee, flattened in the final furlong to finish third, 3 1/4 lengths behind the winner.
Two starts ago Clairiere and Malathaat also finished 1-2 in the Ogden Phipps, a race in which Search Results looked clear at the furlong pole but could not hold the top two off, and finished third by 2 1/4 lengths. Search Results has raced once since the Phipps, stalking the pace and taking command in the Molly Pitcher (G3) at Monmouth. Though that was a softer field, it is a positive that second-place Leader of the Band came back to beat a good field in the Summer Colony on August 19. Letruska was last seen in the Ogden Phipps; she set the pace as the odds-on favorite, but weakened badly to finish fifth and last.
Personal Ensign Stakes Contenders
Letruska: At her best, she fits with these, but she has not been at her best yet this year. From a pace perspective, she should be able to dictate terms on the front end, but she will have Search Results and Crazy Beautiful just on her, and will have to hold off Clairiere and Malathaat, two foes in career-best form. Her speed is an asset, so if she ends up drifting up from her morning line she may be worth a shot, but 3-1 against in-form horses would be an underlay.
Search Results: She comes into the Personal Ensign in strong form, she has strong form over the nine-furlong trip, and her tactical speed could help her work a trip. The question is her class. She was no match for Clairiere and Malathaat in the Ogden Phipps, and faced an inferior group in the Molly Pitcher last out. She won nicely, but did not step up the way she would need to in order to suggest she is more than an underneath candidate once again.
Clairiere: A daughter of 2016 Personal Ensign winner Cavorting, she has emerged in her last two starts as the new leader of the distaff division. Though she is a closer, short fields do not faze her, and she can stay in range of a slow pace: she came from well off the pace to run down quicker fractions in the Ogden Phipps, then raced in closer range of a slow pace in the Shuvee and won with authority. Off her last two races, she comes into the Personal Ensign the horse to beat.
Crazy Beautiful: The only horse in the field who has yet to win a Grade 1, she was third behind the two likely market leaders in this race but was no match for that pair. She has yet to run a race that matches the form that Clairiere and Malathaat have turned out in their last few. Her tactical speed is a positive and she has some upside to improve third off the layoff, but it would be a surprise to see her find enough to do more than round out the exotics by default if anyone else lays an egg.
Malathaat: She impressed three starts back when winning the Doubledogdare first off the layoff, showing grit to get up. However, in her last two starts, she has proven second bet to Clairiere: in a close decision two back in the Ogden Phipps, and a more separated one in the Shuvee. After the race, Todd Pletcher claimed that Malathaat came into the race a little quieter than she usually does for her good races. So, make a point of watching Malathaat in the paddock and seeing whether she shows better energy.
Personal Ensign Stakes Past Winners Past Performances
The two races that have produced the most next-out winners of the Personal Ensign over the last ten years include the Delaware Handicap (G2) and the Ogden Phipps, with three winners each. No one from the Delaware Handicap turns up in the Personal Ensign this year, though the last time it produced a Personal Ensign winner was 2015 and that race has declined in importance in recent years.
Four of the five entrants in this year’s Personal Ensign contested the Ogden Phipps with Letruska running in it last out. However, note that all three Personal Ensign winners in the last ten years who came in straight from the Ogden Phipps won that prep. The last time a horse ran off the board in their last race and then won the Personal Ensign was 2012, when Love and Pride was fourth in the Delaware Handicap and then won this race.
Other races that have produced Personal Ensign winners in the last ten years include the Fleur de Lis, the Molly Pitcher, and the Ruffian. The only one of these represented in this year’s edition is the Molly Pitcher. Midnight Bisou (2019) used that as a springboard to the Personal Ensign; Search Results uses it this year.
Personal Ensign Stakes Undercard
The Personal Ensign is the 9th race on Saratoga’s spectacular 13-race Saturday card. The card features six graded stakes events including the meet’s signature race, the Travers (G1). It is one of the best betting dates of the east coast’s premier summer meet. And, you can tune in all day long on TVG.com and place your bets at TVG or FanDuel!
Saratoga Race Course
Based in Saratoga Springs, New York, Saratoga Race Course is the oldest organized sporting venue of any kind in the United States. John Hunter, who became the first chairman of The Jockey Club, and William R. Travers built the horse racing track in 1864.
Saratoga has two popular nicknames—The Spa, named for the nearby mineral springs, and the Graveyard of Favorites, named for the historic upsets recorded there in years past. Perhaps most notable is Man o' War’s only defeat in 21 starts, Secretariat’s loss to Onion after winning the Triple Crown, and Rachel Alexandra losing there in her four-year-old season.
There are three separate horse racing tracks at Saratoga: a main dirt track; an outer turf track known as the Mellon Turf Course, and an inner turf horse racing track. The main dirt track has a 1 1/8 mile circumference, the Mellon Turf Course is a 1-mile turf track and the inner turf track is 7 furlongs. Additionally, there is the Oklahoma Track, used for morning training.
Personal Ensign Stakes FAQ
Q: When is the Personal Ensign Stakes?
A: Saturday, August 27, 2022, at 4:32 p.m. Eastern time.
Q: Where is the Personal Ensign Stakes?
A: The Personal Ensign Stakes takes place at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Q: Which trainer has the most wins in the Personal Ensign Stakes?
A: Two trainers have won the Personal Ensign four times: MacKenzie Miller, whose last win came in 1993 with You’d Be Surprised, and the still-active Shug McGaughey, who most recently won it in 2010 with Persistently. Among trainers with a horse in the race in 2022, Todd Pletcher (trainer of Malathaat) has won it twice, and both Steve Asmussen (Clairiere) and Fausto Gutierrez (Letruska) have won once.
Q: Who is the favorite for the Personal Ensign Stakes?
A: Off of her victories in both the Ogden Phipps and the Shuvee, 6-5 morning-line favorite Clairiere should be the well-defined top betting choice in the Personal Ensign.
Q: Who is the best Personal Ensign Stakes jockey?
A: Angel Cordero, Jr. leads all riders with eight victories in the Personal Ensign. Among jockeys who are riding in the 2022 edition, John Velazquez (riding Malathaat) leads with three wins, most recently with Love and Pride in 2012. Joel Rosario (Clairiere) has won twice, and Julien Leparoux (Crazy Beautiful) has won once.
Q: Who won the Personal Ensign Stakes in 2021?
A: Letruska won the race in 2021, and she makes a repeat bid for trainer Fausto Gutierrez. Her rider will be different, however: Irad Ortiz, Jr. rode last year but Jose Ortiz takes the call this time.