Churchill Downs Picks: Nod to Arlington Million part of special Saturday card on August 13

Arlington Park was sold by Churchill Downs Inc. last year, but on Saturday they are honoring the famous race that was, in-part, what made the track so famous. Picks included ... here we go!
Arlington Park was sold by Churchill Downs Inc. last year, but on Saturday they are honoring the famous race that was, in-part, what made the track so famous. Picks included ... here we go!

Churchill Downs Picks: Saturday, August 12, 2022

  • Race 1: 3-5-1-9
  • Race 2: 4-2-1-6
  • Race 3: 7-3-8-4
  • Race 4: 7-10-6-1
  • Race 5: 4-3-5-1
  • Race 6: 6-9-3-10
  • Race 7: 3-1-2-4
  • Race 8: 1/1A-8-3-7
  • Race 9: 1-8-2-6
  • Race 10: 6-2-5-3
  • Race 11: 6-1-4-9
  • Most Likely Winner: Santin #6 (Race 11)
  • Best Value: Intrepid Heart #6 (Race 10)

On Saturday, famed Churchill Downs Inc. (CDI) puts on a one-day event to honor Arlington Park's running of what came to be known as "The Million." That was a race on the grass that garnered international attention, and was the 1st in the world to offer a $1 million purse. It was always run with a bevy of stakes in August, and now it is back for a special card.

Since the Matt Winn Turf Course has undergone a refurbishment, there will be limited turf racing on the card. Only 2 of the races that once were part of that celebrated Chicago card remain. We examine both the Arlington Million and the Beverly D, and picker J.N. Campbell is ready with his selections.  

At we have you covered, including all of the action! It is a good time for some of the best that North American racing has to offer. Stay tuned! If you're looking for picks elsewhere around the country this Saturday be sure to check out our free Horse Racing Picks via the gold button below. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter ... Horseracing_USA !!!

Horse Racing Picks

All-Stakes Rundown … 

Race 5: Turf, 1 1/8th, Beverly D Stakes (G1), $500k, F&M 3+

How will the Matt Winn Turf Course play? Hmm … anyone’s guess … The Churchill stakes action begins with an homage to Arlington Park … it’s the Beverly D. This Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” contest offers entry into the Filly and Mare Turf (G1) at Keeneland in November. That usually means that American representatives will face some stiff international competition. To check that kind of power, you want a blade runner that has the past history, plus the budding talent to build some nice form over the course of the late summer and into the fall. I think that Chad Brown’s Rougir (FR) #4 fits the bill. Owners Peter Brant and Michael Tabor brought this filly by Territories (IRE) over, after they purchased her for a whopping $3.3 million. After missing in last year’s BC F&M Turf (G1), she was officially transferred to Brown. Her NYRA attempts continue to be mixed, at best, but she comes to Churchill with much promise. Manny Franco is getting more and more opportunities to ride for Brown, and I have the utmost confidence that this one can punch her ticket to Keeneland.

Wagering Recommendation: $25/$50 WP #4


Race 7: Dirt, 6F, Lady Tak Stakes, $200k, F&M 3+

The dirt sprinters will be out in force, and we have a marquee match-up between Neil Pessin’s Bell’s the One #1 and Greg Foley’s Sconsin #2. They have faced one another many times, and recently the latter has gotten the best of the former. Honestly, you could put their names in a bag and shake it up … the result … anyone’s guess. Most will probably side with Foley … he has Gaffalione in his corner. When it comes to a top selection, I am going with John Ortiz’s Joyful Cadence #3. The filly by Runhappy has the requisite skills, and Reylu Gutierrez knows how to hustle this one. He did just that when he was last aboard this 4-yr-old at Prairie Meadows in a “Non-G.” I realize the competition in that race might not be up to par with this bunch, but her class rating is on the rise. What we know for sure is she will be more than a square price when this race goes off …

Wagering Recommendation: $100 Bankroll, Graduated Wager, WPS #3 ($10-W, $15-P, $75-S)


Race 10: Dirt, 1 3/16ths, Fort Larned Stakes, $200k, 3+

Named for one of the best, this distance test on the Main Track brings together an eclectic crowd of runners. I think Kenny McPeek has the inside track with King Fury #2, a colt by Curlin that braved the BC Juvenile (G1) at Keeneland in ’20, and then travelled the Derby Trail the year after. He was no match for Essential Quality in the Travers S. (G1), but he did build some nice class along the way. His ’22 campaign began in April at Turfway Park, but since then he has not been seen outside the training track. How sharp will he be? That is a question … Instead of backing this one, I am more interested in Joe Sharp’s uncoupled entry … Twilight Blue #5 and Intrepid Heart #6. Both of these runners will be stretching out, but that isn’t much of an issue. I am more interested in the fact that both of them relish the Churchill oval. Sharp is one of those unheralded conditioners that has yet to crack the nation “super trainer” conversation … that will soon change. Intrepid Heart #6, with Tyler Gaffalione in the irons, this gelding by Tapit has all the ability to get the job done. That last speed fig he posted at Churchill in late June before the Meet closed was solid against OC80kn3x-types. Here is the wager I have constructed … Sharps up!

Wagering Recommendation: $2 Trifecta Box, 2/5/6


Race 11: Turf, 1 1/8th, Arlington Million Stakes (G1), $1 Million, 3+

There is history and the culture of Arlington Park is something to be remembered … The famous Arlington Million has moved, in case you did not hear, and it comes to the Twin Spires. The purse is back where it once was, but the distance will not be the customary 1¼. The central question though is not the length of this race, but actually the ground. The Matt Winn Turf Course set-up rather strangely in late April and May, before it was summarily scrapped … safety was the concern. Will the raters be able to rate? Will the closers be able to close? We shall see … What I am confident of is the top pick that I made in the Turf Classic (G1) on the Kentucky Derby undercard was solid then, and should be now. Brendan Walsh’s Santin #6 was dead-on that day, and the Godolphin homebred has the class to grab this purse. A son of Distorted Humor, the colt missed in the Manhattan (G1), but he should enjoy a return to Louisville. Tyler Gaffalione is the master of this place, and he does his best on the green. There are some tough competitors in here, but the “Boys in Blue” will triumph … odds of 3/1 … yes indeed!

Wagering Recommendation: $2 Exacta Wheel, 6 w 1/2/3/4/5/7/8/9


Enjoy this special Churchill Downs Saturday! The tradition under the Twin Spires marches on … Be sure to follow us on Twitter … @Horseracing_USA !!!