If you are looking for a long shot on Thursday, check out this one!
1 1/8th (Turf) Wonder Again Stakes (G3), $200k, 3F
The Grade III Wonder Again Stakes has a short history, but a series of amazing winners. How about Lady Eli? What about Time and Motion? Or New Money Honey? Ever heard of Cambier Parc or Sweet Melania? Each of these routers were impressive because they could hold the line, and were across the line in impressive fashion. Now, it is time to add another name to the list of grass goddesses.
Favoritism comes to unexpected runners sometimes, and turf racing is no exception. The tote may yield several options in this case because we have a race that includes a number of salty entries. Take Todd Pletcher’s Jouster #3 who is a filly with a signature win under her belt. Last time, in the Transylvania (G3) at Keeneland she held off both Gift List #6 and Plum Ali #10 in the end. Luis Saez was magnificent up front, and he made the right call early on. After 2 months off, the question is … her sharpness.
Speaking of Gift List #6, I missed picking this Brian Lynch runner in the Edgewood on KY Oaks Day on the Churchill undercard. Maybe I was trying to be too clever, but somehow, I negated the fact that Javier Castellano was in the irons. Silly … silly to bet against JJ. Now, here is a chance to makes amends. There is no doubt that this one is well-bred, and Lynch has her pointed in the proper direction. Not including her in some capacity would be a poor choice to be sure.
As for Christophe Clement’s Plum Ali #10, his daughter of First Samurai is coming into this race with high hopes off-the-bench. Last fall, in the Miss Grillo S. (G2) she was supreme, making it 3 in-a-row. Though the BC Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) didn’t turn out, nobody was going to best Cox’s Aunt Pearl that day. It was her, then everyone else. Even if there is some cut in the ground because of moisture, Joel Rosario has the ability to take her all the way. Should be an interesting pick. As for others in this deeper route, we cannot overlook the mounts of Irad Ortiz who is on Fluffy Socks #7, and Flavien Prat who draws Con Lima #2. Both have potential upside with these 2 super jocks, but their recent exploits speak to a strong level of fitness. Leave them out at your peril.
Finally, I do not want to exclude Mia Martina #1 or Technical Analysis #9 because they come from excellent ownership groups in Eclipse Thoroughbreds and Klaravich Stables. Trained by Graham Motion and Chad Brown, each has strong points. Clearly, the Brown filly is riding high after a pair of NYRA wins at Aqueduct and Belmont. Jose Ortiz has really made his mark on this one, and do not be surprised if she takes this contest. As for Motion’s entry, she is my top pick. As a wise girl, she has talent, breeding, and a really impressive jock who defies his age—Johnny V. I like the price at 15/1, and I like the move to go longer. This might be the wager of the week!