Stephen Foster Handicap, Saturday June 14th

This segment of the Pick 6 Challenge begins Saturday May 3rd with the Kentucky Derby. It will span 9 weekends of racing through Saturday, June 28th. The racing will cover the 3 Triple Crown races (Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes). It starts Saturday May 3rd, and will conclude Saturday June 28th with the Gold Cup at Santa Anita. Be sure to log in each weekend to make your picks for the races on Saturday. Races and past performances usually go up on Wednesday night. Entries are added by Thursday.

This week the Santa Anita races are first on the card, as we return to Churchill Downs for night racing this weekend!  The entries are a little on the light side this week, so it will be interesting to see if we have a lot of high scores.  We are all probably so used to picking from 12-13 horse races that 8 is going to seem like a gift.  We’ll see, it may be the most challenging week yet.

Race 1: The Shoemaker Mile.
In Race 1, the Shoemaker Mile I think that Obviously and Jack Milton’s best days are behind them.  Winning Prize looks great and will no doubt be a top pick, and Summer Front put up huge numbers last time out, can he repeat?  Not much else from Pulpit or Silentio.

Race 2: The Vanity Stakes.
In Race 2, the Vanity Stakes, Let Faith Arise looks like the pick of this bunch, with maybe Yahilwa challenging.  Everyone else has put up some good numbers in the past, with a drop off in their last start.  It should be interesting to see who bounces back.

Race 3: The Matt Winn Stakes.
Our first night race a Churchill is the Matt Winn Stakes.  Tapiture is an intriguing play, well rested since a poor start in the Derby, but can you blame him?  20 horses is a lot to deal with, hard not to like a Triple Crown contender here. Rise Up is rested, but has poor graded stakes results.  Almost Famous killed in the last Allowance race, but these are not allowance horses.  Ulanbator is training well, and Conquest Titan seems to have leveled out, but is that speed fast enough to win this race?  Doubtful.

Race 4: The Fleur de Lis Handicap.
Six for the Fleur de Lis Handicap and on paper it looks like Flashy American should do just fine.  FiftyShades and On Fire Baby should also contend.  Molly Morgan, the sneaky pick?

Race 5: The Stephen Foster Handicap.
The Stephen Foster looks awesome, good luck choosing from Revolutionary, Will Take Charge, Golden Ticket, and Prayer for Relief.  Moonshine Mullin could have a shot at this as well.  Save your picks for this one, and tune in, hope this is on TVG, or else you’ll see me tuning in online.

Race 6: The Regret Stakes.
Our last race has the most entries, A little Bit Sassy seems a little bit ahead of this field, Personal Diary and Istanford could be there as well.  Aurelia’s Belle wasn’t in the right class for the Oaks, but did fair well in the G2 and G3 stakes races before hand, is the switch to Turf a good thing? Stellaris and Share the Sugar have a couple wins apiece, but both are moving up in class.  Sugar has a win at the track in her last start, didn’t someone just spark an upset after winning at the track of their previous start?  Oh yeah, that would be Tonalist who won his last trip at Belmont.

I must say that I am really surprised how many people seem to have come out in support of Steve Coburn’s lobby to change the Triple Crown format.  It seems like disappointing typical American ideology.  If something is too hard to do, let’s just change it to make it easier.  It seems to happen in so many sports, let’s add more teams to the playoffs, lets add more playoff games.  If the format was changed it would totally diminish the magnitude of a Triple Crown win.  There’s a reason it hasn’t happened in so many years, it is hard.  And just because it is hard doesn’t mean the rules should change just to make it easier.

Good Luck to all this week.

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