Even though it’s more than a week away, the Aug. 3-5 stakes extravaganza at Saratoga Race Course is taking shape, with the release by the New York Racing Association of a list of probables for the four graded stakes.
Expected for the $750,000 Whitney Invitational Handicap (gr. I) Aug. 4, a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I), are grade I winners Flat Out, Hymn Book, Ron the Greek, along with Endorsement, Fort Larned, Hunters Bay, Rule , Successful Dan, and Trickmeister. Mucho Macho Man and To Honor and Serve were listed as possible.
On the same card, the $300,000 Prioress Stakes (gr. I), a new addition to the Saratoga stakes schedule, is expected to attract Emma's Encore, Jamaican Smoke, Tu Endie Wei, and Agave Kiss, who were the first, second, third, and fifth-place finishers, respectively, in the grade III Victory Ride Stakes on July 7 at Belmont Park. Judy the Beauty is also probable, with Ageless, Livi Makenzie, and Well Kept listed as questionable.
The third grade I of the weekend, the $400,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap, at six furlongs over the main track Aug. 5, is expected to include lightly raced Emcee, Hamazing Destiny , Jersey Town , Justin Phillip, Rothko, and possibly Indiano and Sloane Ranger.
The stakes action begins Aug. 3 with the $200,000 Honorable Miss Handicap (gr. II), a six-furlong sprint for fillies and mares. Gleaming and Winning Image, the respective top two finishers from Delaware Park’s Sweet and Sassy Stakes on June 23, are probable for the Honorable Miss, as are Vagrancy Handicap (gr. II) winner C C's Pal, grade III winner Island Bound, and Chaldea Stakes heroine Roman Treasure. Beat the Blues and Bold Affair are questionable.