One year after London Bridge became the first New York-bred to win a race at the Breeders' Cup World Championships, horses bred in the Empire State are securing spots with an eye toward doing more damage at this year's event.
With Wise Dan still progressing in his comeback from May 16 colic surgery, favoritism and a highweight assignment in Saratoga's $500,000 Fourstardave Handicap (gr. IIT) go to Dale Romans trainee Silver Max.
New York-bred Palace, formerly a $20,000 claimer, earned his first grade I victory for owner Antonino Miuccio and trainer Linda Rice in the $350,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt (gr. I) Aug. 2 at Saratoga Race Course.
The $1.5 million Whitney (gr. I) (Aug. 2)--the richest race this summer at Saratoga Race Course--has attracted a robust field of likely starters, topped by last year's Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner, Palace Malice.
Clearly Now returned to the winner's circle in blazing fashion July 5, setting a track record for seven furlongs when taking home the $400,000 Belmont Sprint Championship Stakes (gr. II) by open lengths at Belmont Park.
However you feel about California Chrome (and let's face it, emotions are running hot right about now), in handicapping this race, you must move beyond whatever rooting interest you have and stick to the basics.
Dads Caps, a front-running sprint specialist who won the April 5 Carter Handicap (gr. I), tops the nine-horse field of 4-year-olds and up entered for the $250,000 True North Stakes (gr. II) at Belmont Park June 6.
My Titania appears to be in fine fettle for the Etihad Airways Irish One Thousand Guineas (Ire-I) May 25 at the Curragh after a slight setback forced her to miss the English equivalent earlier this month.
Lemon Drop Dream and Action Andy are co-highweights at 115 pounds for the Maryland Sprint Handicap, with Lemon Drop Dream entering the race off a victory in the Count Fleet Sprint H. (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park.
Palace Malice, a prohibitive favorite at odds of 1-20, made easy work of his three opponents in the $142,500 Westchester Stakes (gr. III) May 11 at Belmont Park in his prep race for the Metropolitan Handicap (gr. I).