Tapicat, Watsdachances Rematch in Lake Placid
Besilu Stable's Tapicat, whose three-race win streak was snapped with her third-place finish in the July 24 Lake George Stakes (gr. IIT), and Watsdachances, who rallied to finish second to Kitten's Dumplings in that race, meet again Aug. 18 in the $200,000 Woodford Reserve Lake Placid Stakes (gr. IIT) at Saratoga Race Course.
The 1 1/8-mile turf event, to be run as Race 8 at 4:39 p.m. EDT, has drawn nine sophomore fillies, although two are entered under main-track-only conditions.
No worse than third in five career starts, Tapicat strung together a trio of victories during the winter in Florida, breaking her maiden and taking an optional claimer at Gulfstream Park before a gate-to-wire win in the Florida Oaks (gr. IIIT) at Tampa Bay Downs. In the Lake George, the 3-year-old daughter of Tapit took the lead coming off the turn and was in front to the final yards before being overtaken by Kitten's Dumplings.
Trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott, Tapicat drew post position 2 and was listed as the 9-5 favorite on the Lake Placid morning line. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith will ride as part of a 120-pound impost; the gray filly is highweighted along with Sycamore Racing's Virginia Oaks (gr. IIIT) winner Nellie Cashman from the barn of Francis Abbott III.
Watsdachances, whose 11-length rally fell a half-length short in the Lake George, won her first stateside start last year at the Spa, taking the P. G. Johnson by a neck over Broken Spell. A 2 1/4-length winner of the Miss Grillo Stakes (gr. IIIT) last October at Belmont Park, the Irish-bred daughter of Diamond Green closed out her 2-year-old campaign with a solid second to Flotilla in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (gr. IT) for trainer Chad Brown and owners Michael Kisber, Bradley Thoroughbreds, and Nelson McMakin.
This year Watsdachances is still seeking the winner's circle, having finished fourth in the Appalachian (gr. IIT) at Keeneland in April and third in the May 27 Sands Point (gr. IIT) at Belmont prior to the Lake George. The 2-1 second choice on the morning line, she drew post position 3 and will be ridden by Javier Castellano.
Donning blinkers for the Lake Placid will be the Graham Motion-trained Concise, who made a belated rally from last to finish second in an optional claimer July 25 at the Spa in her American debut. Andrew Stone's Lemon Drop Kid filly won a maiden race at Kempton as a 2-year-old and finished fourth in a stakes at Newbury in May in her most recent European outing.
"We thought she ran well in her first start here," said Motion. "This seems like a good spot for her."
Joel Rosario rides Concise, the 5-1 third choice on the morning line, who will start from the rail.
Returned to the turf in her most recent start, Silsita turned in a game effort to win the July 20 My Princess Jess overnight stakes by a nose over Broken Spell at the Spa. It was the second victory of the year for the Macho Uno filly following the Bourbonette Oaks (gr. III) over the synthetic surface in March at Turfway Park. She then finished last of 10 in the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) behind her stablemate, Princess of Sylmar.
"It was a good performance," said trainer Todd Pletcher of her return. "I don't think she liked the surface at Churchill Downs (for the Oaks). We regrouped after that, and she ran respectably to finish second (in the off-the-turf Astronomia June 13) at Belmont. We felt like she was a filly who liked the turf, and her last race gave us added confidence that she is."
Hall of Famer John Velazquez will ride Silsita, 6-1 on the morning line, from post position 6 for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Tanourin Stable.
Rounding out the field are My Princess Jess runner-up Broken Spell and Caroline Thomas, seventh in that event. Skyfall and Flash Forward were entered for the main track only.
$200,000 Woodford Reserve Lake Placid (gr. IIT, Race 8, approximate post time 4:39 p.m. EDT), 3YO fillies. 1 1/8 mile (turf)
PP, Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer, Odds
1. Concise, J. Rosario, 116, H G Motion, 5-1
2. Tapicat, M. E. Smith, 120, W I Mott, 9-5
3. Watsdachances, J. Castellano, 118, C C Brown, 2-1
4. Nellie Cashman, F. Boyce, 120, F Abbott, III, 15-1
5. Broken Spell, R. Albarado, 116, D W Lukas, 8-1
6. Silsita, J.R. Velazquez, 118, T A Pletcher, 6-1
7. Caroline Thomas, R. Napravnik, 116, B Tagg, 12-1
8. Skyfall (MTO), TBA, 116, T A Pletcher, 5-2
9. Flash Forward (MTO), TBA, 116, D Schettino, 2-1
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