Who’s Who? Belmont June 9

In Race 1, there is Sudden Surprise, a multiple stakes winning son of Giant Surprise for trainer Todd Pletcher. Sudden Surprise has won 7 of his 14 starts. The stakes placed son of Frost Giant, Bobby On Fleek, was seen last time out in the Pat Day Mile, where he finished 12th. Bobby on Fleek was second to Sudden Surprise in the 2016 Funny Cide Stakes.

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Sudden Surprise breaks maiden.
Photo by Bertram F. Bongard

Race 3 has Edge of Reality in, a graded stakes winner of the Smarty Jones Stakes at Parx in 2013. He is also a minor stakes winner and pretty consistent on the track. Mark Casse also sends out Monster Bea, a stakes winning son of Hat Trick.

In Race 4, the pedigrees on some of the horses in the field are very impressive. There is Silberado, a Arch colt who is half to Blofeld, a MGSW. Bill Mott and Florent Geroux team up on this colt. There is also Marshall Plan, who is out of Versailles Song, a daughter of Unbridled’s Song and Versailles Treaty. Versailles Treaty is the dam of Saarland, George Treaty, and Siren Serenade (dam of Luminance). Kieran McLaughlin sents this colt out with Jose Lezcano. There is also the three year old colt named Emancipation, a full sibling to the 2013 Kentucky Derby winner, Orb. Shug McGaughey sends this colt out with jockey Jose Ortiz

Race 5 has eight two-year-olds looking for their first stakes win the Grade Three Tremont Stakes. Todd Pletcher sends out 4 horses, including Admiral Jimmy (Jimmy Creed), Analyze the Odds (Overanalyze), Analyze Your Luck (Overanalyze), and Salmanazar (Shackleford).

Race 6 has Into the Breach, a half sibling to Cairo Prince by Creative Cause. Jimmy Jerkens sends out Rocketry, a son of Hard Spun.

Race 7 has half siblings to some top racehorses to run over the turf recently. Snap Decision is a half to Mr. Speaker (Pulpit) by Hard Spun. Shug McGaughey sends this colt out with the services of John Velazquez. There is also Lunaire, a Malibu Moon half sibling to Sadler’s Joy, a graded stakes winning son of Kitten’s Joy.

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Mr. Speaker (Pulpit)

In Race 8, the first graded stakes of the day, the True North Stakes (Gr. II) has horses like Whitmore, Stallwalkin’ Dude, Noholdingback Bear, and Holy Boss. Whitmore is trained by Ron Moquett, who has successfully turned this gelded son of Pleasantly Perfect into a sprinting specialist. Whitmore is undefeated in 2017 in four starts and is on a five-race winning streak. Stallwalkin’ Dude, other than in Dubai, has not finished worse than third in 2017. He won his most recent start in the Diablo Stakes. Noholdingback Bear was the 2016 Sovereign Award Champion Sprinter. Brian Lynch has gotten the horse on the board in 11 of his 13 starts. Noholdingback Bear was second in the Diablo Stakes behind Stallwalkin’ Dude in his comeback race. Second off the layoff could be dangerous. Steve Asmussen is sending out his graded stakes winning stud Holy Boss, a son of Street Boss. Holy Boss won the Grade Two Amsterdam Stakes, and listed stakes Chick Lang, Bachelor, and Duncan F. Kenner Stakes.

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Whitmore wins the Count Fleet Stakes

Race 9 is the Grade Two New York Stakes, a turf race for fillies and mares four-years-old and upward. The race, void of Time and Motion, has Suffused a multiple graded stakes winner. Suffused won two of her three races this year. There is also Hawksmoor, who won he first start of the year, the Grade Three Beaugay Stakes. There is also Sea Calisi, the Chad Brown entry who is a multiple graded stakes winner. Sea Calisi won her comeback race this year in the Grade Two Sheepshead Bay Stakes, a race in which she won last year too. Finally, there is Dacita, the other Chad Brown runner, who is a multiple grade/group 1 winner. The mare was second last time out in her 2017 debut in the Beaugay Stakes.

Race 10, the Grade Three Belmont Gold Cup Invitational , brings colts and geldings four-years-old and up. There are only two four-year-olds, but those who highlight this race is Now We Can (GB), who was second in this race last year, and has been running his best races back home in England. He could be the best in this field this year. There is also Taghleeb, Mike Maker trainee who is a graded stakes winning son of Hard Spun. In his three races this year, Taghleeb won the W. L. McKnight Handicap, finished 4th in the Pan American, and second in the Grade One Man O’ War Stakes Kieran McLaughlin sends out Farz, a half sibling to Hollywood Don, a minor turf stakes winner. In six of his ten starts, the colt has hit the board. There will also be appearances from Wayward Kitten, Bullard’s Alley, and Hunter O’Riley.

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Taghleeb

Finally, in Race 11, the Bed O’ Roses Invitational Stakes, features horses like By The Moon, High Ridge Road, and Indulgent. By The Moon, one of the best female sprinters in the country, won the Grade Three Vagrancy Stakes last time out, was second in the Grade One Ballerina, and won this race last year. Trainer Linda Rice sends out graded stakes winner High Ridge Road, a daughter of Quality Road. High Ridge Road won the Grade Two Barbara Fritchie Stakes and then placed in the Ruffian Stakes last out. High Ridge Road will be carrying 121 pounds, versus 119 pounds carried by everyone other than Lightstream. There is also Indulgent, who is a Bernardini half to Frosted. Indulgent won her maiden in her 3rd start and two allowance races before placing second in the Grade Two Distaff Stakes before 5th in the Ruffian Stakes.

The card on June 9, the day before the Belmont Stakes, has a huge, fully loaded card of top class thoroughbred racing. Who are you picking in the stakes races for the day?

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