Best Bet: GRASSARLA (8); Best Value: MATINEE BABE (2)
FIRST: Kerry Boy wheels back in a hurry after much-improved third 10 days ago; more to come. Caniform owns swift late-pace and final figures; logical, short-priced threat. Fort Liberty ships up from Gulfstream Park after front-end score in last; odds will be tempting.
SECOND: Matinee Babe is riding a forward line on the numbers and should pack amplified kick with slight cutback in distance. Majestic Mist is speedy, rested and hails from Jason Servis stable; very dangerous. Daddyisdooley bested top selection when second in last two starts; obvious player.
THIRD: Private Client was a “soft” front-end winner in last and should have more in the tank. Achnaha drops and owns field’s fastest figures on best efforts; dangerous. Grateful is speedy and holds sharp current condition; right in the thick of this.
FOURTH: One More Round was a change-of-pace third on Opening Day of meet; call in weak maiden field. River Deep regressed in last after fast-figured second in previous start; bounce-back threat. Javelin has fired big efforts in all three starts; must be considered.
FIFTH: Match Up has the benefit of the rail and could play out as the speed of the speed with aggressive ride. Noble Doss also is quick from the gate and owns 13 wins from 47 starts; dangerous. Street Heat owns stalker’s style and could be sitting in the catbird seat if pace duel develops.
SIXTH: Bad Guy made incremental improvement on the numbers last time and should offer the best price of the contenders. Collective Effort has bested Bad Guy when second in both career starts; runner-up again? Unbridled Charge was dueled into defeat in debut; tighter today?
SEVENTH: Malibu Stacy is 1-for-1 on Spa soil and fired two bullet works since last start; set for best. Annie Rocks, also 1-for-1 at Saratoga, could be ideally positioned in the stalker’s seat; big-time danger. Improv is speedy and should be aided by shorter distance; don’t ignore.
EIGHTH: Grassarla was a front-running maiden winner in last and fired half-mile bullet in the interim; pairs up. Bluegrass Jamboree has delivered strong efforts in all three starts; logical, short-priced player. Cats Halo could be advantageously placed in fractions get hot and hectic.
NINTH: Smart and Sassy owns sprinter’s speed and adds blinkers in weak nightcap; controlling front-runner with proper ride. Piquet was freshened for seven weeks after failing as the favorite in last two starts; strike three today? Words of Love never threatened when a useful sixth in debut; improvement expected. Dream Passage compiled bullet-riddled work slate for first start in nearly a year; worth long look.