Holland's North American free racing picks for Sept. 26
Richard Baltas wins with 16% of his second-time starters and saddles #9 Idol (5-2), who closed to finish second in his debut in a fast time as the favorite over 6 furlongs three weeks ago. Son of Curlin is out of a stakes-winning mare by A. P. Indy and posted a solid 4-furlong work in :47 4/5 eight days ago for Baltas, who wins with 28% of his runners that were beaten as the favorite last time out. Bay meets some well-bred newcomers but experience may prove advantageous under Saez, who has won with one of his last three rides for the barn.
Blinkers are added to #1 Chulainn (5-1), who was not a serious threat when unplaced in his debut over 5 1/2 furlongs at Saratoga last month. Son of Kantharos is out of a mare by Lemon Drop Kid, and trainer Motion wins with 18% of his second-time starters and with 20% using blinkers for the first time. Dark bay can be in good position from the start, and Jose Ortiz retains the mount.
#5 Valedictorian (3-1) has won four of six starts on this turf and comes off a weakening third-place finish after leading early on a sloppy main track here late last month. Dark bay has a record of 12-5-1-2 at this distance, and trainer Breen has won with 27% of his starters at this meet. Daughter of Temple City figures to be in front early and tough to catch under Lopez, who has won with 33% of his rides for the barn in the past 60 days.
Maidens going 6 furlongs include #5 Acceptable Risk (3-1), a debuting son of 13% first-out sire Blame, who is out of a mare by Successful Appeal whose offspring win 16% of their first outings. $190K yearling purchase is a half-brother to four winners and has been working well for trainer Brown, who wins with 20% of his first-time starters. Gelding can win at first asking under Gallardo, who has won with two of his last seven rides for the barn.
Some well-bred maidens include #4 Diamond Ore (4-1), a debuting daughter of Tapit and half-sister to the exceptional Arrogate. $750K weanling purchase has been working well, and trainer Minshall wins with 10% of her first-time starters. Filly is likely ready for a good first outing with in-form rider Stein in the irons. #7 Speightstown Shirl (7-2) makes her first start for Roger Attfield, who also wins with 10% of his first-time starters, and daughter of 16% debut sire Speightstown is a full sister to Shirl’s Speight, who won the Marine (G3). Bay has been posted a string of fast works, and rider Hernandez has won with 13% of his rides for Attfield in the last two months.
A competitive field for the Rodeo Drive (G1) includes #6 Lady Prancealot (2-1), who finished fast when a close second in the John C. Mabee (G2) over 9 furlongs in her latest at Del Mar earlier this month in her second start after a short break. Filly won the American Oaks (G1) here in her one previous start at this distance and has a record of 9-3-2-1 on this turf for trainer Baltas, who wins with 19% of his runners third off a layoff. Bay can be along from off the pace under Rispoli, who has been winning with 26% of his rides on turf.