Horses of note in Belmont Park's $122,784 Pick 6 carryover
This lucrative carryover is the direct result of chaotic results on Saturday. Rainfall led to a sloppy track and the cancellation of turf racing, and only one favorite managed to prevail during the Pick 6. Upset winners at 15-1 and 28-1 sealed the deal, knocking out every ticket.
Rain could complicate the turf races
The Sunday carryover gets underway in Race 4 (post time 2:31 p.m. ET), but here’s the problem—there’s more rain in the forecast, and there’s a strong chance the turf races will be transferred to the main track. This is problematic for bettors hoping to plan their tickets early, since we won’t know the complexions of the fields until race-day changes are announced.
Consider Race 8, the Paradise Creek S. for three-year-olds racing seven furlongs on grass. The Wesley Ward-trained stakes winners #3 Outadore (8-5) and #6 Chasing Artie (9-5) are the logical favorites, but they’ve done their best running on turf, and both finished off the board in their lone starts on dirt. If the Paradise Creek is transferred to the main track, I might prefer the chances of #1 Beren (8-1), a tried-and-true dirt sprinter who rallied to win Belmont’s six-furlong Gold Fever S. by a nose three weeks ago.
Main-track only entrants warrant extra attention
Race 7, a 1 3/8-mile allowance optional claiming race, presents similar challenges. Morning line favorite #1 Temple (8-5) is a stakes-winning turf starter who finished 11th in his lone run on dirt. But that was 2 1/2 years ago, during a quiet period in Temple’s career; his grass efforts at the time weren’t much better. If Sunday’s race is transferred to dirt, will Temple stay in the field and take his chances on the main track? And if he does, can he hold his own against the main-track only entrants #2 Grumps Little Tots (3-1), #3 Limonite (2-1), and #10 Dark Storm (4-1), all of them victorious multiple times on dirt?
One Race 7 runner eligible to factor regardless of surface is #9 Burning Bright (12-1), winner of maiden and allowance races on dirt and synthetic. A son of Belmont (G1) winner Empire Maker out of Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1) winner Forever Together, Burning Bright has tactical speed and is dropping blinkers for trainer Jonathan Thomas, who wins at a 35% rate with this move.
Challenging fields await in the dirt races, too
Deciding how to handle the turf races is one thing, but even the true dirt races look tricky to handicap. Race 4, a $16,000 claiming race, is a perfect example. #2 Super Silver (2-1) towers over the field from a Brisnet Speed rating perspective, but his 15-1-5-3 record indicates he’s something of a “pick up the pieces” type prone to settling for minor awards. He also hasn’t run since February 2020, so there’s no guarantee Super Silver will bring his A-game off the 15-month layoff.
If Super Silver misfires, the logical alternative is probably #5 Millean (9-2), a competitor in the Sam F. Davis (G3) during the winter and runner-up in a $25,000 claiming race two starts back. Dropping down the class ladder can place this Triple Crown nominee in the hunt for victory at a fair price.