How to bet the Open Mind Stakes 2021

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

September 16th, 2021

A talented field of five travels six furlongs on the Churchill Downs main oval in Saturday’s $300,000 Open Mind S. The dash for fillies and mares attracted two of the better one-turn ladies in training, but I don’t think that it’s just a two-horse race.

My top selection is the Greg Foley-trained #2 Sconsin, who finished a respectable fourth in the Ballerina S. (G1) at Saratoga last time out. The Grade 2 heroine has been a sharp performer over the past two campaigns, and she also has compiled a strong 6-3-2-0 mark beneath the Twin Spires.

Sconsin was essentially a one-run closer through 2020 but she has shown more tactical speed this year while knocking heads with some salty fields along the way, including three of the Grade 1 variety. By Include, the likely second choice has something of a tactical edge on the morning-line selection, and I expect her to get the jump turning for home on Saturday with Tyler Gaffalione in the stirrups.

The value of the cast lies with #3 Ain’t No Elmers for conditioner Bret Calhoun. Third in the Honorable Miss H. (G2) at Saratoga most recently after dueling on the lead and leading to midstretch, the four-year-old daughter of Goldencents has displayed improved gate speed since adding blinkers three back, and I expect her to establish the pace from the break in this dash.

If the Kentucky-bred clears and sets reasonable splits, then I envision her being a stubborn foe inside the final furlong at a decent price. She has been training swiftly this season and appears to be sitting on a big effort as the one to catch with Adam Beschizza riding.

#5 Bell’s The One is the deserving one to beat for trainer Neil Pessin. The five-year-old daughter of Majesticperfection is a Grade 1 vixen on the course, she boasts a sterling five-for-five mark at the six-furlong distance, and the bay also comes in with great form following a pair of wins in succession. The late runner will have to rally into a moderate early tempo on Saturday, but her best will make her especially tough to hold off in the late stages of the dash. Regular rider Corey Lanerie will be in the irons.

Open Mind Wagers

  • $20 win #2 Sconsin ($20)
  • $10 trifecta 2,3 with 2,3 with 5 ($20)
  • $5 trifecta 2,3 with 5 with 2,3 ($10)