Mahoning Valley: Horse racing pick of the day for Nov. 23

Profile Picture: J. Keeler Johnson

November 23rd, 2020

Weekday picks and plays for Thoroughbred racing.

Monday, Nov. 23

Mahoning Valley, Race 8: Steel Valley Sprint S. (6 furlongs, 4:02 p.m. ET)

#1 Vertical Threat (3-1 on the morning line) is a deserving favorite to nab this $200,000 dash for 3-year-olds.

The Richard Baltas trainee is undefeated in two starts sprinting on dirt. He broke his maiden by six lengths at Los Alamitos, before he cruised to victory by 5 1/4 lengths in the 6-furlong Smiling Tiger S. at Del Mar.

The latter effort produced a 97 Brisnet Speed rating, which stamps Vertical Threat among the fastest horses in the Steel Valley Sprint field. The talented colt attempted to stretch his speed for the Pat Day Mile (G2) at Churchill Downs, and while he failed to win, he wasn’t disgraced. He finished sixth by four lengths, after he carved out quick splits of :23.14, :46.22, and 1:09.77.

The cut back in distance and drop in class will make Vertical Threat dangerous in the Steel Valley Sprint. He is training forwardly, so if he breaks alertly from the rail, the rest might be running for second.

With a full field in the mix, Vertical Threat’s 3-1 morning line odds should hold up. Let’s bet the bay colt to win and call it a day.

$25 to win on #1 Vertical Threat

Good luck!