Player Quick Pick: Belmont Park for 10/18/2014

D.S. Williamson

October 18th, 2014

Belmont Park hosts some great New York bred stakes action today. The best state-bred NY horses figure to hit the track today with arguably the best betting race being the Hudson Handicap for 3 and up gong 6.5 furlongs for a purse of $150,000.

Belmont Park 10 | 5:14 pm ET

Hudson Hcp for 3&UP going 6.5f

7 – Moonlight Song – 6/1 – Like most New York state-bred events, this one is wide-open. It behooves horseplayers to take a look at a horse that figures to go off at a price. That horse could be Moonlight Song, a seven-year-old gelding sired by Unbridled’s Song that has won 6 races from 15 starts and has banked an impressive $324.9K. Moonlight Song did finish fourth by 6.5 lengths in the Grade 3 Belmont Sprint two back, but in the John Morrisey B state-bred stakes at Saratoga, the Charlton Baker trained gelding’s last, Moonlight Song finished fifth by only 2.5 lengths to likely Hudson Handicap chalk Weekend Hideaway. There’s a chance that Moonlight Song can turn the tables on that rival because Joel Rosario hops aboard and the last two works leading up to this have been awesome.

3– Noble Cornerstone – 3/1 – This New York bred gelding has 4 wins and 2 seconds from 9 starts and looks to be on the right track after winning 3 out of its last 4. The only non-victory was in the Grade 1 King’s Bishop. That can be forgiven since any Grade 1 in New York is likely to attract some of the best horses in North America. Like Moonlight Song, Noble Cornerstone goes into this off of a great work. Also in the gelding’s favor is that trainer Thomas Morley is winning at 25% at the meet and Noble Cornerstone could get a nice stalking trip under hot jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. Irad has 7 wins, 5 second place and 7 third place finishes from 28 mounts in the past 7 days. Ortiz, Jr. will get him in the right position and it’s always tough to go against horses in great form, but the odds will be light.

4 – Weekend Hideaway – 5/2 – The likely chalk couldn’t stick with Palace, Big Business and Vyjack in the Grade 1 Forego in his last, but that race was at 7 furlongs, while this one is at 6.5. The Forgo was also run at Saratoga where horses sometimes just don’t perform well. Trainer Phillip Serpe is winning races at Big Sandy at an awesome 28%. Not only that, but the four-year-old colt sired by Speightstown has a decent 2-1-3 record from 6 races over the Belmont dirt. Some decent works should set Weekend Hideaway up to run well in this even though he hasn’t raced competitively since August 30. Weekend Hideaway can stalk or lay close if need be. He’s also undefeated at the distance and gets the services of hot jockey Jose Lezcano. Horseplayers can’t discount the chalk’s chances. If the morning line odds drift, he’s the play on top.