Salvatore Tells Even Money Aldrin To Buzz Off In Saratoga's Third
Prepare your best Dr. Evil voice because even money morning line favorite Aldrin sold for
at the Keeneland April two-year-old sale after this breeze.
Aldrin certainly looked fluent and stylish in that drill, but the :09.80 second time for a furlong was hardly anything all that exceptional over a Keeneland polytrack surface that played like the Bonneville Salt Flats the morning of the under-tack show.
Indeed, his :09.80 clocking represented only a seven-way tie for the sixth fastest clocking of 45 horses to drill a furlong. The track surface was so fast, that a Sky Mesa New York bred who failed to meet a $35,000 reserve as a yearling, actually posted a bullet :09.40 clocking. And not only were the times of the under-tack drills outrageously fast, but also the horses who worked there haven't exactly lit it up on the track.
So, why the hysteria for Aldrin? His pedigree, his connections, and his workout buzz.
This Malibu Moon colt is out of Tap Your Heels, the dam of super sire Tapit. He's trained by Chad Brown, and his workout reports have been fairly glowing. However, bettors looking to oppose Aldrin today can raise doubt about each of those three factors. While his pedigree is great, it's not especially great for a six-furlong debut race. He's bred to prefer a little more ground. Chad Brown hasn't been off to a quick start at this meet, and while Aldrin is reportedly working flawlessly, he's only done it while going evenly with another highly touted unraced Chad Brown two-year-old named Ludicrous. It's not like Aldrin has been dusting workmate after workmate and is ready to blast off out of the gate.
The bottom line is that I respect the chances of Aldrin, but I'm definitely not willing to accept a very short price on him. So who is his opposition?
Thirtysiverpieces: Dam of this horse won her debut at six furlongs over a synthetic track in England. His sire Badge of Silver won his racing debut in freakish fashion going just 4.5 furlongs at Keeneland. This Wesley Ward trainee has good foundation with a worktab that goes all the way back to mid-March. No local works for this, but there's a good bit of encouraging things about this horse.
Da Jenius: This is a half sibling to the wickedly fast Madcap Escapade. One of my personal favorites, Madcap Escapade was dismissed at 16/1 odds in her debut, and won by 10 lengths, going six furlongs at Gulfstream Park.. In her next start Madcap came back and torched the field in the Old Hat by almost a dozen lengths. She was assigned a sensational 109 BRIS speed figure and 108 Beyer Speed Figure for that victory. Her Lifetime past performances are attached:
I was very tempted to take a chance and pick Da Jenius to win this race, but the closer I looked at him, the harder it became to do. Over the last five years, his trainer Eric Guillot is 0-for-28 with two-year-old first time starters and some of them were defeated at tracks like Evangeline Downs and Louisiana Downs. What's more, the workout reports for Da Jenius aren't as good as they are for some other horses in here. He's outworked a 3-year-old filly named Lovely Elle, who debuted on Friday and finished a well beaten third in a $35,000 MCL race for fillies.
Today's Agenda: This colt is by Monba out of a mare who was a very nice Thistledown based sprinter. Initially a $75,000 yearling, he proved a successful pinhook selling for $180,000 after a good looking drill, but one that wasn't especially fast. His local work caught the eye of clockers, when he reportedly went a bit better than the older Turf specialist Brickyard Kitten. This horse has some appeal, but we're far more interested in a Tony Dutrow second-timer than a Tony Dutrow debuter. Especially one who debuts without lasix.
Bayerd: This colt was a failed pinhook. Initially a $135,000 yearling purchase, Bayerd competed in two separate 2-year-old sales, before they finally cut their losses when he sold for just $75,000 at the Fasig Tipton Timonium sale. The connections and pedigree of this one are attractive, and he certainly has a lot of foundation under him after having competed in two different juvenile sales, but we want no part of failed pinhooks, in these type of races.
Captain Moss: At first glance, my initial thought was "another toss-out first-time-starter for Zito." Indeed, over the last five years, Zito is just 7-for-132 (5% wins) with two-year-old debuters. However, this son of Quality Road has reportedly been training very impressively. He's been showing good zip and dusting an older workmate named Appealing Alex, who is a moderate maiden with four races under him, but one that Zito hasn't yet dropped in for a tag. Zito is 0-for-47 over the last five years, in 2-year-old Maiden Special Weight sprints at Saratoga, so it's hard to endorse.
King Rontos: Debuted in the Tremont for Rudy Rod, but it was a small and fairly weak field. King Rontos was never involved in his debut and though he missed second by only a half length, the horse who held him off for the place money had considerable trouble. I like that he has experience, but others offer more appeal.
Sharm: Over the last five years, Lukas has a 0-for-42 record with two-year-old first time starters in Maiden Special Weight dirt sprints at Saratoga. The workout reports on this one are fairly mixed. A son of Majestic Warrior, the dam of this horse was primarily a router. Others offer more appeal.
Aldrin: The aforementioned Tapit kin for Chad Brown.
Competitive Edge: Pletcher trained debuter landed on the also-eligible list. This son of Super Saver sold for an eye-catching $750,000 at the Fasig Tipton Florida sale after working an eight in 10-flat during the preview show. The dam of Competitive Edge was a very useful stakes-placed sprinter who won 8 out of 20 dirt sprints, but competed at lesser tracks for a good portion of her career. The workout reports have been glowing for this colt. He's easily outworked Designed For War, Dada Maino, and Sky Limit in his last three works, respectively.
1st: Competitive Edge
4th: Captain Moss