Sensational Sands Point winner, favorites perform well as Belmont opens Fall session

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September 16th, 2015


A lucrative stakes race topped the opening weekend at Belmont Park.

Sands Point S. (G2): Godolphin’s homebred SENTERIO ITALIA (Medaglia d’Oro) tracked in second early, took the lead in early stretch and spurted away from her foes in a superb 3 ¾-length romp under Joel Rosario. The Kiaran McLaughlin trainee endured nine panels on the good inner turf in 1:48 4/5.

Track Stats

A total of 28 races were held at the Elmont, New York venue, with favorites winning at a 46 percent rate and the top two betting choices combining for 64 percent of the wins during the week. From 22 races on the main oval, four animals won in wire-to-wire fashion (18 percent), while one of the six grassy races were taken all the way on the lead (17 percent).  

It is hard to make any judgments on how either surface is playing as of yet, with only three days of racing and wet conditions this past weekend. Though, with a high percentage of favorites coming home in first place, we can assume both ovals are fair to this point.

From the four who led at each call on the dirt, three occurred on Friday. In total, two came in route races and the other pair in dashes.

Meet Totals












157 (38%)

2ND Choices:


93 (23%)

Turf Wire:


34 (18%)

Dirt Wire:


57 (26%)



Friday (9/11)

2ND – FISH TRAPPE ROAD (Trappe Shot) returns to this list after a superb maiden tally for conditioner Bret Calhoun, drawing off for fun in the end. The juvenile colt didn’t post the fastest time but was visually impressive and could be stakes bound with more development.

5TH – TAPLESS (Tapit) was always well placed, took a lead in midstretch and stayed on to be a clear second in a solid debut beneath Manny Franco. The Tony Dutrow-trained two-year-old filly does not figure to be a maiden for long.

8TH – MISS ELLA (Exchange Rate) fought off a pair of challengers in the stretch en route to a game stakes tally for conditioner Graham Motion. The sophomore filly came home swiftly and is in fine form with obvious talent right now.

9TH – THUNDERBIRD WINGS (Northern Afleet) took a ton of money in this debut offering and we see why, as the Steve Klesaris ran down a clear one late to post a pretty nice tally first out. The gelded sophomore is one to watch for us and likely will not be in for a tag in his subsequent try.

Saturday (9/12)

4TH – SAIL AHOY (Bernardini) is another repeat visitor to the watch, coming through for Shug McGaughey over a decent field. The well-bred juvenile colt was last early but best late, and appears to be the type who can run all day.

9TH – Senterio Italia has now posted a pair of sensational graded wins in succession and is evolving into one of the top turf distaffers in the U.S. The filly beat what looked like a real good field with relative ease.

Sunday (9/13)

7TH – MEXIKOMA (Birdstone) was in too deep last time but showed his ability in this allowance romp, and the talented four-year-old colt will likely be stakes bound right back for Michael Dilger.

A Look Ahead

Saturday’s $200,000 Noble Damsel S. (G3) is the lone graded attraction this weekend.